Piers Linney has been announced as the final new panelist for the new series of 'Dragons' Den'.
The CEO of cloud service provider Outsourcery, worth in the region of £44 million, will join Peter Jones, Deborah Meaden, Duncan Bannatyne and new Dragon Kelly Hoppen on the BBC show.
Linney has previously appeared on 'The Secret Millionaire', where he went undercover in a young offenders institution, and is named in the top 100 most influential black Britons in The Power List.
He's also a qualified solicitor, has worked as an investment banker and venture capital fund manager.
He and Hoppen replace outgoing Dragons Theo Paphitis and Hilary Devey.
[Related story: New Dragon announced for Dragons' Den]
"I am excited to have the opportunity to join 'Dragons' Den' and once again support entrepreneurs both financially and through my extensive network," Linney said.
"I also think I can widen the appeal of the Den to information economy entrepreneurs as they are key to the future success of the UK economy.”
“Piers is a new breed of dragon. A young and dynamic digital entrepreneur, he has his finger on the pulse of an industry that has never been represented in the Den before,” added producer Ceri Aston.
The news follow the controversy surrounding the appointment of designer Kelly Hoppen to the panel after it emerged that her business KHI Services Ltd had reported profits of just £104,000 last year and £56,000 the year before that. [BBC]
Also in today's press
Coronation Street star Bill Roache is to attempt to talk to his dog through a psychic live on 'This Morning' tomorrow (March 12). The actor, who plays Ken Barlow, has previously claimed that his dog Poppy did an impression of his on-screen wife Deirdre through animal psychic Jackie Weaver. [Daily Mirror]
Meanwhile, it has emerged that Shobna Gulati quit playing Sunita Alahan in the soap over depression and anxiety. “Corrie fame made me a recluse,” she said. “When I handed in my resignation I knew it was the right thing. I hope now I won’t feel like I’m living in a goldfish bowl and the stress in my life will be reduced.” [Daily Mirror]
Christine Bleakley is reportedly facing the axe from her deal with ITV. A source told the Daily Mirror that 'Christine is no longer the golden girl of ITV so a big new golden handcuffs deal is out of the question. If she isn’t careful and reasonable in her demands she could be frozen out'. [Daily Mirror]