Shark Tank Scouts CES, Snags BenjiLock

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Countless entrepreneurs are looking for that big break, the one that propels them and their invention to fame and fortune. Some, like BenjiLock founder Robbie Cabral, realized that opportunity at CES and the event’s showcase for startups, Eureka Park. When Robbie met Shark Tank’s Mindy Zemrak, his biometric padlock ultimately skyrocketed from a modest booth at Las Vegas’s Venetian Resort to the shelves of Ace Hardware, Best Buy and more, racking up sales well into the millions.
Find out how Robbie’s personal story helped make it happen. It's all in season 7, episode 2, How Shark Tank Hooked BenjiLock at CES, of the CES Tech Talk podcast series. Robbie and Shark Tank’s Supervising Casting Producer Mindy Zemrak dive deep into the finer points of capturing consumers’ attention as they discuss what it takes to turn a dream into a commercial success.

Top Four Takeaways

  • No stranger to CES, Shark Tank scouts have sourced fresh new products and solutions from the show’s Eureka Park for about ten years. They’ll be back again in 2024 and want to hear from as many exhibitors as possible.
  • The show’s selection process begins with the entrepreneur’s elevator pitch that can happen informally on the show floor. If there’s interest, the entrepreneur will get a follow-up call that may lead to an appearance on the program. Mindy explains the process in this CES Tech Talk episode.
  • Shark Tank looks for authenticity, vision and a solid business case. As Mindy points out, the five sharks on each panel aren’t pitting entrepreneurs against each other; this isn’t a game show. It’s 50% about the individual business or product and 50% about the entrepreneur’s backstory. BenjiLock snagged a place on the show through those merits.
  • BenjiLock and Robbie first wowed Shark Tank scouts at CES 2020. He’s since returned, having won deals with the show’s Kevin “Mr. Wonderful” O’Leary and Hampton Products International.

They Said It

"I think it goes without saying CES is the biggest and best trade show out there in terms of consumer electronics and products…[W]e've been working with you guys for almost a decade now…and it's kind of a great partnership. You always have amazing businesses and products that…are in the sweet spot for Shark Tank."
Mindy Zemrak (02:21)
"In my case [pitching Shark Tank], the product is very relatable with the story…I have a two-minute [presentation] here in the Venetian. And I was just, ‘Let me just be myself.’ And I was very truthful, just being myself, who I am, what's the product about, why I invented the product, why I created it, and kind of the struggles that it took me to get to this point. And just be myself…I think that really kind of resonated."
Robbie Cabral (08:56)

Mindy Zemrak, Supervising Casting Producer, Shark Tank

Mindy Zemrak is an Emmy-nominated producer for ABC’s hit series, Shark Tank. Mindy has been part of Shark Tank for 15 years, and oversees the entire casting process, searching for the best entrepreneurs from around the country. With more than 17 years of casting experience, her resume includes casting for the Jeopardy! National College Championship, American Idol, Top Chef and more. She graduated from the School of Cinema Television at the University of Southern California. 


Robbie Cabral, CEO and Founder, BenjiLock

A five-time CES Innovation Award honoree, Robbie Cabral founded BenjiLock, the world’s first traditional padlock with fingerprint technology. As seen on ABC’s Shark Tank, he landed Kevin O’Leary as an investor with a 15% equity stake in the company. A CTA member company, BenjiLock’s fingerprint technology is now expanding into a portfolio of products, an upcoming line of bicycle locks, next-generation padlocks, closet and cabinet locks, and a new line of smart home door locks.

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