Ex-Cons Get Second Chance In Business On CBC Reality TV Series

Canadian "Dragon's Den" star Kevin O'Leary to host "Redemption Inc.," based on an original British format.

TORONTO – Giving ex-cons a second chance is paying off again for Canadian TV.

Indie producer Proper Television has started shooting Redemption Inc., a reality series about ex-offenders launching new businesses that is based on an original format from British producer Wide-Eyed Entertainment.

The eight one hour series for the CBC to bow in winter 2012 will be hosted by Canadian Dragon’s Den star Kevin O’Leary.

Cameras rolling on Redemption Inc. follows rival broadcaster Citytv airing two seasons of Conviction Kitchen, a reality that put ex-cons with no culinary skills to work in a classy Toronto restaurant under the eagle eye of celebrity chef Marc Thuet.

Redemption Inc. will see host O’Leary investing his own money in new business ventures by ex-cons where they use their school-of-hard-knock skills to succeed on the right side of the law.

“With Kevin’s wealth of knowledge, practical business advice and brutally honest style, Redemption Inc. is sure to challenge perceptions and excite debate across the country,” Guy O’Sullivan, president of Proper Television, explained.

Cathie James will executive produce the CBC series, while Dean Palmer produces.