Cowboy Lassos Dragon Jones

The latest episode of Dragons’ Den has seen Texan cowboy Joe Walters pitch his beef jerky to the multimillionaire panel…

In last night’s episode of Dragons’ Den on BBC TV, Texan entrepreneur Joe Walters pitched to the Dragons in a rhinestone suit and a stetson hat, accompanied by a trio of singers on squeezebox, banjo and guitar.

Whilst the multimillionaires visibly winced at the chorus of "put that jerky in your mouth" Walters asked for £37,500 for 16% of his company.

Citing a £12 million UK market 90% dominated by just one company, the Texan cowboy has spent 9 months developing an authentic beef jerky and received interest from the craft beer sector.

The difference with this pitch is that Walters had already secured investment from maverick Scottish brewing company BrewDog with the company’s cofounder james Watt promising to match anything the dragons offered him, thus reducing his seeking of £75,000 for a 35% stake to be reduced for this approach on TV. This is apparently a first in the Dragons’ Den with James Watts’ letter of intent, presented to Deborah Meaden, proving the BrewDog cofounder’s interest.

Duncan Bannatyne was the first to say "I’m out" but receiving four offers from the panel of entrepreneurs, the Texan decided to go with Peter Jones despite an immediate offer from Kelly Hoppen, who matched his deal, Deborah Meaden’s full amount for 22% of Joe’s equity and Piers Linney’s offer to "shoot the breeze" with the cowboy, also for a 22% stake.

Peter Jones’ difficult decision making was mulled over for TV tension and he offered to be "really creative", offering £50,000 for 25% of the business.

Negotiating a 24% stake, to ensure he kept control of his business, Joe Walters said "thank you very much, pardner" and accepted Dragon Jones’ offer.

Speaking to the camera at the end of his pitch, the Texan explained that he was willing to give away that greater equity stake in his business in return for what he understood Peter Jones might be able to do for his brand.

Since filming his pitch, Peter Jones and Joe Walters made a mutual decision to part ways but BrewDog’s Captain James Watt has kept to his word and Texas Joe’s Original Texan Jerky is available in all of BrewDog’s ten bars from today.

If you’re too far from a BrewDog bar you can put some jerky in your mouth by ordering online at Texas Joe’s.

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