Duncan Bannatyne has announced that he'll be leaving the BBC's long-running reality TV programme, Dragon's Den. After twelve series, the Scottish businessman said that he'll be stepping away from the show to focus on other commitments.

The 65 year-old said he had has "the time of my life" filming the show and had "made numerous investments and taken part in a landmark TV programme."

"The series that is about to be transmitted is my final season and I'm delighted that it is full of exciting, high quality pitches. I have made a number of investments and it really is must-see business TV," Bannatyne continued.

He added "However, after the 2014 recordings I do not plan to make any further investments on the programme so I thought it fair to ask producers to offer my seat to somebody else. "There are only so many times I can say 'I'm out'."

Bannatyne's departure will leave Peter Jones as the last remaining original dragon on the show. The programme's premise involves aspiring entrepreneurs facing a panel of "dragons," i.e. rich and successful businesspeople, to present their ideas and inventions.

More: Duncan Bannatyne blames divorce for heart scare.

After hearing a contestant's pitch, the dragons would ask questions, leading to an investment or a declaration of "I'm out."

Mark Linsey, the BBC's controller for entertainment commissioning, said: "Duncan has been the most formidable Dragon and we are going to miss him enormously. He has inspired many entrepreneurs to come on the show and helped make Dragons' Den a huge success for BBC Two," via BBC News.

More: Duncan Bannatyne offers £50K to "break arms" of stalker.

The father-of-six has a personal fortune worth an estimated £320 million. He began his business empire with an ice cream van in Darlington and now owns hotels, property, a transport business and his own line of health clubs.

Dragons' Den returns to BBC Two on July 20.

Duncan Bannatyne
Duncan Bannatyne Has Announced That The Next Series Of 'Dragon's Den' Will Be His Last.