Shaan Patel ’16 has spent the last year and a half at Yale SOM working to expand his test-preparation company, 2400 Expert, beyond its Las Vegas roots. The company will get national exposure on January 29, when he will pitch his business plan to a group of potential investors on the ABC reality show Shark Tank.
The test-preparation business grew out of Patel’s own experience of improving his SAT score from “average” to a perfect 2400. It offers students six-week courses for both the SAT and ACT and is available in 20 cities and online.
Patel credits Yale SOM’s Program on Entrepreneurship, which offers coursework and support for entrepreneurs, and the Yale Entrepreneurial Institute (YEI) with helping him to build the skills necessary to take 2400 Expert “from a small business in Las Vegas to a national test-prep brand.”
"Yale SOM has been instrumental in helping me grow my business,” he said. “My involvement with the Yale SOM Program on Entrepreneurship as well as YEI has taught me the importance of lean methodology, which I have applied to my company. For example, Kyle Jensen's class Management of Software of Development led me to hire a web developer and apply agile principles to our website. This has already resulted in an increase in revenue and a better user experience for our customers."
Jensen, the Shanna and Eric Bass ’05 Director of Entrepreneurship and a lecturer in entrepreneurship and computer science, said, “Shaan and I completed an independent study together through which I had an opportunity to see him excel in his leadership of 2400 Expert. Shaan is a fantastic entrepreneur possessed of many attributes worthy of admiration. He is thoughtful, experimental, quantitative, and predisposed to action. I am pleased most of all that he's built a successful team around him and a thriving service preparing students for standardized exams. I can't wait to see him on Shark Tank.”
Patel has launched an online campaign to encourage viewers to tune in to Shark Tank, aiming to break the show’s audience record of 8.6 million people.
Update: At the conclusion of Patel’s appearance on Shark Tank, Mark Cuban, a businessman and owner of basketball’s Dallas Mavericks, agreed to invest in 2400 Expert. Read more on Forbes.com.