The excitement over the chance to face off with the dragons was just too much for some entrepreneurs to handle — three of them stopped by the CBC Hamilton office Friday hoping to make their pitch for CBC's Dragons' Den.
Sadly, the auditions actually started at 10 a.m. Saturday. But that didn't stop them from excitedly discussing their businesses.
Judith Marie Augustino has been developing her product — an adjustable nightstand for those living with mobility or health issues — for over seven years. When she saw the Dragons' Den producers were bringing auditions to her hometown, she decided it was time to take the next step.
"It's such a simple idea, I thought 'it has to be out there,'" she says of her nightstand, which is held in place by sliding the base between the mattress and boxspring. "But in all the research I've done over the last seven years, it's not out there."
The idea came to her when she was bedridden due to poor health several years ago. Though she hasn't sold any units yet, Augustino is hoping if she makes it on the show, she'll be able to get the financing she needs to mass-produce the bedside accessory.
"It's the only way I'm going to be able to get it out there is to get the financing."
Self-proclaimed "serial entrepreneurs" Diana Charabin and Jeff House will be making the drive from London Saturday to pitch their business, Cole and Parker.
"We make socks that start businesses," House cryptically proclaimed, before explaining how their designer sock company helps fund an organization that microfinances businesses in developing countries.
"In 2010, I went to Columbia with a microfinance company to help entrepreneurs get out of poverty and start their own business. I was amazed when I saw, when they're given just a little bit of money, how much they could grow their business," House said.Jeff House and Diana Charabin have a company that makes designer socks to help microfinance businesses. (Kaleigh Rogers/CBC)
The duo has several other projects in the works but quickly started to develop the Cole and Parker concept when they realized how it could help fellow entrepreneurs.
"It ties socks into our passion, which is supporting entrepreneurs," Charabin said, adding if they make it to the show, they're more interested in leveraging the relationships the dragons have.
"We're looking to develop those relationships and the dragons are all entrepreneurs themselves, so who better than them?"
Dragons' Den auditions take place in Hamilton on Saturday, February 23, from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. at the CBC Hamilton office, 118 James St. N. For more information, visit the Dragons' Den website.