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✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ raising money A

fter generating a terrific reception from retailers, consumers and the media alike, the Gandys brothers

decided to seek investment. They needed to sustain the growth of the business and meet the orders that were being placed (check out their handy sales tips on p27). They also wanted a mentor to offer them support when necessary. The brothers wanted to find a unique investor so they decided to call suitable candidates into the ‘Brothers’ Den’. The aim: To find an investor who met

their standards. The idea: To approach successful self-made entrepreneurs to seek investment. The location: A cool bar in London with an unique atmosphere of an exotic beach and beach huts. The uniform: Shorts and flip-flops.

Raising money to finance a new buisness idea can be daunting but the founders of Gandys, the flip-flop company, decided to turn the tables on the ‘big suits’


The brothers set up their own version of Dragons’ Den to challenge potential investors. One by one, the investors came into the beach-style bar to be met by two young lads who had named their company after Rob, the elder of the two, had woken after a festival with 'a mouth like Gandhi's flip-flop'. In this same irreverent style, the brothers arrived at the meeting wearing flip-flops and shorts. This ultra relaxed environment immediately unsettled the ‘suits’ - exactly what the boys had wanted! The idea was to take these business gurus out of their comfort zone to reveal their true colours. Were they hard- nosed, profit-driven dealmakers or did they have real values? One of the potential investors was Dominic List, whom the

brothers had seen on Channel 4’s Secret Millionaire. Rob and Paul thought Dominic just might be the business entrepreneur they were looking for. In the Brothers’ Den he answered the questions well, demonstrating real business acumen and a deep understanding of their plan. Unlike many others, who failed the quick, cross-fire questioning, Dominic revealed another side to his character - a real passion for business driven by a strong set of values and ethical principles.

Rob and Paul chose two of the seven business gurus they had met to come back for round two of the Brothers’ Den. The final two included Dominic, their 'secret millionaire'. In the final round, the boys wanted to get the real deal behind these two impressive entrepreneurs. One entrepreneur invited the brothers to a flash hotel where

he bought them lunch and discussed how he could help the brothers. Flash hotel or not, Rob and Paul were still wearing shorts and flip-flops. Dominic, on the other hand, invited the brothers to his house.

They all sat round the dinner table and enjoyed a home-cooked meal made by his wife - a Brazilian who shared Dominic’s passion for social enterprise. Dominic talked about the work he had done with charitable causes over the years, and shared stories of his travels before he became a ‘suit’ in London. Dominic was excited about joining the journey and was passionate about building a social enterprise that had real purpose. At this point the brothers knew they had found their entrepreneur. Not only did he have exceptional business acumen, he also shared similar values to Rob and Paul.

The result: The brothers had found their new business partner! ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ ✶ 44

fresh young millionaire

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