Haven Lock aims to transform the way we see home security. Instead of deadbolts, the company provides a smart wedge that rests at the base of a door. Founders Clay Banks and Alex Bertelli made one of the more memorable pitches on Shark Tank but didn’t get a deal. As of 2024, Haven Lock is worth $8 million.
About the Founders
Clay Banks and Alex Bertelli are both from Nashville, Tennessee. Alex is a decorated special operations helicopter pilot. After retiring from the U.S. Army, he pursued higher education and eventually earned an MBA from UNC Kenan.
It was also after completing his service that Bertelli met Clay. His fellow Nashville friend got a degree in communications and advertising from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville.
Banks landed his first job at Citadel Broadcasting as an account executive. Later on, he helped found companies like FANtastic Memories, Pure Life Industries, and PodCatalyst. He also became a regional director for TNECD, a government administration.
Founding Haven Lock
When still in the military, Bertelli frequently observed how many families secured their doors with simple steel bars and deadbolts to safeguard their homes. He found it ineffective, so he made his own lock.
With the help of Clay, he developed a smart wedge lock that lies at the base of a door instead of being near the doorknob. It was a new take on preventing break-ins, and it worked. They made mechanical and electronic versions of the product.
They launched the company in 2014 despite having an unsuccessful Kickstarter campaign. Still, they raised over $1.5 million from other sources and partnered with a school in Arkansas. But five years in, the business only made $250,000 in revenue.
Shark Tank Appearance
It was clear that the company needed help. Clay and Alex appeared on season 10 of Shark Tank in 2019, asking for $500,000 for 6% equity.
However, their pitch didn’t go as planned. When Alex was supposed to demonstrate how easy it is to kick down a door with a deadlock, he failed several times and the Sharks were falling over laughing. The demo frame wasn’t set up properly, Alex couldn’t kick the door open because the frame was not stable. With a strong foundation, it would have opened with less effort.
The demo wasn’t exactly what raised red flags about the company. It was the fact that the founders had a debt of around $500,000, and the product had poor profit margins. Because of this, the Sharks backed out one by one.
After Shark Tank
Despite a disastrous pitch, the clip went viral on YouTube and helped them generate a lot more publicity. The company is still in business and makes an estimated $4.5 million in annual revenue according to Konaequity.com.
They are now available to buy at Home Depot, Lowe’s, Amazon, and their official website, HavenLock.com. On Amazon, the mechanical floor mount lock has an average rating of 3.8 stars from 66 reviews. The negative reviews mainly mention the lock doesn’t fit as some doors are low to the ground.
With the recent tragedies at schools, more of them are contacting Haven Lock. There are over 130,000 schools in the country so potentially they can be a huge customer. Also, the smart lock market is forecasted to reach 7.13 billion by 2030. Currently, Haven Lock is worth an estimated $8 million.