When is The Apprentice 2018 on TV? Find out about the candidates, the judges and this year's show
PUBLISHED: 13:29 03 October 2018 | UPDATED: 13:29 03 October 2018
Prepare for boardroom battles as The Apprentice returns for a 14th series. Meet Lord Sugar's new apprentices, including the man who claims "Google is my middle name". It's not, though, is it?
Lord Sugar will see you now.
Ah, the simple joy of watching a group of mainly dislikeable people embarrass themselves in front of the nation in order to stoke the fire of their already flaming egos – there’s nothing better than hubris on Hump Day.
On other reality shows, the contestants don’t have to leave their jobs in order to make themselves even less employable after making gigantic asses of themselves – this is what makes The Apprentice so amazing. I can’t wait.
So what do we know about the new series of the show? It starts on BBC1 on Wednesday October 3 at 9pm and will involve Lord Sugar giving 16 potential Apprentices the opportunity to win a £250,000 investment and his invaluable help.
Back in the driving seat is Lord Alan Sugar and beside him are Karren Brady and Claude “On a Segway” Littner.
This year, the award-winning series will be bigger and better than ever, as Lord Sugar ups the ante right from the start and warns the candidates to “expect the unexpected”. For his first challenge, Lord Sugar immediately sends the candidates abroad - with a strong word of warning ringing in their ears; “Remember, this is NOT a holiday”.
Straight from the first boardroom, the business hopefuls jet off to Malta tasked with buying nine items at the lowest possible prices. How will they cope sourcing, negotiating and buying in a global business environment? (Clue: badly).
And it’s not just foreign tasks that Lord Sugar has up his sleeve: for this series he is also sending the candidates around the UK; to Glasgow to sell art, Birmingham to clinch deals at a Body Building Expo and back to London to launch a budget airline.
To highlight the number of different locations of this year’s tasks, eagle-eyed fans will also notice that the photography of Lord Sugar, Karren, Claude and the candidates features a skyline including Malta, Birmingham and Glasgow alongside London.
The candidates come from a broad range of backgrounds; from Law, Tax and Arboriculture (tree surgery) to Fashion Design, Marketing and Sport. However, they all have one thing in common, a passionate desire to secure a £250,000 investment in their business plan and win a partnership with Lord Sugar.
Over the past seven years, Lord Sugar has invested a staggering £2m into eight fledgling businesses. Last year’s shock decision, which saw him partner with both finalists, each receiving a £250,000 investment, proves that anything can happen in the boardroom.
Comedian Rhod Gilbert returns to host The Apprentice: You’re Fired, analysing each week’s events at 10pm on BBC Two, immediately after the main show. Joining Rhod each week will be a panel of business professionals and celebrity fans, sharing their opinions on the highs and lows of each task.
Two special episodes, The Final Five and Why I Fired Them, will also return to reveal the stories behind the series. The Final Five shares the journey of the five strongest candidates, just before they battle it out to secure their place in the final. As the series reaches its climax, Lord Sugar will reveal further insight into his boardroom decisions in Why I Fired Them..
Brand new for this year is the launch of the official The Apprentice Instagram channel - sharing even more social media goodness and behind the scenes action, including Instagram Stories and IG:TV with new vertical video content (just pretend you know what this means). Fans can also find all the latest Apprentice news on Facebook and Twitter, and share their views with #TheApprentice.
But what we ALL want to know is whether anyone will reach the heady heights of the previous candidate who boasted “don’t tell me the sky’s the limit when there are footprints on the moon”? Or “I will do anything it takes. I am going to throw people under the bus, I am going to throw people over the bus, I am going to get on the bus, take the wheel and get that investment out of Lord Sugar”? Let’s see – from a tree surgeon to a tax adviser, a solicitor to a professional speaker, there’s big potential. Who’s your money on?
Meet The Apprentice candidates for 2018:
Occupation: IT Analyst
Lives: The Wirral
Alex believes his ‘gift of the gab’ is his best skill but admits that he can sometimes be too headstrong. Alongside his granddad, who invented the ‘Finn Chocolate Coater’ (a machine mould to coat chocolate bars and biscuits), Alex credits Elon Musk amongst his role models because ‘in business, he reaches for the stars, rather than everyone else who just aims to conquer the earth’.
He says: “I know everything. Call me ‘Google’... it’s my middle name.”
Occupation: Owner, Nut Milk Brand
Camilla admits to being an adrenaline junkie and loves to try anything new and exciting; from skydiving to swimming with sharks. She believes her people skills are her biggest strength, although feels her openness and willingness to overshare can sometimes work against her. She says she will be ‘keeping her cards close to her chest’ in the process.
She says: “I’m a bundle of energy and creativity and certainly a one off… ain’t no Vanilla Camilla”
Occupation: Owner, Lifestyle Brand
Daniel set up his business in 2017 and likens himself to Jordan Belfort, the main character in ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’, because of his entrepreneurial skills and lavish, party lifestyle.
He says: “I have the beauty and the brains, typically people only have one. I was blessed with both in abundance.”
Occupation: Tax Advisor
Lives: East Yorkshire
David claims that he can speak to anyone about anything, though he gets frustrated when others don’t share his unwavering positivity. He also admits that being too trusting has been his downfall in the past.
He says: “My friends and family call me the Duracell bunny as I take on so much and never stop. I just keep going.”
Occupation: Senior Marketing Manager
Frank is a self-proclaimed ‘trendsetter’ who says he likes to push boundaries with his humour. He claims to use charisma and charm for both negotiating and building morale within a group. Frank admits he can sometimes play people off against each other to get what he wants. He says he can be brutal when he needs to be and does not stand for people who are lazy or shirk responsibility.
He says: “There’s no need to watch your back when I’m already two steps in front.”
Occupation: Sponsorship Consultant
Having sold her company in 2016 and published a business book in 2017, Jackie says she is a trailblazer within the sponsorship industry and wider business community and credits her success to her positive attitude. She admits she can be very opinionated and isn’t good at taking criticism, but hopes her commercial mind will see her through the process.
She says: “I’m not intimidated by anybody, or anything.”
Occupation: Learning and Development Manager
Lives: West Midlands
Jasmine has built her career on training others to better themselves and develop their skills and says that she loves enabling and empowering people. She credits American philanthropist and life coach Tony Robbins as her role model and admires how he has built a global empire and success whilst also improving people’s lives. Jasmine admits to being very stubborn and says she likes to get her own way, however aims to use her charm and charisma to see her through the process.
She says: “All is fair in love and war… and business is war.”
Occupation: Professional Speaker
Professional speaker Kayode delivers talks to inspire young people all over the country. Brimming with ideas, Kayode throws himself into new ventures. With his name meaning ‘he brings us joy’, he believes his positive personality and natural likeability will lead to success in the boardroom.
He says: “I’m not here to razzle dazzle and hit you with buzzwords like ‘I’m so motivated, passionate’… anyone can say those things and I’m not anyone, I’m Kayode Damali. If you’re not your own biggest fan, who do you expect to be it for you?”
Occupation: Owner, Eco Cleaning Company
Having run her own eco-friendly cleaning business for the past three years, Khadija considers her people skills to be her best business asset. She says her friends would describe her as being quick-witted, motivational and genuinely wanting to help others but she can have a bit of a ‘hot head’. Khadija looks up to Richard Branson in business for ‘his success and willingness to assist others’ and plans to be likeable but focused, though says she can be cut-throat when required.
She says: “Whatever I say I’m going to make happen happens. I’m a serious Mumpreneur who doesn’t have time for timewasters and idiocy.”
Occupation: Law Graduate
Kurran believes he has a keen creative eye and is confident that he’ll cope well with ‘managing egos’. He is inspired in business by his father who started his own airline. Kurran gets irked by people who are out for themselves rather than working collectively for the team and gets especially rattled by people who lie. He says that simply being himself will help him to breeze through the process.
He says: “I’ll be honest, I don’t eat, sleep, breathe business but I do eat, sleep and breathe success.”
Occupation: Quality Controller
Rick says that one of his best qualities is his confidence and assertiveness and that being able to separate business from pleasure means he is good at getting the best from others. Rick believes befriending all the contestants will set him in good stead to get their backing in a task but warns he is a ‘wolf in sheep’s clothing’ and will use this to his advantage.
He says: “I won’t pussyfoot and waste time, as time is of the essence in everything. People will have to like it or lump it.”
Occupation: Owner, Tennis Events Company
Sabrina has had her eye on making money from the age of 14, when she set up a business selling retro sweets as part of a Young Enterprise Scheme. She cites Emma Watson as one of her role models because she’s ‘always clear-headed and makes good decisions, whilst still having elements of fun’. Sabrina says she can walk into a room and capture an audience but admits to sometimes making ‘silly comments’ before thinking. She plans to throw herself feet first into the process and use her positive energy to get involved in everything.
She says: “I am a mix of Willy Wonka drinking an espresso martini… classy and sophisticated on the outside; inside, a little bit crazy and wacky but full of brilliant ideas.”
Occupation: Owner, Children’s Acting Academy
Sarah owns and runs an acting academy for children. Sarah says she wants to be a role model to her young daughter and hopes her hard work and life experience will aid her in the process. She admits she’s not good with business terminology and is angered by people in business who turn their noses up at the working-class demographic. Sarah hopes her charm and persuasive skills will see her through to the end and believes her creativity will be her biggest strength.
She says: “I am me, I don’t have a posh accent or pretend to be anyone else. My personality sells me, my passion to succeed and work ethic.”
Sarah Ann Magson
Alongside her role as Director at a law firm, Sarah Ann has also run her own nursery furniture business since 2016. Although she says timekeeping and organisation aren’t her greatest strengths, Sarah Ann believes her loyalty, commitment and ability to remain calm under pressure are her best qualities and thinks that her skills and charm will outwit any of her competitors.
She says: “I am used to laying down the law in the courtroom, but now I’m going to lay down the law in the boardroom.”
Occupation: Owner, Swimwear Brand
Sian owns and runs a swimwear fashion brand, with clients including celebrities and celebrity stylists. She identifies with Coco Chanel as a role model in business, as she ‘came from nothing and worked her way to the top’. She believes she has been brought up to win and every task will see her being calculated, collaborative and ruthless where necessary.
She says: “I bring both the passion and the fire - in the boardroom, I will be merciless.”
Occupation: Owner, Tree Surgery Firm
Having struggled at school, Tom now runs a successful arboricultural (tree care) business. He says he’s drawn to situations that intimidate him and believes he can rise to any challenge. Tom believes his loyalty is one of his best qualities along with the fact he loves not knowing what is around the corner but admits he finds it difficult to ‘switch off’.
He says: “There are very few people that can genuinely say they’re going to make it - but I know that I’m going to.”
And let’s look at Lord Sugar and the team:
Having left school in Hackney aged 16, Lord Sugar started selling electric goods out of a van he bought for £50. In 1968, he founded Amstrad and now, over 50 years later, he has an estimated worth of over £1b.
A former Chairman of Tottenham Hotspur FC, he sold his Amstrad empire to Sky in July 2007. His other companies include Amscreen, the UK’s largest digital media owner and property investment firm Amsprop. Until 2014 he was chairman of Viglen, a manufacturer specialising in computers, networks and solutions.
In 2000, he was knighted for his services to business and he holds two honorary Doctorate of Science degrees, awarded by City University and Brunel University respectively.
Having previously sat on the Business Council for Britain and fronted a campaign promoting the benefits of apprenticeships, Lord Sugar was named as the government’s Enterprise Champion in 2009 and appointed to the House of Lords as Baron Sugar of Clapton in the London Borough of Hackney.
Lord Sugar has also appeared in all thirteen series of BBC One’s The Apprentice, where aspiring young businessmen and women compete for the chance to work with him. He is a philanthropist for a number of charities including Great Ormond Street Hospital and Jewish Care.
Baroness Brady of Knightsbridge CBE is one of the most influential, high profile and respected female business leaders in the UK. Voted Business Woman of the Year, Ultimate Entrepreneur and rated among the 50 most inspirational people in the world, she is passionate about business and the promotion of women in business in the UK. At 27 years old, Karren was the youngest Managing Director of a PLC in the UK when she oversaw the floatation of Birmingham City Football Club.
She is currently the Vice-Chairman of West Ham United Football Club, as well as Chairman of Taveta Investments, owner of global brands including Topshop.
She joined the board of West Ham in January 2010, and negotiated a successful bid for the club’s move to London’s iconic 60,000-seat London Stadium. Under her leadership, West Ham has become one of the five fastest-growing brands in world football.
Karren was made a life peer by the Prime Minister, entering the House of Lords in 2014. She received a CBE from the Queen for her services to business, entrepreneurship and women in business.
Karren’s wealth of experience and passion for supporting entrepreneurs led to her appointment as the Government’s Business Ambassador by the Prime Minister in 2013. Karren joined The Apprentice in 2010 and has been an Aide to Lord Sugar for the past eight series, replacing Margaret Mountford when she stepped down from the role.
Claude Littner is a successful entrepreneur and businessman with almost 50 years’ experience. A long-term business associate and friend of Lord Sugar, Claude has chaired a number of his companies including Amstrad International, Amstrad Spain, Dancall Telecom and Viglen.
Claude was Chief Executive of Tottenham Hotspur Football Club. He was also deputy Chairman of Blacks, Chairman of ASCO plc, and Azzurri Telecom, Chairman and majority shareholder of Powerleague plc.
In 2014, The University of West London Business School was renamed, The Claude Littner Business School in recognition of his exemplary business career and long-term association with the University.
Claude has appeared on The Apprentice in each of the 13 previous series, and best known for his fearsome interview style when grilling the candidates in the penultimate episode of each series. From series 11, he has also assumed the role of aide to Lord Sugar alongside Karren Brady.