Sunday, May 22, 2022
EntertainmentDRAGONS' Den stars reveal they had less than £3 in the bank...

DRAGONS’ Den stars reveal they had less than £3 in the bank before securing £75,000 investment

DRAGONS’ Den stars have revealed they had less than £3 in their bank accounts before securing a £75,000 investment for their ‘double dating’ app.

The founders of Double, an app which allows shy singles to “double up” with friends to help curb first date jitters, caught the Dragons’ attention after showing up wearing flamboyant heart-emblazoned suits.

The trio, made up of Gary MacDonough, 28, Ben Greenock, 26, and Loren Gould, 29, who forged friendships during school and university in Scotland, left the den with an investment of £75,000 from Moonpig creator Nick Jenkins.

The three friends launched their app in February last year but needed some extra investment.

But since the show, which was aired on Sunday evening, the boys have revealed their journey has not been easy and that they only had £2.36 left in their bank accounts before standing in front of the business tycoons.

And just like a scene from Harry Potter, Ben was even forced to live under Gary’s stairs for a while.

However, the boys have been left ecstatic over their new business partner and have seen their users double to over 30,000 over the past few months.

Gary, 28 from Glasgow, said: “By the time we went to film Dragons’ Den we only had £2.36 in our bank account.

The next stop for the Double app is New York.

“We weren’t taking salaries either so just living was getting quite difficult. For quite some time, Ben was living under my stairs in true Harry Potter style.

“We knew we had a great product, making the dating experience to be more fun, less awkward and safer.

“We just needed funding and business know-how to really scale it up, as it has the potential to become a household name among sociable singles everywhere.”

The three founders pitched their ideas to the dragons asking for £75,000 for a 15% stake in their company.

Shy singles can now double up with their friends to take the edge off.

After turning down offers from Deborah Meaden and Touker Souleyman, they closed the deal with Moonpig founder Nick Jenkins.

Nick has since helped the team gain further investment from Bebo founder, Michael Birch.

And the boys are hoping that with the help of a second office opening in Gogarburn, Edinburgh, the app will continue to grow with plans set to launch in New York next year.

Gary and Loren are based in the main office in London while Ben concentrates on anything tech related at the Entrepreneurial Spark office in Edinburgh.

Dragons’ Den investor Nick said: “Their pitch was definitely unusual but I immediately liked the idea. Having named my company Moonpig I can appreciate their unconventional approach to marketing.

“I was impressed by their ingenuity and I feel that they have a unique offering in an otherwise saturated market.”

When asked whether the young entrepreneurs had used the app themselves to meet people, Gary said: “We have all used it for work purposes but I think it would be a bit creepy if we were using our own app to get girls.

“It would be a bit like Mark Zuckerberg creating Facebook just so he could add everyone as his friend.”

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