‘That was quite rude!’ Dragons’ Den investors fight for slice of million-dollar business

Dragons Den winners: The original and the best

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Founders Nathan Evans and Patrick Braun pitched their company ‘Brand Yourself’ to the Dragons. They were seeking a £100,000 investment for a one percent equity stake.

Brand Yourself is a software firm designed to clean up one’s image online which could prevent someone securing a job.

During the pitch, they gave the example of an Oxbridge graduate who would struggle to get a job due to drunken pictures posted from his gap year on social media.

The pair emphasised that these days, more and more employers will analyse everything about candidates before accepting them for a job so online image is important.

The software scans the web and finds things that are harmful to one’s reputation and flags them up in order to help people remove this from the internet.

In 2017 the company had a revenue of £4.4million, and they planned to do over £5million in the next year.

Having done research on Tej Lalvani before the pitch, the duo knew he would not “get out of bed” for just one percent equity.

Both of them agreed that they came to the Den to negotiate.

Mr Lalvani said: “It’s a unique idea, but what’s stopping me from going through and deleting these pictures for myself?”

However, Mr Evans argued that this could take people over 15 hours to do manually.

Fighting for a piece of the company, Touka Suleiman offered the pair 1,000 square feet of office space, free of charge of 12 months in west London if they did business with him, in exchange for ten percent of the business.

Mr Evans and Mr Braun were both speechless at the offer, however, couldn’t agree to the ten percent.

Mr Suleiman continued: “Guys I’m going to make you an offer. All the money, for four percent.”

Deborah Meaden was very pleased by the pair’s pitch and was interested in the business.

She said: “I think it’s great, it’s bang on. You guys are smart.

“I’m going to make you an offer. I will give you all of the money for three percent.”

Mr Lalvani also made an identical offer to Ms Meaden.

Peter Jones also “really liked” the idea. As a father he could imagine how annoying it would be that “one annoying thing” such as a picture posted to the internet, could potentially affect a person’s future.

He said: “I’m going to make you an offer for all of the money for 2.5 percent of the equity.”

Overwhelmed with all the bids, the pair went to discuss whose offer was most attractive to them.

As Mr Jones gave the most generous offer, the pair decided to negotiate with him.

Mr Evans said: “Would you be prepared to give us £100,000 for two percent? At this stage, it’s an open offer.”

However, Mr Jones explained that if it was open to the other Dragons’ he could not accept it. So the pair made it exclusive just to him.

Mr Jones said he would accept the two percent as long as at the “next fundraiser he is not diluting”.

The pair were happy with his terms and accepted the offer.

As the founders exited the Den, Mr Jones told his co-stars: “I actually felt quite bad closing everybody out then.”

Lightheartedly, Mr Lalvani replied: “Well you should, because that was quite rude actually!”

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