Dragons' Den (UK)

Dragons' Den (UK)
Dragons' Den
DragonsDenUK.png
Genre Business
Presented by Evan Davis
Starring

Duncan Bannatyne
Peter Jones
Hilary Devey
Deborah Meaden
Theo Paphitis


Formerly
James Caan (Series 5 - 8)
Rachel Elnaugh (Series 1-2)
Richard Farleigh (Series 3-4)
Doug Richard (Series 1-2)
Simon Woodroffe (Series 1)
Composer(s) John Watt
Country of origin United Kingdom
Language(s) English
No. of series 9
No. of episodes 71 (to end of series 9)
Production
Producer(s) Dominic Bird
BBC Manchester
Sony Pictures
Location(s) Pinewood Studios
New Broadcasting House
Running time 60 minutes
Broadcast
Original channel BBC Two
BBC HD (simulcast with BBC Two, 2009-present)
Picture format 576i (2005-2008)
1080i (2009-present)
Original run 4 January 2005 – present
External links
Website

Dragons' Den is a British television series, hosted by Evan Davis. The format of the show is owned by Sony Pictures and is based on the original Japanese series, which has been sold around the world. The programme has been produced by BBC Manchester since its inception and it was first broadcast on BBC Two on 4 January 2005.

The show allows several entrepreneurs an opportunity to present their varying business ideas to a panel of five wealthy investors, the "Dragons" of the show's title, and pitch for financial investment offering a stake of the company in return.

Contents

Programme

Format

Contestants have what they perceive to be a viable and potentially profitable business idea but lack funding, or are already trading in their business but need additional funds for promotion or expansion. They are required as part of their opening pitch to specify the amount of money they require from the Dragons. The rules stipulate that if they do not raise at least this amount from one or more Dragons, they must leave with nothing. In exchange for the investment, the contestants offer equity in their business, the percentage of which is also stipulated at the beginning of the pitch. If the Dragons see potential in the business idea or product, negotiations then take place around the amount of equity on offer, with the contestant having the opportunity to negotiate further, accept any offers, or simply walk away. Dragons can also offer a percentage of the money requested if they do not wish to commit the full amount, leaving the other Dragons free to do the same. This can lead to the contestant receiving the financial backing of more than one Dragon, with the benefit of a broader range of expertise. However, for this to occur, the contestant usually has to agree to relinquish a larger share in their business than they had first planned.

A Dragon who, having heard the pitch, does not wish to invest, must declare themselves "out", implying that they leave the discussion. (However, on one occasion in series 4, Peter Jones continued to question an entrepreneur after his own declaration.) This concluding phase may range from a few minutes if the Dragons don't perceive the business plan as credible, to much longer when complex conditions are negotiated. The Dragons often ridicule contestants, on grounds that vary widely, but especially for over-valuation of their respective enterprises.

Set and theme

The opening sequence of the programme is set in Ancoats, Manchester, an area transformed by the Industrial Revolution which helped give the city its nickname Cottonopolis.[1] The sequence features shots of Murrays' Mills, one of Manchester's most famous cotton mills in production at the time of the Industrial Revolution and keeps in line with the programme's warehouse theme.[1] The location of the set where the footage of the pitches is filmed is kept a secret however.[1]

Awards

The programme was nominated for two BAFTA awards and a Royal Television Society award in 2007. The executive producer is Dominic Bird.

The Dragons

Seat Order (Right to Left) Series 1 Series 2 Series 3 Series 4 Series 5 Series 6 Series 7 Series 8 Series 9
1
Peter Jones
2
Doug Richard
Deborah Meaden
3
Simon Woodroffe
Theo Paphitis
4
Duncan Bannatyne
Hilary Devey
5
Rachel Elnaugh
Richard Farleigh
James Caan
Duncan Bannatyne

Other Dragons' Den programmes

A Junior Dragons' Den was broadcast on 16 November 2007 as a short special during Children in Need and involved young children and teenagers displaying their ideas. Items included a "Look for Loneliness" pack, with stickers, trophies and branded 'friendship' stops (£5,000 was wanted) and also a selection of guinea pig and hamster houses (£1,000 wanted).[2]

Dragons' Den: Where Are They Now[3] came in four episodes, showing how a selection of successful and unsuccessful contestants from the previous series had subsequently fared in their businesses. The first episode covered the first and second seasons. The second episode covered the third and fourth seasons, but focused mainly on Levi Roots' Reggae Reggae Sauce. The third episode showed more from the third and fourth seasons, but focused in particular on the iTeddy. Finally, the fourth two-part episode focused on the third season.

In 2010, the BBC aired a follow-up series Dragons Den: What Happened Next,[4] showcasing popular entrepreneurs from the show that both succeeded in gaining investment and failed, with the dragons offering a review of all scenarios. Each respective dragon had an episode detailing the success of their investments, as well as some reviewing and re-negotiations with entrepreneurs who went on to succeed without the dragon's investment.

Statistics

Dragon No. of Investments
Series 1 (6 episodes)
Peter Jones 3
Duncan Bannatyne 2
Simon Woodroffe 1
Rachel Elnaugh 4
Doug Richard 2
Series 2 (6 episodes)
Peter Jones 3
Duncan Bannatyne 1
Theo Paphitis 4
Rachel Elnaugh 1
Doug Richard 0
Series 3 (8 episodes)
Peter Jones 2
Duncan Bannatyne 2
Theo Paphitis 4
Deborah Meaden 4
Richard Farleigh 2
Series 4 (6 episodes)
Peter Jones 4
Duncan Bannatyne 3
Theo Paphitis 5
Deborah Meaden 4
Richard Farleigh 5
Series 5 (9 episodes)
Peter Jones 5
Duncan Bannatyne 4
Theo Paphitis 6
Deborah Meaden 6
James Caan 6
Series 6 (8 episodes)
Peter Jones 6
Duncan Bannatyne 4
Theo Paphitis 5
Deborah Meaden 4
James Caan 5
Series 7 (8 episodes)
Peter Jones 6
Duncan Bannatyne 2
Theo Paphitis 5
Deborah Meaden 3
James Caan 4
Series 8 (10 episodes)
Peter Jones 6
Duncan Bannatyne 6
Theo Paphitis 5
Deborah Meaden 5
James Caan 3
Series 9 (10 episodes)
Peter Jones 4
Duncan Bannatyne 3
Theo Paphitis 5
Deborah Meaden 4
Hilary Devey 4

Successful pitches

Series 1

Episode First aired Entrepreneur(s) Company or product name Money requested (£) Description of product Investing Dragon(s) Website
Episode 1 4 January 2005 Charles Ejogo Umbrolly 150,000 Multimedia vending unit selling umbrellas and adverts Duncan Bannatyne & Peter Jones [1]
Episode 2 11 January 2005 Tracey Grailey Grails Ltd 120,000 Tailor-made suits for businesswomen Doug Richard & Rachel Elnaugh [2]
Episode 3 18 January 2005 Tracey Herrtage Le Beanock 54,000 A beanbag hammock Rachel Elnaugh [3]
Episode 3 18 January 2005 John and Phillip Petty IV Cam 50,000 A 3D measuring system using camera technology Peter Jones and Doug Richard [4]
Episode 4 25 January 2005 Paul Thomas Mycorrhizal Systems 75,000 Land for a truffle farm Simon Woodroffe [5]
Episode 5 1 February 2005 Elizabeth Galton Elizabeth Galton Ltd 110,000 Custom-made jewellery Duncan Bannatyne & Rachel Elnaugh [6]
Episode 6 8 February 2005 Nik Rawcliff Snowbone 75,000 Handle attachment for snowboards Rachel Elnaugh [7]
Episode 6 8 February 2005 Hugh Gwyther Wonderland (magazine) 175,000 High-end fashion and culture magazine Peter Jones [8]

Series 2

Episode First aired Entrepreneur(s) Company or product name Money requested (£) Description of product Investing Dragon(s) Website
Episode 1 15 November 2005 Dominic Killinger Square Mile 150,000 Wireless broadband supplier to UK marinas Theo Paphitis & Peter Jones [9]
Episode 2 22 November 2005 Danny Bamping Bedlam Puzzles 100,000 3-D puzzles Rachel Elnaugh & Theo Paphitis [10]
Episode 3 29 November 2005 Julie White Truly Madly Baby 75,000 Unique baby products Peter Jones [11]
Episode 5 13 December 2005 Paul Cockle The Generating Company 160,000 Contemporary circus shows Peter Jones & Theo Paphitis [12]
Episode 6 20 December 2005 David Lees Mode Al 225,000 Custom furniture to house technology Theo Paphitis & Duncan Bannatyne [13]

Series 3

Episode First aired Entrepreneur(s) Company or product name Money requested (£) Description of product Investing Dragon(s) Website
Episode 1 3 August 2006 James Seddon Eggxactly 75,000 Water free egg cooker Richard Farleigh & Peter Jones [14]
Episode 2 10 August 2006 Gary Taylor Alpine Cleaning 200,000 Franchised HGV cleaning service Deborah Meaden & Theo Paphitis [15]
Episode 3 17 August 2006 Matthew Hazell First Light Solutions 100,000 A sonar based man-overboard detection system Richard Farleigh [16]
Episode 4 24 August 2006 Ian Chamings MixAlbum 150,000 Dance download site with digital mixing software Deborah Meaden & Theo Paphitis [17]
Episode 5 31 August 2006 Richard Lee & Daren Duraidi Dr Cap 150,000 Chain of shops selling baseball caps Duncan Bannatyne [18]
Episode 6 7 September 2006 Stephen Bellis Nuts Poker League 50,000
(but received 65,000)
Pub based tournament poker league Theo Paphitis & Deborah Meaden [19]
Episode 7 14 September 2006 Peter Sesay Autosafe 100,000 A seat-belt height adjuster Peter Jones & Duncan Bannatyne [20]
Episode 8 21 September 2006 Ian Daintith & Richard Adams Coin Metrics 200,000 Technology to monitor cash operations for slot machines Deborah Meaden & Theo Paphitis [21]

Series 4

Episode First aired Entrepreneur(s) Company or product name Money requested (£) Description of product Investing Dragon(s) Website
Episode 1 7 February 2007 Levi Roots Reggae Reggae Sauce 50,000 Spicy BBQ sauce Richard Farleigh & Peter Jones [22]
Episode 1 7 February 2007 Anthony Coates-Smith & Alistair Turner Igloo 160,000 Specialist chilled and frozen transport services Duncan Bannatyne & Richard Farleigh [23]
Episode 2 14 February 2007 Imran Hakim iTeddy 140,000 Classic teddy bear with integrated media technology Peter Jones & Theo Paphitis [24]
Episode 3 21 February 2007 Roger Hind Rotamate 85,000 A clothes airer that protects washing from the rain Deborah Meaden & Richard Farleigh [25]
Episode 3 21 February 2007 Denise Hutton Razzamataz 85,000 A chain of dance, drama and singing schools for children Duncan Bannatyne [26]
Episode 4 28 February 2007 Christian Lane Foldio 80,000 Stationery folder that halves size of paper without creasing Theo Paphitis [27]
Episode 4 28 February 2007 KC Jones Foot Deodoriser 100,000 Sanitiser that kills bacteria within shoes Deborah Meaden & Richard Farleigh [28]
Episode 5 7 March 2007 Chris Haines Safe-T-First 95,000 Emergency light Deborah Meaden & Theo Paphitis [29]
Episode 5 7 March 2007 David Pybus Scents of Time 80,000 Perfumes from historical times which are re-created for today Peter Jones & Theo Paphitis [30]
Episode 6 7 March 2007 Peter Ensinger and David Baker Standby Saver 100,000 Device that cuts off electrical current to home appliances on stand-by All 5 for 50% [31]

Series 5

Episode First aired Entrepreneur(s) Company or product name Money requested (£) Description of product Investing Dragon(s) Website
Episode 1 15 October 2007 Celia Norowzian & Ian Forshew Beach Break Live 50,000 Events company Peter Jones [32]
Episode 1 15 October 2007 Laban Roomes Goldgenie (formerly Midas Touch) 60,000 Mobile gold plating service James Caan [33]
Episode 2 22 October 2007 Sarah Lu youdoodoll 35,000 Personalizable doll Deborah Meaden [34]
Episode 2 22 October 2007 Emmie Matthews & Ed Stevens Gaming Alerts 200,000 Gaming referral website Theo Paphitis [35]
Episode 3 29 October 2007 Mark Champkins Concentrate Design 100,000 Products that help children at school Peter Jones [36]
Episode 4 5 November 2007 Max McMurdo Reestore 50,000 Functional pieces of furniture from waste objects Deborah Meaden & Theo Paphitis [37]
Episode 4 5 November 2007 Jamie Jenkinson Cush'n'Shade 100,000 A fold-away screen that acts as a cushion and sun shade Deborah Meaden and Peter Jones [38]
Episode 5 19 November 2007 Shane Lake and Tony Charles hungryhouse.co.uk 100,000 An online takeaway ordering service James Caan & Duncan Bannatyne [39]
Episode 6 26 November 2007 Ian Helmore Steri Spray 145,000 UV Sterilising system for shower heads Deborah Meaden & Theo Paphitis [40]
Episode 6 26 November 2007 Mark and Eleanor Davis Caribbean Ready Meals 100,000 Caribbean ready meals made using genuine Jamaican and Trinidadian recipes James Caan & Duncan Bannatyne [41]
Episode 7 3 December 2007 Sammy French Fit Fur Life 100,000 A dog treadmill James Caan [42]
Episode 7 3 December 2007 Jerry Mantalvanos & Paul Merker JPM Eco Logistics 100,000 Environmentally friendly haulage company Deborah Meaden & Theo Paphitis [43]
Episode 8 11 December 2007 Peter Moule ElectroExpo, Chocbox 150,000 Plastic housing that protects cable connections Duncan Bannatyne and James Caan [44]
Episode 9 18 December 2007 Amanda Jones & James Brown Red Button Design 50,000 A water transport, sanitation and storage device for the developing world All five Dragons [45]

Series 6

Episode First aired Entrepreneur(s) Company or product name Money requested (£) Description of product Investing Dragon(s) Website
Episode 1 21 July 2008 Jamie Turner[5] Hamfatter 75,000 A music band Peter Jones [46]
Episode 1 21 July 2008 Julia Charles & Amy Goldthorpe D4M Ltd 75,000 Events management company Duncan Bannatyne & James Caan [47]
Episode 2 28 July 2008 Victoria McGrane Neurotica 56,000
(but received 75,000)
Fashion designer Peter Jones [48]
Episode 3 4 August 2008 Ming Yun Light Emotions 40,000 Glow in the dark products Peter Jones [49]
Episode 3 4 August 2008 Michael Cotton DDN Ltd 250,000 Misfuelling prevention device Theo Paphitis and Deborah Meaden [50]
Episode 4 11 August 2008 Charlotte Evans & Caroyln Jarvis Buggy Boot 80,000 Storage solution for pushchairs Deborah Meaden [51]
Episode 4 11 August 2008 Andrew Harsley Rapstrap 150,000 Waste-free cable-tie Duncan Bannatyne & James Caan [52]
Episode 5 18 August 2008 Neil and Laura Westwood Magic Whiteboard 100,000 Portable whiteboard in the form of a roll Theo Paphitis and Deborah Meaden [53]
Episode 5 18 August 2008 Guy Unwin & Caroline Kavanagh Planit Products 200,000 Toastabags James Caan [54]
Episode 6 25 August 2008 Guy Portelli Guy Portelli Sculpture Studio 70,000
(but received 80,000)
Collection of 18 sculptures James Caan, Peter Jones & Theo Paphitis [55]
Episode 6 25 August 2008 Raymond Smith Magic Pizza 50,000 Device designed to eliminate a 'soggy middle' Theo Paphitis & Peter Jones [56]
Episode 7 1 September 2008 Dominic Lawrence, Simeone Salik & Janice Dalton Blindsinabox Ltd 40,000 Temporary, easy to install blinds Duncan Bannatyne & James Caan [57]
Episode 7 1 September 2008 Christian Richardson & Rachel Watkyn Tiny Box 53,000 Unique recycled packaging company Theo Paphitis & Peter Jones [58]
Episode 8 8 September 2008 Paul Tinton ProWaste Management Services 200,000 Construction waste recycling service Duncan Bannatyne & Deborah Meaden [59]

Series 7

Episode First aired Entrepreneur(s) Company or product name Money requested (£) Description of product Investing Dragon(s) Website
Episode 1 15 July 2009 Rupert Sweet-Escott Sweet-Escott Aviation Ltd 80,000 An aviation renewable energy supply company James Caan [60]
Episode 1 15 July 2009 Steve Smith TrueCall Ltd 100,000 A device to stop nuisance phone calls Peter Jones [61]
Episode 2 22 July 2009 Richard Enion & Michael Davis Basstoneslap 50,000 High energy drumming performance for corporate team building Peter Jones & Theo Paphitis [62]
Episode 2 22 July 2009 Sharon Wright Magnamole Ltd 50,000
(but received 80,000)
A device to thread cables through cavity walls Duncan Bannatyne & James Caan [63]
Episode 3 29 July 2009 Lawrence Webb & Frank Drewett Lid Lifters 50,000 A labour-saving device for lifting wheelie bin lids Peter Jones [64]
Episode 3 29 July 2009 Oliver Richmond & Toby Richmond Servicing Stop 100,000 A bespoke nationwide car servicing company Deborah Meaden [65]
Episode 4 5 August 2009 Tony Earnshaw & Stephen Pearsons UK Commercial Cleaning 100,000 Commercial cleaning company Duncan Bannatyne [66]
Episode 4 5 August 2009 Karen O'Neill & Karen Coombes KCO Inline Ice Skating Ltd 100,000 New inline skate that allows dancers to perform ice-dancing moves on all surfaces Theo Paphitis [67]
Episode 5 12 August 2009 Carol Savage MyDish.co.uk 100,000 Online community for people who love food and cooking and want to share recipes with their friends and family Deborah Meaden [68]
Episode 5 12 August 2009 Jane Rafter Slinks 75,000 Sandals for every occasion: one base with a selection of interchangeable uppers Theo Paphitis & James Caan [69]
Episode 6 19 August 2009 Jason Roberts Tech21 150,000 Protective cases for laptops, mobile phones etc. using a material called D30 Peter Jones & Theo Paphitis [70]
Episode 7 26 August 2009 Michael Pritchard The Anyway Spray 125,000 Invention that allows every last drop of liquid to be used in multi-directional household product sprays Theo Paphitis & Peter Jones [71]
Episode 7 26 August 2009 Kay Russell Physicool Ltd 100,000 Invention that reduces the temperature after a bandage has been applied to an injured area Deborah Meaden [72]
Episode 8 2 September 2009 Michael Lea Earle's 100,000 Food truck franchise that sells hot and cold foods Peter Jones [73]
Episode 8 2 September 2009 David & Patti Bailey Motor Mouse 100,000
(but received 120,000)
Wireless mice shaped like famous sports cars James Caan [74]

Series 8

Episode First aired Entrepreneur(s) Company or product name Money requested (£) Description of product Investing Dragon(s) Website
Episode 1 14 July 2010 Geoff Bowen Pebblebed Vineyard 60,000 The chance for wine lovers to rent their own vines in a vineyard Duncan Bannatyne [75]
Episode 1 14 July 2010 Kirsty Henshaw Worthenshaw's 65,000 A frozen dessert which is a dairy-free healthy alternative to ice cream Duncan Bannatyne and Peter Jones [76]
Episode 2 21 July 2010 Angela Newman Vintage Patisserie 100,000 A vintage hosting company that runs parties which capture elements of a bygone era. Deborah Meaden and Theo Paphitis [77]
Episode 3 26 July 2010 Dennis Fuller Golfers' Mate 100,000 A 3-in-1 golf accessory that includes a pitch-mark repairer, ball marker, t-peg and sharpener James Caan [78]
Episode 3 26 July 2010 Peter Harrison and Wesley Downham FGH Security 75,000
(but received 100,000)
A security company that provides manned security, electronic security (alarms) and CCTV Peter Jones and Theo Paphitis [79]
Episode 4 2 August 2010 Layla Bennett Hawksdrift Falconry 50,000 Birds of prey business which does pest control, falconry displays and provides a gift delivery service using birds. Duncan Bannatyne [80]
Episode 4 2 August 2010 Tim Williams and Tom Hogan Lumacoustics 50,000 An electronic graffiti wall Peter Jones and Deborah Meaden [81]
Episode 5 9 August 2010 Sarah & Mike Longthorn & Laura Booth WedgeWelly 65,000 Wellington boots with a wedge Theo Paphitis [82]
Episode 6 16 August 2010 Faizal Khan & Gary Hilman Peel Engineering 80,000 The world's smallest production car, also powered by an electric motor. James Caan [83]
Episode 6 16 August 2010 Ralf Klinnert Funky Moves 120,000 An electronic interactive sports cone game Peter Jones and Theo Paphitis [84]
Episode 7 24 August 2010 Letitia Valentine & Alexander Lewis Surviva Jak 75,000 Jacket that has foil lining to prevent hypothermia Deborah Meaden [85]
Episode 7 24 August 2010 Richard Blakesley & Chris Barnardo The Wand Company 200,000 "Kymera" - a buttonless gesture-based universal remote control Duncan Bannatyne [86]
Episode 8 31 August 2010 Patrick van der Vorst Value My Stuff Now 100,000 An online antique valuation service Deborah Meaden and Theo Paphitis [87]
Episode 8 31 August 2010 Chris Elsworthy Power8 Workshop 150,000 Power8 workshop, a power tool set that is the world's first cordless bench top system Duncan Bannatyne and Peter Jones [88]
Episode 9 6 September 2010 Solvej Biddle Content and Calm (Traykit) 80,000 A backpack-tray for use on cars, planes, etc. that prevents children's toys rolling onto the floor Peter Jones and Deborah Meaden [89]
Episode 9 6 September 2010 Adam Weaver Proppa 50,000 A website that sells vehicle accessories Duncan Bannatyne [90]

Series 9

Episode First aired Entrepreneur(s) Company or product name Money requested (£) Description of product Investing Dragon(s) Website
Episode 1 31 July 2011 Georgette Hewitt The Present Club 60,000 A website for buying gifts for children Peter Jones and Theo Paphitis [91]
Episode 1 31 July 2011 Chris Hopkins Ploughcroft Solar 120,000 A company that installs solar panels in homes Deborah Meaden and Theo Paphitis [92]
Episode 2 7 August 2011 Christian Hartmann, Martin McLaughlin, Tom Callard Love Da Pop 70,000 A business turning the old popcorn treat into a modern mainstream snack Peter Jones [93]
Episode 2 7 August 2011 Liz and Alan Colleran Raskelf Memory Foam (Duvalay) 80,000 A zip-up memory foam mattress and duvet combo Hilary Devey [94]
Episode 3 14 August 2011 Peter and Michelle Hart Fun Fancy Dress 100,000 Fancy-dress shop business and franchise Duncan Bannatyne [95]
Episode 4 21 August 2011 Bob Davis Unique Ideas UK 50,000 Corporate events and entertainment including the Cyclone GameCube Hilary Devey [96]
Episode 4 21 August 2011 Robert Lewis Rollersigns 100,000 Advertising on belt banners Peter Jones [97]
Episode 5 28 August 2011 Kate Castle BoginaBag 50,000 Lightweight, portable toilet Theo Paphitis [98]
Episode 5 28 August 2011 Henry Buckley and JJ Harding JogPost Limited 50,000 Direct marketing company specialising in leaflet distribution Deborah Meaden [99]
Episode 6 4 September 2011 Andy Bates AB Performance 50,000 Bike-engined car manufacturing, servicing, repairs and tuning company Peter Jones [100]
Episode 7 12 September 2011 Nick Cross, Richard Hadden and Sebastian Stoddart barMate 50,000 Hands-free pint-pulling product Deborah Meaden and Theo Paphitis [101]
Episode 7 12 September 2011 Simon Booth Kiddimoto 75,000 Children's balance bikes Hilary Devey and Duncan Bannatyne [102]
Episode 8 19 September 2011 Ryan Ashmore and Liam Webb RKA Records 50,000 Record label Duncan Bannatyne [103]
Episode 8 19 September 2011 Aidan Quinn and Gemma Rowe EcoHab Homes and O-Pod Buildings 75,000 Energy-efficient dome-shaped buildings and garden structures Theo Paphitis [104]
Episode 9 26 September 2011 Andrea McDowall and Rebecca Baldwin Shoot It Yourself 60,000 Professional video hiring and editing business Hilary Devey [105]
Episode 10 3 October 2011 Helen Waterston Innovative Gadgets Ltd. (Roastcosy) 70,000 Stainless steel chain mail covering for roasting meats Peter Jones and Deborah Meaden [106]

Successful failures

Some contestants have gone on to success with their products despite being turned down by the Dragons. Examples include Destination London, a board game;[6] the Tangle Teezer, a hairbrush designed to smooth knotted hair;[7] Trunki, travel luggage designed for children;[8][9] and the BarbeSkew, a rotisserie Barbecue.[10]

Rejected Dragon offers

Founder Fenella Lindsell and executive Lara Goodbody appeared on the show in 2006 with their company Yogabugs. They rejected an offer from Australian multi-millionaire Richard Farleigh of £200,000 for 30% of the business. They also rejected £100,000 for 15% of the business by Peter Jones and left Dragons' Den with no offers because they believed the company was worth more. Since then they have gone on to build a franchise operation with 150 locations offered in the UK.

In Series 2, Danny Bamping accepted an offer of £100,000 for 30% of his company Bedlam Puzzles but rejected it after the show, opting to get a bank loan instead. His strategy was successful, as the show generated enough publicity to boost online sales of his Bedlam Cube from 23 to 4,500 on the days before and after the show's airing.

Criticism

Rachel Elnaugh's departure

Shortly before the launch of the second series in 2005, Rachel Elnaugh's company Red Letter Days went into administration; the remaining assets were bought by fellow dragons Peter Jones and Theo Paphitis. Although Elnaugh was at the helm before and at the time of the company's failure, she blames the problems on the actions of the last CEO whom she appointed in 2002, whilst she took a non-executive role to have her fourth child.[11] Following 5 investments over 2 series, as a result of disputes with various Dragons, and the continuing uncomfortable position of the BBC allowing a perceived "failed" business person to continue investing on the show, she agreed to leave the Dragons' Den panel.

Sunday Mirror investigation

Although the BBC has never made any secret of deals that succeeded or fell through, usually offering a follow up in the final episode of the series, in September 2006 an investigation by the Sunday Mirror newspaper criticised the show, reporting that most of the deals were unfulfilled after the programs were shot.[12]

The article claimed that the Dragons either pulled out of the deals over minor technicalities, deliberately offered heavily unfavourable terms to the entrepreneurs in an effort to make them withdraw, or simply broke off all contact with them after the recording. The Dragons however defended their record, blaming the failures on the Entrepreners themselves who were dishonest about their products, with Duncan Bannatyne stating: "We don't hand over money to people who don't tell the truth.", while Theo Paphitis added: "I kept up my end of the bargain. The show is not about a cash prize, it is about us pledging to invest. But people must tell the truth. Simple."

A BBC spokesman said: "After the initial agreement is made on camera, both parties enter a period of due diligence. Sometimes during this period the deals fall through."[13]

Richard Farleigh's departure

It was announced on 18 May 2007 that Richard Farleigh had been dropped from the series.[14]

The Daily Mail suggested he might have been dropped in order to have a new Dragon from an ethnic minority.[15] Farleigh said, "It would be disappointing if that was the reason - rather than anything fundamental - if it was because I was the wrong colour. I don't know why this has happened and I am very disappointed and bemused - I wasn't expecting it because all the feedback I got was very positive. I had even moved back to the UK to focus on commitments for the show. I am gutted that I have not been invited back."[15]

The suggestions in the Daily Mail report were rejected by the BBC who said the new Dragon would be chosen by their "business credentials" and not ethnicity. A BBC spokesman said it was normal that the show sometimes changed its team. Farleigh was later replaced by James Caan.[16]

James Caan's departure

In April 2010, the Daily Mail reported that James Caan and Duncan Bannatyne were involved in a 'bitter row' over tax. Bannatyne claimed Pakistan-born Caan had an 'unfair' business advantage due to his non-domiciled tax status. He complained that, because Caan does not pay UK tax on his overseas earnings, he has more money to invest in his UK ventures.[17]

Caan told the London Evening Standard: "I do not apologise for my country of origin, Pakistan."[18] He also said he could not invest with anyone who had a criminal record - a reference to Bannatyne's having served a sentence in military prison when he was a teenager in the Royal Navy.[18] Bannatyne replied that Caan was 'playing the race card' and 'personalising the whole thing', and accused him of implying he was racist.[18]

Only days before the filming of series 8, Bannatyne went on to Twitter, pointing out that Caan is chairman of the Big Issue, which employs sellers with criminal pasts, and asking how they could now work with their chief.[19] He brought the name of the Big Issue founder into the row by asking: 'Did John Bird know about James Caan's view on ex-prisoners when he gave him the chairman's role?'[19]

Further fanning the flames for Caan was a well publicised critique of accusations that he offered to buy a baby from a family in Pakistan.[20]

On 7 January 2011, the BBC announced James Caan had quit the Dragons' Den panel. The BBC announced regret and sorrow over the exit and thanked him for his efforts over his four series in the show.[21] Clive Morgan of The Daily Telegraph criticised his departure, stating his exit was the show's loss and would not be the same without him.[22]

He was replaced by Hilary Devey in February 2011.[23]

Spoofs

Duncan Bannatyne appeared as himself in a recurring sketch in the ITV1 television show Al Murray's Multiple Personality Disorder titled "Duncan's Den", a parody of Dragons' Den, where Duncan is the only Dragon. Al Murray plays the role of Evan Davis, and in each successive sketch there is only one applicant, the hopelessly nervous and commercially inept, recent divorcee Carole Price, played by Laura Solon.

Kayvan Novak created a parody of the show called "Lizard's Lair" for his character Terry Tibbs on an episode of his show Facejacker where unsuspecting entrepreneurs were led to believe they could receive an investment from Terry in a very similar style to Dragons' Den.

Peter Jones, Deborah Meaden, and Duncan Bannatyne appear as themselves in a satirical dream sequence in a series 6 episode titled "Conned Out of Luck" of the BBC show, Hustle.

The sketch show Harry & Paul has featured a series of parodies by Harry Enfield and Paul Whitehouse, where through careful editing the pair portray all the characters, including Davis (Whitehouse), the contestants unsuccessfully pitching various bizarre ideas (e.g. a 'kitten stomper' device) and a parodied cast of the Dragons. The emphasis is particularly on the entrepreneurs' names (e.g. 'Duncan Guillotine') and personalities (Meadon is simply 'The Grumpy Woman' – Enfield in drag). In one sketch parodying the banking crisis, Enfield's old character Tim Nice-But-Dim made an appearance and was revealed to be "obviously" the brother of 'Peter Jones'.

Dead Ringers parodied the show with strange investments such as a tramp wanting investment in tea and a sketch where a man wants £100,000 and his pitch is a gun. They also parodied Dragon responses with Deborah Meaden seeing a product which turns base metal to gold and saying "How do you make any money out of this?".

The talkSPORT weekday afternoon show presented by Paul Hawksbee and Andy Jacobs has recently begun a weekly spoof slot wherein "Hilary Devey" (Jacobs) makes obvious comments to (absent) sporting personalities who have recently been in the news for making poor decisions. These comments usually deride said personality, ending with the Dragons' common final phrase, "I'm Out!"

DVD release

The first two series of the show are available to buy on DVD.[24] It is unknown whether the remaining series of the show will also be released.

References

  1. ^ a b c Bourne, Dianne (24 June 2010). "New lair for Dragon's Den?". Manchester Evening News Media. http://menmedia.co.uk/manchestereveningnews/tv_and_showbiz/s/1268619_new_lair_for_dragons_den. Retrieved 1 June 2011. 
  2. ^ Dragons' Den | Children in Need
  3. ^ Dragons' Den | Where Are They Now?
  4. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00tvb0v
  5. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/cambridgeshire/content/articles/2008/07/16/dragons_den_hamfatter_feature.shtml | BBC - Cambridgeshire - Entertainment - Hamfatter wow the dragons!
  6. ^ Dragons' Den: The rejects that got rich
  7. ^ Dragons' Den reject has the last laugh after hair Tangle Teezer is stocked by Boots
  8. ^ Dragons' Den reject ends up on top
  9. ^ Rob Law profile
  10. ^ BarbeSkew Inventor Ed Wray's comments on his Dragons' Den appearance
  11. ^ Real Business October 2009 http://www.realbusiness.co.uk/news/business-woman/5701456/rachel-elnaugh-i-thought-my-life-was-over.thtml
  12. ^ Owens, Nick (17 September 2006). "Dragons' Con". Sunday Mirror. http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4161/is_20060917/ai_n16735087/. 
  13. ^ Sunday Mirror (2006) Sunday Mirror Retrieved 17 September 2006
  14. ^ Dowell, Ben (18 May 2007). "I'm out: dragon dropped from den". The Guardian (London). http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2007/may/18/bbc.broadcasting1. 
  15. ^ a b "Dragon's Den panelist ousted for being the 'wrong colour'". Daily Mail (London). 18 May 2007. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-455837/Dragons-Den-panelist-ousted-wrong-colour.html. 
  16. ^ Dave West (21 May 2007). "'Dragons' Den' panellist dropped". Digital Spy. http://www.digitalspy.co.uk/realitytv/a58052/dragons-den-panellist-dropped.html. 
  17. ^ James Caan owes ME an apology after refusing to shake my hand, says Duncan Bannatyne as row between Dragons takes another ugly turn, 23 April 2010, Daily Mail, Retrieved 7 October 2010
  18. ^ a b c "Dragons' Den tax rift escalates". BBC News. 15 April 2010. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/8621733.stm. 
  19. ^ a b http://www.metro.co.uk/metrolife/821726-dragons-dispute-duncan-bannatyne-takes-to-twitter-to-ramp-up-caan-row
  20. ^ http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1322726/James-Caan-regrets-offering-buy-baby-girl-Pakistan-village.html
  21. ^ "James Caan to leave Dragons' Den". BBC News. 7 January 2011. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-12137331. 
  22. ^ "Dragons' Den won't be the same without James Caan". The Daily Telegraph (London). 7 January 2011. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/tvandradio/8246048/Dragons-Den-wont-be-the-same-without-James-Caan.html. 
  23. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/dragonsden/dragons/hilarydevey.shtml
  24. ^ Dragon Den Complete BBC Series 1 & 2 [DVD], Amazon.co.uk

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