Come Friday, one northeast Johnson County mom is going to take a swim with the sharks in front of a national television audience.
Prairie Village resident Betsy Johnson will be among the contestants on the episode of ABC’s Shark Tank that is scheduled to run Friday. Johnson and her brother Berry Wanless are the founders of SwimZip, a company that sells sun protective swim gear. Johnson and Wanless launched SwimZip in 2010, and first debuted their suit designs in fall 2011. The company received some buzz after the children of Jessica Alba and Jennifer Garner appeared in celebrity magazines wearing the suits.
On Shark Tank, Betsy and her brother will face a panel of business experts including Mark Cuban who will vet their business plan and possibly offer them an investment.
Johnson, who grew up in Topeka, says her own experience with skin cancer (she had a a basal cell carcinoma removed at 26) is part of her motivation for the product.
“”The Sharks are all about the money, but in the case of SwimZip, I have a real personal connection and passion about our products,” she said. “We have the best kids sun protective swimwear because I know firsthand the dangers of too much sun exposure at the beach and pool.”
The episode is scheduled to air at 8 p.m. Central on ABC.