About two years ago, Tony Gonzales' 4-year-old son was stung by a scorpion while getting out of the pool and had to be rushed to the hospital, where he received treatment just in time. The experience made a lasting impression on Gonzales, who didn't want any homeowner or parent to go through this situation. At the time, his longtime friend, Aaron Gonzales, had been developing a product that would seal out scorpions and other pests. They teamed up together to create Slick Barrier, a Gilbert-based pest product business.
After dealing with these frustrating scorpion infestations around town and noticing a scorpion was unable to move up a wet sink, the longtime childhood friends were thrilled of their invention of a product that dries as slick as glass, preventing insects from entering the home. They patented the pesticide-free scorpion fighter product and took their invention to ABC’s Shark Tank Friday night.
Presenting their scorpion prevention business on the national stage Jan. 27, the two Gilbert dads secured a deal with Lori Greiner during their appearance on "Shark Tank" as they were vying for the investment opportunity to forward their direct-to-consumer product.
Greiner posted on social media that she "was super skeptical the whole pitch that one of these creepy crawlers would get out. I even got up to check it out. It looks like it’s working!"
Now, Aaron Gonzales and Tony Gonzales, founders of Gilbert-based scorpion fighters Slick Barrier, said they will be able to take their startup to the next level after scoring the shark's big funding deal.
Greiner has hundreds of inventions and holds 120 patents. She became known as the "Queen of QVC" as a result of her show, "Clever & Unique Creations," that premiered on the network in 2000.
“I lived with the frustration of scorpions first-hand after finding an infestation in my home,” said Aaron Gonzales. “I was being stung, paying thousands of dollars to have the arachnids removed with traditional pesticides or prevented with sealing treatments, only to have them re-enter my home months later. This is what led me to develop this one-of-a-kind repellant we guarantee works.”
Slick Barrier had to pitch their invention to the sharks before appearing on the popular show.
“The 'Shark Tank' experience was in one word, ‘intense,'" said co-founder Tony Gonzales. “Not only were we battling the sharks, but we did it demonstrating our product. It was an amazing experience.”
Slick Barrier offers gallons priced from $49 to $139. For more information, visit slickbarrier.