Dragons’ Den 2013: Insider claims new Dragon Kelly Hoppen will be out of her depth on the show!

by Lynn Rowlands

kelly hoppen

Fans of Dragons’ Den will of course know that tycoons Hilary Devey and Theo Paphitis have quit the show, so businesswoman Kelly Hoppen has been hired to replace one of them…

However, an insider reckons that Kelly could be out of her depth on DD, and would be more at home on a downsized version of the show. Perhaps they could call it Lizards’ Lair?

Speaking to the Daily Mirror, the show insider said, “In some of the shows, Dragons part with £100,000 in 10 minutes, and it doesn’t look as though Kelly has that kind of capital to throw around…

“On top of that, she hasn’t got the same kind of investor experience.”

The paper adds, “Her wealth doesn’t seem able to compete with her new co-stars: mobile phone tycoon Peter Jones, 46, at £357million, health club owner Duncan Bannatyne, 64, on £320million and leisure magnate Deborah Meaden, £40million.”

The insider added, “The remaining three Dragons are amongst the wealthiest individuals in Britain – realistically they’re in a different league financially.”

dragons' den

However, Kelly’s spokesman yesterday insisted that she could compete with the other Dragons.

He said, “Kelly operates predominantly as a sole trader and therefore her company’s financial position is not disclosed at Companies House.”

A BBC spokesman added, “Kelly has built a global brand through two recessions, and is a keen champion of entrepreneurs.”

And Kelly remarked, “I have always been passionate about championing entrepreneurs, so taking it to the next level by investing my money in innovative new businesses is very exciting.

“I understand the reality of running a creative business.

“I’m looking forward to bringing a different perspective into the Den and hopefully finding an undiscovered gem or two.”

Well I guess time will tell in terms of how Kelly competes against the others, so for now, here’s a reminder of the last series…


Lynn is an editor and writer here at Unreality TV and is a trained psychotherapist and the author of two books. She's addicted to soaps, period drama and reality TV shows such as X Factor, Big Brother, BGT and I'm A Celeb.