Friday, September 30, 2011

News: Dragon-slayer set to inspire Rotherham entrepreneurs


Successful mumtrepreneur Kirsty Henshaw will be in Rotherham later this year to tell the tale about when she entered the Dragon's Den and came out with significant financial backing for her business.

Kirsty has confirmed she will be speaking to local entrepreneurs at Rotherham Enterprise Board's Dragons' Den style event on the December 6.

Last year, on series eight of the hit BBC2 show, Kirsty demonstrated passion, commitment and a gritty determination to succeed by delivering one of the best pitches ever seen on the BBC Dragon's Den programme. She impressed all of the panel and secured £65,000 worth of angel investment from Dragons Peter Jones and Duncan Bannatyne in return for a 30% stake in her company, Worthenshaws Freedom.

With the backing of the Dragons, Kirsty's company now supplies every major supermarket in the UK with dairy-free, nut-free and sugar-free frozen puddings, which were originally inspired by her four year old son who has a serious nut allergy and is dairy and gluten intolerant.

She began experimenting with a little ice cream maker from Argos in her tiny kitchen at home and formulated a recipe for success combining brown rice milk, coconut oil and natural fruit extracts - all renowned for their health giving properties.

At 24, the former care assistant, bar maid and massage therapist from Preston, became one of the youngest entrepreneurs to receive investment on the show.

Now an inspirational, confident and "can-do" young woman, Kirsty will talk about her experience of entering the real Dragons' Den and about her entrepreneurial journey so far to Rotherham businesses and entrepreneurs. Kirsty will not only be passing on her knowledge and tips to the businesses who are selected to enter the Den, but she will also be putting them through their paces by taking on the role as one of the dragons.

This is the third event of its kind and proudly sponsored by UK Steel Enterprise and funded through the European Regional Development Fund.

The last event took place in July this year and was won by Kara and Tony Chapman of The Whistle Stop Sweet Shop. Kara said: "Since the event, business has definitely increased. It's been great for us, it's made us stand back and look differently at things and it's totally increased our confidence."

Tony will be passing on his own valuable knowledge and experience this time around by taking on the role of a dragon.

The event is free to attend and open to businesses based within Rotherham, that have been trading for three years or less and have excellent growth potential. The best pitch on the night will receive a prize of £1,500 to support their businesses growth potential and they may also receive capital investment opportunities and guaranteed exclusive editorial coverage in the South Yorkshire Business Magazine.

To apply for this event or find out more details contact The Regeneration and Development team at Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council on 01709 823848 or email; or visit; for more information.

Rotherham Enterprise Board website
Kirsty Henshaw website



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