Series 14 has already started filming. The panel of business gurus or dragons included: Deborah Meaden; Peter Jones; Sarah Willingham; Touker Suleyman and Nick Jenkins.
The TV show welcomed applications from any entrepreneur with a viable business idea, which would persuade the dragons to invest in their project.
On the hunt
The BBC is currently still hunting for candidate entrepreneurs – many of whom in the past have suggested food and drink manufacturing ideas. Shortlisted entrepreneurs and companies will be contacted by June 1, 2016.
The BBC said that any applications received after June 1 2016 would be reviewed from January 2017.
Final selection for participation in the programme will be decided on a number of factors including the strength of idea, a robust business plan and projected turnover.
Dragons’ Den investments
Dragons’ Den has helped many companies in the food and drink sector expand and develop their businesses.
Levi Roots was the first food and drink entrepreneur to receive backing from the dragons. Armed with an acoustic guitar, Roots persuaded Peter Jones and Richard Farleigh to invest £50,000 for a 40% share in his Reggae Reggae sauce business in the fourth season of the show.
Farleigh who bought his stake for £25,000 has since sold his stake for £200,000. Roots was now estimated to be worth about £30M.
Entrepreneur Ross Mendham secured a £60,000 investment for a 50% stake in his low carbohydrates, low calories and gluten-free and pasta business from Peter Jones. Since his appearance on the 11th series, Barenaked Foods business has secured a listing with 400 Morrisons stores.
In January, baked beans entrepreneur Ben Mason secured investment in his company Masons Beans after a fierce bidding war. He accepted Nick Jenkins’ offer of £50,000 for a 20% equity stake.
More information about the TV show is available here.
Food and drink businesses backed by Dragon's Den
2006 – Levi Roots was the first food and drink entrepreneur to receive backing from the in the fourth season of the show.
2010 – Kirst Henshaw founder of start-up Worthensaws won £65,000 backing for her frozen dairy-free desserts.
2012 – Sisters Lisa and Helen Tse received financial backing for their gluten-free Chinese sauces.
2014 – The Dragons invested £150,000 in food and drink manufacturers in one show. Shropshire-based coffee-in-bag firm The Little Coffee Bag co and fresh curry business Vini & Bal’s both received investment.
2015 – British Cassis founder and Cargill supplier Jo Hilditch refused four offers of investment for BBC’s Dragons’ Den stars as they wanted too much of a stake in her business.
2016 – Baked beans entrepreneur Ben Mason secured £50,000 from Dragon Nick Jenkins’ for a 20% equity in Masons Beans, which produces premium chilled baked beans with no added sugar and fresh ingredients.