Click here to close now.


News Feed Item

University of Texas at Dallas Alumni Strike Deal with Mark Cuban on 'Shark Tank'

RICHARDSON, Texas, April 22, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- University of Texas at Dallas alumni Corey Egan MBA'10 and Swapnil Bora MBA'11 have emerged from the "Shark Tank" reality television show with a $350,000 deal with entrepreneur and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban.

Egan and Bora, who appeared on the episode of "Shark Tank" that aired April 18, developed the idea of smartphone-controlled light bulbs for their Plano-based business, ilumi, as students in the Naveen Jindal School of Management Full-Time MBA Program. The company makes LED "smartbulbs" that allow users to control lighting levels and colors through a mobile app.

They asked for $350,000 from the "sharks" (who are well-known business people and investors) in return for 15 percent ownership.

"Your money gets our products into customers' hands," Egan told the investors, explaining that the product was in the final stages of development.

Cuban offered $350,000 for 25 percent. He then backed out after seeing Egan's hesitation, but then gave the men a second chance.

"Mark, would you be willing to meet in the middle at 20 percent?" Egan asked.

"I'm going to stick to the 25, guys, because you know I can bring a huge amount of value," Cuban said.

In the end, the classmates-turned-business-partners accepted the deal and have now welcomed Cuban to their newly formed team. The product began shipping this week.

"The great thing about getting Mark Cuban on-board is that we're able to grow our team," Egan told a group of about 100 Jindal School administrators, professors and friends who attended a watch party the school hosted Friday. "This is not the destination. This is just one of the milestones along the way."

Egan, his family and ilumi employees cheered for Egan and Bora throughout the television reality show at a Plano restaurant while Bora, who was in India, joined via Skype.

"This is absolutely as good as it gets," said Lisa Shatz, Jindal School assistant dean of MBA programs and director of the Full-Time MBA Program. "You guys rolled up your sleeves. You did not give up. You kept going… We are so incredibly proud of you."

The entrepreneurs met at the Jindal School while earning their MBAs. Egan earned his MBA in marketing with a focus on product development and Bora's focus was finance and strategy.

"The minute you meet Swapnil, you can tell he's brilliant; he's just so bright," Shatz said. "And Corey is just one of those people that you see so much potential in because he just has it all put together. When I first met him, he wasn't sure what he wanted to do or how he was going to get there, but I had no doubt that he was going to be successful."

The "Shark Tank" victory is not the students' first. Ilumi won the 2010 UT Dallas Business Idea Competition.

After they graduated, Egan and Bora continued to seek input from professors as they developed their business. They were open to feedback and didn't give up when faced with setbacks, said Jackie Kimzey, executive director of the Jindal School's Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

"Number one, they were very passionate about their idea," Kimzey said. "And they were very serious and persistent."

During the "Shark Tank" presentation Egan explained that users of the product can program lights to create a sunrise effect, romantic candlelight or even a post Dallas Mavericks game celebration.

"Mark, represent your team and ours by lighting it up blue and green on game day," Egan said. "After the Mavericks win, let the celebration begin." Then, Egan and Bora danced as the lights changed colors.

The pitch worked.

"Mark's going to be just like fuel on the fire," Egan said in an interview on the show. "This thing is going to spread like wildfire and ilumi's going to shine across the world."

During the watch party, Egan thanked his professors and other mentors for their assistance and support during years of hard work developing the business idea.

"In the end, we're very excited with the outcome that we hooked a big one," he said.

SOURCE University of Texas at Dallas

More Stories By PR Newswire

Copyright © 2007 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PRNewswire content is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of PRNewswire. PRNewswire shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

Latest Stories
I recently attended and was a speaker at the 4th International Internet of @ThingsExpo at the Santa Clara Convention Center. I also had the opportunity to attend this event last year and I wrote a blog from that show talking about how the “Enterprise Impact of IoT” was a key theme of last year’s show. I was curious to see if the same theme would still resonate 365 days later and what, if any, changes I would see in the content presented.
Cloud computing delivers on-demand resources that provide businesses with flexibility and cost-savings. The challenge in moving workloads to the cloud has been the cost and complexity of ensuring the initial and ongoing security and regulatory (PCI, HIPAA, FFIEC) compliance across private and public clouds. Manual security compliance is slow, prone to human error, and represents over 50% of the cost of managing cloud applications. Determining how to automate cloud security compliance is critical...
The Internet of Things (IoT) is growing rapidly by extending current technologies, products and networks. By 2020, Cisco estimates there will be 50 billion connected devices. Gartner has forecast revenues of over $300 billion, just to IoT suppliers. Now is the time to figure out how you’ll make money – not just create innovative products. With hundreds of new products and companies jumping into the IoT fray every month, there’s no shortage of innovation. Despite this, McKinsey/VisionMobile data...
Just over a week ago I received a long and loud sustained applause for a presentation I delivered at this year’s Cloud Expo in Santa Clara. I was extremely pleased with the turnout and had some very good conversations with many of the attendees. Over the next few days I had many more meaningful conversations and was not only happy with the results but also learned a few new things. Here is everything I learned in those three days distilled into three short points.
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo 2016 in New York and Silicon Valley. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be! Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place Nov 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 17th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty ...
In his General Session at DevOps Summit, Asaf Yigal, Co-Founder & VP of Product at, explored the value of Kibana 4 for log analysis and provided a hands-on tutorial on how to set up Kibana 4 and get the most out of Apache log files. He examined three use cases: IT operations, business intelligence, and security and compliance. Asaf Yigal is co-founder and VP of Product at log analytics software company In the past, he was co-founder of social-trading platform Currensee, which...
DevOps is about increasing efficiency, but nothing is more inefficient than building the same application twice. However, this is a routine occurrence with enterprise applications that need both a rich desktop web interface and strong mobile support. With recent technological advances from Isomorphic Software and others, rich desktop and tuned mobile experiences can now be created with a single codebase – without compromising functionality, performance or usability. In his session at DevOps Su...
As organizations realize the scope of the Internet of Things, gaining key insights from Big Data, through the use of advanced analytics, becomes crucial. However, IoT also creates the need for petabyte scale storage of data from millions of devices. A new type of Storage is required which seamlessly integrates robust data analytics with massive scale. These storage systems will act as “smart systems” provide in-place analytics that speed discovery and enable businesses to quickly derive meaningf...
In his keynote at @ThingsExpo, Chris Matthieu, Director of IoT Engineering at Citrix and co-founder and CTO of Octoblu, focused on building an IoT platform and company. He provided a behind-the-scenes look at Octoblu’s platform, business, and pivots along the way (including the Citrix acquisition of Octoblu).
In his General Session at 17th Cloud Expo, Bruce Swann, Senior Product Marketing Manager for Adobe Campaign, explored the key ingredients of cross-channel marketing in a digital world. Learn how the Adobe Marketing Cloud can help marketers embrace opportunities for personalized, relevant and real-time customer engagement across offline (direct mail, point of sale, call center) and digital (email, website, SMS, mobile apps, social networks, connected objects).
The buzz continues for cloud, data analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) and their collective impact across all industries. But a new conversation is emerging - how do companies use industry disruption and technology enablers to lead in markets undergoing change, uncertainty and ambiguity? Organizations of all sizes need to evolve and transform, often under massive pressure, as industry lines blur and merge and traditional business models are assaulted and turned upside down. In this new da...
Culture is the most important ingredient of DevOps. The challenge for most organizations is defining and communicating a vision of beneficial DevOps culture for their organizations, and then facilitating the changes needed to achieve that. Often this comes down to an ability to provide true leadership. As a CIO, are your direct reports IT managers or are they IT leaders? The hard truth is that many IT managers have risen through the ranks based on their technical skills, not their leadership ab...
We all know that data growth is exploding and storage budgets are shrinking. Instead of showing you charts on about how much data there is, in his General Session at 17th Cloud Expo, Scott Cleland, Senior Director of Product Marketing at HGST, showed how to capture all of your data in one place. After you have your data under control, you can then analyze it in one place, saving time and resources.
In recent years, at least 40% of companies using cloud applications have experienced data loss. One of the best prevention against cloud data loss is backing up your cloud data. In his General Session at 17th Cloud Expo, Sam McIntyre, Partner Enablement Specialist at eFolder, presented how organizations can use eFolder Cloudfinder to automate backups of cloud application data. He also demonstrated how easy it is to search and restore cloud application data using Cloudfinder.
The Internet of Everything is re-shaping technology trends–moving away from “request/response” architecture to an “always-on” Streaming Web where data is in constant motion and secure, reliable communication is an absolute necessity. As more and more THINGS go online, the challenges that developers will need to address will only increase exponentially. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Todd Greene, Founder & CEO of PubNub, exploreed the current state of IoT connectivity and review key trends and t...