Source: BBC

Tasty Mates founder Joe Woolf pitched to the Dragons on tonight’s episode

Sugar confectionery startup Tasty Mates has won backing from Peter Jones following an appearance on Dragons’ Den.

The omnichannel brand – which sells its vegan “jelly baby-style” sweets in retail, direct-to-consumer and business to business – secured a £60k investment in return for a 15% stake, valuing Tasty Mates at around £550k.

Founders Joe Woolf and Nick Sunshine will use the funds for inventory and a brand refresh. Following the episode airing, they have also launched a fundraise on Seedrs as they seek to scale their white-label business over the next two years.

Woolf, who pitched on tonight’s show, said “the two-hour grilling in front of the dragons was the most intense investor pitch I have ever been a part of”.

Securing the £60k investment from Jones would bring “significant value to the retail side of the business”, he added.

“Peter and his team’s experience in brand building has already proven useful in bringing our vision to the forefront.

“Since filming the show, we have already had a small brand refresh using advice and insights he provided.”

Tasty Mates was founded by friends Woolf and Sunshine in 2021. They started out making all their sweets by hand from a commercial kitchen in Hertfordshire, often working day and night shifts to meet demand, according to Woolf.

The business has since secured Holland & Barrett and Ocado listings in the UK for its Pear Crumble, Salted Caramel, Very Berry and Peaches & Cream variants.

Today, it manufactures its sweets at its own in-line factory in Spain, and has entered various international markets, including the US and Australia.

Tasty Mates recently inked a white label deal to create Paddington Bear gummies and earlier this month launched a Sour Passionfruit variant with entrepreneur and influencer Simon Squibb.