Irish Dragons Den – First Impressions

The first Irish Dragon’s Den aired tonight on RTE 1 @ 10.15pm. I’m a fan of the British version. I also spent a hell of a lot of time working on my own parody version last semester in college.


In summary, i thought the ideas/businesses lacked bang and wow factor. I don’t think any of them will make millions or go global… here’s a few of them (all bar the last received no investment);

Clean Cash

Cash register that cleans money – at first i thought “Hmm, that’s interesting…” until one of dragons pointed out that in order to take the cash back out, it has to be handled by 2 people – the till operator and the customer – making the whole idea somewhat useless.

Aqua Images

This was a great niche business – selling tropical fish & tanks to businesses and offering maintainence for a monthly fee. Would have worked 2 or 3 years ago, but not now… no business is gonna pay to buy and look after a fish tank – unless they lay off another staff member to cover the costs :mrgreen: Might be worth a gamble though when the economy starts to pick up again – i can see hotels, restaurants, leisure clubs etc… investing in these.

Mums Town

I had a quick look at this site and what stood out for me is that it’s part funded by the EU and louth enterprise board. I’m curious as to how much actually went in to it 😉 I suppose it has legs – i can see it working somewhat but again it’s a really limited niche. The site could pay for itself but as a business – i can’t see anyone making a living from it.

Pedigree Cattle

I was impressed by these guys – they presented well and come across as passionate and hard working. Not surprisingly, 4 of the 5 dragons were interested, all offering to invest and they were spoilt for choice in the end. The site is pretty woeful if i’m honest but i’m sure it was created on a shoestring budget. Money won’t be a problem now however 😈 and i’m sure we’ll see it revamped shortly.

Thumbs Up or Down?

Watching tonights show just gives me another personal boost. My very own BeerChief, in my mind (obviously unbiased!), crushes every single one of these ebusinesses presented tonight. Speaking of BeerChief, not much has been done lately – i’m just too busy with college and i spend my free time learning about programming and photoshop– i’m trying to sharpen my skills all the time.

I have a week off though (first week in march) and BeerChief will get my full attention then. It’s a long, tedious battle but the site is coming together and i’m committed to it for the long haul. The main problem standing between me and BeerChief is college. College is, in effect, my full time job. Trying to look after my blog, gain new contacts through twitter and learn more about web development AND develop BeerChief at the same time with little or no cash is extremely difficult.

It will be done though.. no matter how long it takes. I’m quickly mastering photoshop which immediately saves me cash – most of the graphic work on BeerChief i can now do myself (in fact the current template was designed by myself and that was before i even started reading up on photoshop and started taking it seriously!).

Anyway, Dragons Den – Irish style, gets a thumbs up from me. At the end of the day, it’s helping to create business in Ireland and giving entrepreneurs a shot at fame and fortune. It’s a stage for anyone with ideas to announce their ideas and i’ve no doubt we’ll see a whole host of quality businesses spring up through the show. It’s a much needed glimmer of hope for many people and allows them to dream big and possibly pursue dreams – anything which enables more of that can only be good.

Leave a Reply