Events / Startups

Join this startup for its ‘Shark Tank’ viewing party

Did Guard Llama make a deal? You'll have to watch to find out.

Party time, deal or no deal. (Photo by Flickr user Knar Bedian, used under a Creative Commons license)

A local startup is going to be on Shark Tank and it’s time to celebrate.

Yes, that’s right — Guard Llama, the Chicago/D.C.-based startup that makes a personal security device that sends your coordinates to 911 with the touch of a button, will be featured in an episode airing on April 14.

Here’s how it happened. Nick Nevarez had been an entrepreneur in the D.C. area for years — involved in a couple of tech startups as well as a high-end barbershop and high-end car dealership. One day, while at 1776, he met the cofounder of Guard Llama and was immediately struck by the concept.

See Nevarez had recently had an experience where he saw the potential value of a Guard Llama-type device — while showing a car to a potential buyer he’d had a gun pulled on him. He immediately called 911 but then discovered he didn’t know exactly where he was.

Nevarez first joined Guard Llama as an advisor, and then came on officially in May 2016. Around that time there were Shark Tank auditions for minority entrepreneurs being held in the D.C. area, so Nevarez signed Guard Llama up. “They really liked what we had to offer,” Nevarez recalls, of the audition, and soon (in September 2016) he found himself filming. But the whole process was still a bit of a mystery — “we had no idea if that was going to air,” Nevarez said. “They really don’t tell you.”

And so the team kept working — Nevarez running biz dev, sales and marketing from his base in the District.

And now, it turns out, the episode is indeed going to air.

Guard Llama is hosting a D.C. viewing party on April 14 at WeWork White House and you can RSVP here.

“The viewing party is kinda the coolest thing happening right now in D.C.,” Nevarez assured us, laughing.


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