“Everyone should pull the finger out and start a business and believe in themselves. There is nothing else in it. Anyone can earn 100 million euros. But most people don’t go out there and try. They just stand in the pub and complain
Like Simon Cowell on The x factor, Duncan Bannatyne was the original hard biscuit on The dragon’s den, burns the places of hope with his dragon breath.
And Duncan Bannatyne was an equally tough nut to crack after being incarcerated for assaulting an officer in both the military prison and the infamous Barlinnie prison in Glasgow.
Bannatyne comes from the school of hard blows; After his mother told him she couldn’t afford a bike, he asked local newsagents if he could start a newspaper tour only to find out that he had to bring a list of 100 customers. He knocked meticulously on doors and finally went back to the kiosk with his customer list. “I got the job, bought the bike and never looked back,” he wrote.
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Eventually Bannatyne moved to the northeast, where he bought a used ice cream truck for £ 450; soon he expanded by buying more vans and eventually sold the business for £ 28,000 to start a nursing home business instead. Quality Care Homes was sold for £ 26 million in 1996 and another company, Just Learning, was sold for £ 22 million. His current net worth as of 2021 is estimated at £ 462 million.
Best known for his Bannatyne chain of gyms and hotels, he announced in April that he had surprisingly turned down a £ 250 million offer for his company at the height of the pandemic when everything was on lockdown.
On the other hand, he may not be as tough a man as his television picture would lead us to believe; In 2004 he was named OBE for his charitable services and supports many good causes, especially for children. He is also heavily involved with Comic Relief and UNICEF and is a passionate anti-smoking activist.