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CurlMix Couple Turned Down $400,000 Shark Tank Offer; Raised Over $2 Million With Community Support Kim and Tim Lewis walked away from Robert Herjavec's $400,000 deal for a 20 percent equity stake in the company.

By Charlene Rhinehart

entrepreneur daily

This story originally appeared on Black Enterprise

The Chicago couple known for turning down a Shark Tank deal a few years ago just raised over $2 million for CurlMix. The brand is part of the Listener Brands portfolio and has only been around since 2015.

What's the secret to their rapid success? The company launched an equity crowdfunding campaign that was driven by a loyal community of followers.

"So far we have raised ~$2.3M in a little over 2 days," shared the CurlMix team on the brand's Instagram page. "But the number that stands out most to us is that it was raised by a little over ~3,800 investors which means the average investor is putting in about ~$600."

Related: Painful Lessons for Getting an Investment Deal on 'Shark Tank'

The post continues, "You know what this means??? WE THE PEOPLE ARE INVESTING. Not some large investors, but US! Creating wealth within our own communities and building companies and brands WE support."

CurlMix Leverages Community Support to Raise Over $2 Million

The equity crowdfunding campaign for CurlMix was launched on Tuesday morning. Before lunchtime, CurlMix had raised over $1 million.

Chicago couple Kim and Tim Lewis started CurlMix around six years ago after their first startup failed. To improve sales, they pivoted their subscription box for curly hair into a haircare line. Sales spiked and the couple reached $1 million in only 12 months. Then, the couple pitched their idea on Shark Tank, walking away from Robert Herjavec's $400,000 deal for a 20 percent equity stake in the company.

After closing the door on Shark Tank, the couple was able to open another door with the support of their community. So far, CurlMix has raised over $2.4 million from almost 4,300 investors through their equity crowdfunding campaign.

"Our customers showed up and showed out," says Kim Lewis during an interview with Black Enterprise. "I have black business owners like Lamar Tyler from Traffic Sales & Profit who invested and shared it with his community."

Traffic Sales & Profits is a Facebook group that houses over 24,000 members. Founded by Lamar Tyler, the group helps small business owners and entrepreneurs "plug the profit holes" in their businesses.

"Everything you need is in this room," Tyler shared in the Facebook group.

Freddie Taylor, a member of TSP's mastermind group, cheered on the founders of CurlMix as they reached their first million in funding. A few years ago, Taylor turned $1,500 into a multimillion-dollar business selling flashcards.

"Now, we can invest in their business with them," says Taylor. "We are cheering!! These are some real heavy hitters and if you've tried their CurlMix products, you know it works!"

CurlMix is Providing an Investment Opportunity for the Community

Listener Brands is allowing consumers to invest and be an owner in the brand that they've helped to build.

"You make money if we make money, and that's how it should be," says Lewis."Our dream is to become a black-owned Procter & Gamble, and you can share that dream. Join us in creating wealth for us all."

Consumers can invest using the Wefunder platform. Do your research and due diligence to determine if this is the best investment for you.

If you're ready to grow your wealth, join us for the virtual Black Enterprise Wealth Building and Real Estate Summit. This inaugural event will take place on Thursday, April 22nd! Join us.

Want to be an Entrepreneur Leadership Network contributor? Apply now to join.

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