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Newcastle Herald
Newcastle Herald
Madeline Link

Teens bag $80K investment on Shark Tank for sustainable swimwear

Myla Tucker and Liv Lorenz got an $80,000 investment on Shark Tank. Picture by Marina Neil

TEEN entrepreneurs Olivia Lorenz and Myla Tucker have shattered another glass ceiling after they secured an $80,000 investment for their swimwear brand Cinnamon Cove on Shark Tank Australia.

The 13 and 14-year-old school girls, business partners and best friends from Newcastle launched the sustainable brand two years ago after struggling to find swimwear that wasn't too "babyish" or too "skimpy".

"When we told our parents they said we should start with candles or soaps but this is what we wanted to do, none of us really had any experience in business except for a few ideas that didn't really work out," Liv said.

Going into Shark Tank, the girls said it was one of the "scariest" things they've ever done - and they faced an uphill battle.

A few of the Sharks shared concerns that the girls were too young and would find it tough to balance business, school and social commitments.

"We have managed it so far and we hope we can continue to manage it, it's something that we really love and sometimes we do miss out on going to parties but at the end of the day we love Cinnamon Cove more than anything," Liv said.

Myla said it's really helpful having the experience of Sharks Davie Fogarty and Catriona Wallace behind them, as well as the support of their friends and family.

"We have little parties ourselves with our friends and everyone gets involved in it, on days that we shoot photos everyone's there having a blast," she said.

"From the beginning Liv and I have had the mindset that age doesn't matter, if you want to do it and you know you can - just do it.

"We hope that's something everyone can try, because if you have a goal your age shouldn't stop you."

Cinnamon Cove co-founders Myla Tucker and Olivia Lorenz. Picture by Marina Neil

Starting their own swimwear line hasn't been without its challenges, but the pair push through them together and it's all worth it.

"Mentality is really important, keeping a positive mindset, because in a business you do jump hurdles and there's challenges you have to face upfront, but Liv and I have learned heaps from it," Myla said.

"We like to think of ourselves as a team in everything we do."

The sustainable swimsuits are made from Italian fabric using upcycled nylon, with each piece manufactured in Australia.

Creating something that's eco-friendly is one of their core values and the swimmers are marketed towards girls aged eight to 16 - but they've had a few purchases from adults too.

Since its launch, Cinnamon Cove has sold close to $60,000 in swimwear without a single piece of paid advertising.

The Shark Tank investment is evenly split between Davie Fogarty and Catriona Wallace, and the girls hope to use the funds to grow and better market their brand.

"It was an easy decision for me to invest in Cinnamon Cove," Dr Wallace said.

"The business solves a genuine problem for tweens and the entrepreneurs Liv and Myla are extremely impressive.

"I hope the example of Cinnamon Cove landing two Sharks, Davie and myself, will inspire other young Australians to go into business, especially young women.

"I'm super proud to be part of the Cinnamon Cove team."

Liv and Myla have been asked to speak at events about sustainability and young entrepreneurs, including the 2023 Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Melbourne and the 2022 Blue Solutions Summit.

Last year, the pair were named TweenPreneurs of the Year.

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