Dragon’s Den

8:30pm Sunday 23 December on BBC TWO

Christmas is big business. In December 2011 our retail spend was 40 billion pounds, an increase of 10 billion pounds since 2000. So it’s no surprise that Christmas drives thousands of entrepreneurs to create new ideas and innovative businesses, aiming to cash in on the large profits up for grabs at this time of year. And if there’s money to be made, the Dragons are always nearby.

This year for the first time the den opens its doors purely for commerce at Christmas. Nine entrepreneurs representing six businesses will descend the stairs and pitch their festive businesses in the hope of securing a much needed cash injection from the five multi-millionaires.

Alongside normal proceedings, there will be business insight into this interesting and unique trading period and how this changes an entrepreneur’s and investor’s approach, as well as revealing the pitfalls that can also come with seasonal success.

Following on from the den we’ll catch up with a few of the entrepreneurs, some who succeeded in gaining the Dragons’ support and some who did not. Will they be this year’s festive hit? Or will this most competitive of trading times have swallowed them up and had them for Christmas dinner?

Dragon’s Den could be in for a shake-up with reports the BBC are planning major changes to the show including the culling of current millionaires.

The News Of The World reports that the BBC show may face a re-jig for the next season with the likes of James Caan, Deborah Meaden and Theo Paphitis facing the chop.

Three of the five millionaire panellists may be replaced by younger millionaires to join the popular and wealthiest dragons Peter Jones and Duncan Bannatyne.

“The producers are planning a big overhaul of the show,” an insider said.

“They’re approaching a lot of new businessmen and women – they’d like some younger millionaires and more women on the panel too.”

The BBC is yet to release any information regarding any changes.

Source: What’s On TV

Dragon’s Den returned to BBC this week and while Deborah Meaden, Duncan Bannatyne, Theo Paphitis and Peter Jones were back to spend invest their “children’s inheritance” into some fledling ventures, they’re also being joined by James Caan.

The concept of Dragon’s Den has always been interesting to me. Offer entrepreneurs with the chance of getting some funding from some of the UK’s richest people for a share in the business is great until the ruthless business nous of the dragons kicks in and the share in the company that you were happy to relinquish suddenly expands.

Firstly though, it’s a matter of convincing the dragons that you have something worth investing in. And then, if you can do that, as Celia and Ian from Beach Break Live experienced, an all out bidding war between the dragons can take place. This then gives the entrepreneur some bargaining power and the choice between who will invest and for how much.

Then there are those like the Silver-tongued Laban Roomes whose gold plating business Midas Touch had a reasonable model but it was his personality that caught the new Dragon James Caan’s attention and bought him his first investment in the Den.

All in all, it’s fascinating to see what some people think will sell when it’s a dud and what simply brilliant ideas some people have. Some people you can just tell by the looks in their eyes that they have something beyond a product or service as well.

Dragon’s Den is back on Mondays at 9:30pm on BBC Two.

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