Businessman and investor, Kevin O’Leary makes or breaks entrepreneurs’ dreams as a venture capitalist on ABC’s Shark Tank. The founder of the successful SoftKey Software Products (now The Learning Company) shares his 30+ years of expertise giving audiences “the cold hard truth” about how to succeed in business whether you’re looking to seal a deal with a shark or a dragon on primetime or building your business up in a more traditional way.
After a two-day stint as an ice cream scooper went sour, Kevin made a vow that he was going to be his own boss. While earning his MBA, he interned as a marketing manager at Nabisco, raising their sales in cat food during his time there. After graduation, he cofounded the television production company Special Event Television, which created original sports programming. Both experiences were key, he claimed, in the success of his later venture, SoftKey Software Products.
In 1986, SoftKey was the first company of its kind, carving out a new market as personal computers in the home became more and more commonplace. Over the years it became a major force in the growing educational technology sector acquiring major competitors and ultimately becoming #1 in its industry with annual sales of over $800 million. Eventually SoftKey changed its name to The Learning Company and was purchased by The Mattel Toy Company in a deal that left Kevin a multi-millionaire.
Currently Kevin enjoys following his passion of photography and looking for new exciting projects to back as a shark on Shark Tank.