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From the Den to Beverly Hills

No rest for pillow tycoons with role at Oscars

Michael Corrigan David KellockTwo Scottish entrepreneurs behind a revolutionary travel pillow have been given a starring role at this year’s Oscars a year after a funding offer on BBC television’s Dragons’s Den was withdrawn on a technicality.

The Trtl (turtle) Pillow, designed by Michael Corrigan and David Kellock (above), was showcased at the Golden Globes gift lounge last month and is now on sale at the Oscars in Beverly Hills.

The pair set up the business in October 2013 while studying engineering at Strathclyde University, and last year took their idea to the Dragons’ Den.

Touker Suleyman offered to meet their request for £65,000 for a 30% stake. Once the duo had paid off the loan, the clothing tycoon would have dropped his share to 10%.

Trtl pillowBut the rules of the Den are that any offers from Dragons must be straight cash for equity.

However, the publicity from Dragons’ Den helped sales rise from 3,500 in their first year of business to almost to 41,500 last year.

Managing director Mr Corrigan said: “2015 was a stellar year for Trtl. We’ve seen just what good publicity can do for a company.

“And it’s certainly true that our enthusiastic participation in Dragons’ Den, the Globes, and now the Oscars has put our Trtl Pillow on the map. And helped sales go through the roof.”

Corrigan is forecasting sales of this year 200,000 Trtl Pillows in 63 countries.

The company has begun manufacturing in China as well as the UK and has signed up a US distribution firm.

Photo: Michael Corrigan and David Kellock

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