Newton Pop 'Max' smacks of success

PUBLISHED: 12:00 30 May 2009 | UPDATED: 09:16 18 June 2010

A NEWTON Poppleford Dragon s Den entrepreneur is celebrating after being awarded a contract with a major supermarket. Chris Lomas s invention, named after his son Max, has just been launched in 706 Tesco stores across the country, including Exmouth and Ex

A NEWTON Poppleford Dragon's Den entrepreneur is celebrating after being awarded a contract with a major supermarket.

Chris Lomas's invention, named after his son Max, has just been launched in 706 Tesco stores across the country, including Exmouth and Exeter.

The ingenious device, which Chris designed to help with his son's potty training, is an anti-bacterial small ball, complete with smiley face, which children can 'aim' at when going to the toilet.

In a bid to gain further investment in the 'Max', Chris, 38, went on Dragon's Den 18 months ago to battle for £200,000 in return for 20 per cent of his stake in the business.

Unfortunately Chris walked away empty handed although he was offered half of the amount by James Khan.

However, under Dragon's Den rules the whole amount has to be offered in order for a deal to be struck.

The father-of-two said: "James felt too much progress had already been made to offer the whole amount as it was already on sale in Superdrug, Sainsbury's, Boots and Amazon.

"It was a pretty positive experience and I even got a job offer from Duncan Bannatyne."

Tesco predicts it will shift 185,000 units of the 'Max' in only five months and Chris is delighted with the outcome.

But despite this success, the last year has been extremely difficult for Chris as his mother died in April 2008 after losing her seven year battle with ovarian cancer.

"That had such a negative impact," said Chris.

"I was unable to work for many months and it has only been this year that things have started to recover."

Now Chris and his wife Jayne are working harder than ever and, as well as recording a follow up Dragons Den: Where are they now? programme, they are preparing for the launch in January of Max's new range of anti-bacterial subsidiary products, including towels, step-stools and toilet mats.

Chris added: "My wonderful mum would have been amazingly proud.


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