Outsourcery boss and new Dragons' Den investor Piers Linney has hit back at reports made by the national press which claim he has been a director of 32 failed businesses.
Earlier this month, Linney was announced as a new face on the BBC2 show, replacing outgoing Dragon Theo Paphitis. Following his announcement, the Daily Mirror claimed that Companies House records showed he had directed more than 30 firms which ended up folding.
The paper further claimed that he was director at Interactive Media Developments and Itchy Media, which folded with debts of £462,000 and £565,000 respectively.
But in a recent blog post, Linney hit back, insisting that the red top had got the wrong end of the stick.
He branded the claims as "misleading" and insisted that he has never wound down a company while owing creditors.
He argued: "Some ventures work out and some do not, but those of mine that did not were wound down cleanly with all creditors paid off. Of the 32 companies cited that ‘folded', only around 11 actually ever traded.
"The remainder were either non-trading, dormant group subsidiaries, intermediate holding companies, special purpose vehicles and so on, and they were all simply dissolved with no fuss or creditors as they were no longer required."
He added that he was only a non-executive director of the one firm which did owe creditors, meaning he was not involved with its day-to-day running.
Later on in the post, he said that more emphasis should be placed on the positive impact investors have on the economy, including job creation and tax revenue generation.
He added: "Unfortunately, many start-ups don't make it, but many entrepreneurs get back up and try again and go on to succeed. Resilience is a trait of most entrepreneurs I know.
"The support of entrepreneurs and access to capital improves the odds of our economy recovering and at least putting up a decent fight to maintain its global relevance as a growing number of emerging economies play catch-up."
Linney will join Den veterans Duncan Bannatyne, Deborah Meaden and Peter Jones – who invests in reseller Expansys – as well as new Dragon and interior designer Kelly Hoppen, who will replace Hilary Devey.
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