Dragons’ Den auditions return to Victoria

Energy innovation ideas welcomed for special episode of CBC show

Calling all entrepreneurs looking to make it big and needing a little or a lot of help from investors with deep pockets.

The producers of popular CBC-TV show Dragons’ Den are holding auditions in Victoria at the Inn at Laurel Point on Saturday (March 17), one of more than 40 stops on their cross-country tour.

Last year’s day-long event there attracted a bevy of creative minds with practical and quirky ideas, from smart-home technology to naughty gingerbread creations.

“It’s exciting for the city, not just for us, not just for the Dragons’ Den,” said Avril Matthews, the hotel’s director of marketing and sales. “It’s a favourite day here, because you never know what’s going to come in the doors.”

At least one Victoria team of entrepreneurs who auditioned last year was invited to Toronto to pitch their product to Kevin O’Leary, Jim Treliving, Arlene Dickinson, Robert Herjavec and Bruce Croxon.

Among successful Victoria applicants in past, the owners of WannaWafel made it onto the show and were offered a deal by the dragons.

An average of more than 1.3 million viewers watch the show every Wednesday night.

“This year again, the panel of producers are looking for participants of all ages,” CBC said in a statement.

“This year again, the panel of producers are looking for participants of all ages,” CBC said in a statement. “After a highly-rated ‘all-student’ special in (last year’s) season six, **Dragons Den continues to seek young entrepreneurs who think they have the money-making chops to take on the savviest business tycoons in the country.”

Participants can also pitch energy innovations at the audition for a chance to become one of three finalists who will present their ideas in a special “Future Now” episode that airs June 3. The winner will receive $100,000 from Shell Canada.

The auditions happen from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., at the Inn, 680 Montreal St. For details, visit www.cbc.ca/dragonsden/auditions.

emccracken@vicnews.com