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Peter Jones, CBE (born 18 March 1966) is a Britishmarker businessman with interests in mobile telecommunications, television, media, leisure, and property. He became a television celebrity through his appearances on the British BBC2 television show Dragons' Den and on his American television show American Inventor, where he is known for his often harsh judgements on the businesses. He was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2009 New Year Honours.

Early life and career

Peter Jones grew up in Maidenheadmarker and attended Desborough Schoolmarker there and, subsequently, The Windsor Boys' Schoolmarker where he studied A-Levels in Economics, Biology and Geography.

A keen tennis player as a teenager, he earned money by giving tennis lessons and set up his own tennis academy at the age of 16.

His second venture was a computer business where he manufactured PCs under his own brand. In his mid twenties, he opened a cocktail bar in Windsor based on the Tom Cruise film Cocktail. However, he lost £200,000 after deciding to sell it. In his late twenties he lost his computer business due to customers failing to pay him. He was forced to give up his three-bedroom home in Braymarker, his BMW and Porsche cars and to move back in with his parents.He then joined Siemens Nixdorf, and became head of the PC Business in the UK in the same year at only 28, the youngest ever head of a business unit.

After working for Siemens Nixdorf he worked in the telecommunications market for 12 months and made enough money to set-up his next venture Phones International Group in April 1998. He started humbly by sleeping on the office floor but business soon grew. The firm experienced explosive growth with revenue totalling £14 million by the end of the first year and £44 million by the end of the second. The company was one of the fastest growing businesses in Europe. Group turnover for 2005/2006 was in excess of £150 million.

Television career

Dragons' Den

Jones came to public prominence in the UK for his persona on BBC Two's Dragons' Den.

Jones returned to Dragons' Den for the seventh UK series, which started in July 2009.

Jones is known on the shown for his regular conflicts in the Den with fellow Dragon, Duncan Bannatyne. On one occasion, he was so disgusted with Duncan for undercutting his bid he responded with "You've just put a guy on the bloody edge here and you've just completely been a sly little shit."

Companies Invested In

A list of companies in which Peter Jones has invested on Dragons' Den.

Series Episode Date Entrepreneur(s) Company or Product Name Money requested (£) Description of Company or Product Website Notes
1 1 4 January 2005 Charles Ejogo Umbrollye 150,000 Multimedia vending unit selling umbrellas and adverts with Duncan Bannatyne
1 3 18 January 2005 John & Phillip Petty IV Cam 50,000 A 3D measuring system using camera technology
1 6 8 February 2005 Hugh Gwyther Wonderland 175,000 High end fashion and culture magazine
2 1 15 November 2005 Dominic Killinger Square Mile 150,000 Wireless broadband supplier to UK marinas with Theo Paphitis
2 3 17 December 2005 steven smith E-clean 145,000 music cleaning software to remove innapropriate words with Theo Paphitis

American Inventor

After coming up with a TV show idea called The Inventor, which he took to Simon Cowell to see whether he would be interested in partnering with him, he managed to sell the idea to the ABC Network in America. When it aired in March 2006, it became a No. 1 show for ABC in America - the network's biggest success for a Thursday primetime slot in years. Jones also featured as a judge in his own creation on ABC's "American Inventor" - co-produced by Fremantle North America, Cowell's SyCo and Jones's "Peter Jones Television" company.


After signing a "Golden Handcuffs" deal with ITV to appear as their new "face" of business programming, on 21 September 2006 Jones appeared on GMTV to talk about "Dragons' Den" and his new ITV1 show Tycoon - solely produced by the "Peter Jones Television" company. On 27 June 2007, after just 2 episodes of Tycoon had been broadcast, ITV announced that it would be moved from the prime time slot of 9-10pm on Tuesdays due to bad ratings, even though it got 2.1 million viewers which was more than the UK premiere of The Apprentice and Dragons' Den when they both aired in 2005. The series returned on Monday, 9 July 2007 as a 30-minute format for the 10pm slot.


Jones took over from Gordon Ramsay as the face of BT Business. The campaign features in a TV advertisement alongside the gremlins, who attack the whole office leading to an IT meltdown. The campaign announced the fact that BT Business offers 24-hour IT and communications support for all business customers.

In June 2009 Jones appeared in advertisements for, a UK Price Comparison website.
Hello there people!!

Other businesses

In the summer of 2005, Jones teamed up with another Dragons' Den star, Theo Paphitis, to buy the gift experience company Red Letter Days from fellow panellist Rachel Elnaugh, under whose ownership it had collapsed.

He has also created other businesses between 2004 and 2008, including firms like "", an online retailer specialising in the sale of wine and champagne to corporate clients, as well as "Celcius", a specialist recruitment business.

His investments resulting from his appearances on Dragons' Den include "Wonderland Magazine" (a luxury lifestyle and culture magazine), "Square Mile International" (which provides data services for marinas and later sold to BT), "The Generating Company" (a contemporary circus company), "Concentrate Design" (which creates products to help pupils concentrate at school), "iTeddy" and "Reggae Reggae Sauce".

He owns a TV production company called Peter Jones TV, and his business portfolio also includes a range of property investments (his nine properties include a Portuguese villa that he bought from DJ Chris Evans and a property in Beverly Hills, California).

In 2009 Peter Jones founded the National Enterprise Academy (NEA) as a way to improve the entrepreneurial capabilities within the UK. The Sunday Times reported that a plan by Sir James Dyson for a national engineering academy had been thrown out in favour of Peter Jones’ National Enterprise Academy because the Dragons’ Den star would ‘do more for its public image’. This sparked a "Dyson vs Jones" debate in the media, however Richard Tyler posted a response to the story on the Telegraph site, suggesting that the real reason Dyson’s proposal failed was that it was over budget, that he was unwilling to compromise on a planning dispute concerning the academy’s location and that he, unlike Jones, lacked the political guile to play the system.

Personal life

A self-confessed car freak, his first car was an Alfa Romeo Alfasud, while his business car is presently a Maybach 57.

He is known for his height and came 4th in the "Star in a Reasonably-Priced Car" on the motoring programme, Top Gear, and was told on air by Jeremy Clarkson that if he lost a bit of weight (he weighs 17 stone 10 pounds ( ) and is tall) he would be the fastest celebrity ever to have appeared on the show.

On 12 August 2008 he was challenged by The Sun newspaper to sit a 90 minute A-Level examination in Business Studies. He accepted the challenge and got an 'A' grade.


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