Dragons shoot down Victoria Scufflinks inventors

Business partners encouraged by post-show response

Despite being sent away empty-handed by five of the wealthiest and most business-savvy Canadians on TV, a Victoria team of business partners is looking on the bright side.

Josh Mitchell and his business partner Jeremy Green appeared on CBCs ****Dragons’ Den Oct. 5. They asked the panel of dragons for a $25,000 investment in exchange for a 33-per-cent stake in their company, Mayhem Marketing, through which they sell Scufflinks, which are decorative and functional metal pins used to hem pants.

Despite the rejection and having their air time on TV reduced to one minute, the national exposure is paying off.

As soon as the episode was aired in an earlier time zone, the team began receiving emails from potential customers from as far away as Toronto.

“We’re all really happy with how it went,” Scufflinks spokesperson Alex Miller said of the more than 100 purchase orders and 300 to 400 emails they received, as well as the nearly 1,000 hits their website received within 24 hours after the show aired.

“I mean, it wasn’t like there were a billion orders. We would have loved a billion orders (but) it was a great start.

“We really think it’ll be a slow burn.”

In the wake of the show, Mitchell has been asked to speak at a conference on innovation, organized by the Fraser Health Authority, Miller said, adding that *****Dragons’ Den producers have also asked the team to pitch their product again next year.

The response is encouraging, considering the bulk of their taped pitch ended up on the cutting-room floor.

When asked by dragon Arlene Dickinson about the business name, Mayhem Marketing, Mitchell said: “Because we ‘may hem’ your jeans.”

“That’s funny,” Dickinson said.

Mitchell prompted more laughter – and a few groans – when he said, “So if you help us, we’ll definitely get the leg up over the competition.”

“Oh my goodness, bad pun after bad pun,” Dickinson said.

The entrepreneurs said it is unfortunate the audience didn’t get to see the Scufflinks team talk business with the dragons.

“From what they aired, it was only the tiniest part,” said Miller. “It’s not about the entrepreneurs. It’s about the dragons.

“It’s TV.”

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