It takes a lot of guts to enter Dragons’ Den. The entrepreneurs who take the leap face a serious grilling when they go up against the fearsome Dragons and particularly when they are asking for large sums of money.
In episode 6 of the new series (Sunday, August 15th), a budding entrepreneur with a relatively simple gizmo entered the Den with a rather huge request.
Yorkshire-based Richard Brook came seeking guidance and financial investment into his plug socket safety product, Sockitz. Although the unit was relatively simple, he was asking for £100,000!
And Richard was so nervous about asking for the money that his hands wouldn’t stop shaking.
So, what happened with Sockitz on the show and how is the business doing now?
Richard takes on the Dragons
Former electrician Richard Brook was the last to enter the Den in episode 6 and was clearly a nervous wreck.
Facing the five Dragons, Richard repeatedly commented on how he was not a great salesman and struggled with the advertising and marketing side of the business. Although Richard had owned Sockitz for ten years, he still had not managed to market the product!
Despite this being a red flag for most of the Dragons, Richard’s business success over the decade was enough to hook in some investments.
Each year the sales had grown by 10%, without any ad campaigns to help growth! Richard had also sold on average 240,000 units per year with a £50,000 turnover.
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I’ve never watched Dragon’s Den before. I just want to jump in and hug Richard: he’s so nervous #dragonsden
— RachelR (@rlrossi64) September 15, 2019
Two Dragons take the plunge
Richard was offering 30% of Sockitz’s equity in return for the £100,000 investment. This investment was to purchase four impression tools to help produce more Sockitz and bring down the cost price from 10-12 pence per unit to just 8-9 pence per unit.
Rather than one Dragon entering the deal with Richard solo, two teamed up to help the electrical inventor.
Touker Suleyman’s stand-in, Theo Paphitis teamed up with DIY-lover Deborah Meaden – who he described as “Khaleesi” on the show.
Although Theo and Deborah asked for more of a stake in Sockitz – 25% each – they would reduce to 20% equity each once their investment had been paid back.
This deal was enough to convince nervous Richard who said: “I am confident with two Dragons like yourselves, we’ve got great potential and a great team.”
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How is Sockitz doing now?
Sockitz’s business is booming from the looks of their website.
Currently, all products from the Sockitz range are supplied by electrical wholesalers.
Sockitz also works with many of the UK’s largest construction companies such as Kier, Morgan Sindall and Mears.
Reviews by electricians on LinkedIn show that the product is retaining its popularity in the construction world.
You can follow Richard on Twitter @BrookieRacing.
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I’ve never wanted someone to get an investment more than Richard ?? he’s such a sweet guy! #DragonsDen
— Francesca (@fransbeautyblog) September 15, 2019
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