Crowd-funded boost after telling Dragon: I’m out

James in the Den

A young entrepreneur who rejected an offer of cash in the Dragon’s Den has officially closed its first round of fundraising via Seedrs, having secured more than £220,000 from 271 investors.

James Higginsturbed down Touker Suleyman’s offer of £150,000 to support his Ethical Bedding business which is dedicated to ethical and sustainable principles.

He says hs firm rejection now signals a far better prospect for the long-term success, raising substantially more for just an 9.87 per cent stake (compared to 50 per cent offered in the Den.

He now plans to continue his mission to find investors with the aim to build an entire ‘Ethical Empire’.

He will use the £220,000 to invest in three core focuses – People, Products and Brand. The company’s long-term aim is to leverage current and new product propositions, increase organic social reach on multiple channels and expand its national retail network into high street stores across the UK and Ireland.

James said: “The success of our first Seedrs campaign is just the beginning. I always knew that the business would be successful, and I also wanted the company to become part of the community, so opening it up to public investors was a must.

Ethical Bedding has gained increasing recognition since the brand was showcased to the world. Our appearance on Dragons’ Den provided an ideal platform for spreading our message and meaning, and the overall experience has helped us on our mission to shape an ethical future.

“I didn’t agree to take part in Dragons’ Den to just secure whatever money I could for the sake of having a certain name as an investor. I take pride in my convictions and the message of my business and that’s why I am glad I opened our business up to like-minded individuals who recognise our worth and want to help us build an Ethical Empire.

“Achieving over £220,000 in funding from 271 individual investors emphatically validates my decision to reject with offer on Dragons Den without negotiating. Importantly this level of funding for considerably less equity, ensures that Ethical Bedding is a far more investible proposition for institutional investors in the coming years.”