Can Barbara Corcoran Convince the New Generation of Entrepreneurs to Follow Her Lead? When Barbara Corcoran invests in a startup, founders gain a fully engaged partner with lots of outsize opinions. The only question is: Will they listen?
It's a bright morning in October, and Barbara Corcoran is sitting in her street-level headquarters, a converted doctor's office on upper Park Avenue in New York City, trying to convince Jen and Jeff Martin to wear popcorn bags on their heads.
The Martins, a brother-and-sister team, are the founders of Pipsnacks, one of the fastest-growing companies in Corcoran's portfolio. Their original product is the mini-popcorn snack Pipcorn -- crunchy, largely hull-less and sold in seven flavors, including the much-beloved truffle. The Martins launched the company six years ago and had their big breakthrough in 2014, when they appeared before Corcoran and the other sharks on the ABC prime-time reality series Shark Tank, nabbing a $200,000 investment from her in exchange for 10 percent of the company.