Somnifix Before Shark Tank
A good night’s sleep is something that should be easy to find. Every day, from the day that we are born, we go to bed. You would think that by the time someone is an adult they would have enough practice that they could get a good night’s sleep with little effort. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case.
When it’s not things like bad mattresses getting in the way, we have to fight our own bodies to get a good night’s rest. Many people snore and this snoring can interrupt a good night’s rest if untreated. You could even fall sick because of snoring, developing a disease such as sleep apnea.
Nicholas Michalak’s father was one such person. He was diagnosed with sleep apnea and the remedies available did not work because he slept with his mouth open. A solution was needed and Nicholas developed Somnifix to fix this.
Somnifix is an adhesive tape that can be put over the mouth preventing mouth breathing at night and ensuring a comfortable night’s sleep. Somnifix is made with hypoallergenic strips that will ensure air only passes through the nasal passages when you are sleeping. Although Somnifix keeps the mouth shut, it has a small vent that allows air to pass through and will open up if one needs more air.
Nicholas started his company and Somnifix was off to a great start but he had a lot of challenges keeping the company running. For starters, he spent a lot of the start-up capital that he had getting the business up and running and needed more capital and some advice to maintain the company’s fast growth rate. He applied to be on Shark Tank and they invited him to make his pitch on the 20th episode of the 10th season.
Somnifix on Shark Tank
Nicholas Michalak went to Shark Tank seeking $500,000 for 10% of his company giving it a valuation of $5,000,000. He started his presentation by talking about snoring and how mouth breathing is a major cause of it. He then showed them the Somnifix mouth strips and how they prevented snoring by preventing people from breathing from their mouths as they slept.
Daymond was used as a volunteer to show how the Somnifix mouth strips prevented mouth breathing and stopped snoring giving the user a deep, quiet sleep. Nicholas then gave the sharks some samples to inspect. Lori asked some questions about the strip and Nicholas answered. After Barbara had inspected the box, she asked Nicholas how much she would pay for them since there were 28 strips in one box.
Nicholas said that the sales price of one box was $15.49. Mark Cuban asked what its cost of manufacture was and he was told that it was $5.60. However, the landed cost of goods was $8.60. Mark then confirmed if Nicholas was making a profit margin of around 50% and Nicholas said that it was slightly lower than 50%. Mark Cuban then asked him what his sales had been.
Nicholas said that he had made $350,000 in sales since he started his business which was 9 months before. Cuban thought that it was a good amount. Nicholas then said that they were about to grow by 40% that year. Nicholas then added that his family and he had invested $1,400,000 into the business.
The sharks thought that the amount that he had invested was a lot and they asked him what he had invested the money in. Nicholas said that he invested the money in research, product development, and clinical studies. Mark Cuban said that most companies would not go that far. Nicholas said that he wanted to establish credibility.
Nicholas then said that the studies showed that his product reduced snoring by 72-100%. Daymond then asked him why he should care about snoring since somebody asleep would never hear themselves snoring. Nicholas said that you would not want to bother your significant other while they were sleeping. Nicholas then said that you also don’t want to snore because it brought other health complications like sleep apnea.
Nicholas was motivated to start the business because his father had been diagnosed with sleep apnea 10 years before. The normal prescription for sleep apnea is the CPAP machine. Sometimes a mandibular advancement device is also prescribed. Nicholas’s father could not use either of those devices because he was a mouth breather and those devices don’t work if you breathe through your mouth.
Lori then asked him if he had a patent. Nicholas said that he had 9 patents already granted. Somnifix also had international protection in over 70 countries. This international protection is the reason why so much money was spent on product development. Nicholas spent $350,000 protecting Somnifix’s intellectual property.
Lori asked him who his competition was. Nicholas said that the Breathe Right Strip was his most obvious competition. He said that it was an adhesive nasal strip that was worn on the nose bridge and it was very similar to their product and sold over the counter. He said that it helped people breathe through the nose but their strip would keep the mouth closed. He thought that they could be products used together instead of competing against each other.
Daymond then left. He said that he thought that he would use it for 2-3 days and then abandon it. It was a good product just not for him and so he was out.
After Daymond left, Kevin asked Nicholas how he justified his $5,000,000 valuation. Nicholas said that his family had already invested $1,400,000 and absorbed a lot of the risk associated with starting the company. He also had regulatory clearance and a listing in 4 major markets worldwide. He said that they have a 31% average monthly growth rate. He thought that they would probably add another $350,000-$400,000 in gross revenue by the time the year was over.
Barbara thought that he had spent double the amount he needed to get the product off the ground and that concerned her. She thought that it showed that the business leader had poor financial judgment. She added that her husband had moved her out of his bedroom because of her snoring but she feared that if she used the device he would let her back in. For that reason, she left.
Lori followed suit and left because she was not certain how the product was expected to work. Kevin then left because he didn’t know how he added value to the company. He thought that a deal where the only value he added to a business was money was not a good deal and so he was out.
Mark Cuban asked Nicholas how easy it was to make a duplicate product and would Breathe Easy do it. Nicholas said that he had a patent that prevented anyone from making a device that prevented mouth breathing. He also thought that his device would be used as a complement to Breathe Easy. Cuban then offered Nicholas $500,000 for 20% of Somnifix.
Cuban said that the amount was non-negotiable. He also said that he was worth it. Nicholas accepted Mark Cuban’s offer. He said that he was grateful to have an entrepreneur like Mark Cuban on his table.
Somnifix Now in 2023 – The After Shark Tank Update
The deal with Mark Cuban was never finalized. However, Somnifix has continued to do business and even launched its website. Somnifix has several affiliate partners as well as wholesalers and their website lists them. There are duplicate products in the market as Mark Cuban had thought there would be, but the company has a stable position in the market.
Somnifix has several social media accounts which have garnered large followings. On Facebook, it has more than 2,800 followers. On Instagram, it has more than 17,600 followers. Its Tik Tok has more than 13,900 followers.
Somnifix has been featured in a variety of magazines including the New York Times, Kelly and Ryan, Popsugar, Mind body green, and Everyday Health. It currently has a value of $3,000,000. Somnifix is located in Maryland, United States. Nicholas is still its chief executive and he continues to provide sleep relief to the whole world while providing employment to the people of Maryland.