Duncan Bannatyne

Chairman, The Bannatyne Group

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Duncan BannatyneA poverty-stricken childhood steeled Duncan’s drive to make his fortune from an early age.

After his naval career, which included a spell in military prison, Duncan drifted from job to job ending up in Jersey. It was here that Duncan made the decision to turn his life around.

He began his entrepreneurial life by trading in cars, but it was with an ice cream van purchased for £450 that he changed the course of his life.

With ‘Duncan’s Super Ices’, he set out to become the king of the 99 and eventually sold the business for £28,000, founding a nursing home business instead.

He sold his nursing home business for £46 million in 1996. Duncan quickly diversified into the fitness market and, just over a decade later, now operates Bannatyne’s Health Clubs, the largest independent chain in the UK. 

His Bannatyne Group also has interests in hotels and bars.  Duncan’s latest venture is Sensory Spa, a chain of luxury health and wellbeing spas.

Duncan holds an OBE and was has been awarded an honorary Doctor of Science (D.Sc.) from Glasgow Caledonian University for services to business and charity.  He also launched the Bannatyne Charitable Trust, which supports worthwhile causes.

A Dragon in the Den since the first series and now in it 10th series. Duncan has 6 children and 2 granchildren.

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