(09/23/13) - Jim O'Brien is ready for his 15 minutes of fame. Friday night, the Waterford-based entrepreneur appears on the latest edition of Shark Tank.
"We were told there were over 36,000 people that applied this year alone for Shark Tank and a little over 100 made it, so for a guy who just started a business on a whim just over a year ago, it's just unbelievable," he said.
O'Brien is the morning show producer at Detroit radio station WCSX. His product - "Man Medals".
"My wife Kathy and I have been married for 20 years, and it's a running joke. Every time I take the trash out, I would say, honey I took the trash out, and she'd say, what do you want, a medal? And one day I thought, yes, yes I do," he said.
A set of six medals sells for $25, and features a variety of awards for household tasks.
"I put the toilet seat down, I picked up my laundry, I put the toilet paper roll on, I ran the vacuum, and then I asked for directions," O'Brien said.
The bottom line - they've been selling. Orders have been shipped to Scotland, New Zealand, Australia, Ireland, England, India, and Japan.
"If I had told you 35 years ago that I'm going to take a rock and put it in a box and sell a million of them, you'd have laughed at me. The guy did it with Pet Rocks," O'Brien said.
The application process began last March, and O'Brien finally went in front of the Sharks in July.
"I can honestly say that when you see people up there and nervous and sweating, I did it, and you are a train wreck when you leave that set," he said.
O'Brien isn't allowed to give away many details from the show, but as for how the Sharks received his pitch, "I saw one Shark throw his hands up in the air. I saw one of them shake their head, and I saw one of them yell 'it's about time.' That's how all over the place this is, and I'm just as curious as everyone to see how this looks when it airs Friday night," he said.
You can catch Shark Tank on Friday night at 9 p.m. on ABC12.
And for more information on Man Medals, click HERE.
ABC12 Main Station