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Rescue Ready: What Happened After Shark Tank? [Updated]

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Brett Russell and Eric Hartsfield, two veteran firefighters appeared on the 11th season of the Shark Tank. They introduced their product rescue ready that could increase your survival chances in an event of a fire.

Rescue ready is a ladder made from aluminum with nylon webbing that can hold up to 750 pounds of weight. The ladder could be installed under the window sash where it is not easily visible so people won’t have to compromise their wall décor.

Rescue Ready at a glance:

  • Window-fitted ladder for the fire escapes.
  • Founder: Brett Russell and Eric Hartsfield
  • Asked For $75,000 for 15% at $500,000 valuation on Shark Tank.
  • Received no deal.
  • Currently in business.

Index:

Who is the founder of Rescue Ready?

Brett Russell and Eric Hartsfield were two firefighters from Norfolk. They had an experience of 25 years.  The two firefighters had seen the different types of equipment that work during the house fire and unfortunately which don’t.

Brett Russell and Eric Hartsfield
Brett Russell and Eric Hartsfield

According to Hartsfield and Russell one only has 3 minutes on average to get out of the house to safety during a fire. In the USA alone, 2,500 people die in a fire every year.

After witnessing such events repeatedly, the founders teamed up with various entrepreneurs, fire survivors, engineers to create this product which they pitched to the sharks.

How was the Rescue Ready Shark Tank pitch?

On the 11th season of Shark Tank, the veteran firefighters turned entrepreneur approached the sharks for an investment of $75,000 for 15% of the stakes.  The entrepreneur had spent four years developing the product before appearing on the show.

Russell states “There is no way you are going to be able to find a ladder under your bed or closet in the pitch-black darkness”. The founder further said the ladders found in a home depot just aren’t practical.  They demonstrate the unique feature of the ladder that there is no need to hire a contractor for installation.

Eric says the ladder can be hidden in a small compact area under the window. Even after having such a visionary product the team couldn’t secure the investment from the sharks. The sharks loved the business model, partnering with window manufacturers to install the product and getting 6% royalty from them, although the business didn’t seem feasible and sustainable.

Another issue that was raised by the sharks is that window manufacturers would have to change the design majorly. Barbara states that would mean no upside for window manufacturers. If they had a deal with the manufacturer before coming to the show it would have looked much interesting deal.

The company was in the early stages when it appeared on the show and hadn’t made any sales as of July 2020.

How do they make money?

During the pitch, founders revealed they are intended to partner with the window manufacturers to install the Rescue Ready ladder and get 6% royalty. Although the sharks liked the idea still there was a downfall. As Barbara stated the manufacturer would have to make major changes in the design with no profit, this didn’t seem feasible for the manufacturer.

In 2020 the team introduced the reinvented Rescue ready ladder which could be installed outside the window eliminating the disadvantage they were facing.

What happened to Rescue Ready after the Shark Tank?

After the Shark Tank episode, Brett and Eric told they received many positive responses from people. Eric states they received 150 emails for pre-order of the product.

See also  Tycoon Real Estate Shark Tank Update

After the failed deal on Shark Tank, the founders decided to approach a Kick-starter campaign for $225,000 but there only able to get 287 backers which helped them raise $66,608.

Even after not getting investments from the investor’s Eric and Brett started developing “Rescue Ready Retrofit”. According to the owners, this is not the product they demonstrated to the sharks, taking into account Barbara’s suggestion the ladder does not need to be installed in the window.

The duo decided to move forward and spread awareness about fire safety. “This is not the fun thing to talk about but it’s something you have to talk about,” says Hartsfield. The company has Lindsay McKinnon a house fire survivor who lost her two kids in fire partnered with rescue ready is determined to communicate about fire safety by sharing her experience.

The product is now available for order on the Rescue-ready website for $179.

Competitor’s Details:

The downside of the product is that the product doesn’t sell on Amazon. Yet the company has a long way. There are multiple fire safety ladders are available in the US market which are the biggest competitors for rescue ready.

  • First alert:

The first alert is a fully assembled two-story ladder made with nylon straps and steel which can hold up to 375 pounds of weight. The product is available on Amazon for $54.

  • Kiddie:

Kiddie mainly manufactures products for fire safety. Found in 1917 the company was the first to develop a fire alarm that detected carbon dioxide in the air. Kidde remains the most trusted fire safety brand which sells a variety of fire safety products.

  • Waner2 story built-in ladder:

The ladder is very similar to rescue ready which is made of aluminum and nylon and can hold up to 1200 pounds of weight. The ladder sales at home depot for $108.              

Interesting facts:

  1. Eric and Brett are very passionate about fire safety, they developed the product after realizing most of the fire safety ladder just isn’t practical.
  2. The duo is partnering up with Lindsay McKinnon for a children’s book where the pets escape the house fire using rescue ready ladders, the duo think this could help people talk about fire safety more
  3. Brett Russell one of the partners runs a landscaping business along with rescue ready.
  4. They worked on rescue ready for 4 years with experts before taking the product to market.

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FAQs:

What is Rescue Ready?

Rescue ready is a ladder made from aluminum with nylon webbing that can hold up to 750 pounds of weight. The ladder could be installed under the window sash where it is not easily visible so people won’t have to compromise their wall décor.

Who founded Rescue Ready?

Brett Russell and Eric Hartsfield were two firefighters from Norfolk. They had an experience of 25 years.  The two firefighters had seen the different types of equipment that work during the house fire and unfortunately which don’t.

  1. Ralphmox

    Thank you very much for your interesting article.

  2. Kevin carty

    Excellent brief and this article helped me alot. Say thank you I looking for your information.

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