San Jose ice cream entrepreneurs banking on ABC's 'Shark Tank'

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- Two San Jose entrepreneurs have their sights set on the Shark Tank. No, not the hockey rink. The ABC TV show "Shark Tank." That's because their booming ice cream business needs to expand to meet demand.

Mavens Creamery is a small business that has big plans. Sisters Gwen and Christine Nguyen knew nothing about baking when they started, but they created a specialty ice cream dessert sandwiched between two French-style macarons.

It's all hand made. Despite producing 7,000 pieces per day, demand is exceeding supply. So they auditioned for and got selected to be on ABC's "Shark Tank."

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"We're from San Jose, California, and we're seeking $400,000 in exchange for 10 percent of our booming business," said Gwen as she emerged from the signature, long hallway on the set of "Shark Tank" and faced the judges.

The sisters said they were nervous.

"It was nerve racking," said Gwen. "It was exciting. It was challenging. All at once."

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They had rehearsed for days.

"We locked ourselves up in a hotel room for five solid days and just pitched to each other. Just role play," Christine said.

We discovered Mavens Creamery two years ago. The sisters taught us how to tap the trays of macarons just right.

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The product sells in 22 states now, but the Nguyen sisters want to expand to the East Coast and overseas.

"To meet demand, we're going to double up our shift, double up our capacity, and meanwhile while we're doing that in parallel, we're also going to find ways to automate our process so that we'll be able to scale faster," Gwen said.

That's going to require capital, and that's why they hope one of sharks will partner with them. They have a portfolio of 30 flavors with eight flavors available at a time. The most popular are chocolate toasted almond, cookies & cream, strawberry shortcake and salted caramel.

The anticipation is building. What will happen when Gwen and Christine face the sharks? Find out this Sunday night at 10 PM on ABC7.

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