This article appeared in the Coast Reporter on November 19, 2010 by Christine Wood
A little seed has sprouted into potentially millions of dollars for Brian and Corin Mullins of Sechelt. Wednesday night’s episode of the Dragons’ Den on CBC television saw the local entrepreneurs sign a deal with Boston Pizza billionaire Jim Treliving to market and distribute their Holy Crap cereal.
The cereal contains buckwheat, hemp hearts and chia seeds, which have been found to lower blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol. The Mullins told the Dragons that people have tried to sell chia by itself for years because of the health benefits, but have been unsuccessful in creating a product that would appeal to the masses. “But we managed to discover a formula that people like to eat,” Brian said.
Treliving seemed interested in backing the local couple after just a few bites of cereal. “Holy crap, is this ever good,” he said with a smile on the Nov. 17 show. While the Mullins talked about their cereal, Treliving kept eating the samples given to him, seeming to chew over the possibilities. “Jim, this can impact on your business. The chia seeds that we have alone can turn your tomato sauce and your pizza into a functional food and be healthy for people,” Brian pitched.
Treliving saw something big and was eager to make a deal. “I’ve got a distribution company. I’ve got guys that can make this stuff — whatever you need me to do. Tell me what you want. I just want to buy into your company,” Treliving said.
The Mullins were asking for $120,000 for a 20 per cent share in their company and Treliving was quick to agree. “I’ve never seen Jim salivate so much at anything. Potentially you could be the best potential we’ve ever had on the show,” said fellow dragon Robert Herjavec.
While the $120,000 deal was broadcast this week, it was actually made six months ago, but the couple needed to keep quiet until now in order to keep the deal. Brian says that investment has the potential of making the entrepreneurs millions with the exposure from the show, Treliving’s partnership and the future possibilities for their chia seed formula.
“It’s as if we were a junior mining company looking for copper and we went and discovered a gold vein, but we need someone like Jim to help dig it up for us,” Brian said.
From the time the show first aired in Nova Scotia until 6 p.m. that night (two hours before it aired in B.C.) the couple had already sold $40,000 worth of Holy Crap cereal on their website at www.holycrap.ca.
The Mullins were surrounded by about 100 friends and family members for a special screening at Magellan’s Restaurant in Sechelt.