The Matte Before Shark Tank
The Matte is an over-the-sink countertop organizer for makeup supplies. It fits over any sink in order to save space and keep makeup products neat. The Matte has six sections, with three of them having indentations in order to keep makeup brushes, lipsticks, and more from rolling off. This lightweight mat is 6.5” x 9.5” and can fold into itself, leaving it the same size as a tablet or iPad. Once expanded, The Matte doubles in size, making room for nearly 2 pounds worth of makeup products to be placed down. Being a compact product. The Matte is great for use at home and during travel. The Matte is available on their website and on Amazon for $34.99 each, with a choice between black or pink. The company also sells a travel bag for makeup as well, which costs $9.99.
Melissa Clayton founded The Matte in 2014 as a solution to creating less bathroom clutter from makeup products. Melissa graduated from D’Amore McKim School of Business at Northeastern University, where she gained a master’s degree in Business Administration. By 1997, she had become a Certified Public Accountant for PwC. After four years with PwC, she moved on to Oracle, where she worked as a Senior License Consultant for three years. Now, Melissa is not too new to the world of entrepreneurism. In 2006, she launched her first company, Tiny Tags, a personalized necklace company. She started Tiny Tags after she was unable to find the perfect custom necklace. Matte started out the same way. The founder became increasingly bothered by having to lay her makeup on the edge of the sink and having to continuously pick it up when it fell on the floor. Thinking there had to be a better solution to this problem, Melissa set out to create her own, hence The Matte.
Once Melissa had come up with her design, she started looking for designers to work with; however, none of them appeared to be interested since the founder had a set budget. While this could have been a letdown, Melissa didn’t let it dull her determination; instead, she made more calls to design firms. Unfortunately, all of them rejected her design, but one firm was helpful enough to direct her to a freelance designer! After many edits, Melissa finally came up with the final design for The Matte and they manufactured 500 orders, which were ready to be shipped out by October of 2015.
Within the first 2 years after the launch of The Matte, Melissa reported that she had made more than $1,000 in sales. Since she hadn’t gotten her product into stores yet, all her sales were coming from Amazon and the company’s website. She used photos and videos of The Matte to market them on Instagram. The product also received a promotion on Ricky’s NYC verified Instagram account shortly after the launch. The Matte was also featured by InStyle Germany. In 2016, Melissa took part in Today’s Next Big Thing, which gained her an increase in customers. Based on these achievements, it seems as though Melissa has done well with her new business; however, she does have plans to appear on Shark Tank to expand The Matte further.
The Matte on Shark Tank
Melissa Clayton appeared on Shark Tank on April 9, 2021, with her solution to less makeup clutter, The Matte. She is looking for a $100,000 investment for a 20% stake in her company. The founder starts pitching to the sharks with her story, followed by an explanation of The Matte and how she was inspired to create it. She then brings up her sales data, mentioning that all her sales have come from her website, Amazon, and a few other retailers. Within 2020, The Matte did $85,000 in sales, as well as $20,000 in the month leading up to Melissa’s visit to the Shark Tank. Her lifetime sales were up to $200,000 at the time of filming. The Matte costs $7 to make, and it sells for $24.99. That being said, the founder is searching for a shark to help her with marketing her product better.
After the sharks view their samples of The Matte, Kevin O’Leary says, “I haven’t bought this product, but I want the money back”, before stating that he is going out of the deal. Mark Cuban leaves the deal next, due to this business not being a good fit for him. Barbara Corcoran and the guest shark, Kendra Scott, are the last sharks to drop out, leaving Lori Greiner as the last shark to present an offer. Fortunately, Lori is interested in The Matte, and she offers Melissa $100,000 in exchange for a 33.3% stake in the company. She adds that growing this business will not be an easy task; however, she thinks she can help the entrepreneur. The founder tried to place a counteroffer, but Lori rejects it. Ultimately, Melissa accepts Lori’s initial offer.
The Matte Now in 2023 – The After Shark Tank Update
Since Melissa Clayton appeared on Shark Tank, The Matte has seen an increase in their sales. So much so that Melissa had to get the help of her family in order to pack and ship all the new orders coming in. As for the deal Melissa received from Lori Greiner, there has not been any word about that closing at this time. It was assumed that the shark and the founder may have been negotiating still; however, that hasn’t been confirmed. Furthermore, The Matte has hit nearly $500,000 their annual revenue and $6 million worth of sales as of 2023, and those numbers are predicted to increase soon. In addition to that, The Matte is doing great on Amazon, with many 5-star reviews and positive feedback comments. Melissa, on the other hand, has become a part of the Women in Retail Leadership Circle as of 2022.