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Mark Cuban announces exit from Shark Tank after season 16 – who will replace him?

The Dallas Mavericks owner has been a Shark since the ABC show's third season

SHARK TANK - ABC's "Shark Tank" stars Mark Cuban.
Ahad Sanwari
Ahad SanwariSenior WriterNew York
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There's a ripple in the water as TV personality Mark Cuban revealed that he intends to leave the ABC reality show Shark Tank after its upcoming 16th season.

The 65-year-old billionaire owner of the Dallas Mavericks appeared on the Showtime podcast All The Smoke with hosts and former NBA players Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson.

While discussing his time on the show, he confessed: "This is our 15th year. Next year, 16th year, is going to be my last year." The show is currently in its 15th season, which began on September 29, with the follow-up set to premiere next year.

SHARK TANK - ABCs Shark Tank stars Mark Cuban. MARK CUBAN© Getty Images
Mark announced his intention to leave Shark Tank after season 16

He proudly said "it's time," while admitting that the reason he loved the show in the first place was "because it sends the message the American dream is alive and well." 

Mark continued: "I feel like in doing Shark Tank all these years, we've trained a generation of entrepreneurs, multiple generations of entrepreneurs that if somebody can come from Iowa or Sacramento or wherever, and show up on the carpet of Shark Tank and show their business and get a deal, it's going to inspire generations of kids. 

$$ TALK: Shark Tank star Mark Cuban is so wealthy he owns entire town

"That's what happens, right? Now we've got people coming on [saying] I watched you when I was 10 years old."

SHARK TANK - Daymond John, Barbara Corcoran, Mark Cuban, Lori Greiner, Kevin O'Leary, and Robert Herjavec are "Sharks" on ABC's "Shark Tank."© Getty Images
Daymond John, Barbara Corcoran, Mark, Lori Greiner, Kevin O'Leary, and Robert Herjavec, the six Sharks

He revealed that while he'd invested in hundreds of companies during his time on the show, "on a cash basis I'm down a little bit, but on a mark to market, meaning the companies are still in operation, I'm way up."

ABC has not yet commented on the news, however that would leave five main Sharks on the show, those being Daymond John, Barbara Corcoran, Robert Herjavec, Kevin O'Leary, and Lori Greiner.

READ: Shark Tank stars share shocking behind-the-scenes secret

Daymond, Barbara, Robert, and Kevin have been with the show since its very first season back in 2009, while Lori joined as a guest Shark in season three and became a regular the following year.

SHARK TANK - "1110" - An entrepreneur from Miami Gardens, Florida, presents his patented system that easily helps decorate and set up a Christmas tree in a matter of minutes. Santa and his elves from Murray, Utah, enter the tank with their fun and easy-to-attach body decor, while an entrepreneur from Stowe, Vermont, presents his web rental service that ships outdoor gear and apparel directly to you, wherever and whenever adventure strikes. Finally, an entrepreneur from West Boylston, Massachusetts, introduces his innovative tool to make holiday gift-wrapping easier on "Shark Tank,"
The show has been an ABC staple since its 2009 premiere, and is currently in its 15th season

The show is formatted in a way that does not require every one of the main Sharks to be present at the same time, usually featuring a rotating panel of four Sharks plus one guest (or, sometimes, five of the six Sharks).

PICTURES: Meet the Shark Tank stars' children: Mark Cuban, Barbara Corcoran and more

While Mark had definitely become one of the most prominent members of the team, quickly achieving notoriety and fame for his bold yet comforting style, the other Sharks could capably step in, as could one of the previous guest Sharks.

The network hasn't released any statement on Mark's announcement

One of the most frequent guests in recent years is Daniel Lubetzky, a billionaire businessman who is the founder and executive chairman of the snack company Kind LLC.

MORE: Shark Tank: How Mark Cuban, Kevin O'Leary, and more made their fortunes

He has made appearances as a recurring guest Shark since season 11, and is slated to return for more episodes of the currently airing season 15 as well. 

SHARK TANK - ABC's "Shark Tank" stars Mark Cuban, Barbara Corcoran, Kevin O'Leary, Lori Greiner, and Daniel Lubetzky.© Getty Images
Daniel Lubetzky has been the show's most frequent guest in the past few seasons

Emma Grede has also been a frequent guest since season 13, with the British entrepreneur working closely with the Kardashian family, acting as the CEO and co-founder of Khloe's Good American and a founding partner of Kim's Skims.

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