The Dragons’ Den rejects that became a ‘multimillion pound success story’

Dragons' Den: Hungryhouse founders clash with Peter Jones

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During the pitch, Peter Jones said there was “no value” to the idea, and he struggled to see the “unique competitive advantage”. Co-founders Shane Lake and Tony Charles entered the Den in 2007 seeking a £100,000 investment in exchange for 11 percent equity in the business.

Hungryhouse.co.uk was an online takeaway food order and delivery service founded in 2006. It allowed users to search for restaurants and browse local takeaway menus before placing an order online and being delivered by the restaurant with a small service charge for using their service.

Initially the pair were offered £100,000 from James Caan and Duncan Bannatyne for 25 percent equity share each. Both Dragons’ believed the risks were too high so demanded more equity.

However the deal later fell through and the duo did not receive their investment.

Despite leaving the experience with no investment, hungryhouse went on to become a household name in the takeaway food business.

Research from Company Check found that the business went on to become one of the “multi-million-pound success stories” from the Den.

Even with no investment from the Dragons’, the entrepreneurs were able to raise £150,000 from alternative business angels.

In just a few months, they were able to increase their restaurant partners from 150 in 2007 to over 2,500 in September 2010.

In February 2013, it was announced that hungryhouse was to be bought by the Berlin-based food ordering giant Delivery Hero, which operates in 16 countries and has a total of 60,000 restaurant partners.

By 2016, hungryhouse claimed over 10,000 restaurant partners on its platform and operated in most major cities across the UK.

Though the company was valued at a whopping £2billion in 2015, it joined Just Eat in February 2018 following a successful merger.

Hungryhouse ceased trading in May 2018.

Just Eat announced that it was acquiring hungryhouse from Delivery Hero for £200million.

Another success story that came from the Den was Reggae Reggae sauce.

Initially the Dragons’ found errors in the pitch, stating “this is not right”, however the brand is now worth millions.

Founder of the sauce Levi Roots appeared in the Den in 2007 asking for £50,000 for a 20 percent stake in the homemade sauce.

Despite the lack of faith from Duncan Bannatyne, Reggae Reggae sauce is now sold worldwide and is now worth more than £30million.

Peter Jones and Richard Farley both expressed interest in the sauce in the Den.

They both offered Levi half of the money with 20 percent each. This meant Levi would get the whole £50,000 for 40 percent equity.

Reggae Reggae Sauce is available in all major UK supermarkets, and according to Sainsbury’s, it even outsells Heinz Tomato Ketchup.

Peter has since classified the product as one of his most successful investments from the show.

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