TV show admission

Bannatyne: Dragons’ Den provided valuable publicity

Duncan Bannatyne vid

Duncan Bannatyne: ‘I may have broken even on investments’

Former Dragons’ Den star Duncan Bannatyne says he may not have made any profit from his decade on the television series, but the publicity was worth a lot more to his own businesses.

The Scottish multi-millionaire invested in 36 business proposals including a falconry company, a hat shop and an an ice cream venture which rekindled memories of his own venture in the trade.

The Clydebank-born businessman said four years ago that he had sold all of his investments in the projects he backed on Dragons’ Den which he left in 2015.

He told Tory politician Ruth Davidson’s LBC radio programme this weekend that the experience was worth it to get publicity for his enterprises.

“I probably broke even, made a little bit, but it became obvious to me that wasn’t where the money in this was.

“I remember talking to [fellow dragon] Theo Paphitis one day and we said that you know it’s worth £100,000 a year, the publicity that we get from it for our businesses.”

Mr Bannatyne, who owns the Bannatyne Health Club & Spa chain, claimed the coronavirus pandemic has cost his businesses £30 million.

“But people have lost their lives and people have lost their jobs, and it’s much more terrible for them,” he said.

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