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Lovers of elevator pitch contests (hi Mike, Jemima), start your engines – the BBC is about to do a new, online-only version of Dragon’s Den. This is a new multiplatform commission that will add two new dragons, due to be revealed “in the coming months”, and will require applications with video pitches. Sound familiar? Yep, we thought so, too. But the new project will limit investments to under £50,000 only.
Dragon’s Den and The Apprentice have helped popularise UK entrepreneurship, and the likes of TechCrunch and Seedcamp have tried to create a forum for new little Web 2.0 startups to press some VC flesh. Like TechCrunch’s own Elevator Pitches project, the new Dragon’s Den project – which is notable for being an online/TV 360-degree commission – will publish hopefuls’ video pitches on its website. Visitors will be asked to rate and review contributors’ business plans. Release.
Some dragons already have online cred – ex show star Doug Richard is CEO of mobile social startup Trutap, which has been all but mothballed, and a board member at online VC deals tracker LibraryHouse. Theo Paphitis and Deborah Meaden are investors in new entrepreneur advice site Smarta.