Dragons’ Den: The final pitches

Into the Den first were John and Craig with their skip business ‘Herbie’. Having designed a skip that is also a trailer, John and Craig were convinced that their skips are superior, however after much discussion over parking tickets and traffic wardens, the Dragons were quick to tell them otherwise. Although their design was neat and nifty, Peter’s verdict was that it is over-engineered and too expensive, whilst Deborah had issues with its size and where to park it. None of the Dragons decided to invest, and even went so far as to say that the product was “rubbish”.

And now for something completely different! Fresh from his travels around Thailand, the next pitcher into the Den was Chris, and his edible insects. Duncan had a try of a barbecue grasshopper, whilst the ladies kept well away. Peter asked Chris to eat it himself and it was clear that he didn’t enjoy it, despite his best efforts to disguise his true feelings. The Dragons all seemed in agreement that this product would not be taken seriously, and no offers were made.

An odd pitch from Naomi Bennett came next, as she introduced ‘Neo Slip’. Despite completely stumbling over her pitch, losing her way, and arguing with the Dragons, Naomi did demonstrate a very good product. Neo Slip is a piece of slippery material that makes putting on anti-embolism stockings easier. As a nurse herself, Naomi has first-hand experience of the problem these stockings cause and the casualties that ensue, however her business knowledge seemed poor. The Dragons showed respect for the product, however none of them deemed it suitable for investment.

Bringing some style in next were Matt and Elliot, with a business designed to make shopping for suits much easier and more convenient. Their online company requires the customer to be measured, and then once their measurements are uploaded they can customise their own suit and have it made. However Matt and Elliot’s business model stems from a parent company in Australia, meaning that they do not own the business, and this was a setback in the Den. This was not the only issue; Peter was not shy in pointing out the flaws within the business. Deborah liked the idea but had to withdraw due to a conflict of interest, and with their most likely investor out, Matt and Elliot left the Den empty handed.

Moving on to a different kind of clothing, next into the Den was Miranda. Her pitch, delivered at the speed of light, left the Dragons slightly taken aback, but once they caught up with Miranda’s 7000 words-per-minute pace, they all voiced opinions on her beanie hats. Duncan thought that the hats were a fad, whilst Piers pointed out that patenting would be an issue and competitors would swarm the market if the trend caught on again. Both of these issues were enough to stop the Dragons parting with any cash, and Miranda left the Den.

The last pitch of the series was brought to us by Scotsman Ross, whose cash and carry business was pitched under the guise of energy drinks. Showing their own brand energy drinks off as a best seller of the business, Ross asked for £200,000 for 10 per cent equity of the whole business. His figures and his overall knowledge impressed the Dragons, and eventually Peter offered half of the money but asked for 15 per cent equity. Needing another Dragon to invest, it didn’t look optimistic for Ross as the other Dragons pulled away from investing, however Duncan was interested and matched Peter’s offer. After having to decide whether he wanted to give up 30 per cent of his business overall, Ross eventually concluded that it would be worth his while, and accepted the joint offer, leaving the Den with his £200,000 investment.

And so the only investment made in the series 12 finale was also Duncan’s last, and finishing the series with a light-hearted yet touching montage of his time in the Den was the perfect way to say goodbye to this series and a legendary Dragon.

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