Vodka Innovator Takes Viewers’ Choice on Dragons’ Den


TORONTO — John Vellinga of Oakville, Ont.-based Slava Vodka has been named the winning entrepreneur in the annual “Armchair Dragon” contest on the CBC show Dragons’ Den.

The award was presented to Vellinga by Dragons Jim Treliving and Brett Wilson, as well as Dennis Fortnum, national leader for KPMG Enterprise. The Armchair Dragon contest allows viewers to vote on their favourite product “pitcher” from the 2009/2010 season who did not accept a deal from the Dragons. More than 7,685 votes from viewers were cast over 18 episodes.

“Thanks to the viewers, we entered the Dragons’ Den and came out a winner,” said Vellinga, owner of Slava Ultra Premium and Zirkova Vodkas. “Our small business is doubling sales in Ontario and the Prairie Provinces and we are on deck to enter B.C. and Quebec. This has been great for us and the award is a real honour.”

Vellinga receives $25,000 in services from KPMG Enterprise for winning the contest.


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