THE BLOG
12/24/2013 04:03 EST | Updated 02/23/2014 05:59 EST

Rumble in the Dragons' Den

Preparing to enter the Den was easily one of the most nerve-wracking moments of my life. I recall standing backstage between my business partners in silence until a large booming noise stole my focus. I glanced to both of my business partners only to realize neither had heard the noise. Seconds later, after gathering my thoughts, I realized the booming was the sound of my own heartbeat.

The Rumble formula sustained me leading up to and following my double lung transplant in 2011. My experience alone speaks to the health benefits associated with Rumble and why the Rumble team is a team of believers.

We stepped onto the set and I started our pitch by giving the Dragons a glimpse into the health complications associated with Cystic Fibrosis and how this condition drove me to formulate the nutrient-dense supplement. My business partner Dr. Kim McQueen spoke to the high levels of omega 3s from organic flax oil and other beneficial ingredients that are unique to the Rumble super shake.

All sales-related questions were directed to our third partner on set, James McQueen. After receiving separate investment offers from each of the five dragons, James directed the conversation backstage in order to navigate which offer would best support Rumble's expansion strategy.

Strong interest from the Dragons prompted our team to suggest two of the Dragons join forces for a better-rounded partnership. After the dragons declined, we went ahead and accepted Arlene's offer for 200K and 20 per cent. For viewers the handshake could be perceived as the end of deal, however, the handshake was just the beginning of our due diligence process with the Dragons. While in negotiations with the Dragons, we were also fielding interest from other parties across Canada.

Deciding not to enter into a partnership was a decision that both our team and the Dragons came to mutually. The Dragons wanted a royalty we felt we couldn't afford, and we also needed a partner who could offer a hands-on approach due to our lack of experience in the beverage industry. By June, we had decided to partner with a small investment company out of Toronto, BrandProject. With a goal to expand into the US, we felt confident partnering with BrandProject after considering their extensive experience working with early-stage, disruptive consumer brands. By partnering with BrandProject, we have the opportunity to be mentored by leaders on the team with key beverage experience.

Despite the fact that the partnership with Arlene never materialized, I'm grateful for the experience the Rumble team had on Dragon's Den and the resulting exposure. To any entrepreneur considering a foray into the Den, I say go for it. Just be sure you know both your strengths and your weaknesses and whether, if you're fortunate enough to get an offer, the interests of your burgeoning company will be served by it.