Is the Rocketbook too far out of this world?
SEASON 8 EPISODE 24
microwavable, reusuable, smart notebook
Jake Epstein and Joe LeMay
$400,000 for 10%
The Rocketbook is the innovation in notebook technology that
gives you the freedom of a traditional pen and paper notebook with the convenience of accessing your notes from anywhere.
The smart reusable notebook connects to the cloud through the Rocketbook App which is integrated with Google Docs, Dropbox, Evernote, iCloud, Slack, Box and email.
Both are perfect for taking notes, drawings, shopping lists, flow charts, presentations or whatever comes to mind.
HOW TO BUILD A MULTI-MILLION DOLLAR BUSINESS
The Rocketbook first came to life in 2013 when co-founder Joe LeMay forgot to bring a crucial notebook to a sales meeting. He spent most of the following year looking for solutions that would allow him to access his notes from anywhere and never relive such a painfully embarrasing moment ever again.
In late 2014, he met co-founder Jake Epstein and after pitching the idea for a “cloud connected paper notebook”, Jake was all in. The next day, the duo would begin work on what would become the Rocketbook.
By 2015, Jake and Joe had launched their Kickstarter and Indiegogo crowdfunding campaigns for the first iteration of their microwavable notebook, the Rocketbook Wave.
The crowdfunding campaigns managed to raise over $1.8 million which was used to develop the first wave of the futuristic notebook for its 28,000+ backers.
By Summer 2016, the Rocketbook Wave and accessories were ready for sale on the company website and through Amazon. By the end of 2016, the Rocketbook Wave would become “the #1 selling notebook on Amazon.com.”
In April 2017, Rocketbook launched a crowdfunding campaign for the Rocketbook Everlast.
The campaign went on to raise over $2.7 million with 42,000+ backers. and set the record as the “#1 office/school product in crowdfunding history.”
The Rocketbook duo went face-to-face with the Sharks in the episode aired on May 12th 2017 where they showcased the Rocketbook Wave.
Despite their astronomical success, the idea was a little too far out of this world for the Sharks.
Kevin questions why they wouldn’t want to sell more than one book as they could make more money.
At this point, the Rocketbook entrepreneurs reveal that they’ve sold over 75,000 books so far, which peaks the sharks’ interests. Still, Kevin points out that an iPad could achieve the same effect.
Barbara calls it the “funniest, whackiest, most ridiculous thing” she’s heard of in a long time and worries that it could be viewed as a gimmick.
Robert just doesn’t get it and O’Leary calls it “crazy” as he continues to struggle with the idea of making money off a reusable product.
Lori likes that they reinvented the notebook but feels there are too many steps involved.
Mark Cuban, who initially called it “brilliant”, can’t envision a Rocketbook future and ultimately, all the sharks go out.
LIFE AFTER SHARK TANK
Life for Rocketbook after Shark Tank has been pretty stellar. The company has gone on to sell over 500,000 Rocketbooks in BestBuy, Office Depot, Staples, and Amazon worldwide.
And in the process, they’ve made over $15 million in revenue making them one of Shark Tank’s Top 10 Most Successful Misses.
The next product in line to be launched is the Rocketbook Everlast Mini notebook, a smaller notepad sized version of the Everlast due to arrive summer 2018.
The Rocketbook’s success is backed by thousands of positive customer reviews and you can easily find dozens of customers showing off their Rocketbooks.
But some still feel that the Rocketbook remains a little pricey for what it is and what it does. If you happen to be one of those people, there are a few alternatives for you.
The Elfinbook is another crowdfunded favorite. With the utilization of machine visualization and image processing algorithm, Elfinbook App will automatically scan the contents from the book, crop and modify the image, improve image performance, and can be uploaded to the cloud after saving.
Moleskin has been the smart notebook veteran for a few years now. “The new Evernote Smart Notebook designed by Moleskine uses Evernote’s Page Camera feature to capture the pages of your notebook with your smartphone or tablet. Evernote Page Camera is available for the current iOS and Android release.”
Zohulu though relatively new to the game, has come out with a product comparable in quality. The Zohulu Smart Notebook is an environmentally friendly notebook which can be repeatedly erased 500 times. The App which is available for Android and iOS, allows for easy scanning and access to the cloud for storing notes.
The Camera Phone Method is perfect for anyone who would just rather not purchase a smart notebook. Simply take a picture and send it to the storage system of your choice. It’s not as environmentally friendly as you would still continue using regular paper, but it will definitely save you a few bucks (at least in the short term).