Jeska Shoe Company appeared on Shark Tank's Season 4 Episode 420 reality TV show. The company, founded by Jessica Hayes, started as a business plan created for her MBA class while she attended Southern Arkansas University.
The idea for the interchangeable heel came to Jessica Hayes after she broke her heel on her favorite pair of pumps during a night out. Her creation eliminates the problem of a broken heel.
The Jeska Shoe Company business plan calls for an interchangeable high-heel shoe. Her research found that heels are the first part to wear out on shoes making interchangeable high-heels the answer to extending the life of quality shoes.
Hayes' Professor and other class members liked the plan so much, and they encouraged her to enter a business plan competition(Donald W. Reynolds Busines Plan Competiton) put on by the college, which she won.
Jessica Hayes decided to pursue building a real company by securing an investment from her parents, and putting her life savings into the business.
Soon Jessica began designing shoes in all different colors, patterns, shapes and sizes with plans for a big launch surrounded around her motto, “Cinderella is proof that one pair of shoes can change your life.”
Jeska Shoe Company in Shark Tank
Jessica Hayes auditioned and received her place in line to pitch Shark Tank Investors for $70,000. She offered to give 30% equity in Jeska Shoe Company for their investment.
Hayes estimated the shoe would run approximately $200 which would limit the target buyers to designer shoes.
Jessica created a prototype model at $16,000 for Jeska Shoe Company but lacked the funds for production and came to Shark Tank looking to support production. According to Hayes, the shoes were in pre-production at the time of the pitch on Shark Tank.
Daymond John was the only Shark to make an offer, and it was stiff. John said he would give Jessica Hayes $70,000 for 70% equity in Jeska Shoe Company. Jessica agreed, and they made a deal on the show.
Jessica made several updates on her Facebook page after the show, leading up to having 3500 plus women interested in her shoes when they became available.
Final Post from Jeska Shoe Company
Her last post is on October 6, 2014, which came as a disappointment to Jeske Shoe Company fans. She started off by thanking her family, friends and fans who stood by her during her venture.
Jessica Hayes realized her opportunity to create the interchangeable high heel shoe as a profitable company based on her resources was not likely and, therefore, she needed to change course.
Hayes thanked ABC Shark Tank, the Arkansas Governors Cup, Southern Arkansas University MBA Program, and The Arkansas Small Business Technology and Development Center for their help with her business opportunity.
Lastly, she thanked Daymond John for being an even bigger supporter and mentor after the show, saying working with Daymond proved to be an enjoyable experience. Daymond likely helped Jessica make the final decision to discontinue the pursuit of the Interchangeable high heel shoe.
So, as of October 6, 2014, The Jeska Shoe Company dream came to an end.
Ironically, Jeska Shoe Company is not the only Interchangeable shoe design to appear on Shark Tank. Others include Onesole (a Shark Tank Success) and Boot Illusions (Appears to be defunct).