Dragons' Den entrepreneurs secure investment

By Sandy Rashty, September 10, 2012

Three young entrepreneurs secured a £120,000 investment on the opening episode of Dragon’s Den last night.

Lewis Blitz, James Gold and Richard Gold, from north London, pitched their accessories business to the five dragons, before receiving three offers and accepting one from Peter Jones, CBE.

The graduates initially asked for a £120,000 investment in exchange for 10 per cent of their company, Skinnydip, which was conceived two years ago and combines fashion and technology in a range of accessories, including smartphone covers and headphones.

In the opening pitch, Mr Blitz told the Dragons: “We really believed there was an opportunity to make tech product a little more exciting.”

Though all the Dragons were impressed by the company, Mr Jones was initially distracted by one business partner in particular.

“I was very intrigued because whilst you were doing your pitch, James was miming it,” said Mr Jones.

“My mum’s going to kill me!” said James in response, as he explained that he “learnt the whole pitch, in case, for whatever reason, Lewis or Richard wouldn’t remember it and I could stand in and do it.”

All the Dragons were impressed by the budding entrepreneurs, who currently value Skinnydip at £1.2million, have an estimated turnover of £3.3million by 2014 and currently owe nothing in the business.

Mr Blitz said: “We initially started with £45,000. That was every penny we had from savings and it went into funding our first order.”

The trio rejected offers from Deborah Meaden and Theo Paphitis, but accepted Mr Jones’ offer of £120,000 in exchange for 30 per cent of the company, before he would “drop down and become an equal partner” once he retrieved his investment.

Skinnydip currently supplies 13 major retailers in the country, including Debenhams, Next, Republic, River Island, Harvey Nichols and Tesco.

Last updated: 5:34pm, September 10 2012