Dragons Den Rich List

I have been enjoying the latest series of The Dragons Den. I say enjoying
even though I spend most of my time shouting at the TV in frustration. It’s
not the often inept presentation of the inventors and entrepreneurs, who
are trying to prise money out of the dragons that leads me to despair.

It is the way that the multi-millionaire stars seem to enjoy ridiculing
the poor fools who enter their lair. A young couple, who had invented what
seemed to be a quality product, have just been called naïve by the tall
one. Of course they are! They are nothing but kids and have only been in
business for a few months.

Its as if they want people to be the finished article when they arrive
into the den. But surely they wouldn’t need to ask for help if they knew
all the answers.

Apart from Theo mentioning his ‘children’s inheritance’ time and again it
is the lack of comprehension they show regarding they are giving away that
riles me up.

Duncan Banatyne, for example, is estimated to be worth £320m. During this
latest episode he offered £200k to a couple of inventors. Your initial
reaction might be one of amazement at such an investment.

This is such a small percentage of his overall wealth. If you or I had a
bank balance of £1000 it would be the equivalent of giving away 63p. That
would make the above investment mere loose change to a wealthy businessman.

I am not commenting on the integrity of Duncan and his fellow Dragons but
context always gives you the right perspective. I am sure they give many
thousands of pounds to charity every year and that such giving makes a
definable difference to needy causes, but let’s keep it in perspective.

A recent survey indicated that the lowest earners amongst our population
give a higher percentage of their income to charity. I am quite sure that
most of our people give more than 63p to charity each year.

Figures vary but most commentators reckon that the average annual giving
by British people is 0.8% of their yearly wage. I know many people who give
a lot more than this.

It has been moving to see the response of the British people to the
Pakistan flood victims. Whilst never enough a substantial amount has been
raised and most of seemingly by ordinary folk.

So whilst the Dragons enjoy publicity seeking in their den as they revel
in handing out spare cash to young hopefuls, the rest of us make a real
difference by pooling our resources to help those who don’t have the luxury
of owning any loose change.

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