14/08/2014 12:58 BST | Updated 20/05/2015 06:12 BST

Woman Who Had Three Miscarriages Gives Birth To Healthy Baby Boy - As Her Husband Wins Dragons' Den


A mum has thanked the BBC's Dragons' Den for helping her to have a baby after three miscarriages.

Kelly Mendham, 33, and her husband Ross, 30, had given up on their dreams of having a family after their triple heartbreak. Instead, they put all their energy into building their business which led to Ross securing a £60,000 investment from Dragon Peter Jones.

A month later - either by coincidence or miracle, Kelly became pregnant. And on January 7, the couple welcomed healthy boy Oliver-Jude to the world.

Kelly, from Wymondham, Norfolk, had lost three babies but was told by doctors there was no medical reason. Although there was no medical evidence, it was suggested that stress and worry could have contributed.

During this heartbreaking time, the couple decided to put their hopes of becoming parents aside and Ross ploughed all his efforts into his pasta and noodle firm Barenakedfoods, which eventually led to him appearing on Dragons' Den – where he broke down in tears when asked about his wife.

His pitch resulted in three Dragons offering to invest, before he made a £60,000 deal with multi-millionaire Peter Jones. A month later, Kelly found out she was expecting.

The Dragon's investment led to the business finding success and took the anxiety out of their lives - ensuring Kelly could enjoy a more stress-free pregnancy.

Kelly said: "Following our third miscarriage Ross worked really hard on his business. After Ross's success on Dragon's Den we were just so happy.

"Oliver is a miracle. I feel that I am truly blessed. Being pregnant and losing my babies was the most difficult thing I have had to endure but if we had not gone through that we would not have Oliver. The whole experience has made us stronger and I am grateful for such an amazing supportive husband and father to my child. I am proud of what Ross has achieved."

Speaking about Kelly's miscarriages, Ross said: "Kelly really wasn't coping so we decided to stop worrying about trying to have a baby, especially as the Dragon's Den pitch was coming up. When I walked in there I just though 'this is my big chance', but it was honestly one of the most nerve-wracking things I've ever done in my life.

"But when I walked in I was really confident, I was well prepared and I knew what I was doing. In my mind I thought I was going to nail it and that was the problem. I was supposed to be showing them what my food products tasted like but the saucepan hadn't heated up enough and ten minutes in the food was barely edible.

"Already they were laying into me and they said it had not been well prepared. From there I was on a downer, my legs turned to jelly and I was so nervous. It brought all my emotions out. Prior to Dragons' Den I didn't grieve and I hadn't let it out.

"I left, but then I dusted myself off and when I went back in and I felt really positive, I felt like I had nothing to lose. And then I won them round, it was great.

"It was a turning point for us after all the bad luck. When Kelly first showed me the pregnancy test I though 'oh my God we can't go through this again', but this time it all went to plan and she didn't miscarry.

"We love Oliver-Jude, we really feel like we're on a winning streak."

Sadly, Oliver-Jude will be the couple's last baby, after Kelly was diagnosed with a rare heart condition.

Dragon Peter Jones said: "I'm delighted that Ross and his wife Kelly overcame the personal circumstances that resulted in a dramatic pitch on Dragons' Den with the welcome arrival of their baby, Oliver-Jude, and it's great to be working with Ross to build the Barenaked brand.

"Entrepreneurs often start their own business when they identify a gap for a product or service that they would like to use. That's exactly what happened with Ross."

Congratulations Kelly and Ross - and good luck!