Marxman leaves a lasting impression and sees all Dragons vie to invest
Jenny, 50, a special abilities school assistant and Martin Chard, 50, a self-employed building maintenance man, are a typical couple bringing their four children, two Labradors and rabbit up in the picturesque county of Hertfordshire. But last night they found themselves in the enviable, and rare, position of having 5 of the UK’s biggest and most respected business people vie to invest in their business as all dragons made them an offer in the den.
Each of the dragons immediately saw potential in Martin’s invention and were keen to get on board.
Jenny and Martin were delighted to choose Deborah Meaden to be their partner and mentor given her vast experience and previous success with similar brands in the past. They gladly accepted her £50k investment for 30% of the business even though this wasn’t the top offer they received.
Jenny commented, “We had our sight set on Deborah from the very beginning. She’s a fantastic businesswoman with a huge amount of knowledge and experience in this sector that will really help us develop our offering and expand our network.”
Marxman is a new tool addressing the common problem of being unable to clearly mark a drilling hole, something regularly encountered by professionals and DIY enthusiasts alike. With one push the Marxman delivers a burst of brightly coloured chalk that marks any surface ready for drilling or fixing, even at a distance from the wall.*
Deborah Meaden commented, “The best inventions come from people solving a problem that lots of us experience but don’t do anything about. Martin is exceptional in that not only did he recognise and solve the problem through his invention, but he did so in a simple, elegant and affordable way. I can see widespread use of the Marxman with it becoming an essential part of all home and professional tool kits.”
Martin Chard came up with the idea for Marxman six years ago while trying to fit a sink. He couldn’t mark the drilling position on the wall and see the marks clearly so after a few time wasting attempts he reached for a can of black spray paint in desperation and marked it with that. After several other frustrating incidents like this and lots of wasted trips up and down ladders with broken pencils and felt tips not doing the job he started the process of developing Marxman so other workers could benefit.
Once a search of the patent office came back clear in 2009, Marxman began to take shape in 2010 as the first early stage prototype was developed. The first product was sold in 2014 and in March this year the duo secured a contract with trade retailer Wickes.
It was Jenny’s son Oren who came up with the name Marxman and up until recently the family have been manufacturing every unit themselves in order to achieve the level of perfection they wanted to ensure Marxman does the job.
Jenny commented, “Being on Dragons’ Den was extremely daunting and we were very nervous, we definitely got flustered when being grilled on the numbers – that’s not our forte!
“We are the first to admit that we have very little business experience and we know we need a lot of help. We’ve been able to get this far thanks to the extraordinary support we’ve had from friends, family and the various businesses big and small we’ve asked advice from along the way. We are extremely grateful to everyone that has believed in Marxman and played a part in our journey so far.”
Jenny and Martin plan to use Deborah’s investment to increase manufacture and grow the awareness of such a useful tool.
PRESS IT! MARK IT! DRILL IT!
Find out more:
Marxman Product Information
- Marxman is available from www.marxmanpen.co.uk and www.wickes.co.uk
- It retails at £9.95 and dispenses 250 doses
- Both Standard and Deep Hole Marxman can be used to mark a reference point directly onto any surface. From tiles and pebble dash to wood and metal, whatever the surface the mark will show clearly
- The Standard Marxman can mark clearly through depths of 45 mm and under
- The Deep Hole Marxman can mark clearly through depths of 45mm and over
- Marxman is a British made product which uses non-toxic ingredients and has very low global warming potential
See how Marxman works – https://youtu.be/HGbtUdJgCjY
Website – Marxmanpen.co.uk
Facebook – marxmanpen
Twitter – @marxmanpen