Two Volta companies, Easy Platter and Side Door, have successfully pitched on season 17 of CBC’s reality show DRAGONS’ DEN. Both startups received great praise from the Dragons and secured mutually-beneficial investments on the show. 

Founder Mandhir Singh represented Easy Platter on the show on Thursday, October 13, 2022. Easy Platter, a Volta Cohort company, is a web-based platform that connects customers with local personal chefs for weekly, in-home meal prep. The Halifax startup valued at $2.5M asked the Dragons to invest $150,000 for 6% of the business. After a round of negotiations, Singh shook hands with Manjit Minhas and Wes Hall, giving away 20% of the company for an investment of $150,000. 

“Being on DRAGONS’ DEN was a dream come true, the feedback that I got from the Dragons was really inspirational,” said Singh. “We got a lot of exposure. People from different parts of the country reached out to support and congratulate us, and inquire about when they could book a personal chef for $77 in their region. Our goal is to be in 3 cities in the next 90 days: Calgary, Toronto and Halifax.” 

Both founders of Side Door, Laura Simpson (co-founder and CEO) and Dan Mangan (co-founder and JUNO Award-winning artist) pitched to the Dragons on Thursday, November 3, 2022. Side Door, a Volta Resident company, is an online platform that matches artists with spaces for in-person concert experiences. The Founders proposed a $500,000 investment for 5% of the company valued at $10M. While some Dragons mentioned that Side Door’s valuation is aggressive for their current stage, investor Arlene Dickison was thrilled to offer a deal for $500,000 in a convertible note, which can later be turned into equity at the current valuation. 

“Most people don’t know what you do in the startup life but they understand DRAGONS’ DEN, so the show is a reference point that validates you as a company to the general public,” said Simpson. “As important as the money itself, we got a bunch of people to know that they can host performances in their spaces.” 

The two startups have declared that they benefited tremendously from being on the show, from the opportunity to pitch to the Dragons to the nationwide publicity and recognition they received. The show confirmed to the founders that they are indeed on the right path and that their products resonate with everyday people.  

“Both Side Door and Easy Platter have very strong and compelling products. They are solving real problems, and them being selected to pitch on national television, regardless of the outcome, validates and amplifies the great work they’ve been doing,” said Matt Cooper, CEO at Volta.

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