What Happened To Scholly After Shark Tank?

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Christopher Gray, whose startup Scholly has been featured on ABC's Shark Tank. Chris is a Philadelphia resident who has come to the Shark Tank in hopes of receiving a $40,000 investment in return for 15% ownership of his business.

Is Chris going to be able to get a spot in the Shark Tank? What exactly happened to Chris on this episode of Shark Tank? Let’s dive into all the details.

What Is Scholly?

The Scholly app uses pre-populated data to connect prospective students with scholarships around the country

What Is Scholly

You may begin filling it out at the top by entering your name, state, race, GPA, gender, sorting options (need-based vs. merit-based scholarships), current grade, and major. 

Once you've filled out the form, click the "Match" button, and the app will find you scholarship opportunities that meet your needs.

Scholly features

Chris shares that he knows firsthand how expensive higher education can be since he is now enrolled at a university. With the annual increase in tuition, more and more families are turning to student loans to cover the expense of higher education. 

Although this creates an impossible burden for students, grants are available to assist alleviate financial strain. 

The only catch is that finding such grants is next to impossible, and universities spend billions of dollars annually on grants that go unclaimed. As a result, Chris developed Scholly.

Using pre-populated data, the Scholly app finds scholarships around the country for potential students

You may start filling it out at the top, with your state, race, GPA, gender, sorting options for need-based and merit-based scholarships, your current academic standing, your intended major, and even an area for additional notes. 

After filling out the form, selecting "Match" will immediately return results showing all available scholarships that meet your requirements.

I’m curious about Scholly now that the Sharks have put their money where their words are and invested in this supposedly game-changing software. 

Are you guys curious as I am whether or not they have been successful in taking it from a fledgling company to its current state of prominence? Let's find out what happens after Shark Tank.

Scholly before Shark Tank?

Chris, who is a junior in college, came up with the concept. He actually received scholarships worth $1.3 million.

Chris says it took up to seven months, but as a junior, he scoured the internet and found a lot of "Full Ride" scholarships, which cover everything but textbooks. 

Chris, who was raised by a single mother and has two brothers, discovered that the application fees for several of the schools he wanted to attend prevented him from applying

Chris says that Scholly actually concentrates on external scholarships rather than those offered by the institution itself. 

These are awards that students from any college can apply for. Outside of scholarships, about $100 million is left unused, according to Chris.

Scholly pitching on Shark Tank

Christopher Gray, from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, enters the Shark Tank. Chris is representing his app, Scholly, and has come to Shark Tank to seek a $40,000 investment in exchange for a 15% stake in the company.

Scholly pitching on Shark Tank

Robert begins by saying that he loves the concept, and Chris is completely true; there are so many scholarships that it's like a jungle. Robert has no idea how people manage to receive money from scholarships that aren't offered by the institution.

He then inquires whether the genuine app was displayed, which Chris confirms; the app is compatible with both iPhone and Android operating systems.

Lori then says that she will make a really aggressive offer on Shark Tank because she wants to try something new. Lori promises to pay $40,000 straight away for 15%. Chris's work is something she admires.

Daymond enters and declares that he now wants to join Scholly as well. Daymond takes a personal interest in it because he began working when he was 10 years old and also was brought up by a single mother. 

He intended to attend college when he was 17 years old, but he had to work to support his mother because there was no food on the table. 

Daymond strikes a chord with Scholly and extends the same invitation as Lori. Daymond proposes to give up 15% of the business in exchange for $40,000.

Lori then mentions that other Sharks are asking the questions that she and Daymond aren't, creating controversy. She says she doesn't dismiss Chris and believes him.

Robert wonders how Lori can believe in the company when she hasn't asked how it works, but Daymond says they'll figure it out as they go.

Lori then offers a 50/50 partnership and $40,000 for 15% of the company with two Sharks. Chris acknowledges Lori's pressure to make a decision.

The other Sharks couldn't ask questions or gather information, and Daymond and Lori may have thrown the rug out from under them to secure an early close on a great application.

Mark and Robert mock Lori and Daymond when Chris leaves since they don't know how the back-end engine scrapes university and scholarship websites.

Even Kevin can't decide if it's a charity or business, but they both point out that their investment wasn't charity. Robert questions how they'll grow and scale the business, and Lori and Daymond say, "We'll figure it out."

Kevin says it best: He didn't get enough information, so the Sharks forced $40,000 down Christopher's neck.

Mark, Kevin, and Robert are unhappy because Lori and Daymond stole a deal from them without enough information. Lori and Daymond sit alone in their two recliners as the episode ends.

The Deal: LORI and DAYMOND won a 50/50 partnership and $40,000 for 15% of the company.

What happened to Scholly after Shark Tank?

Lori and Daymond's contract closed following the program. Forbes featured them multiple times. Their social media profiles also flourished after Shark Tank. They had 14,000 Facebook likes by 2016.

What happened to Scholly after Shark Tank

They appeared on Shark Tank's Greatest of All Time Special in February 2020. Mark, Kevin, and Robert appeared in "Greatest Shark Fights" (other companies that were featured in the same segment include Simple Habit, Knife Aid, and Pavlok). 

Kevin said they occasionally go for a drink after filming to "fix things up" for the next day.

By 2021, the app raised $100 million for students, making it the top scholarship app. They collaborated with 25-year-old entrepreneur, investor, and Morehouse College grad Bryce Thompson. 

Ten students received $100,000 in Financial Freedom Scholarships. 2022: The app has 4 million users. Gray said they'll offer a student loan payoff service by year's end.

Some people like the app, but others don't. Students often claim that the program requires payment to discover scholarships, which negates the point as they don't have much money.

Several users have also had payment issues where they were billed after canceling their subscriptions.

The app has 4.2 stars out of 3,100 ratings on Google Play, and 3.7 stars out of 6,000 ratings on the iOS App Store.

Many users have had problems. One user said the app won't let them access premium features despite their annual membership. Others ask why the software lacks filters or search boxes.

The app is used globally. The company is worth $5 million in 2022, about double what it was when it featured on Shark Tank.

Scholly pricing plans

Scholly costs $.99 in the Play Store, and has generated 92,000 paid subscriptions in less than a year, as well as "viewer marketing" (viewers of the app, without even purchasing it, tell others about Scholly's existence).

Scholly pricing plans

Scholly pros & cons

Scholly is an app that aims to help students find scholarships. It's a great idea, but here are some pros and cons of the app:

Pros

  • It's the top scholarship app.
  • It has given more students Financial Freedom Scholarships.
  • By 2021, the app raised $100 million for students.
  • They'll offer a student loan payoff service by year's end.

Cons

  • The program requires payment to discover scholarships
  • They also had payment issues where they were billed after canceling their subscription.
  • The app won't let them access premium features despite their annual membership.
  • The software lacks filters or search boxes.

Wrapping up

So, what do you think? Did Chris get his money's worth?

He's the first to admit that he's not the smartest kid around, and he often feels like he has a lot to learn. But it's clear that Chris has been able to make something of himself—and he did it with the help of scholarships.

So if you're looking for some inspiration as you start your own search for startups, just remember: If a guy like Chris can do it, so can you!

About the author 

Peter Keszegh

Most people write this part in the third person but I won't. You're at the right place if you want to start or grow your online business. When I'm not busy scaling up my own or other people' businesses, you'll find me trying out new things and discovering new places. Connect with me on Facebook, just let me know how I can help.

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