Season 5 | Episode 511 | EP511
In Season 5, Episode 11 of Shark Tank, Jan Goetgeluk approached the Sharks seeking an investment of $2,000,000 in exchange for 10% equity in ‘Virtuix Omni’. The company is currently based in Houston, Texas.
The Virtuix Omni is a virtual reality product for gamers. This product is a treadmill that is hooked up to the virtual reality headset; the Oculus Rift. The primary intention of the Virtuix Omni is to make games seem far more realistic. For example; a person walks in the game and they will be walking on the treadmill. If they run in the game then they will have to run in real life. It of course could also be marketed as a fitness product much in the same way as the ‘Wii Fit’ system was.
The Sharks did not believe that this was a viable business proposition for them for a number of different reasons. The main being the fact that it was far too reliant on somebody else’s technology (the Oculus Rift had not quite achieved the buzz that it has nowadays at that point). This meant that the investment would be lost if the other company went out of business.
It was clear that the Sharks did not quite understand the current gaming market. Many seemed to be living in the past when they claimed that gamers are inherently lazy. They do not want to be standing up and running while playing a game. Jan countered this notion with the fact that a lot of gaming fitness products had actually been successful already. He believed that the Virtuix Omni would be the next big thing. The Sharks did not agree.
The Virtuix Omni was unable to secure investment in the Shark Tank. This was mostly down to the fact that the Sharks believed that it was far too reliant on the Oculus Rift. The popularity of the Oculus Rift in early 2014 however lead one Shark to reconsider making an offer when Facebook purchased Oculus Rift for $2 Billion. Mark Cuban teamed up with a number of investors away from the Shark Tank and injected $3,000,000 into the business. It is very rare that a deal is completed away from the Shark Tank in this manner.
The Virtuix Omni was unable to secure any offers from the Sharks.