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Dragons Den Seeks Green Entrepreneurs For Series 9

Press Release
24 Feb 2011

After its record breaking series in 2010, Dragons’ Den is preparing to open for business once again, giving entrepreneurs from across the country the chance to realise their ambitions and make their business dreams come true.

If you’re genuinely seeking investment for your business idea or invention, we’d like to hear from you.

Last year saw more entrepreneurs than ever before enter the Den and face the Dragons, with 17 businesses convincing the multi-millionaire investors that they were worthy of their cash. One of the most memorable pitches from the series came from 24 year-old, Kirsty Henshaw, who, having developed her healthy frozen desserts for her young son, needed £65,000 to expand the business. After an emotional encounter, the single mum’s hard work and determination paid off as Duncan Bannatyne and Peter Jones joined forces to give her business a much needed cash injection. Kirsty says, with the help of her Dragon partners, her Freedom products have been stocked in over 2000 supermarkets nationwide and sales figures have hit £360,000. She predicts she’ll make £1million in sales in her first year alone.

All the financiers were impressed by inventors Richard Blakesley and Chris Barnardo who pitched their magical remote control and sparked a fervent bidding war. In the end it was a tactical Duncan Bannatyne who fought off his rivals and shook hands with the duo. Antiques expert Patrick van der Vorst sought investment in his valuation website and was delighted to secure the backing of two Dragons, Theo Paphitis and Deborah Meaden. Patrick says that since the Den his turnover has increased five fold and his customer base has risen to more than 23,000.

Dragons Den AdvertPerhaps the most famous entrepreneur to secure investment in the Den was Levi Roots, who in 2007 secured investment in his secret recipe, Reggae Reggae sauce. Just 4 weeks after his appearance on the programme his Dragon investors helped him launch his product in major supermarkets all over the UK. Now a household name, his range includes; table sauces, cooking sauces and ready meals, and has also secured a licensing deal with one of the world’s largest frozen food manufacturers, has several hit books under his belt, and presented his own cookery series. Levi says he sold six million bottles of sauce last year alone and now, thanks to the Dragons, has a business empire valued in the millions,

Of course not everyone secures investment in the Den but that doesn’t stop determined entrepreneurs going on to prove the Dragons wrong. In 2009, Paul Ward came into the Den with his MRSA killing laundry detergent, after receiving an offer but failing to agree terms, he walked away empty-handed. Paul says his company now has a turnover of £1.4million. In 2006, Rob Law pitched his children’s luggage range, Trunki, but after a legendary but disastrous encounter with Theo Paphitis, failed to earn any of the Dragons’ cash. Since then, Rob says he has grown the business into a global success story, selling 750,000 products to 62 countries worldwide. In the New Year’s Honours List he was awarded an MBE for his services to business.

The rules are simple: entrepreneurs ask for a cash investment in return for equity in their business. However, they must get at least the amount they ask for or they will walk away with nothing. The Dragons are prepared to listen to a pitch for any kind of business but they must be convinced that it requires investment and will make money. Ideas, businesses and products that have previously gained financial backing in the Den have demonstrated one or more of the following: unique selling point, scalability, clear route to market and a planned exit strategy.

The BBC will be auditioning throughout the coming months. If you would like an application form please send an e-mail to [email protected] or visit www.bbc.co.uk/dragonsden

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Notes for Editors:

www.therenewableenergycentre.co.uk

The Renewable Energy Centre is committed to informing all online users about energy saving and renewable energy in order to:

  • increase public awareness through accurate and informative resources
  • create business opportunities throughout the UK through its’ local and national directories.

For more information contact:

Angela Gallacher (Head of Press and Marketing)
Email:
Telephone: +44 (0)1926 865 835
Address: 1 Alpha House, Farmer Ward Road, Kenilworth, Warwickshire, CV8 2ED

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