FoodLocal BusinessWilliam J. Ford

Everything Legendary’s Vegan Products Hit Nationwide Market

Prince George's-Based Company Strikes Gold with 'Shark Tank' Appearance

A Prince George’s County-based company that received a $300,000 investment in February from billionaire entrepreneur Mark Cuban on the reality TV show “Shark Tank” now has its product on shelves in the marketplace nationwide.

Everything Legendary’s plant-based vegan burgers and ground can be purchased in 310 Target locations in 13 states. That’s in addition to the hundreds of other grocery stores including Giant, Safeway, Acme and Stop & Shop.

The Black-owned business’s product ranks third among plant-based meats sold to consumers.

“Mark Cuban believed in us. It’s been amazing ever since,” Duane Cheers, president and CEO of Everything Legendary, said during an interview Friday. “We did $250,000 in the first 24 hours [and] $1.5 million in three months since ‘Shark Tank’ aired. It’s a blessing.”

Before the process to appear on “Shark Tank,” Cheers illustrated his ingenuity and entrepreneurial skills, disguising himself as a “delivery boy” so he could improve his chances of securing a meeting that led to a contract 17 months ago with representatives at Safeway to sell his company’s product.

“I did my research for all the different meat managers — ‘I have all these burgers for everyone,'” he said. “I gave it to the receptionist. She was, like, ‘I’m about to give them a call.’ I said, “No, no. Don’t do that. [They’re] in a big meeting. If you call them, you’re going to get fired. That was the funny part.

“I came back two days later,” Cheers recalled. “[The receptionist] was, like, ‘you’re that delivery guy.’ I said, ‘Let me introduce myself. I’m the founder and CEO of Everything Legendary and I would love to get a meeting. From there we got the meeting…”

According to the company’s website site at www.golegendary.com, residents can purchase products at various stores in the D.C. and Baltimore areas. A few stores sell the plant-based items in Frederick County, Maryland, and Fredericksburg, Virginia.

The business, when founded in 2019, centered on Cheers’ mom, diagnosed with lupus 35 years ago, who converted into a “strict vegan” more than 30 years ago. Cheers said she recently celebrated her 71st birthday and “that’s because of a healthy diet.”

“She’s been a big influence,” he said. “We make this product which is flavorful. It has the right texture. It’s healthy. It’s the best plant-based burger in the world.”

David Iannucci, president and CEO of Prince George’s Economic Development Corp., said Cuban’s investment will boost an entrepreneurial spirit in the county.

“The Mark Cuban investment tells the nation that Prince George’s County is a welcoming home to entrepreneurs,” he said. “It will help make the county known to more people as a business-friendly environment.”

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William J. Ford – Washington Informer Staff Writer

I decided I wanted to become a better writer while attending Bowie State University and figured that writing for the school newspaper would help. I’m not sure how much it helped, but I enjoyed it so much I decided to keep on doing it, which I still thoroughly enjoy 20 years later. If I weren’t a journalist, I would coach youth basketball. Actually, I still play basketball, or at least try to play, once a week. My kryptonite is peanut butter. What makes me happy – seeing my son and two godchildren grow up. On the other hand, a bad call made by an official during a football or basketball game makes me throw up my hands and scream. Favorite foods include pancakes and scrambled eggs which I could eat 24-7. The strangest thing that’s ever happened to me, or more accurately the most painful, was when I was hit by a car on Lancaster Avenue in Philadelphia. If I had the power or money to change the world, I’d make sure everyone had three meals a day. And while I don’t have a motto or favorite quote, I continue to laugh which keeps me from driving myself crazy. You can reach me several ways: Twitter @jabariwill, Instagram will_iam.ford2281 or e-mail, wford@washingtoninformer.com

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