Dragons' Den (Canadian TV series)

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Dragons' Den
Dragon's Den logo.jpg
Genre Reality show
Directed by Joseph Interisano
Presented by Dianne Buckner
Starring Jim Treliving
Michael Wekerle
Joe Mimran
Manjit Minhas
Michele Romanow
Opening theme "Put Yer Money Where Yer Mouth Is" by Oasis
Country of origin Canada
No. of seasons 10;11th season is set to premier in September or October
No. of episodes 156
Producer(s) Tracie Tighe
Molly Middleton
Alexandra Lane
Amy Bourne
Editor(s) Steve Tonon
Robert Megna
Location(s) Toronto, Ontario
Camera setup Multi-camera
Running time 43 to 45 minutes
Production company(s) Celador (2006-2007)
2waytraffic (2007-2012)
Sony Pictures Television (2012-present)
Original network CBC Television
Picture format 480i 4:3 (SDTV) (2006-2007)
1080i 16:9 (HDTV) (2007–present)
Original release October 3, 2006 – present
External links

Dragons' Den is a Canadian television reality show based on the internationally franchised Dragons' Den format which began in Japan.[1][2] The show debuted on October 3, 2006 on CBC Television, and is hosted by Dianne Buckner. Aspiring Canadian entrepreneurs pitch business and investment ideas to a panel of five venture capitalists (termed "Dragons") in the hope of securing business financing and partnerships.

Auditions for the 11th session began on February 6, 2016 and ended on April 2, 2016 in Toronto after a tour across 33 cities in Canada.[3][4]


Each typical episode features approximately eight pitches, along with a brief synopsis of a further three pitches which usually were rejected by the Dragons.

Each pitch begins with the entrepreneur specifying the amount they are seeking as an investment and the percentage of their business which they are offering in exchange. The entrepreneurs generally describe their business and provide financial details in respect of their costs, sales, and profit margins. Pitches range from those at the conceptual stage to full-fledged long-term businesses. The Dragons ask the entrepreneur questions in order to assess whether their business is one which they would consider investing in. Each Dragon ultimately will either make an offer to invest, or will declare that they "are out", meaning they are not interested in the business. Once all five Dragons are "out", the pitch ends.

While some entrepreneurs are made offers of exactly what they are seeking, most of the offers the Dragons make either seek a greater percentage of the business (equity) or seek a royalty on the sales of the business (this has become more prevalent in later seasons). The entrepreneurs and Dragons may then engage in negotiations until the available offers are either accepted (and a "deal" is made) or rejected.

While Dragons often partner up and make joint offers, they just as often make competing offers. Each of the Dragons has a unique set of skills and connections which sometimes results in the entrepreneur being forced to choose between offers (which might be offering the same or different economic terms) based on the "added" value the specific Dragon would bring to the business.

The main "rule" as set out at the start of every episode is that the entrepreneur is not permitted to accept an offer or multiple offers unless they would receive a total investment of at least the amount that they initially sought. The main ramification of this restriction is that entrepreneurs are often criticised for over-valuing their businesses. This is because the amount sought by the entrepreneur may be more than 50% of the value of their business as perceived by the Dragons (the Dragons rarely make deals for greater than 50%) and sometimes more than the entire value of the business as perceived by the Dragons. The restriction means the Dragons cannot offer a lesser amount that is more in line with their perceived value of the business.

Notwithstanding the acceptances of offers on the show, and the handshake agreements, the offers on the show are generally subject to due diligence by both parties and many "deals" made on the show do not ultimately close, or close at different terms than originally expected. The show sometimes offers updates on both deals which were made and entrepreneurs who were rejected, including certain special episodes focusing exclusively on updates.


Timeline of Dragons[edit]

Dragons Seasons
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11
Current Dragons
Jim Treliving Main
Michael Wekerle Main
Joe Mimran Main
Manjit Minhas Main
Michele Romanow Main
Former Dragons
Kevin O'Leary Main
Robert Herjavec Main
Laurence Lewin Main
Jennifer Wood Main
Arlene Dickinson Main
W. Brett Wilson Main
Bruce Croxon Main
David Chilton Main
Vikram Vij Main

Current Dragons[edit]

Former Dragons[edit]

  • Kevin O'Leary (Seasons 1–8), co-host of CBC News Network's business news series The Lang and O'Leary Exchange. O'Leary is the former president of The Learning Company, which was sold to Mattel for $4.2 billion in 1999. He also appears on the US version of the show, Shark Tank. On March 14, 2014, it was announced that O'Leary would not be returning to the show for season 9.[9]
  • Robert Herjavec (Seasons 1–6), founder of an IT security firm that he sold at the height of the dot-com bubble for over $100 million. Currently head of IT security firm "The Herjavec Group". He can still be seen on Shark Tank.[10]
  • Laurence Lewin (Seasons 1–2), co-founder of La Senza, a chain of lingerie shops with more than 310 stores throughout Canada, and, through corporate licensees, a further 320 stores operating in 30 countries around the world. Lewin left the show for health reasons and died on November 12, 2008. The show broadcast a dedication in memory of him on November 17, 2008.[11]
  • Jennifer Wood (Season 1), an executive in Canada's beef industry. Her career in the cattle business began in 1990.
  • Arlene Dickinson (Seasons 2–9), the owner of Venture Communications, a marketing company with offices across Canada. Announced she would be leaving the show February 13, 2015 to pursue other career aspirations.
  • W. Brett Wilson (Seasons 3–5) is a founder of FirstEnergy Capital Corp, a part owner of the English football team Derby County, and a minor partner in NHL's Nashville Predators team. During his time on the show, he brokered more business deals than any other Dragon on any version of the show worldwide.[12] Said to be the most philanthropically-minded of the Canadian Dragons,[13] he has been involved in numerous charities and participated in a CBC staff video for the online It Gets Better Project. Wilson left the show following season 5. In interviews following the announcement of his departure, Wilson criticized the show's producers for sticking to a format that favoured "abuse" and "criticism", rather than offering constructive guidance and feedback to potential entrepreneurs.[14] He subsequently announced his own entrepreneurship-themed series, Risky Business, to air on Slice.[15]
  • Bruce Croxon (Seasons 6–8) is a founder of online dating website Lavalife and owner of Vida Wellness Spas and partner of Round 13 Capital Investment Firm.[16] Croxon departed the series at the end of season 8.[9]
  • David Chilton (Seasons 7–9) is the author of the The Wealthy Barber books.[17]
  • Vikram Vij (Season 9),[5] restaurant magnate, celebrity chef, author and entrepreneur.

Episode list[edit]

Season Episodes Start Date End Date Dragons
Season 1 7[18] October 3, 2006 November 22, 2006 Treliving, O'Leary, Herjavec, Lewin, Wood
Season 2 10[19] October 1, 2007 December 3, 2007 Treliving, O'Leary, Herjavec, Lewin, Dickinson
Season 3 12[20] September 29, 2008 December 15, 2008 Treliving, O'Leary, Herjavec, Dickinson, Wilson
Season 4 21[21] September 30, 2009 March 30, 2010 Treliving, O'Leary, Herjavec, Dickinson, Wilson
Season 5 20[22] September 22, 2010 March 30, 2011 Treliving, O'Leary, Herjavec, Dickinson, Wilson
Season 6 21[23] September 14, 2011 June 3, 2012 Treliving, O'Leary, Herjavec, Dickinson, Croxon
Season 7 20[24] September 19, 2012 April 14, 2013 Treliving, O'Leary, Dickinson, Croxon, Chilton
Season 8 20[25] October 2, 2013 April 2, 2014 Treliving, O'Leary, Dickinson, Croxon, Chilton
Season 9 20[26] October 15, 2014 April 8, 2015 Treliving, Dickinson, Chilton, Wekerle, Vij[27]
Season 10 22[28] October 7, 2015[29] April 6, 2016 Treliving, Wekerle, Mimran, Minhas, Romanow
Season 11 TBD TBD TBD Treliving, Wekerle, Mimran, Minhas, Romanow


On June 13, 2011, Dragons' Den was named best reality program at the Banff World Television Festival.[30]


Two spinoff shows featuring Dragons on their own have been created, Redemption Inc. with Kevin O'Leary, and, The Big Decision with Arlene Dickinson & Jim Treliving.


  1. ^ O'Leary, Kevin (2012). Cold Hard Truth on Business, Money & Life, Random House, page 8, ISBN 9780385671767
  2. ^ Wilson, W. Brett (2012). Redefining Success: Still Making Mistakes, Penguin Books, page 122, ISBN 9780670066940
  3. ^ http://www.tv-eh.com/2016/01/15/dragons-den-season-11-audition-tour-announced/
  4. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/mediacentre/dragons-den-prepares-for-11th-season-as-audition-tour-dates-are-announced.html
  5. ^ a b "Michael Wekerle, Vikram Vij join CBC's Dragons' Den". cbc.ca. 14 March 2014. 
  6. ^ "Joe Mimran, Canadian fashion mogul, joining CBC's Dragons' Den". CBC News, March 18, 2015.
  7. ^ "Calgary beer matriarch Manjit Minhas joins Dragons' Den". cbc.ca. March 25, 2015. Retrieved March 25, 2015. 
  8. ^ Wong, Tony (March 25, 2015). "Dragons' Den gets two new dragons, loses Vikram Vij". thestar.com. Retrieved March 25, 2015. 
  9. ^ a b "Kevin O'Leary, Bruce Croxon leaving CBC's Dragon's Den". CBC.ca. March 13, 2014. Retrieved March 14, 2014. 
  10. ^ "Robert Herjavec departs Dragon's Den". CBC.ca. March 13, 2012. Retrieved August 21, 2012. 
  11. ^ "Dragon's Den - Season 3, Episode 8 - Nov 17, 2008". CBC.ca. November 17, 2008. Retrieved October 1, 2012. 
  12. ^ Lilley, Brian (March 1, 2011). "CBC loses star over sticky rules". TorontoSun.com. Retrieved August 21, 2012. 
  13. ^ Wells, Jennifer (March 17, 2010). "Brett Wilson: The Dragon with a heart". TheStar.com. Retrieved August 21, 2012. 
  14. ^ Leong, Melissa (February 28, 2011). "W. Brett Wilson leaves Dragon's Den with a challenge". NationalPost.com. Retrieved August 21, 2012. 
  15. ^ Lederman, Marsha (April 20, 2011). "Former Dragon Brett Wilson starts Risky Business". TheGlobeandMail.com. Retrieved August 21, 2012. 
  16. ^ Harris, Bill (February 28, 2011). "CBC unveils new "Dragon's" star". TorontoSun.com. Retrieved August 21, 2012. 
  17. ^ Cox, Jennifer (March 21, 2012). "David Chilton New Dragon On Dragon's Den". CraveOnline.com. Retrieved August 21, 2012. 
  18. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/dragonsden/episodes/season1/
  19. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/dragonsden/episodes/season2/
  20. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/dragonsden/episodes/season3/
  21. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/dragonsden/episodes/season-4/
  22. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/dragonsden/episodes/season-5/
  23. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/dragonsden/episodes/season-6/
  24. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/dragonsden/episodes/season-7/
  25. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/dragonsden/episodes/season-8/
  26. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/dragonsden/episodes/season-9/
  27. ^ Bitti, Mary Teresa (March 14, 2014). "Dragons' Den's Bruce Croxon on his favourite deals, why he's leaving the Den and what's next". business.financialpost.com. Retrieved March 14, 2014. 
  28. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/dragonsden/episodes/season-10/
  29. ^ Super User. "Dragons' Den (CA) season 10 release date". when-will.net. 
  30. ^ "CBC's Dragon's Den wins best reality TV prize". CBC.ca. June 14, 2011. Retrieved August 21, 2012. 

External links[edit]