BBC Dragons' Den star blasts 'humiliating' time on show as he fumes at 'aggressive' treatment: 'Edited harshly'

BBC Dragons' Den star blasts 'humiliating' time on show as he fumes at 'aggressive' treatment: 'Edited harshly'

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Lauren Williams

By Lauren Williams

Published: 03/04/2024

- 16:11

The Dragons' Den candidate appeared on the show in 2017 to pitch his ‘world’s best poop-scoop’ company

Dragons' Den candidate John Nicholls has spoken out about his time on the show and the treatment he received from some of the Dragons – before going on to make a success of his company on his own.

Nicholls entered the den and asked the Dragons for a £45,000 investment in return for a 15 percent share in his business, HandiScoop.

During the episode, viewers saw how nervous the 65-year-old was, something he recently claimed he was reprimanded for by Peter Jones.

He recalled that Jones was “especially difficult” when asking questions about the company and felt the others piled on and were “hunting me like a pack”.

“I would not want to be in business with him at all. During my pitch, he was fiddling with things instead of taking notes and kept rolling his eyes while I answered questions, it was like he was saying, ‘We’ve seen enough, get on with it',” he told The Sun.

Before applying, Nicholls recalled how a lot of trade show customers would often praise the product and encourage him to appear on the BBC business show.

Dragon's Den

John Nicholls encouraged the Dragons to use the product


He noted that the only reason he did apply for a position was because he saw it as “an easy way to raise capital” without having to “jump through all the hoops” of a bank loan.

Despite doing all the preparation he could, Nicholls struggled to recall specific figures during the pitch and had to admit he hadn’t secured a patent for one part of the device.

Unimpressed by his presentation, Jones said at the time: “You’ve really just come in and tried to wing an investment.”

Fashion tycoon Touker Suleyman added: “The product's right but you’re uninvestable,” leaving Nicholls to believe he was treated unfairly.

Dragon's Den

Whilst they liked the product John was branded "uninvestable"


“When you are in there, the Dragons hunt like a pack - there are five of them versus one of you. All they tried to do was take the mickey out of me and when the episode aired they didn’t show everything that went on, it was edited harshly. But by doing that, it means they miss very good ideas.”

The 65-year-old was told that his product would change pet owners' lives and reduce the amount of plastic they would use – but still wasn’t taken seriously.

Nicholls also claimed fiery scenes with an "aggressive" Peter Jones were cut from the edit.

GB News has contacted the BBC for a comment.

The entrepreneur's revelation comes just days after the show found itself hitting headlines after one savvy candidate turned down the Dragons' offers and walked away empty handed.

Dragon's Den

Dragon's Den star shared 'humiliating' moment he encountered on the show


During a recent episode, Peony Li walked into the den and asked for an investment into her company We Are Jude, which helps women with menopause and bladder issues.

The ambitious 29-year-old also revealed she had already secured investments from Reckitt Benckiser, which owns Dettol, Nurofen and Durex.

Whilst Steven Bartlett jumped the gun and claimed she was a "superstar", she soon dropped a bomb and asked for a £100,000 investment in exchange for just one per cent of the business.

Emma Grede, Deborah Meaden and Peter Jones all made offers for the £100,000 investment but countered that they wanted 1.5 per cent of the business - something that Li refused and walked away from.

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