As we finish or celebrations of the patron saint of England, Saint George, we look at some modern day dragons for their inspirational stories of how they secured their financial wellbeing.
The current panel of Dragons consists of self-made multi-millionaires looking to share their fortunes with talented business people. It would be foolish to think that these Dragons have had their wealth handed to them on a plate, each Dragon has worked hard to achieve their success from very little.
Perhaps one of the most recognisable businessmen in the UK, Theo has made his empire by taking struggling organisations and revamping them. From becoming Chairman of Milwall FC, taking them out of administration and into the FA Cup final, to reviving Ryman, Partners the Stationers, and Stationery Box and merging them into one successful business Ryman Stationery, Theo has turned their business fortunes around.
This attitude towards helping businesses and the economy has seen Theo become a multi-millionaire. Even now he continues to help those less fortunate than himself as he donates all of his fees from TV and the media to the Theo Paphitis Charitable Trust, which distributes the money to various children’s charities.
From a very early age Peter dreamt about running a multi-million pound business whilst sitting in his father’s office. Peter first tried to turn this dream into reality when he set up his first venture: a tennis coaching school. After that, things weren’t easy for Peter, he lost a lot of money and assets when a restaurant investment turned sour. However, a job with Siemens Nixdorf turned his life around as it led to him founded Phones International Group.
Today, Peter has an active interest in 25 different companies which generate millions of pounds every single year. He has also used his money to open the Peter Jones Enterprise Academy, which supports 16 to 19 year olds with an entrepreneurial flair.
By studying at Business College after leaving school, Deborah opened up many opportunities, and opted to launch her own company in the glass and ceramics industry. Despite having little capital, Deborah was able to supply well-known stores such as Harvey Nichols. Later in life Deborah returned to the family business, and ended up becoming the Managing Director of Weststar Holidays. She sold a stake in company for over £30m, and a few years later sold the remaining stake for £83m.
Nowadays Deborah spends her time investing in companies, and has a portfolio which includes fashion, software, market research, and waste management. Outside of work Deborah is the chair of the Childline ‘Child’s Voice Appeal South West’ and is an Ambassador for the WWF.
Duncan’s life story is a real rags to riches tale as he went from living in poverty as a child, to spending time in military prison, and drifting between jobs aimlessly. Duncan first began his journey to becoming a millionaire by investing less than £500 in an ice cream van, and selling it for £28,000. Duncan used his proceeds to found a nursing home business which he went on to sell for £46m, and has since expanded into other areas such as health clubs, hotels, property, and bars.
Duncan is continuously looking for new ventures, and just last year set up a digital marketing agency designed to target new start-up businesses, Bannatyne Digital. With an estimated wealth of £460 million, Duncan still insists on spending his money wisely, and only ever splashes out on holidays and cars.
In 1995 Hilary saw an opportunity and grabbed it with both hands. Despite being rejected for a bank loan, she still managed to set up her pallet exchange business Pall-Ex. Hilary financed the business by selling her house and car, and managed to turn her one truck company into a multi-million pound national haulage company shipping over 9000 pallets a day. Hilary still works hard with Pall-Ex and is currently in charge of the company’s pan-European expansion.
Outside of Pall-Ex, Hilary is passionate about encouraging and motivating women into jobs that are typically dominated by men. Hilary has established the ‘Penny a Pallet’ scheme which ensures that her chosen charities receive donations on an ongoing basis.
All five of the dragons have worked incredibly hard to achieve their fortunes, and have proven that with passion, dedication, and excellent money management, just about anyone can share similar success and wealth.
|Written by :||Follow @marktscott
|Mark is the Marketing Director at CompareandSave.com, having previously worked at a number of media agencies on various financial brands.
He now splits his time between promoting CompareandSave and investigating new ways to help our readers save money.
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