Dragons’ Den success stories: Skinny Tan (and what you can learn from them)

The “cellulite busting” fake tan business had its pick of all five Dragons, find out what its founders have achieved in the two years since pitching…

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Company name: Skinny Tan
Description: Tanning lotion and cellulite-reducing cream
Series: 11
Year: 2013
Investment received: £60,000 for 10%
Dragon investors: Kelly Hoppen and Piers Linney
Still in business? Acquired in June 2015

Any business which boasts profit figures of £600,000 for its first year is always going to turn heads in the Den and Skinny Tan did just that – attracting offers from all five Dragon investors.

Launched in Australia in 2012 by Kate Cotton and Louise Ferguson, Skinny Tan is a naturally-deriving fake tanning lotion which claims to reduce the appearance of cellulite.

Having appeared in the Den in 2013 with the goal of getting finance to “conquer the UK”, Cotton and Ferguson have spent the past two years achieving their aims. On the back of Hoppen and Linney’s investment, the company secured a deal with Boots and expanded to Spain, Canada, South Africa and Dubai.

In June 2015, the business announced it had been acquired for an undisclosed sum by global beauty giant InnovaDerma for an 80% stake of the company. Hoppen and Linney will remain shareholders and Cotton and Ferguson are staying with the business but a return on investment hasn’t “been finalised as yet”.

With revenues of £1m for 2014 and turnover set to double to £2.2m over the next 12 months, it’s no wonder that Skinny Tan was a winner in the Den.

Watch the original pitch here.

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