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More fame and tips to tame the Dragons

This article by Christine Wood originally appeared in The Coast Reporter on February 25, 2012.

Brian and Corin Mullins will get another 15 minutes of fame when they’re featured on a Dragons’ Den update special next week, and they plan to pass on their tips to tame the Dragons to other hopeful entrepreneurs next month.

“This special edition of Dragons’ Den will take you across the country to reveal what’s happened to your favourite pitchers, track down the most memorable disasters and catch up with some of the biggest success stories in the show’s history,” a press release from Dragons’ Den said about the show, which airs on CBC Feb. 29 at 8 p.m.

The Mullins are sure to be touted as one of the biggest success stories, with the worth of their business HapiFoods Group Ltd. (which makes Holy Crap cereal) skyrocketing from about $600,000 before the show to upwards of $15 million now.

“One hundred per cent we credit the show with our success,” Brian said, noting it was their segment on Dragons’ Den that gained them the attention of the country, and beyond. Corin said the healthy product and loyal customers have also bolstered the company’s gains.

HapiFoods products Holy Crap and Skinny B cereal are now commonplace in stores around Canada and the U.S., and another segment on the Dragons’ Den won’t hurt their fame. “Because we’re in all the stores across the country now, everybody wants to know when we’re on again. So we’ve got a built-in audience that we didn’t have before,” Brian said.

Corin added the segment will likely show off the Coast, the local factory and community members who came out to celebrate with the Mullins last year when CBC film crews came to the Sunshine Coast.

After the update show airs Feb. 29, other Coast entrepreneurs will have their chance to impress the Dragons when auditions for the 2012/13 season are held in Sechelt on March 20. The auditions will run from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on a first-come, first-served basis at the Seaside Centre.

It’s recommended that entrepreneurs complete an on-line application form and release form to bring with them that day. More information is at www.cbc.ca/dragonsden/auditions/index.html.

The Mullins have already been approached by a number of local entrepreneurs hoping to learn their secret to success in the Den, and the couple plans to give out that advice to a broader audience on March 19.

“For companies that are going to pitch, we’re going to run a seminar for them,” Brian said, adding the event will be publicized on a billboard in Sechelt and in full-page advertisements in Coast Reporter in the coming weeks as the venue details are yet to be confirmed. The Mullins encourage anyone with an idea or invention to come out to the Dragons’ Den auditions this March. “You never know when the season’s going to end with the show, so you can’t say you’ll wait until next year. It’s time now,” Brian said.