Stoke-on-Trent-born Piers Linney started his entrepreneurial journey at a young age, cutting out the middleman and going direct to the wholesaler to start his own paper round when he was 13.
In 2000, he left banking to focus on internet entrepreneurship, becoming involved in a number of different technology ventures before getting his big break in 2007 when he and business partner Simon Newton bought Genesis Communications – a mobile voice and data reseller company.
Linney invested in eight companies during his two series as a Dragon, of which four went through after the show.
The Startups Awards-nominated Lost My Name was one of Linney’s biggest success stories from the Den. Initially investing £100,000 for a 5% stake in the personalised children’s book company, he now owns a 3.2% share – thought to be the highest valuation in the show’s history.
Linney was named as one of the top 100 most influential black Britons in the JP Morgan sponsored Power List 2013 and Entrepreneur Leader of the Year at the 2014 Black British Business Awards.
He has also used this heritage to inspire and support the business ambitions of young black men in the UK in his capacity as a role model for the government’s REACH programme, and those of entrepreneurs from any race, gender, faith or ethnicity as a founding trustee of the Powerlist Foundation.
Linney is the Founder and of Moblox, a platform for owner-led businesses that provide technology and tools that help them do business better.