Teenage CEO of South Florida Company to Appear on ‘Shark Tank’

Teenage entrepreneur Rachel Zietz pitched her million-dollar company Gladiator Lacrosse to the millionaires and billionaires of “Shark Tank” nearly a year ago, and she will finally appear on the hit TV show May 13, the South Florida Business Journal has learned.

Zietz’s pitch was filmed in June, but her family was recently notified that she would appear on the 22nd episode of the seventh season of the reality show. There were no guarantees the episode would air, said her fatherSam Zietz, even though his daughter was standing in front of dozens of cameras while she talked about her company to the “Shark Tank” stars.

“We didn’t know for sure she’d be on,” said Sam, who is also CEO of Boca Raton-based TouchSuite. “I told her you’ll never have as much pressure walking into a business meeting as you did today.”

Rachel founded Gladiator Lacrosse in 2012 when she was 13 years old. An avid lacrosse player, she knew she needed better equipment, and would eventually roll out her own line of lacrosse equipment and accessories, including rebounders and practice goals for players to use in their backyards.

“I definitely didn’t think it would be as big as it is,” Rachel said in a 2015 interview with the South Florida Business Journal.

Since launching her company, Rachel has garnered attention from major business news outlets including the The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. She was also named a finalist for the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce’s 2015 Entrepreneur Award of young professionals.

This year, Gladiator Lacrosse is projected to reach $2 million in sales, Sam told the Business Journal. Rachel attends high school in Fort Lauderdale.

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