And that’s a wrap. Evan Davis has closed the doors on this series of Dragon’s Den, and what a way to end it. Three businesses won the dragons over this evening, seeing the tycoons collectively invest £176,000 in this one episode alone.
Over the course of 14 episodes, the dragons have invested their money into 32 start-ups of all shapes and sizes and in varying industries – from a refillable deodorant brand and some fresh chocolate to squeezy contraptions for glass bottles and seals for pipes. That’s the second largest number of businesses backed after series 18’s 36.
We also saw social media mogul Steven Bartlett join the den following Tej Lalvani’s departure, and goodness did he shake things up – just ask Touker Suleyman and his first born. He’s also invested more than any other dragon in their first year of being on the show, beating out Sara Davies, who invested over £525,000 in her first year.
So, what businesses did we see tonight to close out Dragon’s Den for another series? Everything from an energy-boosting caffeine chew, diverse festive ornaments for varying occasions and a skincare brand aimed at men, to a webcam that helps you keep eye contact with your audience and a tiny workbench.
Dragon’s Den will return later this year, but for now, here’s our round-up of the final five start-ups seen on screen tonight and where exactly you can buy the products.
It was the highest tempo pitch we’ve seen all series from David Hellard and his energy chews business Caffeine Bullet and we were here for it. While three of the dragons offered up their cash, it was Steven Bartlett who managed to put Hellard on the spot, ultimately scoring him the deal, with Peter Jones in tow no less.
Caffeine Bullet is a chewable caffeine-based alternative to energy gels. The company says that because they’re chewed, they enter the bloodstream through your cheeks in just five minutes, giving you that extra boost mid-marathon. Each Caffeine Bullet has 100mg of caffeine – which is about the same as a strong cup of coffee. There are two flavors to choose between – mint or chocolate orange – and comes with four chews in each packet.
This doesn’t happen too often, but Caffeine Bullet actually appears in our round-up of the best energy gels, with our writer saying that although they found them “quite hard to chew to start with while running, they soon softened up, providing an extra boost when we needed it.”
You can buy three bags of 120 chews (£54.95, Caffeinebullet.com), one bag of 40 chews (£24.99, Amazon.co.uk), four packets of 16 chews (£9.95, Caffeinebullet.com) or one packet of four chews (£.4.75, Amazon.co.uk) as a one-time purchase or as a subscription.
Probably the sweetest couple ever to enter the den was Michael Robinson and Victoria Barry, who was there to help her partner out when he forgot his lines. While the dragons fell in love with the pair, it wasn’t to be for the makers of the mini workshop.
The Tiny Workbench is a portable, fully customizable work area that can be put on any tabletop, made completely by Robinson’s hand. There are two different workbenches to choose from. You can go completely modular Ikea-style, picking out your own case, shelves, drawers and caddies or you can stick with the classic ready-built model which comes in two sizes: A3 (£340, Tinyworkbench.co.uk) or A2 (£380, Tinyworkbench.co.uk). There are also accessories to go with the bench, like pen pots, a tool caddy and a tablet stand.
While the dragons loved Matt Jones as an entrepreneur, only Touker Suleyman found his skincare business for men compelling enough to invest in. Despite Steven Bartlett telling Jones that the offer Suleyman had made was like giving him away his first born, he still took him up on the offer.
Mesoa is a skincare, haircare and beard care brand aimed at helping simplify beauty for men. The company sells a number of products on their own, but also as “routines”, which are handy for those who don’t know where to start with their grooming regimen.
If you want better skin, there’s the three and easy: face routine, which includes a cleaning face wash and a deep cleansing exfoliant (From £15, Mesoa.men) or the fourface: beard routine, which adds in some beard oil (From £20, Mesoa.men). Or you could get the haircare routine, consisting of a revive moisture shampoo, a deep moisture conditioner and a matte hair clay (£29.99, Mesoa.men).
All the dragons saw the potential in Dan Baker and Jonathan Pykett’s manoeuvrable webcam, but they ultimately thought the pair were too early in their journey for them to invest.
The View-You Cam is a USB/USB-C HD webcam that makes it easy to maintain eye contact over Zoom. The webcam clips onto the top of your monitor and can be adjusted up and down over the screen, helping you position it next to someone’s face so you can keep eye contact as you talk. The View-You Cam is available to pre-order (£80, Viewyoucam.com) and is expected to ship in the autumn.
Christmas came early for Alison Burton and Natalie Duvall, who managed to convince Deborah Meaden and Peter Jones to invest in their festive ornaments of color business March Muses. And funnily enough, we actually profiled the founders a few months ago too.
March Muses makes all kinds of different ornaments by hand – from Christmas tree decorations like a Mariah angel tree topper (£25, Marchmuses.co.uk) and an Aretha hanging tree decoration (£10, Marchmuses.co.uk) to Santa ( £12, Marchmuses.co.uk) and a nativity set with lights (£30, Marchmuses.co.uk). The company also sells wrapping paper and cards and has recently branched out into ornaments for other occasions, like Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day.
For the latest discounts on the best gadgets, try the links below:
Want to catch up on the rest of the businesses seen in the 19th series of Dragon’s Den? Check out our start-up recap round-ups
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.