Dragons’ Den viewers will soon witness Gary Neville make an unexpected investment in a ‘hanky-panky pod’ firm.
The 48-year-old former footballer and Sky Sports commentator will make a special one-time cameo as a Dragon on Thursday night’s edition of the reality business show.
Putting his money on the line while making proposals to entrepreneurs, it was a novel business concept that piqued his interest.
In the episode, he will be apprehended by the Cosy Cinema company, which is controlled by a Welsh couple who are looking to expand their fleet of tiny containers outfitted with a TV screen and mattresses.
Despite being marketed as ‘the ultimate movie experience,’ experienced Dragon Peter Jones dubbed them ‘hanky panky pods’ since they appeared to be the ideal opportunity for couples to become slightly distracted and instead focus on each other rather than the film.
Gary surprises Stephen Bartlett, Sara Davies, and Deborah Meaden by making an offer to invest in their firm.
He also offers to help use their design skills to evolve the company and make affordable housing, as reported by The Sun.
Gary will also convince Touker Suleyman to co-invest in the enterprise.
The former athlete isn’t the only guest on this season of the show; another episode will feature entrepreneur Emma Grede, CEO and co-founder of fashion firm Good American.
When his role on the show was revealed, Gary said: ‘I’m absolutely delighted to join the Dragons’ Den, even if it’s only for a very short period on an interim contract.
‘I’m used to being an interim coach. I’m going to bring character, personality, drive, determination, hard work, all the things you’d want in a team player.’
Gary, whose net worth is reported to be over £20 million, has spent his whole football career at Manchester United, having made his debut in 1992.
At the age of 21, he began mixing his sporting interests with ambitions to build a property development business.
However, he kept it a secret from his football manager, Sir Alex Ferguson, who wanted all of his players to focus exclusively on the game.
In a 2018 interview, Gary told the BBC that Sir Alex ‘would have considered it as a distraction’, so he went to great pains to keep it hidden, including making secret phone calls in the showers.
Since then, he has founded GG Hospitality and invested in hotels and restaurants, as well as purchasing an interest in Salford City FC in 2014.
Dragons’ Den airs Thursdays at 8pm on BBC One.