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

Having walked away empty-handed from the Den in 2006, the “worthless” ride-on children’s suitcase company has become a multi-million business...

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Company name: Trunki (registered as Magmatic Ltd)
Description: Ride-on hand luggage suitcase for children
Series: 3
Year: 2006
Investment sought: £100,000 for 10% equity
Why didn’t the Dragons invest? Theo Paphitis broke a strap of the suitcase which led the other Dragons to question the product quality

“No-one in their right mind would think that business was worth £1m” – was the comment made by Paphitis following Trunki’s exit from the Den in 2006; an appearance which had seen founder Rob Law fail to win investment from the Dragons.

Eight years later, Paphitis’ remark couldn’t be further from the truth.

Widely known to be one of the Den’s most successful ‘rejects’, Law’s sit-on, ride-along children’s suitcases have become a familiar sight at airports all over the world, secured £4m backing from the government-backed Business Growth Fund in 2013, and has totted up product sales of over two million and counting.

And that’s not all. Since appearing on the show, Trunki has won over 100 design awards, Law has been granted an MBE, and the Trunki product range has been extended to include BoostAPak; a children’s booster seat that doubles as a backpack, and SnooziHedz; a three-in-one travel pal, pillow and blanket.

Law’s business has also become a ‘Made in Britain’ success story with its own factory in Devon which manufactures the suitcases and recycles them, supported by a team of over 60 staff.

Despite having recently been involved in a number of intellectual property (IP) battles with companies creating similar products to Trunki – including an ongoing legal battle with Hong Kong rival PMS International – the Trunki brand looks to continue its growth ascent with latest published revenue sitting at a comfortable £8.13m.

Duncan Bannatyne and Peter Jones have both admitted that they regret not investing in Trunki and we’re not surprised!

Watch the original pitch here.

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