James Caan to invest £500,000 in next recruitment start-up star

Ex-Dragon offers funding, support and mentoring for successful entrepreneur

Ex-Dragons’ Den star James Caan has announced he will invest up to £500,000 into the recruitment industry’s next rising star.

Having made his fortune through his own recruitment businesses Alexander Mann and Humana International, Caan will offer his own mentoring and support in addition to the backing, as well as the support of his own mid-market private equity firm Hamilton Bradshaw.

Established in 2004, service-focused firm Hamilton Bradshaw specialises in the recruitment industry, with 12 such companies now part of its portfolio.

Caan has announced that the right entrepreneur should already be a proven ‘top performer’ in the recruitment industry, with a proven track record and a ‘deep understanding’ of the market.

The £500,000 funding will be used by the successful applicant to set up and grow their own recruitment business.

Those wishing to apply should send in a 500 word outline of their recruitment business proposition, a 500 word covering letter and a full bio of themselves and any proposed team members.

The deadline for applications is October 18, following which shortlisted entrants will attend a presentation week taking place from the November 11. A decision will be made after this point.

Caan is best known for his long stint on the BBC Two show Dragons’ Den, during which he invested £1m across 14 companies.

James Caan said: “I strongly believe that people make businesses a success, particularly when it comes to recruitment, so I am looking for somebody who is passionate, has the confidence to take their career to the next level, as well as great expertise in their sector.

“Of the 20 recruitment companies currently part of the Hamilton Bradshaw portfolio, six of them have been started up from scratch, with over £100m revenue in three years.

“Every single one of these businesses has benefited from our experiences as well as our funds.”

Interested applicants should email agolding@hbpe.com with the subject heading ‘Recruitment Entrepreneur’.


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  1. I touched base with James Caan’s team to check what are they looking from recruitment entrepreneur and the answer was person who is doing recruitment in usual way. It’s funny they don’t have interest in funding any new idea.