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ABC’s TV show “Shark Tank,” where entrepreneurs pitch to multimillionaire and billionaire investors, has scheduled an official casting call in Kansas City on Fri., Feb. 21, 10 a.m. to 5 pm. at the OHUB.KC Ecosystem Lab in the 18th & Vine District.

The newly launched ecosystem lab is powered by the Economic Development Corporation of Kansas City.

Those interested in pitching should visit bit.ly/36zZnTW.

The show features a panel of investors called “sharks,” who decide whether to invest as entrepreneurs make business presentations on their company or product. The sharks often find weaknesses and faults in an entrepreneur’s concept, product, or business model. Some of the investors try to soften the impact of rejection, while others can be “brutal” and show “no patience even for tales of hardship.” The sharks are paid as cast stars of the show, but the money they invest is their own. The entrepreneur can make a handshake deal on the show if a panel member is interested. However, if all of the panel members opt out, the entrepreneur leaves empty-handed.

The show is said to portray “the drama of pitch meetings and the interaction between the entrepreneurs and tycoons.” A one-hour pitch by a contestant is edited down to “a dramatic 10-minute segment.” About 40,000 companies apply each season with 158 getting to pitch the Sharks and 88 of those making it to air.

Presentations during the Shark Tank casting call may be selected for the opportunity to pitch to Mark Cuban, Barbara Cocoran, Lori Greiner, Robert Herjavec, Daymond John and Kevin O’Leary.

While the event is part of the “Shark Tank Diversity Tour,” the KC casting call is open to would-be entrepreneurs of all kinds, said Rodney Sampson, founder of Opportunity Hub, which established OHUB.KC with the Kansas EDC last year.

Sampson is a longtime entrepreneur who has co-founded companies that have overcome the odds by collectively raising more than $20 million in angel and venture capital, created hundreds of jobs and generated millions in revenue before acquisition or going public.

He also previously worked on the production team for Mark Burnett Productions, which produces “Shark Tank.” He led diversity and inclusion efforts for the show, helping to establish its first minority casting calls across the country, StartLandNews.com reported.

Entrepreneurs will pitch on a first come, first serve basis throughout the day. Prompt pitch applications and timely arrivals are necessary for things to run smoothly. It’s co-sponsored by Values Partnerships.

The casting call will be followed by OHUB.KC’s monthly 3rd Fridays Entrepreneurship Series, which is set to feature Sherrell Dorsey, co-founder and CEO of ThePlug. This event will take place at 6 p.m. Feb. 21 at the Hyvee Arena Event Suite. For info on OHUB. KC, visit https://opportunityhub.co/kc.

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