Belfast Telegraph

Latest batch of Apprentice candidates revealed

The new series of The Apprentice kicks off next week with Lord Alan Sugar confident that this year's batch of contestants includes some "credible people".

The first episode sees Lord Sugar send the hopefuls out to make and sell sausages at London's Smithfield Market.

Lord Sugar said: "One of the things I insisted on this time was we would have some credible people and credible in the sense that their CVs prove they have actually done something and achieved something in their life."

They are certainly not short of confidence with the youngest ever contestant, telecoms entrepreneur Stuart Baggs, proclaiming: "Everything I touch turns to sold".

But Stuart, who began in business in the school playground selling yo-yos, does not impress all his team members with his over-confident approach.

The contestants are all battling for a plum role at Lord Sugar's side with a six-figure salary.

But there is a quick reality check for the men who find their negotiating skills no match for the canny butchers working in the historic market.

The teams go down very different routes in the race for profits with the women aiming for the high end of the market with gourmet sausages, while the men go down the pile 'em high, sell 'em cheap route and put their trust in their salesmanship skills.

But project manager Dan Harris soon sees rebellion in the ranks over his aggressive style - and that is before he tries to boost sales by knocking on the doors of upmarket homes in London's posh Kensington in a bid to sell his shoddy sausages.

It is a tight race with the winners getting a champagne barbecue and first glance of the luxury pad they will be calling home, while the losers are left having to decide which of them will be put in the firing line when Lord Sugar decides who will be fired.

Other candidates include 24-year-old Melissa Cohen who swapped hairdressing for food business management, pushing Tesco's share of the Kosher food market to 75%.

Mortgage Broker Christopher Farrell was formerly a sniper in the Royal Marines and served in Iraq, Northern Ireland, and Afghanistan. He said: "I take that killer instinct across into business."

Another of the boys, Shibby Robati is a qualified surgeon before turning to the business world and is still only 27. He said: "My first word wasn't Mummy. It was money."

Lord Sugar is accompanied by adviser Nick Hewer and businesswoman Karren Brady, vice-chairman of West Ham, as he weeds out the weaker candidates.

But Hewer admits some of the candidates seem doomed to make some familiar mistakes.

He said: "In each series they don't appear to have learned anything by having watched earlier shows."

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph