Tonight’s enjoyable within the den included toys, video games and tacky half-time snacks however one missed alternative did depart the dragons questioning in the event that they’d dropped the ball.
First out of the carry have been brothers Chris and Mick Knell of Escape Kent, whose declare to fame is being Canterbury’s greatest escape rooms (are there that many others?). The bruvs wished £100,000 for a 5 per cent share of their pirate-themed escape room journey, which they noticed as a possible world franchise.
Not so quick me hearties, mentioned Peter Jones, who shot a cannonball into the franchise idea from the get-go, whereas Deborah Meaden – whose background is in operating leisure parks – dismissed the escape room craze as a fad which was simply copiable. At this level, Touker Suleyman introduced that he was escaping (did you see what he did there?).
“I wish to put money into codecs of the long run, and I don’t imagine that is it,” opined Steven Bartlett, who nervous about whether or not the entire thing was Instagram-friendly sufficient. Truthfully, it’s a must to really feel sorry for these millennials continuously fretting about feeding the ‘gram.
“I immediately and vehemently disagree together with your technique to franchise,” interrupted Peter Jones, who however supplied all of the £100,000 in change for a 25 per cent stake, ultimately agreeing to divide his items of eight with Sara Davies, offering the brothers set sail in a brand new route.
Subsequent via the doorways flashing her pearly whites was former worldwide tax advisor turned e-commerce tycoon Natalie Quail.
Toothsome Natalie was asking for £50,000 in change for a bite-sized 2 per cent stake in her SmileTime enamel whitening enterprise, which had made £846,000 in income simply in its first 12 months.
“To have constructed a million-pound enterprise in a single yr is completely excellent,” mentioned Sara, flashing her greatest smile.
However Steven Bartlett wished to drill down into the enterprise mannequin, which mainly provides enamel whitening kits cheaper than you’d pay for on the dentist.
“What’s the defensible factor about this enterprise?” he puzzled. “What’s its distinctive worth level?”
Peter then bared his enamel by pointing on the market was a disconnect between her web site deal with and the model title. Seems, she didn’t personal her personal right web site deal with and worse, she didn’t know who did.
Each Peter and Deborah rapidly gave the teeth-whitening model the comb off, whereas Touker bought all Linda Evangelista by asserting he wouldn’t get off the bed for two per cent. He would, nonetheless, wish to sink his enamel into 25 per cent of the enterprise.
Steven then trumped Touker’s provide by providing the complete £100,000 for simply 10 per cent of the enterprise, not 25 per cent.
Would Natalie conform to both dragon taking a a lot larger chew than the two per cent she initially supplied?
Bizarrely, she agreed to Touker and Steven investing £50,000 apiece in change for every of them getting a ten per cent stake. So by having Touker on board, she doubled her lack of fairness, whereas he bought a half-price funding. With monetary acumen like this, you do marvel about Natalie’s tax recommendation.
By now it was intermission time for snacks and drinks and Romanian entrepreneurs Alex and Greg handed spherical their Monarchs pure cheese crisps – when it got here to the crunch there have been no provides of money – whereas one other duo, Nick Johnson and Nick Graham, served up their Berczy exhausting seltzer.
Now, it seems that arduous seltzer – mainly fizzy water laced with booze – is a $4bn market within the States and one which the large drinks producers are hoping will catch on over right here too. The pair’s plan was mainly to journey the slipstream of those larger drinks manufacturers, making a marketplace for their very own artisanal exhausting seltzer.
Would any of the dragons be thirsty for this one?
Sadly, every of the dragons known as time on the pitch, questioning how a lot drinks trade expertise the pair had.
But Steven spoke for the room when he puzzled if this is perhaps a type of that bought away, a bit like different Dragons’ Den rejects which have gone on to make hundreds of thousands comparable to Trunki and Tangle Teezer.
Final to bounce via the doorways have been duo Pasquale and Nathan with the musical bouncing ball. The Oddball, Nathan grandly introduced, wasn’t a lot a youngsters’s toy as “a cultural motion”.
Sorry Nick, a ball which makes a noise while you bounce it’s not up there with Bauhaus or the Pre-Raphaelite motion.
Anyway, the pair wished £100,000 for a 4 per cent stake within the Oddball, which they’d already offered £350,000 price off direct via their web site. Would this be music to the dragons’ ears?
This one didn’t bounce for the dragons aside from Deborah Meaden, who at all times marches to a unique tune. Deborah supplied the entire cash in change for 10 per cent of the enterprise.
There was consternation within the den after the pair determined that Deborah hit a bum notice, rejecting her mentorship and funding. No matter you consider their product, it’s a must to admit this pair actually had balls.