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Dec 10 2008

Tycoon – Peter Jones Book Review

Tycoon Peter JonesI do not know how well known Peter Jones is in the US but here in the UK Peter Jones is an Entrepreneur who is part of the Dragons Den TV series. Dragons Den is an investment business show shown on the BBC.

I love Dragons Den, although I must admit that the last series has been turning more into a media circus with more “just for TV” business ideas being aired.

I read and reviewed “Anyone Can Do It“, the book from fellow Dragon, Duncan Bannatyne back in the early days of this blog.

I have had Tycoon, the book by Peter Jones for quite a while and eventually got around to reading it.

For some reason, I never really took to Peter Jones when watching him on Dragons Den. He reminds me of somebody that I do not like so maybe this is the reason. I also sometimes disagree with his actions and opinions on Dragons Den but one thing you cannot argue with is the fact that he has amassed a great wealth on his own from his Mobile Phone companies.

Peter Jones has also endured the hard times when his first company went under. This makes me realize that Peter Jones has really earned the wealth that he now enjoys.

So, what about his book. Well, to be honest I was pleasantly surprised with the book and actually enjoyed it. It was one of those books which I thought I would not like so had pre-conceived ideas about it even before I had started it.

I do have a problem with the word “Tycoon“. It does not really strike me as a positive word when referring to wealth. The word drums up images of an overpaid sleazy businessman and the use of the word Tycoon in the book is in my opinion over the top. Each time I read about the “Tycoon Mindset” I cringed.

The book is split into eight chapters:

  1. The Ten Golden Rules
  2. Put Your Imagination to Work
  3. What’s the Big Idea?
  4. Planning and Pitching
  5. Ignition, Making it Happen
  6. Building Your Future
  7. My Time on TV
  8. Final Word

Now, being an entrepreneur myself, involved in a 2 year old start up business a lot of what this book promoted was what I was going through and it did offer some good advice.

The book started off quite weak and then greatly improved to the point where I really was getting benefit from the book. It is a book which I would recommend to anybody looking at starting a business.

I think this book will really only appeal to you if you are looking to make the jump into your own business or if you are already running your own small business and toying with the idea of looking for investment.

I would not rank this book in the same inspirational league as How to Get Rich by Felix Dennis but it is worth the read if you fall into the categories that I just mentioned.

Keeping on the theme of Dragons Den I am currently reading the book from James Caan. Review will follow and I am enjoying the book so far.

have you read this or other books from any of the Dragons Den investors? Would love to hear if you have.

  • 4 Comments... What do you think?
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  1. Kieron said on December 10th, 2008 at 9:20 pm

    It’s an absolutely terrible book, am very surprised you gave it any praise at all. I was hoping for a book that told me about Peter Jones’ background, his life, his businesses, his successes and failings. Instead it’s a “how to” book full of “advice” that anyone with half a brain can see is just basic common sense. The book is a feable attempt to cash in on the crap TV series and nothing more. When he releases a proper autobiography then that will be worth reading. As for the other Dragons books, James Caan’s is the best, Theo’s and Duncan’s are OK, as is Rachel Elnaugh’s.

    Reply
  2. Andrew Mason said on December 10th, 2008 at 10:09 pm

    @Kieron:
    I was expecting you to comment :)

    I really did not like this book when I started reading it but I held out and must admit that some of the latter chapters were quite good. It did relate to where I have been and where I am in business so I could relate to it.

    I think it is ghost written and do agree with the cashing in on the TV series but I still do regard some of the info in it to be good.

    I am loving James Caan’s book. Much more of an autobiography. Still got to read Theo’s and Deborah;s if I can stomach reading about her!

    Hope you are keeping well.

    Reply
  3. Zath said on December 14th, 2008 at 1:44 pm

    I’ve had similar feelings with regard to Peter Jones, he often comes across in a slightly bad way, the “Tycoon” title and his (dreadfully produced) ITV show – however having watched his recent Dragon’s Den story I think I now want to read this book and at least see what he has to say about his business history and general advice.

    Reply
  4. Macdara said on March 31st, 2009 at 4:28 pm

    I was looking at James Caan’s book on iTunes and now I have decided based on all of your comments that his is worth a listen. It was always my gu feeling that James Caan is a far more sincere and profound character than Peter Jones, who I also admire for his success by the way.

    Reply
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