LAUNCHPAD: Sainbury's to gobble up Texas Joe's Jerky

The supermarket says it will stock the Dragons' Den contestant's meaty products.

by Gabriella Griffith
Last Updated: 23 Oct 2013
Joe Walters, the Stetson-wielding entrepreneur who wowed the investors on Dragons’ Den last weekend, has announced a deal with Sainsbury’s for his Texas Joe’s Jerky range.
He made the announcement via Twitter, with the news quickly confirmed by the supermarket giant.
The move is a big two fingers up to the BBC2 programme. On the show, Walters had the investors eating dried meat out of the palm of his hand, with all five dragons expressing interest in his meaty snacks.
He secured £50,000 of investment from retail magnate Peter Jones for 24% of his business, but it has emerged he has since ditched the dragon and made a deal with Sainsbury’s without Jones’ help.
MT wonders if that was the canny entrepreneur's plan all along. After all, he already had investment from craft beer company BrewDog’s founder James Watt. The show gave Walters a platform from which to introduce his product (and rather naughty ‘put that jerky in your mouth, mouth, mouth’ jingle) to the public. It’s the kind of advertising money can’t buy.
Presumably the the Dragons are licking their wounds: MT has never seen them so excited about a pitch. Kelly Hoppen practically bit Walters’ hand off to give him exactly what he wanted; Piers Linney just wanted to be his friend, ‘shoot the breeze’ and wear matching suits in Camden; Peter Jones jumped out of his seat to offer him even more money than he wanted, smiling like a maniac. Now they’ve been shot down.
It’s fantastic. Go Joe, go forth and bring your delicious jerky nibbles to the world. We salute you.

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