Skip to main content

Dragons' Den IP Blog - Series 21 Episode 4

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Business, Copyright, IP, Trade marks, Trade secrets

Unveiling innovation, a fiery episode in the Den

In the latest episode of BBC Dragons’ Den, the entrepreneurial spirit soared as four diverse businesses stepped in to pitch their ground-breaking ideas. From stone age education to South Asian beauty, natural ice pops, and lab-grown diamonds, this heated episode had it all. 

Dragon, Touker Suleyman.

Stepping back in time with a stone age venture

First into the Den was husband and wife duo, Naomi and Dan, accompanied by their children Maggie and Wren. Their venture, The Stone Age Company, aims to deliver interactive workshops to primary school children.  

Their unique approach to education, inspired by their experiences living outdoors and surviving off the land, resonated with the Dragons. Although the financials showed a bumpy journey with losses in recent years, Peter Jones recognised their dedication. He provided guidance and support, emphasising the importance of staying true to their passion. 

The team delivers workshops to primary schools. Their lesson plans will be protected automatically by copyright when creating their original literary and dramatic work.

Find out more about what automatic copyright covers via this link:
How copyright protects your work. 

The Stone Age Company business owners Naomi and Dan, accompanied by their children Maggie and Ren.

Despite the Dragons all saying how much the stone age concept rocks, the family left the Den without investment, but with a promise of help from Peter Jones: 

The biggest gift I can give you is support from my team, but I’m happy to help... your dream can still become a reality without having a Dragon breathing fire into your cave.  

Pavan Beauty, a celebration of culture and henna

Next up in the Den, Pavan Dhanjal, the creator of Pavan Beauty, was seeking £50,000 for a 20% equity stake in her South Asian beauty venture. Her mission was to bring the art of henna to a mass market, celebrating diversity and inclusion. 

The Dragons were impressed with Pavan’s CV, which includes a Guinness World Record (since bettered) of fastest henna artist, a permanent location in Selfridges since 2015 and she once created a window display in Harrods. Pavan demonstrated a strong pitch... then the Dragons dived straight in with their questioning. 

The heat in the Den began to soar, with three of the Dragons soon declaring themselves out. 

Pavan Dhanjal, the creator of Pavan Beauty

Touker Suleyman saw potential in Pavan's venture, however, offering all the money for a 40% stake, with the possibility of reducing it to 30% if he recouped his investment within 12 months. Pavan accepted, delighted at the potential for her cultural beauty products to thrive in the market. 

Did you know?  

Registering a company name at Companies House provides no legal right to use that name as a trade mark. To grow a brand it makes sense to register a trade mark. This is something businesses like Pavan’s might wish to do if they intend to expand their business.

IP rights don’t have to be scary. Intellectual property consists of many different areas, from logos and corporate identity through to products, services and processes that differentiate your business offering. It’s when these assets are used without permission that a person or organisation can potentially run into issues.

That is why it’s so important to know your patents from your trade marks and your designs from your copyright.

Take a look at our IP Basics video, 'Do I have Intellectual Property rights?'

Pola Poles, natural ice pops with a twist

Next Isaac, the 27-year-old founder of Pola Poles, pitched his natural ice pop company, seeking £50,000 for a 15% equity stake. His commitment to using real fruits and crafting natural, tasty alternatives impressed the Dragons. 

Despite facing challenges and losses in the initial years, Isaac's determination remained icy cool. Touker Suleyman suggested exploring a franchise model, however, the Dragons, including Peter, Sara, Steven and Deborah, ultimately decided not to invest. They admired Isaac's passion but questioned the scalability of his business. 

Isaac, founder of Pola Poles

Shhh - keep it a secret! 

Many people think that you can protect an idea, such as Isaac’s natural ice pop business. However, an idea alone does not count as intellectual property (IP). It is what is created from an idea – an invention, a story and so on that can be protected. 

Another belief is that you can protect a list of ingredients (used to create your product) with IP, which is not the case. However, many successful food and drink businesses protect their tasty creations using trade secrets, which require no application, are completely free and have no expiry date. A trade secret can be a very effective form of protection.  

Read about how a popular drink brand has protected their recipe for more than 100 years.  

Intellectual Property: Irn Bru - Case study - GOV.UK (

Kimai, ethical luxury in lab-grown diamonds

The final entrepreneurs of the evening, Sidney and Jessica from Kimai, brought a touch of luxury to the Den. Seeking £250,000 for a 3% stake in their ethical, lab-grown diamond business, Kimai aim to revolutionise the fine jewellery industry. 

 Steven was keen to know the difference between a lab-grown diamond and a real diamond in terms of price and demand.  

They are identical in terms of physicality. Chemically lab-grown diamonds are less expensive than mined ones by around 50-60%.  

Kimai entrepreneurs Jessica and Sidney.

When it comes to protecting their business, the most obvious route for Jessica and Sidney to take would be a trade mark and registered design. I can see that the Kimai team has registered their business name both in the UK and across the pond in the USA. You can view it through this link: UK00918084098

Jessica spoke about how they have set out to focus on the design of their jewellery - come up with designs that are unique to them.  

To protect the design of their products, Jessica and Sidney would need to register their designs. Design rights protect the overall visual appearance of a product including the shape, decoration and any special configuration. 

Find out more about registering your design through this link:
Register a design

Touker and Peter bowed out, however, Sara, Deborah and Steven were dazzled by the diamond duo, Sara offering 3% and the other two offering all the money for a 5% stake.

In a surprising turn of events, Sidney and Jessica rejected all three offers, showcasing confidence in their brand's value. Peter Jones was stunned:

Just to get this right so I'm not confused, You’ve came in asking for a quarter of a million for 3%  you've been given that offer and you've rejected it!

It became apparent the pair came here for social media guru, Steven. They tried their luck asking him if he’d negotiate for 3% equity in their business. His response: 

I just can’t let you walk away so you’ve got a deal, you drive the best bargain in the world!   


As the fiery episode concluded, each entrepreneur left with a unique story and a lesson in resilience and determination. The Dragons, with their diverse expertise, provided valuable insights and encouragement about opportunities for growth. It was a testament to the dynamic and unpredictable nature of entrepreneurial ventures, where passion and innovation take centre stage. 

For those inspired by the Den, it's crucial to recognise the importance of intellectual property (IP) in safeguarding innovative ideas. Trade marks, patents, and copyright play a pivotal role in securing a brand's identity and ensuring its longevity in the competitive market. As showcased in the Den, protecting assets and understanding the marketplace are vital steps for any business aiming to make a mark in the ever-evolving world of entrepreneurship. 

In the end, the Dragons' Den continues to be a stage where dreams meet reality, and entrepreneurs strive to turn their visions into successful businesses, one pitch at a time. 

If you are thinking about the intellectual property in your business, visit the IP for Business section of our website or sign up to receive regular updates. 


The purpose of the blog is to help identify the IP in entrepreneurs’ pitches and highlight how IP works, or could work, in the real-life examples featured. IPO’s authorship of this blog does not constitute its endorsement or sponsorship of any products, individuals or businesses referenced within it. 

Sharing and comments

Share this page

Leave a comment

We only ask for your email address so we know you're a real person

By submitting a comment you understand it may be published on this public website. Please read our privacy notice to see how the GOV.UK blogging platform handles your information.