Johny Georges is the founder of the Tree-T-Pee, which protects trees from frost and provides them with more efficient irrigation. It looks to be a great innovation as it conserves water, giving it that necessary green approach businesses need in this day and age. Apparently it saves roughly 70% of the water used by traditional tree watering systems. The benefit to the grower is that the Tree-T-Pee will save money across the board in water usage, fuel, fertilizer and herbicide costs.
Johny explained to the Shark Tank clan that the T-Pees cost him $2.95 to make, and that he only charges the farmer $4.50 per. He says he makes about $1 per Tree-T-Pee. Given the potential cost saving for the farmer, that seems like an extremely small margin for Johny.
Johny has an industrial patent on the Tree-T-Pee and has already sold more than 100,000 in just 5 counties in Florida. He hasn’t even marketed the product, only having sold to people he knows in the small Florida region.
Because Johny is so passionate about water conservation, and supportive of farmers and their livelihoods, he hasn’t marked the product up like many entrepreneurs would. While it may be necessary in the future in order to expand his business, I can’t help but admire the guy for his pricing concept.
Johny Georges and his Tree-T-Pee perfectly demonstrate the beauty of capitalism and its ability to not only provide the entrepreneur willing to take a risk with a better life, but the customer and environment as well. This is a great story.
Around the 5 minute mark of the video above, Johny shares a pretty cool moment in his entrepreneurial venture, documenting the guts and humility he had when trying to build the business out…
With 5 of his Tree-T-Pees in hand, Johny goes on to a farmer’s grove and installs his patented devices on 5 trees out of nearly 5,000. While installing his innovation, for free I might add, the elderly owner of the farm spots him and approaches Johny. She accuses him of trespassing, at which point Johny goes into his pitch… just watch the video to see how it all worked out for him. This is awesome. Talk about going the extra mile for a potential customer!
After hooking the sharks with his fantastic, real world story of his product being utilized, Mark Cuban and O’Leary press him on his modest margins. He’s making just over a buck per Tree-T-Pee. Cuban suggests bumping the price to $5, then O’Leary suggests $12… Johny’s response is incredible. And this is precisely why he will be a huge success with this entrepreneurial innovation. He cares deeply about the livelihoods of his customers.
“When good people come together for a noble cause , great things happen.”
–Johnny Georges, Founder of Tree-T-Pee