A Minnesota business is slated to compete on ABC’s “Shark Tank” this weekend.
Dog Threads, a Long Lake-based canine clothing company, will appear on the series on Sunday. Husband-and-wife duo Scott and Gina Davis run the company.
Gina says she decided to apply for the show “on a whim” back in January.
“So many people over the years suggested we apply, and we never thought there was a chance we’d be the type of company they’d be interested in,” she says. “But when I saw applications open, I figured we may as well give it a go.”
The couple has been selling dog clothing for about five years now. Gina, a Minnesota native who studied fashion design in Los Angeles, says she aims to create designs that mimic the trends of human apparel.
“When we were thinking about starting the business, all we could find at those mainstream boutiques were a lot of ruffles and sequins,” she says. “We wanted something that reflected our dogs’ human-like personalities.”
Dog Threads began selling its apparel five years ago through dogsofinstagram, an Instagram account geared toward photos of users’ pooches.
At the time, the owners of the account were launching an online store, and Gina made a pitch to sell her clothing there.
“It definitely helped give us a start,” she says.
Today, Dog Threads is sold at about 50 retailers around the world. That includes ecommerce sites, along with brick-and-mortar giants like Nordstrom and Von Maur. The company’s products are also sold at small niche boutiques, Gina says.
The company works with a handful of local contractors to produce a “large amount of inventory” in Minnesota, Gina says. There are a few factories in California, too.
And, being a global operation, Dog Threads produces some goods overseas. The company has a knitwear facility in Ukraine, where knit sweaters are manufactured.
Due to Shark Tank’s restrictions ahead of the airing, Gina wasn’t able to share revenue figures. But she confirmed that the company has one full-time employee, along with a slew of contractors.
She also notes that Dog Threads donates a portion of each purchase to non-profit animal rescues.