The Apprentice (UK series three)
|The Apprentice UK|
Series Three of The Apprentice (UK) was a television series which aired in the UK on BBC One. The series began on 28 March 2007 and finished on 13 June 2007, with Simon Ambrose as the winner. Ambrose's prize was to work on a project to develop a hotel and golfing complex near London Stansted Airport, whilst training as a chartered surveyor. Kristina Grimes, the runner-up, has received many job offers from separate companies and is now working as an investment sales director.
Sir Alan Sugar reprised his role as the boss with Nick Hewer and Margaret Mountford as his advisors. Moving from BBC Two, this series attracted 10,000 applicants and promised "tougher tasks and better people" than before, however Sir Alan believed that the show was morphing into "Big Brother". Sugar also criticised the US version for making the error of "trying to change things just for the sake of it", causing it to backfire.
Two 90-minute specials were aired during the series run. The first programme was titled The Apprentice: Beyond the Boardroom and featured information about the personal lives of each of the semi-finalists. The second, The Apprentice: Why I Fired Them, featured Sugar revealing why he chose to remove each candidate from the programme.
- 1 Candidates
- 2 Weekly results
- 3 Challenges
- 3.1 Week 1: Coffee To Go
- 3.2 Week 2: Doggy Designs
- 3.3 Week 3: Start-up Service
- 3.4 Week 4: Sugar Rush
- 3.5 Week 5: Fish, Lips and Horses
- 3.6 Week 6: The Sausage Saga
- 3.7 Week 7: The 97 Pence Victory
- 3.8 Week 8: Brand-a-trainer
- 3.9 Week 9: Selling To Trade
- 3.10 Week 10: Selling on TV
- 3.11 Week 11: Interviews
- 3.12 Week 12: The Final
- 4 Criticism and controversy
- 5 Related programmes
- 6 Aftermath
- 7 Ratings
- 8 References
- 9 External links
|Candidate||Background||Original team||Age||Result||Record as project manager|
|Simon Ambrose||Internet Entrepreneur||Eclipse||27||Hired by Sugar||1-1 (win in week 7 & loss in week 10)|
|Kristina Grimes||Pharmaceutical Sales Manager||Stealth||36||Runner-up||2-0 (win in week 5 and 10)|
|Katie Hopkins||Global Brand Consultant||Stealth||31||Quit in week 11||2-0 (win in week 2 and 9)|
|Tre Azam||Marketing and Design Consultant||Eclipse||27||Fired in week 11||1-1 (win in weeks 3 & loss in week 9)|
|Lohit Kalburgi||Telecoms Manager||Eclipse||25||Fired in week 11
||1-0 (win in week 6)|
|Naomi Lay||Advertising Sales Manager||Stealth||26||Fired in week 10
||0-1 (loss in week 3)|
|Jadine Johnson||Financial adviser||Stealth||27||Fired in week 9||2-0 (win in week 1 and 8)|
|Ghazal Asif||Business Development Manager||Stealth||23||Fired in week 8||1-1 (win in week 4 & loss in week 8)|
|Adam Hosker||Car Sales Manager||Eclipse||27||Fired in week 7||0-2 (loss in week 4 and 7)|
|Paul Callaghan||Ex-British Army Lieutenant||Eclipse||27||Fired in week 6||0-1 (loss in week 6)|
|Natalie Wood||Housewife||Stealth||29||Fired in week 5||0-1 (loss in week 5)|
|Sophie Kain||Quantum Physicist||Stealth||32||Fired in week 4|
|Gerri Blackwood||Transport Development Manager||Stealth||33||Fired in week 3|
|Rory Laing||Bankrupt Entrepreneur||Eclipse||27||Fired in week 2||0-1 (loss in week 2)|
|Iftikhar "Ifti" Chaudhri||Company Director||Eclipse||36||Fired in week 2|
|Andy Jackson||Car Sales Manager||Eclipse||36||Fired in week 1||0-1 (loss in week 1)|
For this series, there were sixteen candidates instead of fourteen, as seen in the previous two series. The candidates were initially separated into two teams by gender. The women chose the name Stealth for their team, while the men named their team Eclipse. Three candidates - Ifti, Gerri and Sophie - never had the chance to be project manager.
The candidates were:
* as of the date of the programme.
- The candidate was on the winning team (or, in Week 11, managed to avoid being fired.)
- The candidate was on the losing team.
- The candidate was hired and won The Apprentice.
- The candidate was the runner-up.
- The candidate won as project manager on his/her team.
- The candidate lost as project manager on his/her team.
- The candidate was brought to the final boardroom.
- The candidate was fired.
- The candidate lost as project manager and was fired.
- The candidate left the competition.
Week 1: Coffee To Go
- Stealth: Andy (Project Manager), Sophie, Gerri, Naomi, Katie, Kristina, Natalie and Ghazal.
- Eclipse: Jadine (Project Manager), Tre, Paul, Rory, Adam, Ifti, Simon and Lohit.
- Task: Sell coffee in Islington. The team that makes the most profit wins.
- Result: Both teams decided to split up into two, with one half maintaining a fixed coffee stand and the other half staffing a mobile coffee van. Eclipse made a good start despite some initial purchasing blunders whilst Stealth struggled to sell by placing their van in an area already served by many low-price coffee outlets. Whilst both teams sold well, Stealth failed to make a large profit as a result of buying too much stock, milk in particular. As a result, Eclipse made the larger overall profit, making £360.97 compared to Stealth's £111.92.
- Winner: Eclipse.
- Reward: A trip to the Royal Ballet at Covent Garden.
- Brought into the boardroom: Andy, Gerri and Sophie.
- Who gets fired: Andy, for being far too hands-off as a leader, which resulted in Gerri and Sophie making major errors that derailed the task early on (Gerri being responsible for the team's poor location and Sophie being accountable for the overspend of the team's stock). While Sir Alan noted that all three were to blame for the loss, he felt that Andy's inability to lead such a simple task rendered him unworthy of continuing in the process.
- On the day of the task, Sir Alan had the project managers change teams. There would ultimately not be any point in this series where both teams were made up exclusively of men or women, making this the only UK Apprentice series never to have a "battle of the sexes".
- Sir Alan also told the boys to change the team name after their original name (Certus) was found to be the name of a company that Tre had previously worked for, so they became Eclipse.
- Early in the task, Jadine decided to pull Simon and Tre away from a highly lucrative sales area. While she correctly identified that they were on a red route and would have been fined for overstaying their allowed time, Tre pointed out that they still had ten minutes left before they had to move. As a result, he butted heads with Jadine for the rest of the task.
- In the boardroom, Jadine claimed that several members of the team (implying Tre in particular) were unwilling to be led by a woman. Sir Alan told her that regardless of whether or not that claim was true, attacking her team members before the task result was even announced was a bad idea.
- After his firing, Andy pleaded with Sir Alan to change his decision, without success. Sir Alan had to tell him he was fired a second time.
- The Apprentice: You're Fired! panel: Sahar Ashemi, Ruth Badger and Mark Frith.
Week 2: Doggy Designs
- Stealth: Katie (Project Manager), Sophie, Gerri, Naomi, Kristina, Natalie and Ghazal.
- Eclipse: Rory (Project Manager), Tre, Jadine, Paul, Adam, Ifti, Simon and Lohit.
- Task: Design an innovative product for dogs and pitch it to three stores: Pets at Home, Harrods and Pets and the City. The team that makes the most profit wins.
- Result: Stealth decided to focus their efforts on pitching their dog wardrobe to the largest store, Pets at Home. In Eclipse, Rory went against his team members' advice and market research to design a dog-owner utility belt. His autocratic leadership style (even as going as far to threaten to send team-members out for over-talking and wanting everyone to take off their jackets to show who was boss) irritated his team further; Tre in particular took offence. Ultimately, Eclipse took the lead getting orders adding up to £565 from Pets and the City and Harrods, whilst Stealth didn't get any orders. However, the tide turned with Pets at Home as Stealth got £5000 worth of orders, while Eclipse got none at all.
- Winner: Stealth.
- Reward: A luxury meal at The Dorchester Hotel in Mayfair.
- Brought into the boardroom: Rory, Tre and Ifti.
- Who gets fired (first time): Ifti, with regret, for failing to make any contribution to the task and admitting he was unable to focus himself properly, both of which he put down to missing his family. Sir Alan fired him as soon as the final boardroom session began, but in a shock move, then told Rory and Tre that the boardroom would continue as normal, and a second firing would take place.
- Who gets fired (second time): Rory, for being a dictator rather than a leader, designing a poor product, ignoring the advice of the research team, and attempting to evade responsibility for the task's failure, instead blaming Tre for questioning his decisions.
- Stealth's revenue outgrossed Eclipse's by a factor of 8.8:1, making this the biggest victory in the history of the UK version of The Apprentice at that time.
- This was the first time that a double firing took place before the interviews, following an alteration to the show's format that enabled multiple firings, which were previously not an option for Sir Alan. This change was in part motivated by an episode of Series 2, when Sir Alan fired Alexa Tilley, but expressed a desire to also fire Syed Ahmed and Tuan Le. Sir Alan commented in his column in that week's Daily Mirror that under the previous format of the show he would have been forced to either keep Ifti despite his clear lack of motivation to carry on, or Rory despite his terrible performance as team leader.
- Tre was very critical of Rory's performance, and was shown to have little respect for his leadership in the task. Although Sir Alan warned Tre about his behavior, he didn't hold him responsible for the team's loss, and saw no reason whatsoever to keep Rory, who did not help his case by getting tongue-tied in the boardroom.
- Coincidently, Tre would go on to win the next task as Project manager.
- This task and its failings were shown on the spinoff episode "The Worst Decisions Ever" with guests like Vanessa Feltz criticising Rory's leadership heavily and his product even more-so, saying "such an item doesn't exist because nobody needs it" whilst Tre's criticism of the belt went as far as saying he didn't think "it was safe to walk around looking like a terrorist when you're walking your dog".
Week 3: Start-up Service
- Stealth: Naomi (Project Manager), Sophie, Jadine, Gerri, Kristina, Natalie and Ghazal.
- Eclipse: Tre (Project Manager), Paul, Adam, Katie, Simon and Lohit.
- Task: Starting with £200, generate the maximum possible profit through whatever means. The team that makes the most profit wins.
- Result: Eclipse started a gardening business in the day and a pub-singing service in the evening whilst Stealth set up a face painting service for children in the day and a kiss-o-gram service in the evening, with a kiss and a hug for £1. Jadine, Gerri and Ghazal all refused to participate as kiss-o-grams. Both teams got off to a slow start, though Stealth lost a lot of custom by not managing their location properly, which was blamed on Gerri. Back in the boardroom, Stealth were effectively accused of prostitution by Sir Alan after selling kisses on the streets of London, which he described as being like "another old profession I've heard about". Although Tre's leadership style was highly aggressive, Eclipse made £189 profit whilst Stealth made £65.
- Winner: Eclipse.
- Reward: A night out in a Cuban bar and restaurant in London.
- Brought into the boardroom: Naomi, Jadine and Gerri.
- Who gets fired: Gerri, for not contributing anything of value to any of the tasks, fouling up the choice of location on two of the three tasks, and for admitting that she was "biding her time" before putting in a full effort. Despite Naomi's weak performance as project manager and Jadine's questionable behavior and lack of contribution, Sir Alan felt Gerri was too much of a slow starter and had more than enough opportunities to step up, leading to her dismissal.
- The only Stealth members who were actually willing to give out kisses were Kristina and Natalie, causing Sir Alan to point out how ridiculous it was for the team to choose to run a business that five of the seven team members weren't willing to take part in.
- Jadine believed Naomi was a not a good leader and openly questioned her decisions at several points in the task. Sir Alan actually agreed that Naomi had been an extremely poor project manager, but told Jadine that it was no excuse for her behavior, which suggested she had little respect for fellow competitors; she had already been warned for attacking her teammates without good reason in the first week. Sir Alan ultimately kept Jadine for her potential, but warned her a repeat of such behaviour would end in dismissal.
- Naomi was told that she had been lucky to survive, as Sir Alan considered her almost totally at fault for the loss. However, it was noted that Naomi was at least a hard worker, whereas Gerri seemed content to stay in the background.
Week 4: Sugar Rush
- Stealth: Ghazal (Project Manager), Tre, Jadine, Paul, Naomi and Kristina.
- Eclipse: Adam (Project Manager), Sophie, Katie, Natalie, Simon and Lohit.
- Task: Manufacture sweets and sell them at London Zoo. The team that makes the most profit wins.
- Result: Both teams went for similar ideas in terms of their product; Stealth opted for chocolate lollies (with an animal design) and bags of fudge, while Eclipse went for chocolate lollies (with a paw design) and orange flavoured lollies. Stealth struggled to manufacture enough of their product and so ran out of stock by 4pm, an hour before the task finished. In comparison, Eclipse had plenty to sell but struggled to offload their orange lollies which were mistakenly labelled as 'natural'. With limited time left they had to resort to reducing their prices and eventually gave their remaining sweets away for free. Stealth created a profit of £994, beating Eclipse's £983 by just £11.
- Winner: Stealth.
- Reward: A night out Bowling.
- Brought into the boardroom: Adam, Sophie and Natalie.
- Who gets fired: Sophie, for her unenthusiastic selling and naivety about the business world.
- Sir Alan did not feel that Stealth were deserving winners, and was further annoyed by Ghazal's cocky attitude and failure to acknowledge the team's mistakes (Tre ended up being the person who did this for the team) in the boardroom.
- Sophie's firing was not only because of her weak sales tactics, but because she showed no real knowledge of the business world, which convinced Sir Alan that she was a poor candidate.
- While Natalie escaped being fired, she was given a severe warning after she repeatedly lied to Sir Alan about who was responsible for the labelling error; in fact she had made this mistake herself, but tried to blame it on Adam.
Week 5: Fish, Lips and Horses
- Stealth: Kristina (Project Manager), Tre, Jadine, Paul, Naomi and Ghazal.
- Eclipse: Natalie (Project Manager), Adam, Katie, Simon and Lohit.
- Task: Choose photographs from two different artists and then sell them in a fashionable east London gallery, making as much money as possible.
- Result: Stealth showcased artists with the themes of horses and fish, whilst Eclipse chose artists whose work related to lips and Morocco and Colombia. In Stealth, Tre was uncomfortable around the pictures, some of which depicted nipples, and claimed they "belong in a fetish gallery”. The teams took very different approaches to selling, with Eclipse going for a softer approach and Stealth opting for the hard-sell. At the end of the task, Eclipse had made £1,599.78 from the sale of four photographs, but Stealth sold 14 pieces to make a profit of £4,702.
- Winner: Stealth.
- Reward: A pampering session at a Champneys, a spa.
- Brought into the boardroom: Natalie, Adam and Lohit.
- Who gets fired: Natalie with regret, for being "out of her depth", and bringing Adam mainly for personal reasons, not better explaining her decision to bring back Lohit, and not bringing Katie otherwise.
- This task also featured in the first series of The Apprentice.
- This was the first ever UK episode (barring the Series 2 final task) in which both the project managers were women.
- A critical factor in Natalie's firing was her poor explanation of her decision to bring back Adam, one of only two members of Eclipse to sell anything, and Lohit, who followed the soft sale strategy being pushed by Natalie and Katie and subsequently sold nothing, but otherwise did nothing significantly wrong. It was implied that Katie should have been brought back and possibly fired for missing the point of the task, failing to ask relevant questions to the artists (and even going so far as to mock Adam for his attempts to do so) and then failing to sell anything. Natalie further harmed her cause by falsely accusing Adam of lying about his preference of artists in the boardroom; Adam stated that he had personally liked the lips pictures, but had expressed reservations about how well they would sell. Margaret, while not openly challenging Natalie's claim, did point out that Adam had been telling the truth when the final three were sent outside.
Week 6: The Sausage Saga
- Stealth: Paul (Project Manager), Adam, Katie, Kristina and Ghazal.
- Eclipse: Lohit (Project Manager), Tre, Jadine, Naomi and Simon.
- Task: Buy high-quality British produce and then sell it at a French farmers' market in Arras. The team which makes the most profit wins.
- Result: Eclipse chose to sell smoked fish, marmalade and tea whilst Stealth opted for sausages, chutney, and cheap processed cheese bought at the last minute from Makro, a cash and carry. After a communication error with the printers, as well as arriving over 5 hours late, Stealth ended up having to pay £115 for an incorrectly translated banner, far more than the £20 bunting Eclipse purchased (which was universally deemed to be much better). Paul planned to make up their advertising costs by trying to cook their sausages with a tin filled with lighter fuel instead of buying a camping stove; unfortunately it failed disastrously, losing them precious sales. Kristina eventually found a restaurant that allowed her to use their gas cooker to cook the samples, at which point the sausages sold very well. However, they sold little to no cheese, due to the popularity of high quality cheese in France. Eclipse hit a snag in selling the tea in a predominantly coffee-drinking nation (Nick Hewer had questioned the choice early on, saying they were "getting confused about France"), but their fish and marmalade sold very well, greatly assisted by Simon's fluent French. Whilst neither team managed to sell all their produce, Stealth's numerous errors resulted in a loss of £225, whilst Eclipse made a healthy and impressive profit of £410.
- Winner: Eclipse.
- Reward: Indoor skydiving in a vertical wind tunnel.
- Brought into the boardroom: Paul, Kristina and Adam.
- Who gets fired: Paul, for a catalogue of bad decisions; trying to sell a "breezeblock load of bloody cheddar cheese" which was completely shunned by customers, creating a useless burner for the sausages that didn't even warm the fat in the pan, and selling to the trade at cost price early in the task. Sir Alan was extremely angry that the team had made a loss, and that Paul had not brought Katie back, as she had effectively acted as second-in-command in some of the major decisions. Paul's choice of Kristina was also not looked on favourably, as she had been sidelined for correctly identifying the task was doomed to failure.
- This week's team reshuffle was specifically intended to balance out the French speakers on the teams, with Eclipse ending up with Naomi and Simon as fluent French speakers, and Tre knowing some basic French. Likewise, Stealth had Paul and Katie as fluent speakers, and Kristina with a loose knowledge of the language. Thus, Paul's decision to sell to local shops with Katie in the middle of the day was seen as another bad move, as there were no confident French speakers left on the stands, which would play a crucial role in Stealth's defeat.
- Though Eclipse's execution of the task was generally trouble-free (aside from the van taking their produce getting lost and only boarding the ferry with 30 minutes to spare), there was a major spat between Simon and Jadine on the ferry over to France, apparently caused by Jadine taking offence to Simon referring to the team as "guys" despite having two female members in Jadine and Naomi. Lohit's poor grasp of French also caused him to make numerous gaffes while trying to sell in the streets of Arras. Nevertheless, Sir Alan was very impressed with Eclipse's performance and gave strong praise to Simon who was deemed the strongest performer on the team.
- Nick, who has a home in France, sharply criticised Stealth for their choice of selling cheese saying that in a French supermarket, no-one would ever "find an English cheese, never in a month of Sundays" and describing taking the cheese as a "complete waste of time". Sir Alan also described the choice of cheese as "coals to Newcastle".
- Paul, Katie and Ghazal all attempted to pin the blame for the loss on Adam, for overspending on the banner. While Sir Alan agreed that Adam was the most at fault for the banner, it was pointed out that the roughly £115 spent on it would not even have been enough for the team to finish the task with a profit, and the choice of products had doomed Stealth before they had even started selling.
- Sir Alan made it very clear that he did not see Kristina responsible for the loss, as she had correctly identified the flaws in her team strategy (specifically Paul's decision to sell cheese), and was the only member of the team who openly disagreed with Paul during the task. She was also responsible for securing the gas cooker that helped pick up sales, and prevented Stealth from losing more money.
- When questioned about Paul's decision to bring him into the boardroom, Adam said that Katie should have been chosen because she had been involved in the decisions that caused the task to fail, and that the only reason Paul had not done so was because they were "too close". Kristina then went even further, declaring that Paul and Katie were in an "inappropriate relationship", while Paul vigorously denied that was the case. Sir Alan explained he didn't mind relationships between co-workers as long as it didn't interfere with their work, but warned Paul that if it did, he would "be out that door so quick, you wouldn't know what's hit you." Despite defending him strongly in the boardroom, Katie was shown to disagree with several of the decisions Paul made in the task, including buying the cheese and using the improvised burner instead of a gas camping stove.
- Before making his final decision, Sir Alan indicated that he actually considered Paul to be a better overall candidate than Adam, but ultimately deemed Paul's bad decisions and refusal to take any responsibility for the loss to be unforgivable. Although Adam survived the boardroom, Sir Alan questioned whether he could succeed in the competition. Adam then asked Sir Alan to be Project Manager in the next task, to which Sir Alan said that he would consider his request. Subsequently Sir Alan let Adam lead the next task.
- When Kristina and Adam returned to the house after Paul's firing, they did not receive cheers from the other candidates as before they returned, Katie and Ghazal had effectively framed them for the task failings; Eclipse had had no idea of what was going on, and so believed the failure had been down to the banner purchase. Katie also made personal attacks on Kristina, largely because she had been the only person who objected to Paul's decisions.
Week 7: The 97 Pence Victory
- Stealth: Adam (Project Manager), Katie, Kristina and Ghazal.
- Eclipse: Simon (Project Manager), Tre, Jadine, Naomi and Lohit.
- Task: Purchase a set list of ten items for prices lower than those asked by the vendors. The team which spends the least wins.
- Result: Simon's erratic style of leadership caused tension amongst Eclipse, with deals being rushed without enough time for negotiation. Over in Stealth, Katie and Kristina put aside personal differences and managed to negotiate a number of items successfully. Both teams were initially confused as to what nigella seeds were, with Adam even suggesting they may be a form of AstroTurf. Eclipse wrongly assumed that buying second-rate tiles was classed as a discount, and were fined £50 as a result; however Stealth were also fined £80 for failing to purchase the nigella seeds. The teams' final balances were separated by only 97p, the narrowest margin in the show's history, with Eclipse bringing back £459.68 and Stealth £458.71.
- Winner: Eclipse.
- Reward: A racing car driving day at the Bedford Autodrome.
- Brought into the boardroom: Adam, Ghazal and Katie.
- Who gets fired: Adam, for poor management skills, for choosing not to buy all items on the list despite the fact it would earn a larger fine than being late (without which Stealth would have won by £29.03), and his generally bad track record throughout the competition.
- The items that teams were required to buy were: a car battery, 3 kg of nigella seeds, a square metre of marble tiling, hair-removal wax, a house plant, leather trousers, a bin, a wetsuit, a white rabbit and a unicycle.
- This task had previously featured on the first and second series of The Apprentice.
- This episode was the fourth time in succession that Adam appeared in the final boardroom, at the time a new record on the UK show. In Series 4 Michael Sophocles was also in the final three four times in succession, but the record has not yet been exceeded.
- Whilst Katie did a decent job this task, Sir Alan gave her harsh criticism over her poor performances and her CV. She survived because Sir Alan saw potential in her, but warned her to improve her work.
- Sir Alan seriously considered firing Ghazal, sharply criticising her for realising what the nigella seeds were at the halfway point of the task, but failing to relay this information to Adam quickly enough for it to be acted on. He also questioned her level of experience, but agreed to give her one last chance after she asked to lead the team on the next task.
- Adam's defeat in this task meant that he had lost two tasks as Project Manager, making him the least successful project manager in Series 3. Sir Alan admitted that Adam probably didn't deserve to be in the final boardroom as often as he had been, but felt that he made too many mistakes in both his turns as project manager to be allowed to continue in the process.
- At this point, Simon was the only candidate who had not appeared in the final boardroom.
Week 8: Brand-a-trainer
- Stealth: Ghazal (Project Manager), Naomi, Katie and Kristina.
- Eclipse: Jadine (Project Manager), Tre, Simon and Lohit.
- Task: Create a brand logo, poster and video advertisement for a new style of trainers.
- Result: Eclipse created "Street" trainers with a "reclaim the street" brain child of Jadine, and a promise to donate 10% of the sale price to youth charities. Stealth built the campaign for their "Jam" trainers around an urban music theme. Despite Naomi having the most advertising experience out of the Stealth members, Ghazal largely ignored her advice and let Katie direct much of the campaign. Stealth's TV ad, though well made, was heavily criticised for lacking a message and failing to make it clear what was being advertised. A group of advertising executives decided which team won the task; they ultimately decided that while Eclipse's campaign had made a bad move by naming the specific amount donated to charity, Stealth's campaign was so generic that it barely even resembled a trainer advert, resulting in Eclipse being deemed the clear winners.
- Winner: Eclipse.
- Reward: A lesson at "Cocktail school" in The Savoy Hotel in London. On their way back, Eclipse saw a poster of their Street trainers on a bus stop.
- Brought into the boardroom: Ghazal, Katie and Naomi.
- Who gets fired: Ghazal, for not leading the task properly, bringing Katie (who, by Ghazal's own admission, was actually the best performing team member) back into the boardroom in a misguided effort to force Sir Alan to fire Naomi, attempting to scapegoat Naomi for the failure of the task, and her generally poor track record throughout the competition. While Sir Alan made it clear that he was not impressed any of the three candidates, he felt Gazhal's poor record, along with her cocky attitude and lack of experience gave him more than enough reason to fire.
- In the initial boardroom Gazhal attempted to pin the blame mostly on Naomi, claiming she didn't bring anything to the table despite her experience. Naomi was quick to deny this, and while her ideas were not felt to have been especially better than those of Katie, Nick made it clear that Naomi and Kristina had been sidelined in decision-making. Gazhal further got in trouble for bringing Katie back in an effort to force Sir Alan to fire Naomi. However, Sir Alan saw through the decision almost immediately, and Katie focused on defending herself rather than attacking Naomi. This combined with Gazhal's poor performances, especially in weeks 3,4, and 7, finally sealed her fate.
- Ghazal bringing back Katie in order to assist her in getting Naomi fired was the second and last occasion to date in the UK show where a candidate was brought back by the project manager as an "advocate" (a tactic more commonly used in the US version of the show, though doing so is frowned upon in both versions). The previous occasion that this tactic was used was in Series 1, when Lindsay Bogaard brought Miriam Staley into the boardroom, despite the fact she had made an excellent pitch, in an attempt to force Sir Alan to fire Adele Lock.
- Sir Alan stated that Ghazal was being fired not because of her age but for being "all talk and no do." He also added that he felt Gazhal "argues for the sake of arguing" and believed that in the previous week he thought that she didn't yet have enough experience, but decided on the basis of this task that she was simply a poor overall candidate.
- This was Tre's sixth consecutive winning task, equalling the record set by James Max in Series 1. They continued to hold this record until Series 7, when Helen Milligan won nine consecutive tasks. By contrast, this was Katie's fifth consecutive losing task, at the time a new record, which was equalled in Series 7 by Vincent Disneur and Tom Pellereau and then exceeded in Young Apprentice Series 2 by Harry Maxwell, who lost seven consecutive tasks. Sir Alan hinted that he was considering firing Katie for poor track record, but decided that her overall defence in the boardroom and not following Gazhal's plan to fire Naomi convinced him to keep her, but warned Katie she was now on her final chance.
- This is the fourth consecutive week in a row in which the project manager was fired in the series.
- Jadine's victory in this task meant that she had won two tasks as Project Manager, making her the joint most successful project manager in this series, along with Katie and Kristina.
- Following Stealth's defeat, there was no clear consensus amongst the group about who should be fired. Naomi blamed Ghazal for being a poor project manager, whilst Ghazal criticised Naomi for failing to use her advertising background to come up with better ideas even though she had been blatantly ignored. Kristina felt that Katie had been objectionable and had poor ideas, whilst Katie merely stated that in her dream world Kristina would have been fired, apparently still resenting Kristina's role in exposing the relationship between her and Paul (and then getting him fired) two weeks previously.
Week 9: Selling To Trade
- Stealth: Katie (Project Manager), Naomi and Kristina.
- Eclipse: Tre (Project Manager), Jadine, Simon and Lohit.
- Task: Interview representatives from five nations and choose three items from that nation and sell them to the trade.
- Result: Stealth chose to market Canadian goods, including a "Rug in a Box" set, a portable light therapy device and a set of sport shoe insoles. Eclipse chose a set of Swedish products, a lamp with a built in air purifier, vacuum cleaner heads and a set of microwavable soft toys. At the end of the first day Jadine suffered a minor emotional breakdown, leaving Lohit able to set up only one appointment with a potential buyer. Similarly, Stealth failed to make any appointments due to spending too long being briefed by the Canadian Trade Commissioner, Michelle Gartland, and so both teams were left to make their appointments the following morning. The teams performed similarly, but Stealth's products proved to have a higher market value, resulting in them making £2,226.59, while Eclipse had trouble getting sales appointments and managed only £1,494.42 (which was reduced by 10% to £1,344.29 after the team was delayed in traffic on the way back to the boardroom).
- Winner: Stealth.
- Reward: A £500 voucher to spend, with the aid of a personal shopper, at Selfridges.
- Brought into the boardroom: Tre, Jadine and Lohit.
- Who gets fired: Jadine, with regret, for losing focus for a large part of the task's first day, and not making a convincing argument as to why she deserved to stay over Tre or Lohit. Sir Alan didn't feel Jadine was ready yet but told her that she could be a truly great businesswoman one day.
- This programme featured the Cutty Sark. The ship was badly damaged in a fire just two days before the episode aired.
- After Jadine left, Sir Alan informed Lohit that were it not for Jadine missing her daughter, he would have been the one who was fired. While Lohit had in fact sold the most on the team and strongly defended himself in the boardroom, Sir Alan felt that based on what he had seen so far, he was now certain that Lohit was not suited to his organisation.
- Katie's victory in this task meant that she had won two tasks as Project Manager, making her the joint most successful project manager in this series, along with Jadine and Kristina.
- The previous series had also featured a task of selling products to the trade, where similarly the losing team were fined for arriving back late, although this time the fine made no difference to the result.
Week 10: Selling on TV
- Stealth: Kristina (Project Manager), Katie and Lohit.
- Eclipse: Simon (Project Manager), Tre and Naomi.
- Task: Select and sell a variety of items on the Ideal World teleshopping channel.
- Result: Stealth chose good items but Kristina kept repeating "Okay" throughout her entire chocolate fountain ad and her vacuum cleaner demonstration went badly wrong, and it succeeded only in spreading the dirt around. Lohit was given the awkward task of trying to help sell ladies' slimming pants along with Katie, though the two ended up selling in reasonably good quantities. Eclipse manager Simon gave very few instructions to team-mates Tre and Naomi while in the producers' gallery and thus they struggled. Simon's choice of a foldable wheelchair was questioned, but ended up accounting for more than half of Eclipse's income. Simon also made a spectacle of himself by bouncing on a trampoline and then unwittingly appearing to be masturbating when screwing in its legs. By the end of the task, Eclipse had made £921.79, but Stealth managed to sell £1,339.10 of goods.
- Winner: Stealth.
- Reward: Trip to a Turkish Bath.
- Brought into the boardroom: Simon, Tre and Naomi (i.e. every member of Eclipse).
- Who gets fired: Naomi (with regret), for selecting poor products, being disrespectful towards Simon, and her generally average-at-best track record, despite her great presenting skills. A majority of the You're Fired studio audience disagreed with the decision and felt Simon should have been fired.
- Despite much boardroom hilarity at the on-screen antics, Sir Alan was not pleased with either team and was reluctant to tell Stealth their reward. Complaints from Ideal World viewers described the candidates as 'rubbish' and 'a waste of time'.
- Eclipse chose to sell foldable wheelchairs, decoupage pads, trampolines and leg shavers. Stealth chose chocolate fountains, foot spas, slimming pants and steam mops.
- Despite Simon's many major errors in the task, he was saved from being fired due his enthusiasm, otherwise impressive track record and the fact that the products he chose contributed around £880 of the money raised by Eclipse. Naomi, who had chosen the trampoline and decoupage pads, attempted to blame Simon for his poor job of presenting and selling them (in particular the trampoline, which he failed to sell a single unit of), but Sir Alan called this a poor excuse and pointed out that Naomi was just as much to blame since she had been directing Simon.
- Tre was also criticised for his lack of input and enthusiasm on the task, but avoided firing because Sir Alan felt that Naomi was more directly at fault for the loss, and had a far inferior overall track record in the competition.
- This task originally featured in the first series of The Apprentice.
- Kristina's victory in this task meant that she had won two tasks as Project Manager, making her the joint most successful project manager in this series, along with Jadine and Katie. However, her performance was badly received; Sir Alan was not remotely amused by the "comedy" of Lohit selling slimming pants, and was amazed Kristina had managed to sell any vacuum cleaners at all, sarcastically suggesting the customers should be put in straitjackets.
Week 11: Interviews
- Task: The five remaining candidates are individually interviewed by three of Sir Alan Sugar's business colleagues. The interviewers then report their impressions of the candidates back to Sir Alan to help him choose the two finalists.
- Interviewers: Paul Kemsley, Claude Littner and Bordan Tkachuk.
- Result: After the round of 25-minute interviews, three candidates – Katie, Simon and Kristina – stood out. The only candidate with positive reports from all three interviewers was Kristina. Conversely, very few positive comments were made about Lohit, who was quickly fired after being deemed "nice," but too "boring." Tre was next to go, after Sir Alan told him that, while he was a strong candidate, he lacked the required maturity. He was also described as argumentative and difficult. Simon was praised for being academically gifted and for knowing more than the other candidates about Sir Alan's companies. His track record, however, came under fire for appearing too wooly, making it hard to understand where Simon is going with his career. While doubts were expressed over Katie's motives for entering the show, Sir Alan nonetheless made her the first finalist. While he was deliberating over whether to make Simon or Kristina the other finalist, Katie was clearly beset by doubts. After Sir Alan advised her that she would have to make an absolute commitment to the job should she get it, she suggested she "stand down". This allowed Simon and Kristina to proceed to the final.
- Who gets fired:
- Lohit, for being too nice and having the worst CV of the final five. Sir Alan noted that Lohit's firing was overdue, and that he would have been fired two weeks previously if not for Jadine's inability to continue in the process.
- Tre (with regret), for performing poorly in the interviews, and for his argumentative manner and lack of maturity.
- Left: Katie, despite being given a place in the finals, resigned, citing potential difficulties in making childcare arrangements should she be offered the job.
- Finalists: Kristina and Simon.
- In a one-off special, The Apprentice: Why I Fired Them, broadcast a few days later, Sir Alan Sugar expressed his opinion that Katie had never really been interested in working for him but had entered the competition merely for the kudos. He said that he felt he had been hoodwinked, and that if Katie had not voluntarily stood down he would have reversed his decision and fired her after all.
- After the airing of the episode, internet conspiracists believed that Katie's exit from the show was fixed and the segments were re-filmed and edited in later. Although, Simon Ambrose denied that this was the case and that nothing was changed.
- This task was also used in the eleventh week of the first and second series.
Week 12: The Final
- Task: Each of the two finalists, Simon and Kristina, must put together a proposal for the redevelopment of a site currently occupied by the IBM Building on London's South Bank. This site was purchased for £120m by Sir Alan Sugar. The task involves the designing of a major landmark building that is both profit-making and has an iconic design. After each enlisting the help of four of the previously fired candidates, the finalists must then present their ideas to an audience of 100 property, finance and architectural experts, along with Sir Alan Sugar and his assistants Margaret Mountford and Nick Hewer.
- Kristina's team: Kristina (Project Manager), Paul, Naomi, Adam and Natalie.
- Simon's team: Simon (Project Manager), Tre, Jadine, Rory and Lohit.
- Result: Simon proposed "The Wave", an ambitious building with an "organic" design. Kristina offered "The Phoenix", whose name symbolised the regeneration of the site. Both presentations were well received by the experts. In his final boardroom evaluation, Sir Alan contrasted Kristina's experience with Simon's creativity, and said that both candidates were very employable.
- Runner-up: Kristina; despite a largely superior track record in the series and her prior career next to Simon, Sir Alan felt that she had played it a little too safe in the final task.
- Who is hired: Simon, for being more of a risk taker than Kristina, as well as his intelligence and insight on Sir Alan's business background. Sir Alan himself admitted that he was "taking a risk" hiring Simon.
- Notes: A maximum of 7.4 million people watched this episode, achieving more ratings than an episode of Big Brother on Channel 4, but less than Britain's Got Talent on ITV1. The final boardroom scene broadcast was one of two different boardroom showdowns, one for each possible result, that were filmed. Sir Alan then took the two finalists to lunch to tell them who had actually won closer to the airdate.
Criticism and controversy
This series was described as "the most controversial" out of all three series that had been made at the time.
Two candidates, Katie Hopkins and Paul Callaghan, started a romance while competing on the programme. This received much coverage from the tabloid press. This was one of the reasons that Callaghan was fired from the competition, as other candidates complained about the situation, saying that the relationship affected the performance of the team during the tasks.
Candidate Gerri Blackwood claimed that the allocation of showers in the house where the candidates stay appeared to have been manipulated in such a way as to force the female contestants to shower together. She told the Daily Star "One of the bathrooms was used by the film crew, but two of the others were closed off with 'Out of Order' signs on them. That left two bathrooms to share between 16 people. I am not sure whether it was deliberate or not but you can imagine they wanted us to share showers". In her interview, she also claimed that Nick Hewer and Margaret Mountford fed the candidates misleading information so that they would fail the tasks, and that Sir Alan Sugar's boardroom diatribes were re-filmed to make them look better. Fellow candidate Tre Azam also criticised the editing of the programme, claiming he was worried that his portrayal "might have been dumbed down because I made some of the other characters look too weak".
After Paul Callaghan was fired in the sixth episode, wholesale chain Makro and manufacturer Wyke Farms criticised the programme due to the negative comments made about its cheese. In the episode, Sir Alan Sugar verbally blasted Paul for taking the inexpensive products to France to sell. Makro and Wyke Farms claimed that the cheese is very popular in France. Richard Clothier, the Managing Director of Wyke Farms, said "Alan Sugar, you know a lot about electronics, but not that much about cheese, and for that reason, you're fired!".
Several organisations, including the Trades Union Congress, the Liberal Democrats, The Equal Opportunities Commission and the Recruitment and Employment Confederation, accused Alan Sugar of sexism and breaching the 1976 Sex Discrimination act after only questioning contestants Katie Hopkins and Kristina Grimes about their child-care arrangements, despite the fact that male contestant Tre Azam was also a parent (though Hopkins and Grimes were single parents at the time of the interviews, whereas Azam was married). Sugar's questioning, during the eleventh episode, eventually made Hopkins resign from the programme and decline Sugar's initial offer of a chance to compete in the final episode. Although, Sugar defended his actions and told Fiona Phillips of GMTV that he was aware of all rules regarding sexual discrimination within the workplace. The incident was well documented within the media.
Contestant Natalie Wood complained about a situation with Adrian Chiles, host of The Apprentice spin-off programme, The Apprentice: You're Fired!. Chiles, who has a distinctive Birmingham accent, asked Wood on the spin-off programme whether her Essex accent had been a hindrance. "But how can you pick up on my accent when Sir Alan is sitting across the table," commented Wood. "How can he say that? Essex is fantastic and I'm proud to come from Essex. A lot of people from Essex are very successful. I find it hard to swallow."
The Apprentice: Beyond the Boardroom
This was a one-off special shown on BBC Two on 2 June 2007. The programme featured interviews with the final five candidates from this series. Nick Hewer and Margaret Mountford also gave their opinions on the final five, along with some of the previously fired candidates. The programme spoke about the candidates' private lives, revealing that Kristina Grimes was sent to a convent at age 17 due to her pregnancy, Tre Azam once fell asleep whilst driving and nearly died, Simon Ambrose was bullied as a child and has an IQ of 174, Katie Hopkins ran the New York Marathon despite knowing that she was pregnant and that Lohit Kalburgi is a homosexual. Friends of the candidates and members of their families, including parents, children and partners, aired their views.
The Apprentice: Why I Fired Them
This one-off special was screened on BBC Two on 10 June 2007, three days before the revelation of the winner of this series of The Apprentice. In the programme Sir Alan Sugar looked back over the series so far, discussed the merits and demerits of the candidates, and explained in more detail why he fired each candidate when he did. The episode featured the former participants' views of their time on the programme and what they had learnt from the experience. Sugar's assistants Nick Hewer and Margaret Mountford also spoke about the former contestants. At the end of the programme, Sugar reviewed the performances of the two finalists, Kristina Grimes and Simon Ambrose, and said that deciding who to hire would be difficult. Despite voluntarily leaving rather than being "fired", Katie Hopkins also featured on the programme and her time on The Apprentice was discussed.
As a result of winning The Apprentice, Simon Ambrose started work on a project to develop a hotel and golfing complex near Stansted Airport, whilst training as a chartered surveyor. Runner-up Kristina Grimes was offered a job by Sir Alan, but decided to work as an investment sales director with property company Dandara instead. Katie Hopkins, who finished in third place, was sacked from her job as a global brand consultant at The Met Office as a result of her appearance on the programme. Hopkins is taking the organisation to an employment tribunal. Jadine Johnson went on to be head hunted by millionaire Simon Johnson (no relation) of Watford, Hertfordshire and started an extremely successful Debt Management company turning over more than 1.5 million in the first year - she now runs her own businesses. Candidate Adam Hosker left his job at a car dealership in order to work as a sales director. Other contestants have started their own businesses, such as Natalie Wood, and Naomi Lay and have expressed interest in becoming television presenters. Both Hopkins and Grimes have been offered to participate on I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here!. Hopkins accepted the offer and became a late arrival on the 7th series, but was voted off second. Tre Azam has appeared on Big Brother's Big Mouth. Three candidates from this series, Katie Hopkins, Tre Azam and Kristina Grimes, appeared on the apprentice version of the weakest link. There was still noticeable animosity between Katie and Kristina, whom were questioned and criticised by presented Anne Robinson. Kristina proceeded to the final though was beaten by series two candidate Jo Cameron after she failed to get anything correct.
|Episode No.||Airdate||Total Viewers
|BBC One Weekly Ranking|
|1||28 March 2007||4.50||19|
|2||4 April 2007||4.98||16|
|3||11 April 2007||5.31||17|
|4||18 April 2007||5.68||10|
|5||25 April 2007||5.46||14|
|6||2 May 2007||5.68||11|
|7||9 May 2007||5.92||9|
|8||16 May 2007||6.05||11|
|9||23 May 2007||4.99||18|
|10||30 May 2007||5.23||12|
|11||6 June 2007||6.60||8|
|12||13 June 2007||7.09||5|
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