The story of uLace is really a story about U (you), the uLace consumer.

When our founder and uLace product creator Tim Talley created this brand the first thing he did was name the product uLace; because the product was truly all about the consumer and empowering U to customize and personalize your sneakers in a manner that was totally U.

For 12 years we have continued to design and improve uLace with a sole focus on U the consumer.

From continual product improvements to the addition of new product lines, new colors, new patterns and even new accessories lines, our eyes and thoughts have remained keenly focused on U; the incredible people who keep us both going and growing.

Our Customer Focus Shows In Our Product Benefits


How it All Began: The uLace Shark Tank Journey

uLace appeared on Season 5, Episode 19 of the hit ABC TV show Shark Tank. And while the episode first aired on March 7th 2014, the actual episode was shot on Sept 14th, 2013 at Sony Pictures Studios in Hollywood, CA.

So while recent years have seen many new Shark Tank shoelaces and brands enter the scene, uLace paved the way nearly a decade ago by introducing the very first of its kind, no-tie shoelace product. Today, many are familiar with the popular Shark Tank laces, but few realize that uLace actually invented the entire no-tie shoelace category. Now, with years of experience under our belts, uLace can proudly call itself the original modular no-tie shoelace brand — but how exactly did we become the creator of no-tie shoelaces?

At the time we were on Shark Tank, ulace only offered uLace Classic laces, however since the episode aired, we have added several uLace product lines including: uLace Kiddos, uLace Slims, uLace Shorts and uLace SiliPrint - our animal and graphic print no tie laces - to our ever expanding catalog.

While submitting an online application may be enough to get on Shark Tank today, back in 2013 the only way to get on the show was to attend an open casting call.

In May 2013 - uLace founder Tim Talley drove from Rochester, NY to Philadelphia and spent a long night outside in the pouring rain with several hundred other would-be Shark Tank contestants. With his Classic no tie laces in hand, Tim stood amidst a crowd all hoping for the chance to present a 1 minute pitch to the Shark Tank producers.

Actual Tee and Sneakers worn for the pitch

By the time morning came, the crowd had swelled to over 6000 people, all seeking a chance to be on the show. Fortunately for Tim & uLace, getting there early –– and bearing it out in the pouring rain –– put him at number 85 of over 6000 hopefuls.

Tim soon got his chance to pitch his uLace no tie shoelaces to the Shark Tank producers, before heading home with the final notice: “we only call with good news. If you don’t hear from us by Friday close of business that means you weren’t selected to proceed forward.”

The next Friday Tim received the ‘good news’ call. He, and uLace, were officially moving forward. Armed with the uLace Classic laces, he now had to focus on creating the perfect pitch.

So began Tim’s huge, four month effort to write an air-tight pitch, practice said pitch, and answer probing questions about the pitch, business and (most importantly) the numbers — all with his assigned producers each week.

On Sept 14th, 2013 Tim shot the uLace episode of Shark Tank. He, and his already globally distributed uLace Classics, quickly won a life-changing deal with billionaire Dallas Mavericks owner – and Shark – Mark Cuban, but it had to remain a tightly held secret for the next 6 months.

So for months, Tim waited for the episode to air, knowing that uLace was about to become the most important Shark Tank shoelaces in history. Finally, on March 7, 2014 the actual uLace Shark Tank episode aired.

Now, in addition to securing the deal with Mark Cuban and pioneering the first no tie Laces on Shark Tank, one of the things we are the most proud of was the Shark’s stellar reception of Tim. When promoting the episode, ABC referred to the modular lace creator as ‘The Real Deal’ and a ‘Hero’.

In fact, Tim was the sole entrepreneur on the episode that all the Sharks agreed was a great guy with a great product, background, and story.

uLace After Shark Tank: How the Shark Tank Shoelaces Took Off

Our Shark Tank journey and partnership with Mark Cuban and Mark Cuban Companies was tremendously impactful and helped position uLace no tie laces for the growth we have seen since airing on the Show. In 2018, we were again blessed with the opportunity to buy our equity back from Mark Cuban. This is something that rarely happens in business and we are grateful to Mark for allowing us to do so

Today, uLace has proudly paved the way for a sea of Shark Tank laces, with new elastic, no tie, and modular shoelaces all competing for a place in the category Tim created. Nevertheless, no other laces seen on Shark Tank or no tie lace will ever be able to proudly call itself the one, true originator of no tie laces.

We hope our Shark Tank story will inspire you to take your idea and run with it. Whether on Shark Tank or not, if you have a great idea pursue it. You just might change the world and your life in the process.

To Discover The Perfect Pair of uLace No Tie Laces for Your Own Favorite Sneakers, Shop the Classic Collection Today!

Otherwise, to learn more about uLace and find the answers to all your no tie shoelace questions and concerns, explore our uLace no tie shoelace FAQ page. Additionally, to read about the other sites and publications that have featured uLace click through to the uLace Press page!