Shark Tank

The shark: the most feared ocean predator by man, and animal. The creatures that have survived five mass extinctions, even outlasting the dinosaurs. With a range of 2-15 rows of teeth up to 6 inches long, sharks have established a popular and intimidating presence. The sharks that entered the doors of Holy Family Monday night might not have had these same gigantic teeth, however, they were potentially equally as intimidating to the students of Mr. Richter’s Psychology of Business and Marketing class.

Throughout the first semester, the students learned the ins and outs of business and marketing as they were being prepared for a final shark tank presentation. Students were broken up into groups with the task of creating a product or service that they would pitch to a panel of “sharks” at the end of the semester. There was a great deal of information and work put into these hypothetical businesses including a mission and vision statement, a competitive analysis, and a profit and loss grid. Monday night in the performing arts center, the groups finally had the opportunity to present their businesses with the hopes of approval and investment from the “sharks”.

There were a few familiar faces on the panel of sharks. Caitlin Tvrdik graduated from Holy Family and is currently the director of marketing for Lift Brands. Brady Richter and Griffin Johnson represented Holy Family’s graduating class of 2018 and were also the winners of last years shark tank. They are currently at the University of St. Thomas in the Opus School of Business. Mike Buchholz, the father of junior Jack Buchholz, stood in representing sales as he is the vice president of sales for Sammons. Brett Machtig represented the finance and investment aspect as he is a founding partner for Capital Advisory Group, and has written many books. And finally, Mr. Robb Richter. Representing Mergers and Acquisitions, Robb Richter is the founder of rCentruc Advisors, and more commonly known as the teacher of the class. The sharks posed thoughtful and important questions that kept the presenters on their toes and ensured that they have thought through all the details of their business.

There was a great variety in the types of products and services: we saw everything from a Bluetooth charger, to a book club service, to taco tape. Many great ideas were featured as the students displayed strong presentations and did a little convincing as to why their business would be a success. The overall experience was very professional and there seemed to be exciting energy in the room. Don’t be surprised if we see some great businessmen and women come out of Holy Family, and perhaps these innovative ideas will come to life.