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From the garden shed to a £12million business: Melksham inventor is Dragons’ Den success story

Jordan (left) on a tour of the GripIt factory with Deborah Meaden and Richard Osman

Jordan (left) on a tour of the GripIt factory with Deborah Meaden and Richard Osman

LOCAL entrepreneur Jordan Daykin continues to reach dizzying heights in the business world with his company, GripIt Fixings Ltd, now worth a whopping £12million. And Jordan has become a leading light for BBC’s  Dragons’ Den after starring on Pitches to Riches – a showcase of the programme’s success stories.

Jordan, who invented the GripIt plasterboard fixing with his granddad when he was just 13, is taking the now multi-million pound company worldwide from its factory in Melksham.

The now 20 year-old  said, “The way GripIt has grown has been astronomical; to have gone from 500 to nearly 4,000 UK stockists and exporting worldwide in just 18 months is a massive growth.

“When I found out the valuation I couldn’t believe it. Something that was invented in a garden shed less than eight years ago to now be worth £12million was unbelievable.”

Pitches to Riches, broadcast on 28th February,   looked into the biggest successes of Dragons’ Den – at 18, Jordan was the youngest ever person to secure a deal on the show. He accepted an offer from Deborah Meaden of £80,000 for a 25% stake in the company.

However, his pitch wasn’t completely smooth sailing as a radiator, attached to a drywall to demonstrate the product, was pulled off the wall by ‘Dragon’ Peter Jones.

Jordan insists he wasn’t fazed by the incident saying, “The radiator being  pulled off the wall didn’t really bother me because I knew the plasterboard getting damp was the reason for it. I was determined to explain why it wasn’t a problem with the GripIt.

“Because when I started I was just thirteen, I have just taken every problem in my stride, and overcome my doubts by finding solutions – an aspect of the job  I really enjoy. Going into the den on the day, I was hoping for the best but expecting the worst. I remember thinking the worst case scenario  was that nobody would say ‘I’m in’.

“Now being named as one of the biggest success stories along with being the youngest is an amazing achievement, and something I never thought would happen to GripIt or me. I had always been a fan of Dragons’ Den and can remember being ten years old watching Reggae Reggae sauce being pitched, and now it’s ten years on!

“I’ve always said nothing’s going to get handed to me on a plate, and I’ve just had to make myself go out there and get it.”

On Pitches to Riches, the 6’7” presenter Richard Osman demonstrated the fixing’s strength by standing on a radiator attached to a wall with the fixings. The host then took a tour around the factory on Commerce Way with Deborah Meaden, before visiting Jordan’s grandfather Stan in the garden shed where they invented GripIt.

The emotional scene was the first time Stan had been told how much the company was worth, when he remarked, “It’s going to the right guy”.

Jordan said, “I think going to see my granddad in the shed when filming Pitches or Riches was my biggest achievement since going on the den.

“Being able to relive what it was like right back in the early days and then to be able to tell him the value of the business was just amazing. Although very emotional, that was a great moment to share with my granddad and was probably one of the best things that will ever happen to me.

“To also see two of my very good friends, who started out helping me make GripIts around a dining table, in senior positions in the company, is something I am very proud of them for.”

GripIt Fixings now employs 20 full-time staff, and is this year set to move into 15,000 stores across the USA and Australia. The company recently set up a crowdfunding investment scheme to secure £1.5million to buy new machinery, and raised over £1.8million in just five days.

The director, who has worked hard through his teens to build a booming company, hasn’t gone unnoticed. He was ranked number 68 in City AM’s most powerful entrepreneurs’ list earlier this year, had the firm named the most innovative in the south west in 2015, and was shortlisted in the O2 Smarta 100 awards in 2014.

He has taken the  awards in his stride and continues to look forward and strive for better. “We have six new products we will be brining out within the next 18 months and my plan is to add more and more products to the range,” he explained.

“Having such a valuable company does motivate me, but also the infrastructure the business now has  drives me on a daily basis to grow the business bigger and bigger.

“Within five years’ time I want GripIt to be a household name worldwide, and to have a range of building products under that name.”

Find out more about GripIt Fixings online at www.gripitfixings.co.uk

For more information about GripIt’s crowdfunding project go to