Born in Clydebank, Scotland, Duncan Bannatyne is best known as one of the stars of BBC entrepreneurship programme Dragons’ Den. His own business career began in his twenties, when he bought an ice cream van for £450. He soon expanded by buying more vans and eventually sold the business for £28,000, founding a chain of care homes instead. Quality Care Homes subsequently sold for £26 million in 1997 and another business, children's nursery chain Just Learning, sold for £22 million. He has since built the well-known Bannatyne's Health Clubs chain, as well as investing in bars, hotels and property.
He has been honoured with the Order of the British Empire for his contributions to charity and is heavily involved with Comic Relief and UNICEF.