Jiggy Puzzles founder Kaylin Marcotte found a new investor in Mark Cuban during Friday night's episode of Shark Tank. Marcotte founded the company in 2019, focusing on puzzles that could also be used as works of art to decorate walls. The company began really taking off in 2020 when people found puzzles as a great way to pass the time during coronavirus lockdowns. Cuban was concerned about how the company could sustain that success, but he was too impressed with Marcotte's presentation to turn her down.
Marcotte was hoping to get a $500,000 investment in exchange for a 5% stake in the business. Cuban was interested but only at a 15% stake. There was some negotiating between the two, but when Cuban said he would match the company's charitable donations, Marcotte took the deal. The sharks were all concerned about Jiggy sustaining its success after the pandemic, including Cuban. "The only risk is, does it roll over after COVID?" Kevin O'Leary noted. "No, I invested in her," Cuban said. "We pivot and go to something else."
Marcotte founded Jiggy in November 2019, and the company took off after the pandemic hit, notes Forbes. The idea to create a company focused on puzzles that could act as art came to her after her time at the startup TheSkimm. She started doing puzzles as a stress-reliever after work. The only problem was that the puzzles she was doing did not look great. "All the options were super cheesy stock photography, watercolor animals and landscapes and stuff," she told Forbes.
In 2015, she decided that reinventing puzzles was something she wanted to do. In 2017, she left TheSkimm to focus on building Jiggy full-time. During that time, she also decided that Jiggy would support the work of female artists. "Empowering female artists is such a part of our mission, and now with Mark on our team and this wind at our banks, we can scale that impact across the world," Marcotte said on Shark Tank.
Marcotte also sees puzzles as a "great metaphor for life, serving as a symbol of the challenges and obstacles that stand in our way, especially this past year," she told Forbes in January. She even expanded the business beyond just selling individual puzzles. Earlier this year, she launched the Jiggy Puzzle Club, which costs $26 per month. Subscribers are sent one 500-piece puzzle a month and get early access to other products, as well as exclusive content and free shipping. As for Shark Tank, the show airs Fridays at 8 p.m. ET on ABC. You can stream past episodes on Hulu.