Scotland business

Cally Russell secures Samsung app deal after rejecting 'dragon'

Cally Russell on Dragon's Den
Image caption Mr Russell successfully pitched his business on Dragon's Den but walked away empty-handed

A young Scottish app entrepreneur has secured a partnership with tech giant Samsung - after turning down an offer of investment from a 'dragon'.

Cally Russell, 27, had been looking for £75,000 for his shopping app Mallzee when he appeared on BBC's Dragons' Den.

But he walked away from an offer by dragon Peter Jones after they could not agree on terms.

Mr Russell, whose company is based in Edinburgh, later struck a deal with Samsung UK and Ireland.

Under the partnership, Mallzee will be available on Samsung GALAXY Apps and other channels during 2015.

Mallzee, which was founded by Mr Russell in 2012, is a personalised shopping app, which allows users access to more than 100 fashion stores at one go.

Image copyright Mallzee
Image caption Mr Russell said "it felt awful" to turn down the offer of money in Dragon's Den

It also lets shoppers build their own "style feeds".

During his appearance on Dragons' Den, Mr Russell asked the dragons to invest £75,000 for a 5% stake in his business.

Peter Jones offered him the full amount, after telling him Mallzee was "either a £100m business or nothing".

He added that you had to be "ballsy to invest in Mallzee".

But Mr Russell walked away after the dragon said he wanted a 15% share of the company.

'Right decision'

Mr Russell, who is the son of MSP Mike Russell, said: "It felt awful to turn down the money in Dragons' Den but I simply couldn't undervalue the business like that and now, thanks to this agreement, I know it was the right decision.

"I'm sure over the coming years we can prove Peter Jones right and become at least a £100m business.

"I always knew setting up Mallzee was going to be a rollercoaster ride but the last couple of months have been insane."

Since 2012, Mallzee has raised £600,000 from a range of angel investors.

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