Guzzo: enter the Dragon

The movie mogul of Selwyn House just launched his TV career. Old Boy Vincenzo Guzzo ’86 has joined the cast of the popular Canadian television show Dragon’s Den as an investor. The first episode of season 13 aired last night, September 20.
The following article appears in the 2018 issue of Veritas:
Many in the Selwyn House community know Old Boy Vincenzo Guzzo ’86 pretty well. He sits on the school’s board of directors, has been extremely active in the Old Boys’ Association for years and has been such a huge supporter of the school that his name is practically etched in the stone from which the school is built.

Vince is blessed with a dynamic personality that gives him a larger-than-life presence. Obviously, a guy like this is a reality TV program waiting to happen.

Well, wait no longer, Selwyn House. On September 20, Vince will begin appearing as a member of the investors’ panel on season 13 of the popular CBC series Dragon’s Den.

The program taped all the episodes for season 13 earlier this year in a marathon of shooting in Toronto. Vince and the rest of the cast were at the studio every morning at 6 a.m. for makeup and would put in 12-hour days on camera. The whole experience, he says, has given him a new respect for on-camera actors and personalities.

“With several successful family businesses, Vince will be the perfect Dragon to help turn Canadian entrepreneurs’ dreams into reality,” says the CBC, describing him as “a sassy entertainment mogul who has disrupted the movie landscape by living and breathing the Canadian Dream.”

No one can dispute Vince’s credibility as an entrepreneur. What began as his father’s small movie business has grown into a 141-screen, 10-theatre chain, the third largest in Canada. In 1998, he sued the biggest chains in Canada for equal access to first-run movies, and won. His company now includes a real estate division, construction division, a hospitality division and even a medical division.

Never one to under-sell himself, Vince told the CBC he thinks he brings to the Dragon’s Den panel, “good looks, a great fashion sense, and probably a different branding approach.”

But those who know him would say that his strongest asset would probably be his reputation as a tough negotiator.

“My business experience is a cutthroat one,” he told CBC. “It’s basically one that either I can be your partner and we can make money together or I have no use for you.”

The gloves are off and the season hasn’t even started yet.

To view an an article about Vince that ran in the Montreal Gazette on September 20, click here.