A former JFS pupil has told of getting a “full house” of offers when he stepped in front of investors on the Dragons’ Den TV panel.
Jonny Plein, the co-founder of a desktop app that helps shoppers find discount codes, revealed this week that he was coached to appear in front of the daunting power players, as he pitched his company, Pouch.
Plein co-founded it with friends Vikram Simha and Ben Corrigan, and together with chief strategist Adam Murray, set out to woo the investors for funding.
“We were very nervous for our three-minute pitch, as you only get one chance to do it and if you muck up, you muck up,” said Plein this week, speaking to Jewish News. “But after we knew the Dragons understood our concept, we felt great and it was just like speaking to any other potential investor.”
On learning that all five Dragons wanted to invest, Plein and the Pouch team knew they’d hit the jackpot. “We just couldn’t believe it,” he said, “especially from [investor] Peter Jones… We thought we had alienated him to get the other Dragons on board, but when he made his offer it was amazing. Full house!”
In dramatic TV viewing, Plein and Co. came up with a counter-offer – urging three Dragons to invest together. “It was totally an on-the-spot thing,” said the Nottingham graduate, a chartered accountant who speaks Mandarin.
“It just felt like a natural thing to do to get as many Dragons on board as possible whilst not giving away more equity than needed. To get three dragons at 18 percent made more sense than two dragons at 20 percent.”
The team wants to expand into Europe, Australia and Canada, and plans to launch a mobile app in the next 18 months. In the meantime, the Dragons’ money means Plein “can now pay myself more than £500 a month”.
You can download Pouch for free on Google Chrome or Safari from www.joinpouch.com