Sweetkiwi is a frozen yogurt with healthy ingredients that claims to improve your gut health. Founded in Africa, Founders Ehime Eigbe-Akindele and Michael Akindele moved to the US to expand their business. They pitched their business on season 14 of Shark Tank and got a deal with Robert Herjavec. After Shark Tank, Sweetkiwi is worth an estimated $4 million.
About the Founders
Ehime Eigbe-Akindele and her husband, Michael, currently reside in Washington, DC. Previously, Ehime lived in London, where she studied at London Metropolitan University. Michael lived in Lagos, Nigeria, and graduated from George Mason University.
Before becoming an entrepreneur, Ehime worked in customer service at retail stores in the UK such as River Island and Asda. She later held senior positions at Amnesty International, Chase, and Citi.
Michael started out as an analyst at Accenture and spent five years as the director of digital content at Fusion Media and Entertainment Company. He also founded two startups, JohnRhoda and Uncharted Ventures.
After being diagnosed with uterine fibroid, Ehime began making her own food. Ice cream was her favorite treat because she had a sweet tooth. It was hard for her to give it up, so she made a healthy alternative to replace guilty pleasure.
What she came up with was frozen yogurt made up of superfoods that helps boost immunity and gut health. With this, Ehime and her husband launched Sweetkiwi in Nigeria in 2011. The venture became so successful that Ehime became an influential role model for aspiring female entrepreneurs in the country.
They only worked with local farmers to support the African dairy industry. In 2019, the couple made a move to go international. They took their brand to the United States and set up base in Washington.
Getting on Shark Tank
Sweetkiwi has done nothing but expand since moving overseas. The founders have pursued several marketing strategies to get a lot of exposure. They were also awarded with a $200,000 grant from the Black Lives Matter movement.
In the past, they received accolades including British Council Alumni Awards and OXFAM ‘Work in Progress’ Award. In 2022, they got accepted to feature on season 14 out of 40,000 companies. Ehime and Michael delivered a professional pitch and it was clear they were well prepared.
After Shark Tank
When the episode aired in March 2023, Ehime and Michael noticed a big uptick in orders. Ehime and Michael are planning to expand into the UK, Canada, and Mexico. It’s still too early to say when Sweetkiwi can achieve these milestones, but anything can happen with the “Shark Tank effect”.
Their gut-friendly products are available to buy at their website, Sweetkiwi.com. They are now in over 1,700 retail stores across the US including the likes of Kroger, Walmart, and Whole Foods. For March 2023, the company is offering a 20% discount for Shark Tank viewers. Goodhousekeeping.com listed Sweetkiwi’s Chocolate Hazelnut in their top 15 healthier ice creams.
The frozen dessert product has an average rating of 4.3 from 573 Google reviews. Sweetkiwi is thriving and should bring in record sales in 2023. Currently, the business is worth an estimated $4 million.