Here's What Went Down With Bombas After Shark Tank

For many people, socks are the last part of the wardrobe they think about. After all, there's a reason they're considered a last minute gift idea.  However, for David Health and Randy Goldberg, they're an essential that shouldn't be overlooked. After learning that socks were the most requested item of clothing in homeless shelters, the entrepreneurs created their own line specifically for donation purposes. "I just thought it was sad that a piece of clothing I only spend a few seconds a day thinking about is perceived as a luxury item for over 650,000 people living here in the U.S.," Heath told Inc. "We saw Toms donating shoes and Warby Parker donating glasses, and we thought, 'What if we donated socks?' " It was with this in mind that the two launched Bombas in 2013.


But even businesses that are clearly on the road to success need capital along the way. Because of this, Heath and Goldberg did what any entrepreneur does these days: they took their line of socks and their pitch to Shark Tank in the hopes of scoring big. It was a stressful episode, to say the least. 

Bombas had some success on Shark Tank

From the get-go, the sharks weren't really picking up what Heath and Goldberg were putting down. Asking for $200k for five percent of the company, the duo explained what made Bombas different — no seams, Peruvian pima cotton, and honey-comb arch support, among other features that not every athletic sock has. Even before Heath and Goldberg mentioned the $4 million valuation of Bombas (something that all but made Kevin O'Leary's head spin), the sharks were skeptical that money could be made if a sock was donated for every sock that's bought at only a nine-dollar price point. O'Leary was the first and loudest about his concerns, dropping out almost immediately. Robert Herjavec, Lori Greiner, and Mark Cuban also weren't buying what Heath and Goldberg were selling. If there were going to be a negotiation and Bombas was going to get anything, it was all up to Daymond John.


After an intense back and forth — at one point Heath and Goldberg requested to call their CFO and John denied them that — the three settled on $200k for 17.5% equity in the company. John also agreed to finance all of their inventory needs no matter what the cost might be.

What happened to Bombas after Shark Tank

Considering the heated negotiations and the sweat dripping from Goldberg's face, it's safe to assume that after he and Heath walked out of the room, they immediately went for a drink. "They warned us about it," Goldberg and Heath told Entrepreneur. "For the first 15 minutes after you walk out, you're actually not going to remember what happened. It's almost hallucinatory like you're in shock. The psychologist is on hand to brief you to make sure you're not traumatized. Can you imagine people going on and saying the wrong thing and feeling like they just embarrassed themselves on national television?"


That stressful day aside, Bombas hasn't just thrived but become Shark Tank's most successful business since the show premiered, having accrued a whopping $1.3 billion in lifetime sales. Bombas has also donated more than 100 million items to homeless shelters — the brand has expanded beyond socks, fitting even more of the needs of the people in these circumstances.

Bombas is still in business

Not only is Bombas a billion-dollar business, but they've branched out to include slippers, underwear, and t-shirts, the latter two of which are also in high demand at homeless shelters. "Our whole thesis was to donate a lot of socks," Heath told Zach Seward on Quartz's "Make Business Better." "So you need to sell a lot. And if you're going to sell a lot, you've gotta create the best sock in the history of feet and do it for a very broad market." And apparently they have.


Further proof that not just really successful, but onto something Bombas has teamed up with Venus Williams, who's also a Bombas investor, to create a line of socks. When one of the greatest athletes of all time wants in on your business model and supports your vision, you definitely know you've made it. Bombas' Instagram account has over 250k followers and goes beyond just marketing and advertising their products, but also serves as an educational space about homelessness in the United States.

What's next for Bombas and its founders?

Well, obviously, both David Heath and Randy Goldberg are still the CEOs of Bombas and are very much involved in its present and future. Rarely does someone build a billion-dollar business to just up and walk away from it.


According to their Instagram, they've recently launched reflective socks so bicyclists can ride in peace knowing that they're being seen by others on the road. When Goldberg talked to Modern Retail last year about why they were expanding their line to include bralettes and the method behind their productive development strategy, he said, "We are not the type of people that race to market with products. We are obsessed with the little things. We want to get the details right." In other words, he and Heath are just getting started and we're going to see a lot of exciting things from these two and Bombas in the future.