Fun dating facts
And when Sharon Wright, a single mother from Scunthorpe, stepped from the 'lair' with more money that she had asked for, it really was a coup.
Yet what should have been a giant step for Sharon soon proved to be disastrous.There could have been a mains cable inside the wall. And there was.' For the next two years, Sharon worked 16-hour days developing an impressively simple device she calls a Magna Mole – a plastic rod that can take a cable through cavity walls without risk of electrocution.It was an unlikely choice of product as Sharon is by no means an engineer.Indeed, she left school with just two O-levels and had devoted all her time since then to caring for her daughter, Molly, who is now 14.Her account will shake the confidence of the programme's many fans and, in her opinion at least, casts doubt on the methods of James Caan, one of the show's star panellists. I didn't receive the monies that I expected, I didn't receive the support I needed and, more importantly, they were charging me for their services. I just hope no one chooses him in the future.' It seems that this is not the first time Caan has used loans to invest in Dragons' Den hopefuls – though viewers and entrepreneurs are given the impression the Dragons are investing hard cash.I felt hugely disappointed and disheartened.' She adds: 'I'd felt James had empathy for people. A spokesman confirmed Caan had previously invested using loan agreements.
Sharon's story began in 2006 with the visit of a telephone engineer to her new, three-storey terraced house in Scunthorpe.
She watched in surprise as the workman poked a cable through the double-skin wall using nothing more sophisticated than a metal coathanger, apparently with no idea of what lay in between. 'I thought, "That's not safe – you don't know what's inside that cavity".
Within months, she was on the verge of financial collapse – a state of affairs that she blames squarely on the BBC programme – followed by the spectre of a personal breakdown.
The expert help she was expecting from her slick new backers never came, she says.
Nor did the £80,000 investment she was promised by the Dragons for a stake in the company: instead of giving her the money to buy into the company, they offered it as a loan.
Today, in an exclusive interview with The Mail on Sunday, the 40-year-old businesswoman tells how Dragons' Den nearly ruined her. Viewers are given the impression that the money the Dragons provide is to buy equity in the business. In terms of the way he conducted business, I think he's out for himself.