How H3 Enterprise Won in Business After Losing on Shark Tank
It’s not often that NOT making it onto Shark Tank is the best thing to ever happen to your business. But that’s exactly what happened to Reggie Gray and Roy Scott.
Roy Scott and Reggie Gray are the founders of Healthy Hip Hop (H3) Enterprise, an EdTech company powered by the arts, entertainment and social interaction. They made it into the Tank, pitched to the sharks, received an offer from the infamous Mr. Wonderful (Kevin O’Leary), only to have their episode canned because corporate thought it may conflict with other properties.
“We were devastated,” admits Roy. “But this is part of the grind as an entreprenuer and we wouldn’t give up on our dream. Our only option was to keep swimming.”
After suffering such a huge upset on Shark Tank, Reggie and Roy decided to sign up for a class—FastTrac® TechVenture™ at the UMKC Small Business and Technology Development Center. Why? Let’s go back a little bit to set the stage.
>>>>>The next round of FastTrac TechVenture starts Wednesday, September 27. Sign up now. If you live or do business in Kansas City, Missouri, you’re eligible for a scholarship that will save you hundreds.
Reggie Regg the Magic Man and Rappin’ Roy have performed over 1,500 live events reaching hundreds of thousands of children in the past 5 years. “We learned in order to truly scale this company we would need to launch our own technology and we succesfully made the pivot to becoming a tech company. Our online and mobile platform would allow us to impact more children and create new streams of revenue.”
Reggie has been a children’s performer most of his adult life. And Roy, a Kansas City native, was once a street hip hop artist. He grew up listening to gangster rap, which is full of violent themes, disturbing language and harsh topics. “It wasn’t until I had my first son Justus that I realized the negative effect it was having on the kids who were exposed to it and this inspired me to create a positive alternative.”
Healthy Hip Hop was Roy’s solution to this problem and it pairs nicely with Reggie Regg’s high energy antics. Parents, educators and students absolutley love it, and so did the Sharks. It really is unfortunate their episode didn’t pan out.
“When we came back to Kansas City, we became responsible for building our own audience. Shark Tank wasn’t going to do it for us, so instead we looked to go digital. We became tech entrepreneurs.”
Fasttrac TechVenture was the perfect place to start. And as a bonus, because H3Enterprises is in Kansas City, Missouri, they saved hundreds of dollars with an Urban Business Growth Initiative Scholarship. (You can. too. Apply now.)
Over the course of eight sessions, participants learn the basics of building a scalable tech business—from building and testing a minimum viable product to recruiting a top-notch team. “The biggest benefits for us were working with the amazing instructor and starting to build our network in Kansas City. FastTrac TechVenture really propelled our business.”
FastTrac TechVenture made Roy and Reggie even hungrier to learn and grow more. And Kansas City’s entrepreneurial ecosystem delivered.
Diving into Kansas City's Entrepreneurial Ecosystem
Reggie joined ScaleUP! Kansas City, a coaching program for growth-focused entrepreneurs offered by the UMKC Innovation Center at no cost to participants thanks to a generous grant from the U.S. Small Business Administration. There he learned how to structure his business for maximum growth potential.
And Roy joined the ranks of Pipeline Entrepreneurs, a fellowship of high-performing entrepreneurs dedicated to challenging one another to grow. Through Pipeline Roy gained access to a national network of business experts and an even deeper desire to grow H3 Enterprises. “Being around other entrepreneurs truly inspires and motivates me.”
Good thing Kansas City always has more to give. The community loved Roy and Reggie’s passion and drive during their presentation at 1 Million Cups, a weekly entrepreneurial showcase and networking event at the Kauffman Foundation.
The team added yet another program to their impressive resume when they recently joined the Lean Lab, an edtech focused accelerator. Plus they're currently enrolled in the E-Scholars program at the UMKC Regnier Institute.
This year, H3 Enterprise received a grant from Digital Sandbox KC, a proof of concept program of the UMKC Innovation Center. With the money, they plan to build out their web platform so they can share their active curriculum with classrooms everywhere.
To top it all off and seriously accelerate their efforts, the H3 Enterprise team recently won a $50,000 grant in the Launch KC competition.“When Shark Tank flopped, we thought we missed our chance to be on TVs everywhere. Nope, turns out it was just preparing us for this big break.”
Reggie and Roy are impressive to watch on stage, but they’re just as inspiring in their day-to-day. Their tenacity is unparalleled and they care so deeply about every person that they meet that you can’t help but love them. “Being an entrepreneur is all about connections. Connecting solutions to problem, people to people, and for us—kids to their bright futures.”
If you want to make your tech business dream a reality, get ready to work as hard as Reggie and Roy, don’t worry about pitching to the Shark Tank, and sign up for FastTrac TechVenture now. Class starts on September 27.
This is great! What else do you have for budding entrepreneurs?
Glad you asked. As the go-to for KC entrepreneurship, we can plug you into the right course, mentor, organization or group for your small business, startup, side hustle or idea in the making.
Just give us a call at 816-235-6500 or fill out your request over here at www.kcsourcelink.com/myplan. We’ll develop a personalized action plan to help connect with resources and opportunities, so you can hit that next milestone.
, Digital Sandbox
and 1 Million Cups
are all accepting applications right now. Follow their links to apply.