Dragons Den BBC2 TV Series is unlike any other reality TV show in that there is something more at stake than the contestants’ pride. In front of some the richest and most successful businessmen and women in Britain members of the public pitch their products, ideas and their business acumen in the hopes of securing an investment that could turn their businesses and their lives around in a way that most can only dream of. The aim of the game is not to win but simply to make a life changing business agreement. The stakes are real, as is the money.
Whilst many of the ‘budding entrepreneurs’ that have entered the Dragons Den over the past five years have only succeeded in winning the dragons’ distain, an equal number have also made a lasting impression on them, winning not only their investment but also their valued advice. A number of the winning ideas featured on the Dragons Den TV show are now making their mark on the business world and we are witnessing the rise of a new business empire, controlled by the Dragons and made stronger by the wide-scale publicity that the show offers.
Perhaps the most successful of all the products featured on Dragons Den UK, however, has been reggae singer Levi’s brand of Jamaican BBQ sauce. Levi has been successfully selling his Reggae Reggae Sauce at the Notting Hill festival for the past fifteen years but with the help of Dragons Peter Jones and Richard Farleigh demand has exploded. Reggae Reggae Sauce can now be found on the shelves of major UK supermarkets.
Despite a shaky start on the show Ray Smith’s Magic Pizza – a device for ensuring that microwave pizzas do not go soggy in the middle – was also snapped up by the Dragons Peter Jones and Theo Paphitis, much to the delight of the thousands of pizza fans across the UK. Ray Smith has since been added to the gallery of Dragons Den success stories with his innovative product selling to single men, students and busy mums up and down the country. Other Dragons Den success stories include the i-teddy, the Cuddledry range of baby and toddler towels, the Concentrate range of school and college accessories and many more.
One of the most famous products from the Dragons Den are Trunki suitcases – colourful ride-on suitcases for kids, which was unsuccessful in securing funding from the dragons but has since gone on to become a great success story.
Ice Blading boots were a successful product pitch in which Theo Phaphitis invested. He loved the idea of these sohphisticated inline skates which allowed you to move like an ice skater but without the ice. They are being launched in 2009 so we are looking forward to see how successful this Dragon’s Den Product is.
With such successful deals being made right on our TV screens it is clear that Dragon’s Den is more than just another BBC reality show. It is helping to shape the business landscape of the UK and giving us an opportunity to see how the big boys play. For those of us with an idea to pitch and the guts to go up against the Dragons, this BBC2 TV show is also an opportunity to make it big by winning the interests of both the Dragons and the nation.