Richard Branson's latest investments
- By Jack Preston -
- May 15, 2012
The final round of the Virgin Media Pioneers’ ‘Pitch to Rich’ competition took place at the Branson household near Oxford this morning, with Richard Branson and three of his business friends choosing to spread their investment among a strong range of ideas.
Four budding entrepreneurs, who had made their way through a tough selection process, were able to pitch their ideas to the panel, which consisted of one time Virgin Media Pioneer and young entrepreneur Jamal Edwards, Nigel Gilbert of Virgin Media and Innocent Drinks co-founder Richard Reed. With each member having £1,000 to invest, as well as £1,000 going to the overall winner, it was a nail-biting morning for the contestants.
In the end it was the brains behind SafetyNet Technologies, Dan Watson (whose video can be watched below), who came out on top. His idea for a specialist fishing net to support sustainable fishing captured the attention of the panel and Richard Branson who called it a "sea-shaking idea".
The beauty of the idea was perhaps best explained by Richard Reed, who confessed: “"I'm not a fish & I'm not a fisherman, but this is clearly a great idea!"
As well as some solid investment the contestants also received some solid business advice from the panel of experts, with the Virgin Group founder explaining: “Whatever you are trying to sell, storytelling is the most powerful thing you can do. Most of the best business ideas come from personal experiences."
The three other finalists - Guy and Heidi from CODOC, Maria from Jack and Jill Toys and Jacob Hill from The Lazy Camper - all made excellent pitches and were each rewarded with £750 investment, with £3,000 going to the outright winner Watson.
Congratualtions to Dan and all those who took part!
Image by Jamal Edwards