From watching the episodes unroll the countless number of unsuccessful pitches leading to a pitch hosting a potentially investable business, it seems that there tends to be a trend that has been established as the series has progressed – and this episode was no exception.
Kevin was the first budding entrepreneur to enter the den, in the hope of receiving investment in his online male grooming retailing business. He was hoping to gain £45,000 for a 15 per cent equity stake share, particularly anticipating an interest from Touker.
The company most prominently sells American grooming products including pomades, and some Australian products too, with the benefit of low shipping charges which a lot of existing companies do not offer.
Due to the fact the business is solely online, Kevin wanted to receive investment in order to transfer into wholesale.
After finding out Kevin is a full-time secondary school teacher and does this business on the side of his current career, this didn’t seem to work in his favour as Dragons failed to see how he could solely dedicate himself to this grooming business. Although the numbers were average, I didn’t really see enough potential to the extent that Kevin could transcend from his education-based career to being a full time business owner and entrepreneur.
After Nick declared “you’ll have to give up the day job”, Kevin blatantly wasn’t certain on the idea, or rather would not commit.
You can’t help but commend the budding entrepreneur for his confident answers to the Dragons’ tackling questions, but the fact he already had a steady career in something completely conflicting to what this ‘other’ business, was understandably not appealing for the Dragons, let alone any investor.
To be honest, going into the den, knowing full well what the Dragons can be like from witnessing reaction to previous pitchers who have declared balancing two jobs at once, is something that Kevin should have considered.
Although his students and fellow colleagues will surely be proud of his feature on the show, unfortunately with the Dragons’ interest elsewhere and Touker stating to ‘”hate” the business, Kevin walked out of the den empty handed.
‘Nutrifiz’ was the next business to be presented to the Dragons. Founder, David was hoping to track down a £75,000 investment in exchange for a 10 per cent equity stake in his wheatgrass-based business.
The product is a wheatgrass tablet that dissolves when added to water – supposedly easier and less messy than a lot of current wheatgrass products on the market.
I’ve heard that wheatgrass isn’t the nicest tasting healthy beverage and this rumour has been strengthened through the lack of positive comment from the Dragons on the general taste of the product – even to the point where Touker was slightly choking on it! However, it can’t be too bad if it’s already stocked in Asda and Holland & Barrett!
Although the product is making a fairly healthy profit, it wasn’t appealing enough for the Dragons to take a shot at a business opportunity, and consequently all declared themselves “out”.
Founder of ‘Snugs’, Paul, walked into the den asking for a £80,000 investment for a 5 per cent share in his custom earphone business.
The idea is that these earphones will not fall out your ears as they are created to the exact shape and dimensions of your own ears. You get your ears scanned, which then gets produced into bespoke earphones that fit you perfectly.
Despite this being quite a good idea, with the Dragons all round liking the product, there is probably no way I would pay £199 for a pair of earphones, when I can get some for £20 that, granted, may not stay in as well, but will essentially do the same job.
When discovering that the scanners alone cost the company $10,000, it was difficult to remain optimistic about the potential profits that the business could earn. With Paul wanting to get more scanners in addition to his current two, the costs were becoming quite alarming for the Dragons, recognising the amount of products needed to sell just to cover the scanner price.
Even though Peter had stated, “I like it a lot”, the likeability was not enough for him to invest, but he proudly stated that he would be a customer.
With a shared lack of ambition to invest, the budding entrepreneur exited the den with no investment in hand.
Finally to conclude tonight’s episode, husband and wife, Sinead and Adam presented their “clever baby products for modern parents” business, asking for a £75,000 investment in exchange for a mere 5 per cent stake.
The company essentially sell products that are modernised and help make parenting that little bit easier. From updated moses baskets to non-slip bathtubs, the business seems to be a baby-boom for parents.
Already being stocked in John Lewis, The White Company and on Amazon, the potential for this business was becoming more promising as the pitch progressed.
One thing was stopping the couple from receiving prominently positive feedback was their “ludicrous, ridiculous ad stupid” valuation – a typically miscalculated figure the Dragons find often.
Valuing their business at £1.2 million wasn’t sitting right with the Dragons and was clearly setting their ambitions a little high at this early stage. Despite the countless international business deals the couple had managed to secure, the background in parenting USP was something the Dragons weren’t buying.
With most of the Dragons declaring themselves “out”, including Deborah who’s faith in the branding wasn’t strong enough, only one was left holding the baby – Touker.
Finally, an offer made! Touker was willing to give up £100,000 for a 30 per cent stake in the business – much opposing to what Sinead and Adam initially came in asking for.
After a little discussion and negotiation, the final deal was £100,000 for a 25 per cent stake, down to 15 per cent in a buyback deal – result!
Touker has a new baby business to adopt and grow.