A FORMER employee of Dragons' Den panellist Hilary Devey is bringing one of Devey's most successful investees up to the region to share their business secrets.
Debra Hart, from South Shields, who has spent the past three years working alongside the entrepreneur as commercial director at Pall-Ex UK Ltd and was responsible for setting up the successful Boldon-based spin-out business Pronto Sameday Couriers, has joined forces with Tedco to inspire would-be entrepreneurs.
She has helped TEDCO to bring to the region founders of Duvalay, the duo who successfully took on the dragons in their den to secure an £80,000 investment into their memory foam mattress business, to share their story at the ‘I Beat the Dragons Event’ later this month. Hart, who now runs business consultancy Bee Commercial Solutions, worked with companies in which Devey had invested.
One such business was the husband-and-wife team Liz and Alan Colleran, inventors of the Duvalay, a zip-up memory foam mattress and duvet combo and Hart knew that their story of how they started out in their garage to become an internationally recognised brand would be inspirational to other start-up businesses.
She said: “The founders of Duvalay are a truly inspiring couple with a great story to tell. They have managed to turn a business that began in their home garage into a successful concern with global recognition.”
Alex Wiley, marketing manager at Tedco, said: “We are really excited by this event and are delighted that Debra has been able to introduce us to such an inspiring couple with such a great story to tell. It’s not often that start-ups and growing businesses in the region get the opportunity to chat directly with people who have succeeded inside the Dragons’ Den and gone on to grow hugely successful businesses.
“Whilst we appreciate that The Dragons’ Den is TV entertainment, it does provide an insight into a certain type of investment route.
“We are working with businesses across the region to help them to become more investment ready in order to grow, whether that be accessing traditional bank loans, introducing them to relevant venture capital funds or getting them ready for dragon-like pitches to angel investors.”
'I Beat the Dragons Event' takes place tomorrow at 10am at The Quadrus Centre, Boldon. To book your free place, contact The Quadrus Centre on 0191 519 7202 or email email@example.com