Here's What Went Down With Muvez Footwear After Shark Tank

Muvez footwear actually started out as a high school project back in 2013. The signature shoe — which features a unique design that turns an indoor slipper into a shoe that can be worn outside — first came to be after founder Ryan Cruz was tasked with improving an already existing product. His co-founder Kevin Zamora told Inc in 2020 that Cruz came up with the idea for indoor footwear that could be made into outdoor footwear, and the two decided to team up to bring the shoe to life. However, they abandoned the concept for three years after being told by a teacher it wouldn't work, but then started again after seeing a similar product on the market. The novel idea? Adding a separate sole to a shoe to make it more durable for outdoor use.

That's when the three decided to start a Kickstarter to get their company off the ground. After raising more than $30,000, the brand caught the attention of the creators of "Shark Tank." The trio were actually contacted by producers to bring their product on the ABC show. "At first when they emailed, we assumed one of our friends was behind it because we were only in business six months. After that, there were auditions and challenges we overcame. We had a less than 1% chance of making it," Eric Cruz told Kean University. And this is what happened next.

Muvez footwear caught Daymond John's attention on Shark Tank

Kevin Zamora, Ryan Cruz, and Eric Cruz entered the "Shark Tank" tank looking for $200,000 in exchange for a 15% stake in Muvez Footwear. In the Season 11 episode, which aired in March 2020, the trio began their pitch by showing the Sharks their innovative product in a range of colors, even giving them samples. Zamora then explained that the company had done sales of $73,000 in just a few months, with no money spent of marketing.

Kevin O'Leary was first to make his thoughts known. He told the three that although he thought the valuation was too high, he didn't plan to invest because of the difficult market of footwear. Both Robert Herjavec and Mark Cuban then admitted they weren't fans of the branding of the product, so both dropped out. Lori Greiner, meanwhile, was undecided. She told the trio that she would be willing to team up with another Shark, but wasn't sure if she was willing to make a solo investment. Despite the other Sharks hesitating, Daymond John was interested. He initially offered the trio the $200,000 they were looking for, but wanted 33.3% of the business in exchange. He also made it clear he wouldn't be teaming up with Greiner, who then dropped out. With the trio admitting they didn't want to give away 33.3%, they worked out a counteroffer, shaking hands on 25% of the company for $200,000.

The entrepreneurs were certainly happy to get Daymond John onboard

Speaking about his "Shark Tank" experience after the episode aired, Eric Cruz admitted to Kean University that Daymond John was always the Shark they were hoping to get onboard when they entered the tank. "It was surreal. As a longtime fan of the show who usually responded to questions posed by the Sharks while watching comfortably on my couch, it was quite the experience," he noted. And it sounds like there were no hard feelings towards the Sharks who weren't willing to invest. "The Sharks were all really great. It was an experience no one can take away from us," Eric shared.

And the company certainly got a boost from "Shark Tank." After the episode aired, the business brought in $300,000 in sales, according to Inc, which was three times its sales for the whole of 2019. And that success saw plenty of giving back for the company. From their impressive sales, they followed in the footsteps of Fur (another "Shark Tank" success story!) and gave back by donating over $9,500 to WHO.

Muvez saw a lot of success during the COVID pandemic

While many businesses fell victim to the COVID-19 pandemic, Muvez wasn't one of them. In fact, the business boomed when much of the world shut down. The entrepreneurs took matters into their own hands and really got hands on to keep the company alive. "Our distribution company was closed, so we went into the warehouse and started boxing up orders ourselves," Eric Cruz told Footwear News. And, with more people staying indoors, the shoes started flying off the shelves. "We don't think of ourselves as the COVID shoe, but a lot of people have discovered us because of what's going on," Eric said.

The brand also started giving back as they saw more success. The company started the Donating Muvez charity, which saw them donate products to shoes to hospital as well as teaming up with other businesses to provide food and water to those in need. Kevin Zamora admitted to Inc that they were more than happy to make less profit in order to give back. "We're more than okay taking the hit because of the cause. Once you become a brand, it's your responsibility to give back and set that example," he said. And even after the pandemic, as of December 2023, Muvez footwear is still in business and trading.

Muvez has expanded since Shark Tank, but slowed down on social media

After seeing so much success since appearing on "Shark Tank," it seems like Muvez is still going strong. The business has continued to expand, with Eric Cruz telling Footwear News that the business's success during the pandemic allowed them to upgrade many aspects of the business. In 2020, the company changed warehouse partners and customer support operations to help them ship out more product alongside the increase in demand. "Now, the entire experience is consistent throughout," Eric shared.

And it seems like Muvez only plans on keeping the upgrades coming. In 2022, the company revealed on Instagram that Muvez was a top 100 finalist in Fedex's Small Business Grant Contest. The brand also announced a Holiday sale on its website for the 2023 period. However, the company, which was once very active on social media, seems to have strayed away from promoting across its online accounts in 2023. The brand's Instagram account (which has over 15,000 followers) hasn't been updated since July 2023, while Muvez has been absent from uploading new content to TikTok since June.

It seems at least one of the brand's team has other work interests outside the business. According to Kevin Zamora's LinkedIn, while he's still with Muvez, he also currently serves as the co-founder of another company, Fusion Fashion Events. Eric still lists himself on his LinkedIn as being director of operations at Muvez, while Ryan Cruz's LinkedIn suggests he's still working at the business as co-founder and chief creative officer.