World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

The Apprentice (UK TV series)

The Apprentice
Genre Reality game show
Created by Mark Burnett
Narrated by Mark Halliley
Theme music composer Dru Masters[1]
Opening theme "Dance of the Knights" by Prokofiev
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of series 11
No. of episodes 124
Running time 60 minutes
Production company(s) Talkback and Mark Burnett Productions (2005)
Talkback Thames and Mark Burnett Productions (2006–11)
Boundless and Mark Burnett Productions (2012–13)
Boundless and United Artists Media Group (2014–)
Distributor FremantleMedia
Original channel BBC Two (2005–06)
BBC One (2007–)
Picture format 16:9 (1080i HDTV)
Original release 16 February 2005 (2005-02-16) – present
Related shows The Apprentice (US version)
The Apprentice (Irish version)
The Apprentice: You're Fired!
Young Apprentice
External links

The Apprentice is a British reality game show in which a group of aspiring businessmen and women compete for the chance to win a £250,000 investment from British business magnate, Alan Sugar, towards a business of the candidate's creation, with Sugar as a 50% owner. Between series one to six, the prize was originaly a £100,000-a-year job as an "apprentice" to Sugar, and winners went on to work at Amstrad, an electronics manufacturing company founded by Sugar (but since sold to BSkyB),[2][3] or one of Sugar's other companies, Viglen,[4] Amsprop[5] or Amshold.[6] The show, billed as a "job interview from hell", is very similar in format to the American series of the same name, which starred entrepreneur Donald Trump.[7] Both American and British versions of The Apprentice are produced by Mark Burnett.

Both the first and second series aired on BBC Two in 2005 and 2006 respectively, before the third series was aired on BBC One in early 2007,[8] the success of which led the BBC to commission two more series.[9] The fourth series began in March 2008, and the fifth series in March 2009. These were then followed by the sixth series in October 2010, the seventh series in May 2011, the eighth series in March 2012, the ninth series in May 2013, and the tenth series in October 2014. An eleventh series commenced airing on 14 October 2015.[10]

The programme has spawned three spin-offs, The Apprentice: You're Fired! (a studio-based programme which acts as a companion to the regular series), plus celebrity versions for Comic Relief and Sport Relief.[11][12] Occasional 60-minute special episodes, often concentrating on particular candidates and their stories, also air.[13] Apprentice-related merchandising includes a magazine, podcast, and official books.[13][14][15] The programme has led other production companies to produce shows that follow a similar format, including Tycoon, Beat the Boss,[16][17] and Election. It has also been compared to another BBC series, Dragons' Den.[18]


  • Format 1
    • Candidate selection 1.1
    • Tasks 1.2
    • Boardroom 1.3
    • Interviews 1.4
    • Final 1.5
    • Schedule 1.6
  • Series overview 2
    • Series One (2005) 2.1
    • Series Two (2006) 2.2
    • Series Three (2007) 2.3
    • Series Four (2008) 2.4
    • Series Five (2009) 2.5
    • Series Six (2010) 2.6
    • Series Seven (2011) 2.7
    • Series Eight (2012) 2.8
    • Series Nine (2013) 2.9
    • Series Ten (2014) 2.10
    • Series Eleven (2015) 2.11
  • Criticism of process 3
  • Subsequent activity of winning candidates 4
    • Series One 4.1
    • Series Two 4.2
    • Series Three 4.3
    • Series Four 4.4
    • Series Five 4.5
    • Series Six 4.6
    • Series Seven 4.7
    • Series Eight 4.8
    • Series Nine 4.9
    • Series Ten 4.10
  • The Board 5
  • Series records and statistics 6
  • Filming locations 7
  • Related programmes 8
    • The Apprentice: You're Fired! 8.1
    • The Apprenticast 8.2
    • Comic Relief Does The Apprentice 8.3
    • Sport Relief Does The Apprentice 8.4
    • Young Apprentice 8.5
    • Special programmes 8.6
      • One-Offs 8.6.1
      • Series 8.6.2
  • Reception 9
    • Praise 9.1
    • Criticism 9.2
    • Viewing figures 9.3
    • Awards 9.4
    • Parodies and imitations 9.5
  • Merchandise 10
    • YouTube releases 10.1
  • Transmissions 11
    • Series 11.1
    • Specials 11.2
  • References 12
  • External links 13


Candidate selection

Open auditions and interviews are held across the country before a series begins,[19] attracting thousands of applicants.[20] About 75 candidates are called back for a second round in London, for assessment in groups, asked to do various exercises to test their business skills and how they work in a team. After this, between 20 to 30 candidates are assessed by a psychologist, references are taken and other checks made. It is from this group that the final line-up is chosen.[21] The first and second series featured 14 candidates of men and women, increased to 16 from the third series onwards, until the eleventh series when it was decided this would be increased to 18. The fifth series would have had 16 candidates, but a last-minute withdrawal led to it going ahead with only 15.[22] The BBC Comedy website published a spoof video at the beginning of Series 6 revealing more about the candidate selection process. Series 10 featured 20 candidates; the highest number of any variation.[23]


The successful candidates are split into two teams, initially by gender, with each team discussing and picking a name for themselves throughout the process (until the Interview stage). The teams are then given a series of business-themed tasks designed to test their skills in salesmanship, negotiation, requisitioning, leadership, teamwork and organisation, with each episode covering a single task. At the start of each episode, the teams each choose a project manager to act as the team leader for the duration of the task,[24] though in later episodes the project managers are sometimes nominated or suggested by Sugar himself. As candidate numbers are whittled down, the teams are periodically rearranged by Sugar, either to balance the numbers, ensure a fair distribution of skills for a specific task, or to give less vocal candidates a chance to demonstrate their abilities.

Each team is followed by two television crews and is provided with two vehicles to drive them between locations when required. As such they are only permitted to split into two sub-teams and no more. In reality most business teams would work together cohesively and would be pulling together in the same direction. However given that the candidates are also direct rivals with their teammates for the same prize, many of them understandably focus more on their individual roles and needs than the greater good of the team. In addition to the crews and vehicles, they are also followed in the execution of their tasks by Lord Sugar's advisers, who note down their opinions and thoughts on how they execute the task for later reference in the boardroom.[25]

The show notably does not often adhere to a realistic nature in terms of the actual business world, and the tasks themselves, in reality, are significantly more difficult than they appear when they are televised, for a few reasons:

  • The candidates must adhere to very strict time constraints, which would not be enforced in the real business world. One example is that each series has a task in which candidates are required to design a product and pitch it to retailers within 2 days; in reality they would have several months to perform this.
  • On each task, candidates are usually provided with detailed dossiers which outline further guidelines that they must work under, i.e. cost restrictions when designing products, locations in which they are not permitted to sell or purchase goods, themes, ingredients or materials that they may use etc.
  • In tasks where candidates want to buy goods from or sell goods to certain stores and/or establishments, the production crew must first receive filming permission from the respective owners. This can be a cumbersome and time consuming process that may influence the results of tasks, especially during the one day scavenger hunt task when candidates must purchase a specified number of items within a strict time limit.
  • Candidates are usually not allowed to use the internet during tasks, and will have handed in their mobile phones to the production team at the start of the process. This increases the difficulty of determining suitable locations, appropriate pricing structures etc.
  • As tasks that are completed over 2–3 days are edited down to approximately 30 minutes when televised, numerous candidates may appear to make minimal contributions in them. However, if candidates do not feature prominently in these final edits, but are also not shown to be accused of staying under the radar by Sugar or his advisers, it can usually be assumed that they have completed their duties in a successful and professional manner, and that this has not been deemed as entertaining enough to be broadcast.
  • The persistent presence of television cameras when candidates are working intensifies the pressure on them, with their mistakes usually emphasised more during the final edits than the duties that they have performed well.

Owing to the fact that tasks are held back to back and not once a week, as indicated by the broadcast schedule, the process is extremely gruelling for candidates. The result of this usually leads to them working considerably long hours and suffering from a lack of sleep and food on task days, often owing to the fact that could start very early on in the morning and finishing well after midnight with minimal time for breaks. As candidates are usually only allowed one phone call home each week, and are living in the same house as their direct rivals for the same prize, this can further increase the stress that they are under during tasks.


After completion of a task, the Interview stage, or the finals, the teams/remaining candidates report back to the "boardroom", a studio mock-up of a real company boardroom, usually after the completion, or the following day.[26] Once in the boardroom, Lord Sugar, with the help of his advisers, reveals the results of what they went through and discusses about their performance, often exposing flaws in the candidates' strategies and personalities. Sugar, who is introduced in the programme as "Britain's most belligerent boss",[27] frequently delivers scathing criticisms couched in colourful language ("This was a total bloody disaster" ... "you haven't got a bloody clue" ... "I'll fire the whole bloody lot of you if I have to"); this is not the case for candidates in Young Apprentice. The boardroom is usually divided up into three stages:

  • Stage 1: Each team are asked to comment on their performance in the task, often through the project manager, but also through team members. Both Sugar and his advisers often gives out some criticism or praise in this stage about what happened in the team's execution of the task; if the task involved the creation of a new product and/or a advert, they also review what was created. After this, Sugar and his assistants reveal which team has won, often giving out a result of figures (sales, orders, etc) to prove this. Members of the winning team are then told by Sugar that he has laid on a special treat for them such as a dinner at a fancy restaurant or a music recital, and they leave the boardroom. The losing team are dispatched outside the boardroom to discuss amongst themselves about their failures in the task, usually convening at the Bridge Café to do so.
  • Stage 2: The losing team are subjected to a detailed review of their performance, sometimes humiliating, with the PM and team members often discussing/arguing about how well they did, what mistakes could have been avoided, who they feel is to blame for their failure, often with Sugar and his advisers interject with their own opinions, either agreeing or disagreeing with an argument, pointing out things they felt was wrong, who they felt did good, and any feedback made by outside parties connected to the task. After discussions on the task, Sugar asks the team's project manager to choose two team members to accompany him or her into a final round of interrogation, which are normally the two poorest performing members of the team, yet the project manager may act treacherously, and either seek to remove more able members of the competition or make choices based on personality. Those not picked are sent back to the house, while the "final three" are told to wait outside the boardroom.
  • Stage 3: Sugar and his advisers discuss about the final three in regards to performance in the process, relations to the other candidates, and any strong/poor points to them, before they are let back into the boardroom to discuss why they should not be fired by Sugar. These discussions often become acrimonious as each candidate tries to divert blame towards the others, and can sometimes lead to heated arguments. The discussion ends with Lord Sugar giving a quick review of what he and his advisers thought of each candidate's performance in the task and the process, before dismissing one or in some cases two of the three from the process (in extremely rare cases, he has fired all three), with the catchphrase "You're fired!", at which point that candidate is eliminated from the competition (if more than one is fired, each receives the catchphrase separately).[24][28] The fired candidate(s) then leaves and departs in a waiting taxi for the 'journey home', where they are briefly interviewed in the taxi to reflect on his or her rejection from the competition. Sugar then sends the surviving candidate(s) back to the accommodation provided for the duration of the show.

There are some changes to these stages for specfic points in the competition:

  • For boardrooms that occur after the "Interview" stage, the boardroom sequence consists of just two of these stages, sometimes merged together - Stage 1 & 3 - in which Sugar reviews feedback from the Interviewers, before choosing who is "fired" and who moves on into the final (with the exception of Series 7 & 8, when the Interviews were the final task). In some cases, a tough decision between two remaining candidates of who moves on and who is eliminated will result in them being sent out to give Sugar and his advisers time to discuss on their performance throughout the process before a final decision.
  • For boardrooms that occur after the final task, the remaining candidates (usually two) argue on why they should be hired, before Sugar informs which has won with the line "You're hired!", upon which the winner departs in Lord Sugar's limousine to reflect on his or her success in the competition.

In some cases, the firing of a candidate might not occur in the usual fashion. In the seventh episode of Series 4, Sugar fired one candidate before the final boardroom, and then asked one team member to return to the house, effectively choosing who would accompany the Project Manager into the boardroom himself, while in the second episode of series 10, Sugar fired one candidate immediately after the results announcement, before allowing the losing team to leave the boardroom, with another regular firing taking place. In the fourth episode of Series 1, one candidate resigned without being brought back to the boardroom, effectively terminating the boardroom.[24]

The scenes where candidates are grilled by Sugar in the boardroom usually last for several hours. This often means that the boardroom sequence in its 3 stages could take the best part of a full day to complete, further adding to the show's gruelling schedule.


When only four candidates remain in the process (in some cases five), each undergoes an individual set of interviews with selection of trusted aides of Lord Sugar, whose feedback after the interviews usually results in whom Sugar selects to be his two finalists; there has only been one instance in the show's history where the feedback given was used by Lord Sugar to fire one of five candidates that he considered weakest.[29]

The interviews usually see each candidate being questioned and grilled about any brash or controversial statements that they have included on their application forms and CVs during the selection process; rather ironically, they are usually encouraged to make such outlandish claims, as failing to do so in their application would lead it to being rejected for being too bland and dull. In addition, they are also questioned about their performance during the process. Because of the change of format and the prize offered since the seventh series, an additional part of the interview questions the surviving candidate's business plans, including any issues with it, flaws about it, and whether the candidate's skills and experience and reasoning make them sound for Lord Sugar to invest in.


     Currently stars
     Previously starred
Starring Series 1 Series 2 Series 3 Series 4 Series 5 Series 6 Series 7 Series 8 Series 9 Series 10
Claude Littner
Mike Soutar
Claudine Collins
Ricky Martin
Nick Hewer
Paul Kemsley
Karren Brady
Bordan Tkachuk
Alan Watts
Matthew Riley
Margaret Mountford


In the original format, these two proceed to the Final and perform one last task with teams chosen from the previously fired contestants, after which one is told, "You're hired!", and wins the highly paid executive job working with Lord Sugar.[24] The person to be hired is not always the person who won the final task, as the decision is based on all the tasks. In fact, two versions of the final boardroom sequence are filmed—showing each of the finalists winning. Between filming and transmission—a period of about six months—both finalists work for Lord Sugar in temporary jobs. Lord Sugar does not reveal his decision about whom he is going to hire until shortly before transmission, and this determines which ending is shown. The BBC has issued contradictory statements about the decision procedure. The first version of events is that Lord Sugar makes his decision on the day that the final boardroom sequence is filmed, based on the contestants' performance in the final task, and keeps it secret until just before transmission.[30] The second version is that Lord Sugar decides after the six-month trial period.[31] Former contestant Saira Khan also stated that "His final decision is not based on the programme that people see. His final decision is based on these two people [who] have been working with him for the six months."[32]

Owing to the change in the prize from series seven, series seven and eight moved the "interview" round to the final; the penultimate week instead utilises a task similar to the previous final episodes, but with five candidates still in the process and no returning contestants.[33] In the ninth series, the interviews round was moved back to the penultimate episode, with the final having the two candidates attempting to set up their businesses, and then presenting their proposed plan and brand to a group of industry experts. Young Apprentice did not include an interview week, and continued to feature returning candidates in the final task.

In Series 4 of the main programme, and Series 1 and 3 of Young Apprentice, the format for the final was slightly different: instead of two, there were four contestants in the final, with each team having two joint project managers. At the end, the project managers of the losing team were automatically fired, leaving Sugar to choose which of the remaining two contestants can win. The reason for this in Series 4 was because Sugar could not separate the final 4 candidates, and therefore decided to have them all undergo the last challenge.


Unlike most reality television programmes, the whole of The Apprentice is pre-recorded; typically the series is shot during the autumn for transmission the following year. The candidates live together in a large rented house or apartment for the duration of the competition.[34] Owing to the twelve-week broadcast schedule, the audience is given the impression that the candidates stay for 12 weeks in the house and that there are breaks between tasks. The series is actually filmed in about two months(8 weeks),[31] and the filming schedule means that the tasks are generally performed one after the other.[35]

Compared to the US series, the British version has a more rigid format that requires twelve episodes per series and at least four candidates for the final round of interviews. This meant that in the first two series multiple firings were not allowed at all, a fact that was acknowledged in the second series when Lord Sugar expressed his desire to fire both Alexa Tilley and Syed Ahmed, but could only get rid of the former. In subsequent series, this was changed to allow Lord Sugar to conduct double firings where needed, with greater freedom for multiple firings when 20 candidates were introduced in the tenth series; in some episodes, Sugar performs a treble firing, which often occurs in the interview weeks when more than four candidates are involved, and has only happened once outside of interviews in the show's history, during the fourth episode of Series 10. The highest number of candidates Sugar has fired in one episode is four, and was during the penultimate episode of the second series of Young Apprentice; at the start of the task there were six candidates remaining, but Lord Sugar informed them that only two would proceed to the final, as the entire losing team and one member of the winning team would be fired.

Series overview

Series Premiere date Finale date The Board Honour places Average viewers
Head Left Advisor Right Advisor Winner Runner Up
1 16 February 2005 11 May 2005 Lord Alan Sugar Nick Hewer Margaret Mountford Tim Campbell Saira Khan 2.60 BBC Two
2 22 February 2006 10 May 2006 Michelle Dewberry Ruth Badger 4.43
3 28 March 2007 13 June 2007 Simon Ambrose Kristina Grimes 5.62 BBC One
4 26 March 2008 11 June 2008 Lee McQueen Claire Young 7.29
5 25 March 2009 7 June 2009 Yasmina Siadatan Kate Walsh 8.37
6 6 October 2010 19 December 2010 Baroness Karren Brady Stella English Chris Bates 7.87
7 10 May 2011 17 July 2011 Tom Pellereau Helen Milligan 8.80
8 21 March 2012 3 June 2012 Ricky Martin Tom Gearing 7.35
9 7 May 2013 17 July 2013 Leah Totton Luisa Zissman 7.34
10 14 October 2014 21 December 2014 Mark Wright Bianca Miller 7.40
11 14 October 2015 2015 Claude Littner
The Apprentice
The Board

Lord Sugar
Nick Hewer (series 1–10)
Margaret Mountford (series 1–5)
Karren Brady (series 6–)
Claude Littner (series 11–)

Series One

Hired: Tim Campbell

Runner-up: Saira Khan

Other candidates: Paul, James, Miriam, Raj, Ben, Sebastian, Rachel, Matthew, Adele, Miranda, Lindsay, Adenike

Series Two

Hired: Michelle Dewberry

Runner-up: Ruth Badger

Other candidates: Ansell, Paul, Syed, Tuan, Sharon, Samuel, Jo, Mani, Alexa, Karen, Nargis, Ben

Series Three

Hired: Simon Ambrose

Runner-up: Kristina Grimes

Other candidates: Katie, Tre, Lohit, Naomi, Jadine, Ghazal, Adam, Paul, Natalie, Sophie, Gerri, Rory, Ifti, Andy

Series Four

Hired: Lee McQueen

Runner-up: Claire Young

Other candidates: Helene, Alex, Lucinda, Michael, Raef, Sara, Jennifer, Jenny, Kevin, Lindi, Simon, Ian, Shazia, Nicholas

Series Five

Hired: Yasmina Siadatan

Runner-up: Kate Walsh

Other candidates: Debra, Lorraine, James, Howard, Ben, Mona, Philip, Noorul, Kimberly, Paula, Majid, Rocky, Anita, Adam

Series Six

Hired: Stella English

Runner-up: Chris Bates

Other candidates: Jamie, Joanna, Stuart, Liz, Laura, Christopher, Sandeesh, Alex, Paloma, Melissa, Shibby, Joy, Raleigh, Dan

Series Seven

Hired / Business Partner: Thomas Pellereau

Runner-up: Helen Milligan

Other Candidates: Susan, Jim, Natasha, Melody, Zoe, Leon, Glen, Edna, Vincent, Ellie, Felicity, Gavin, Alex, Edward

Series Eight

Hired / Business Partner: Ricky Martin

Runner-up: Tom Gearing

Other Candidates: Nick, Jade, Adam, Stephen, Gabrielle, Jenna, Laura, Azhar, Katie, Duane, Jane, Michael, Maria, Bilyana

Series Nine

Hired / Business Partner: Leah Totton

Runner-up: Luisa Zissman

Other candidates: Francesca, Neil, Jordan, Myles, Alex, Jason, Natalie, Kurt, Rebecca, Zeeshaan, Uzma, Sophie, Tim, Jaz

Series Ten

Hired / Business Partner: Mark Wright

Runner-up: Bianca Miller

Other candidates: Daniel, Roisin, Solomon, Sanjay, Katie, Felipe, James, Lauren, Pamela, Jemma, Ella Jade, Sarah, Steven, Nurun, Lindsay, Scott, Robert, Chiles

Series One (2005)

Rumours of a UK version of The Apprentice were confirmed in early 2004 by

External links

  1. ^ Masters, Dru. "Dru Masters". Retrieved 30 July 2007. 
  2. ^ "First Day at the Office for the New Apprentice" (Press release).  
  3. ^ "Apprentice TV winner to be chosen". BBC News. 4 May 2005. Retrieved 11 May 2007. 
  4. ^ Taylor, Matthew (30 September 2006). "Michelle Dewberry quits Viglen to start her own company". London: Guardian. Retrieved 31 August 2007. 
  5. ^ "Q&A: Does Sky deal mean end for Amstrad?". BBC News. 31 July 2007. Retrieved 31 August 2007. 
  6. ^ "The Apprentice – Notes to Editors", BBC Press Office, 17 March 2009
  7. ^ a b "Tycoon Sugar heads reality show". BBC News. 19 May 2004. Retrieved 11 May 2007. 
  8. ^ a b "Boardroom blitz! Baron Sugar raises the bar as The Apprentice moves to BBC One" (Press release). BBC Press Office. 20 March 2007. Retrieved 23 April 2007. 
  9. ^ a b "Apprentice gets two more series". BBC News. 18 May 2007. Retrieved 18 May 2007. 
  10. ^ Walker-Arnott, Ellie (7 October 2014). "The Apprentice series 11 is already in production".  
  11. ^ "Adrian Chiles". Speakers Corner. Retrieved 30 July 2007. 
  12. ^ a b Needham, Alex (13 March 2007). "Comic Relief Does The Apprentice? Bring it on!". London: Guardian. Retrieved 30 July 2007. 
  13. ^ a b "The Apprentice – series two – starts 9.00 pm on Wednesday 22 February 2006 on BBC TWO" (Press release). BBC Press Office. 7 February 2006. Retrieved 30 July 2007. 
  14. ^ a b "The Official Apprentice Magazine". At Home Magazines. Retrieved 16 May 2007. 
  15. ^ a b Plunkett, John (6 June 2007). "The Apprentice – series three, episode 11". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 24 July 2007. 
  16. ^ Wright, Mark (20 June 2007). "Tycoon a Turn Off".  
  17. ^ "Saira Khan to front new CBBC series Beat the Boss" (Press release). BBC Press Office. 26 April 2006. Retrieved 30 July 2007. 
  18. ^ Keating, Roly (14 November 2005). "The Rebirth of Business Television – speech given at Enterprise Britain Summit '05". BBC Press office. Retrieved 30 July 2007. 
  19. ^ McCaffrey, Julie (27 March 2007). "The Day I Tried To Become The Apprentice".  
  20. ^ "On your marks...". BBC One. Archived from the original on 15 March 2008. Retrieved 16 May 2007. 
  21. ^ "The Workings of the Apprentice".  
  22. ^ a b "The Apprentice's Contestants".  
  23. ^ "The Apprentice Selection Process". 29 September 2010. Retrieved 1 October 2010. 
  24. ^ a b c d "The Apprentice – Background". What's On TV. 2007. Retrieved 23 April 2007. 
  25. ^ Wollaston, Sam (28 March 2007). "Spying for Sir Alan". London: Guardian. Retrieved 23 April 2007. 
  26. ^ a b Asthana, Anushka (8 May 2005). "Interview: Jasper Gerard meets Tim Campbell".  
  27. ^ The Apprentice series four opening sequences.
  28. ^ "Exit Rory and Ifti". BBC. Archived from the original on 26 April 2007. Retrieved 14 May 2007. 
  29. ^ " 
  30. ^ "The Workings of The Apprentice". BBC. Archived from the original on 24 April 2009. Retrieved 10 June 2009. 
  31. ^ a b Lane, Megan (7 June 2007). "10 things about the apprentices". BBC News. Retrieved 4 August 2007. 
  32. ^ "The Apprentice's growing success", BBC News, 10 May 2006
  33. ^ "The Apprentice 2011: Why the final wil be very different this year". New Magazine. New. Retrieved 5 July 2011. 
  34. ^ " 
  35. ^ The Apprentice': Adam Hosker"'". DigitalSpy. 2007. Retrieved 16 May 2007. 
  36. ^ The Apprentice' coming to UK"'".  
  37. ^ "BBC Two favourite to win 'Apprentice' rights".  
  38. ^ a b "Talkback confirms Apprentice UK star".  
  39. ^ Randall, Jeff (27 February 2009). "The Apprentice is to real business what Monopoly is to property". London: Telegraph. Retrieved 22 May 2009. 
  40. ^ Byrne, Cormac (30 November 2009). "How Mick told Marian (on her own show) that he'd chop her holidays". Evening Herald. Retrieved 22 December 2009. 
  41. ^ "'"Slow ratings start for 'The Apprentice.  
  42. ^ "Transport manager wins Apprentice". BBC News. 4 May 2005. Retrieved 10 May 2007. 
  43. ^ "First Apprentice winner quits job". BBC News. 21 March 2007. Retrieved 16 May 2007. 
  44. ^ Bright Ideas Trust. "Bright Ideas Trust". Bright Ideas Trust. Retrieved 9 December 2012. 
  45. ^ "Breaking News – "APPRENTICE UK" WILL START AIRING 25 AUGUST ON CNBC". The Futon Critic. 7 August 2008. Retrieved 22 May 2009. 
  46. ^ "BBC's 'Apprentice' gets second series".  
  47. ^ "'"Confirmed: Sugar to return for second 'Apprentice.  
  48. ^ "'"Spinoff show planned for next UK 'Apprentice.  
  49. ^ a b "Apprentice banks record ratings". BBC News. 11 May 2006. Retrieved 10 May 2007. 
  50. ^ "Ex-cashier wins TV's Apprentice". BBC News. 10 May 2006. Retrieved 11 May 2006. 
  51. ^ "Apprentice winner quits prize job". BBC News. 24 September 2006. Retrieved 28 September 2006. 
  52. ^ a b "Commissioning – BBC ONE". BBC. Archived from the original on 19 May 2007. Retrieved 16 May 2007. 
  53. ^ "The Apprentice moves to BBC One". BBC News. 25 August 2006. Retrieved 10 May 2007. 
  54. ^ Robb, Stephen (3 April 2007). "Back in Apprentice's firing line". BBC News. Retrieved 12 May 2007. 
  55. ^ "Weekly Top 30 Programmes (week ending 1 April 2007)". BARB. Archived from the original on 18 April 2007. Retrieved 16 May 2007. 
  56. ^ a b c Schmidt, Veronica (14 June 2007). "Simon 'shocked' at Apprentice win". London: Times Online. Retrieved 5 August 2007. 
  57. ^ Apprentice' final brings in 6.8m"'".  
  58. ^ "You can reach goals with tough-talking". Evening Times. 9 July 2007. Archived from the original on 16 July 2009. Retrieved 25 July 2007. 
  59. ^ "The Apprentice – Do you think you could be Sir Alan's next Apprentice?".  
  60. ^ "The Apprentice Series 4 online application form".  
  61. ^ "The Apprentice – Let the boardroom battle commence!", BBC Press Office, 18 March 2008
  62. ^ "The Apprentice Ep 1/12". BBC Press Office. Archived from the original on 11 March 2008. Retrieved 27 March 2008. 
  63. ^ "So you think you can be Sir Alan's next Apprentice?".  
  64. ^ a b Conlan, Tara (12 June 2008). "First-night record for The Apprentice". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 27 March 2008. 
  65. ^ a b Conlan, Tara (12 June 2008). "TV ratings: Apprentice final attracts show's highest audience". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 14 June 2008. 
  66. ^ Margaret Mountford quits 'The Apprentice' Digital Spy, 6 June 2009
  67. ^ Karren Brady hired for Apprentice BBC News, 30 August 2009
  68. ^ Sir Alan hired in government role BBC News, 5 June 2009
  69. ^ Sir Alan to keep Apprentice role BBC News, 18 June 2009
  70. ^ Apprentice delayed until summer BBC News, 10 November 2009
  71. ^ "The Apprentice: back on Wednesday 6 October". Radio Times. 22 September 2010. Archived from the original on 3 December 2010. 
  72. ^ Ian Tucker Karren Brady: In a league of her own The Observer, 6 June 2010
  73. ^ Karren Brady: 'I love The Apprentice, it's one of the best experiences of my life' The Observer, 28 February 2010
  74. ^ John Coles (2 October 2010). "Apprentice 'fraud' fired for net porn".  
  75. ^ Osman Baig (30 September 2010). "Apprentice Star On Bail Over Suspected Fraud".  
  76. ^ "Apprentice man Christopher Farrell in fraud probe".  
  77. ^ Crick, Andy; Gilbert, Helen (1 October 2010). "Sugar baddies".  
  78. ^ "Second Apprentice contestant's criminal past revealed: Joanna Riley convicted of racial abuse".   Stelle English beat Chris Bates in the final
  79. ^ "BBC One – The Apprentice". 13 June 2012. Retrieved 14 July 2012. 
  80. ^ "Alan Sugar confirms start date of The Apprentice 2012 on BBC One – mocks long time rival Piers Morgan!". Unreality TV. 10 March 2012. Retrieved 10 March 2012. 
  81. ^ "Former wrestler Ricky Martin wins The Apprentice – Telegraph".  
  82. ^ "Next series of The Apprentice pushed back until autumn 2014 to avoid clashing with World Cup, Lord Sugar confirms". Mirror Online (Trinity Mirror). 29 October 2013. Retrieved 30 June 2014. 
  83. ^ "The Apprentice 2014 - The battle to become Lord Sugar’s business partner is bigger than ever". BBC Media Centre. 7 October 2014. Retrieved 13 October 2014. 
  84. ^ What happens after you win The Apprentice? Past protégés describe the unique experience of working for Lord Sugar - Features - TV & Radio - The Independent
  85. ^ McQuaid, Darius (19 July 2011). "The Apprentice, fated or flawed?".  
  86. ^ Job a sham
  87. ^ Judd, Terri (12 April 2013). Tantamount to blackmail': Apprentice winner Stella English is the loser over dismissal claim"'". London: The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 9 May 2013. 
  88. ^ "First Apprentice winner quits job". BBC News. 21 March 2007. 
  89. ^ Taylor, Matthew (2 October 2006). "'"Four months after Sir Alan said: 'You're hired', Apprentice star tells him: 'I'm off. The Guardian (London). 
  90. ^ "Apprentice winner Simon Ambrose quits Sir Alan Sugar's firm to go it alone". Daily Mail (London). 28 April 2010. 
  91. ^ "Apprentice 'off ill' on first day". BBC News. 2 July 2008. 
  92. ^ Gary O'Shea (1 July 2010). "Now that's what I'm talking in public about".  
  93. ^ Todd, Ben; Nathan, Sara (24 February 2012). "Apprentice winner Yasmina Siadatan quits Lord Alan Sugar's business empire – after falling pregnant for a second time". Daily Mail (London). 
  94. ^ Roche, Elisa (23 December 2010). "Apprentice Winner Stella English Engaged to Scaffolder".  
  95. ^ "An ice cold Stella for Lord Sugar". London:  
  96. ^ Jefferies, Mark (28 May 2011). "The Apprentice winner Stella English demands a new job from Lord Alan Sugar – and gets it".  
  97. ^ Henry, Julie (18 February 2012). "Apprentice winner Stella English to sue Lord Sugar". The Daily Telegraph (London). 
  98. ^ "Apprentice winner Stella English loses case against Lord Sugar". The Guardian (London). 12 April 2012. 
  99. ^ "Home". Tom Pellereau. Retrieved 14 July 2012. 
  100. ^ Stylfile: Nail Care Innovation from Tom Pellereau and Lord Sugar
  101. ^ "Lord Sugar and latest Apprentice Ricky Martin launch Hyper Recruitment Solutions". Recruiter. 24 October 2012. 
  102. ^ McNally, Kelby. I feel so lucky!' The Apprentice winner Dr Leah Totton opens her first botox clinic"'". Express. Retrieved 29 March 2014. 
  103. ^ "Dr Leah Totton | Skin Care Clinics | Rejuvenation Treatments". Retrieved 29 March 2014. 
  104. ^
  105. ^ "The football millionaires" (PDF). London: Times Online. Retrieved 19 May 2007. 
  106. ^ "Honorary graduates – Sir Alan Sugar".  
  107. ^ "Who's funding who?". BBC News. 19 February 2002. Retrieved 4 August 2007. 
  108. ^ Harding, James (13 June 2007). "Show business". London: Times Online. Retrieved 4 August 2007. 
  109. ^ "BSkyB agrees £125m Amstrad deal". BBC News. 31 July 2007. Retrieved 4 August 2007. 
  110. ^ "Alan Sugar leaves Amstrad", The Register, 2 July 2008
  111. ^ "Alan Sugar is no shareholder idol", Times Online, 1 August 2007
  112. ^ Moore, Joanne (11 May 2006). "Dad tells of pride in Sir Alan’s right hand man".  
  113. ^ Nick Hewer on Twitter: "So farewell Apprentice - it's been 10 yrs of fun working on a worthwhile show but now it's time to file the notebook and throttle back. Bye"
  114. ^ "Nick Hewer to leave The Apprentice". BBC. Retrieved 19 December 2014. 
  115. ^ "Amstrad Board of Directors". Amstrad. Archived from the original on 5 April 2007. Retrieved 16 May 2007. 
  116. ^ "Interview: Margaret Mountford on her last series of The Apprentice". Daily Telegraph (London). 1 June 2009. Retrieved 4 May 2012. 
  117. ^ Cochrane, Kira (15 April 2009). "Margaret Mountford is the only person worth our respect on The Apprentice". London: The Guardian. 
  118. ^ "Sullivan takes control" (reprint).  
  119. ^ Young, Kirsty (30 December 2007). "Karren Brady".  
  120. ^ Ewing, Sarah (2 February 2009). "'"Karren Brady: 'I didn't have a holiday for 13 years.  
  121. ^ Johnston, Ian (30 August 2009). "Birmingham City FC's Karren Brady joins Lord Sugar on The Apprentice".  
  122. ^ "Behind the scenes of the Apprentice". This Is Money. 6 May 2011. 
  123. ^ Tucker, Ian (5 June 2010). "Karren Brady: In a league of her own". London: The Observer. Retrieved 21 March 2012. 
  124. ^ Asthana, Anushka (27 February 2005). "TV house open for business". London: Times Online. Retrieved 31 August 2007. 
  125. ^ "My love for Syed tore me apart". London:  
  126. ^ "Sugar's Trade Secrets".  
  127. ^ "The Apprentice: Behind the scenes with Sir Alan Sugar", Telegraph, 25 March 2008
  128. ^ "Portobello Dock". Retrieved 15 April 2009. 
  129. ^ [2]
  130. ^ "The Apprentice filmed in East Sheen". Retrieved 17 April 2012. 
  131. ^ Marszal, Andrew (3 April 2012). "The Apprentice splashes out on this year's pad". The Daily Telegraph (London). Retrieved 17 April 2012. 
  132. ^ "Apprentice house 2013 most expensive in three years". Retrieved 4 August 2013. 
  133. ^ " 
  134. ^ Rose, Steve (21 March 2012). "Shard star of the Apprentice".  
  135. ^ a b c "Sugar's Trade Secrets".  
  136. ^ a b " 
  137. ^ "Riverside TV Studios". Riverside TV. Retrieved 13 May 2007. 
  138. ^ Pickard, Anna (9 May 2007). "The Apprentice – series three, episode seven". London: Guardian. Retrieved 4 August 2007. 
  139. ^ Pickard, Anna (16 May 2007). "The Apprentice – series three, episode eight". Blogs (London: The Guardian). Retrieved 4 August 2007. 
  140. ^ "The Apprentice on Five Live".  
  141. ^ "The Apprentice on Five Live". Somethin' Else. Archived from the original on 19 July 2007. Retrieved 24 July 2007. 
  142. ^ "BBC One – Winter/Spring 2007" (PDF). BBC One. 12 December 2006. Retrieved 25 July 2007. 
  143. ^  
  144. ^ "Comic Relief Does The Apprentice".  
  145. ^ "Comic Relief appeal raises £40.2m". BBC News. 17 March 2007. Retrieved 31 August 2007. 
  146. ^ a b c "Tim Campbell". What's On TV. Archived from the original on 6 October 2008. Retrieved 25 July 2007. 
  147. ^ "Everett Quits Reality Show After One Day". Contact Music. 16 December 2006. Retrieved 25 July 2007. 
  148. ^ Johns, Ian (16 March 2007). "Celebrity red noses to the grindstone". London: Times Online. Retrieved 12 October 2007. 
  149. ^ "Jonathan Ross: I'll end up on the shopping channel", Telegraph, 11 November 2008
  150. ^ a b Methven, Nicola (5 November 2007). "Hire we go again".  
  151. ^ Banks-Smith, Nancy "Last night's TV", The Guardian, 15 March 2008
  152. ^ "Sport Relief Does The Apprentice". BBC. Archived from the original on 3 March 2008. Retrieved 16 January 2008. 
  153. ^ Teeman, Tim "Sport Relief Does the Apprentice; Wonderland", Times Online, 13 March 2008
  154. ^ "Junior Apprentice ‘provisionally scheduled’ for May 12 premiere". TellyMix. Retrieved 3 May 2010. 
  155. ^ "BBC1 to hunt Junior Apprentice". Broadcast. 21 May 2009. Retrieved 22 May 2009. 
  156. ^ "Press Office – BBC One recommissions Junior Apprentice". BBC. Retrieved 14 July 2012. 
  157. ^ a b Smith, Laura (23 September 2005). "Amstrad warns of falling profits as consumers shun cut-price videophones". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 4 August 2007. 
  158. ^ "The Apprentice: Tim in the Firing Line". mighTyV. Retrieved 13 July 2007. 
  159. ^ "Tim in the Firing Line". The Apprentice. Season 1. Episode 13. 19 February 2006. BBC. BBC Two. 
  160. ^ "Ironing out the wrinkles".  
  161. ^ a b Swan, Melanie (3 June 2007). "Battle for my Baby".  
  162. ^ a b c "Beyond the Boardroom". The Apprentice. Season 3. Episode 13. 2 June 2007. BBC. BBC Two. 
  163. ^ Wright, Mark (8 June 2007). "Square Eyes 8–10 June".  
  164. ^ a b "Why I Fired Them". The Apprentice. Season 3. Episode 14. 10 June 2007. BBC. BBC Two. 
  165. ^ a b c d "The Apprentice – series two – starts 9.00 pm on Wednesday 22 February 2006 on BBC TWO" (Press release). BBC Press Office. 7 February 2006. Retrieved 21 May 2007. 
  166. ^ UK is top European location for entrepreneurs - EY - United Kingdom
  167. ^ Blacker, Terence (27 April 2007). "'"Why I'm not sold on 'The Apprentice. London:  
  168. ^ Methven, Nicola (3 April 2007). "Parky's Sugar Blast".  
  169. ^ a b Jackson, Nick (10 May 2007). "The Apprentice is just good television". London:  
  170. ^ Egere-Cooper, Matilda (10 May 2006). "The Apprentice's growing success". BBC News. Retrieved 10 May 2007. 
  171. ^ "'"Apprentice reject was 'too zany. BBC News. 5 June 2008. Retrieved 22 May 2009. 
  172. ^ "The Apprentice: Lucinda Ledgerwood blog – day 4". Blogs (London: Telegraph). 10 June 2008. Retrieved 22 May 2009. 
  173. ^ "James Max Blog". Blogs. AOL. 2007. Retrieved 22 May 2009. 
  174. ^ Apprentice' star complains about editing"'".  
  175. ^ "Sugar Show's sex shock".  
  176. ^ Key Lessons from Alan Sugar Autobiography ‘What You See Is What You Get’ (page 531), 28 January 2011, retrieved 29 July 2011 
  177. ^ a b Oatts, Joanne (14 May 2007). "'"Concerns over product placement in 'Apprentice.  
  178. ^ Jonathan Corke (31 October 2010). "THE APPRENTICE: YOU'RE FIXED".  
  179. ^ a b c d "The Apprentice hired by BBC ONE" (Press release). BBC Press Office. 25 August 2006. Retrieved 10 May 2007. 
  180. ^ Wilkes, Neil (8 May 2005). Apprentice' finale draws almost 4 million"'".  
  181. ^ Wilkes, Neil (19 April 2007). Apprentice' ratings hit new high"'".  
  182. ^ "Weekly Top 30 Programmes Weekly Viewing Summary – w/e 18 March 2007".  
  183. ^
  184. ^ "BAFTA Nominees and Winners in the 2000s" (PDF).  
  185. ^ "This year's nominations".  
  186. ^ James Welsh (20 May 2007). "In full: BAFTA winners list". Digital Spy. Retrieved 21 May 2007. 
  187. ^ "The Apprentice: notes to editors" (Press release). BBC Press Office. 28 September 2010. 
  188. ^  
  189. ^ "Dead Ringers Episode Guide-Series 5, Episode 2". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 18 May 2007. 
  190. ^ Gill, AA (4 March 2007). "How does sir like his TV? Overcooked?".  
  191. ^ "You're Fir3d". Steve and Mike Boleg. 2006. Retrieved 18 May 2007. 
  192. ^ "Have I Got News For You: Promotional trailer".  
  193. ^ Rumbelow, Helen (20 June 2007). "Last night's TV". London: Times Online. Retrieved 31 August 2007. 
  194. ^ Conlan, Tara (3 July 2007). ITV are copycats,' says BBC"'". London: The Guardian. Retrieved 17 October 2007. 
  195. ^ Oatts, Joanne (7 July 2007). "'"Peter Jones and the 'Tycoons.  
  196. ^ Wilkes, Neil (27 June 2007). "ITV yanks 'Tycoon' from prime slot".  
  197. ^ a b Wilkes, Neil (24 July 2007). "Series low for 'Tycoon' finale".  
  198. ^ Kilkelly, Daniel (24 July 2007). "'"Iain Morgan is winner of 'Tycoon.  
  199. ^ "Charlie Brooker's Screenwipe Special – Preview – BBC Four". YouTube. BBC. 19 October 2007. Retrieved 22 May 2008. 
  200. ^ National Student Apprentice
  201. ^  
  202. ^  
  203. ^ "The winner". The Apprentice Magazine. Archived from the original on 28 September 2007. Retrieved 14 July 2007. 
  204. ^ "Time to shed some pounds?". The Apprentice Magazine. Archived from the original on 17 July 2009. Retrieved 14 July 2007. 
  205. ^ "Where are they now?". The Apprentice Magazine. Archived from the original on 25 July 2009. Retrieved 14 July 2007. 
  206. ^ Masters, Dru (2007). The Apprentice (Media notes).  


Date Entitle
2 April 2005 The Story So Far
19 February 2006 Tim in the Firing Line
3 June 2007 Beyond the Boardroom
10 June 2007 Why I Fired Them
3 April 2008 The Worst Decisions Ever
18 April 2008 Motor Mouths
2 June 2008 The Final Five
8 June 2008 Why I Fired Them
3 June 2009 The Final Five
5 June 2009 Why I Fired Them
9 December 2010 The Final Five
16 December 2010 Why I Fired Them
7 July 2011 The Final Five
15 July 2011 How to Get Hired
29 May 2012 The Final Five
2 June 2012 Why I Fired Them
8 July 2013 The Final Five
11 July 2013 Why I Fired Them
13 October 2014 Ten Years of The Apprentice
16 December 2014 The Final Five
18 December 2014 Why I Fired Them


Series Start date End date Episodes
1 16 February 2005 4 May 2005 12
2 22 February 2006 10 May 2006 12
3 28 March 2007 13 June 2007 12
4 26 March 2008 11 June 2008 12
5 25 March 2009 7 June 2009 12
6 6 October 2010 19 December 2010 12
7 10 May 2011 17 July 2011 12
8 21 March 2012 3 June 2012 12
9 7 May 2013 17 July 2013 12
10 14 October 2014 21 December 2014 12
11 14 October 2015 2015 12



In November 2010, the BBC made the first two series of The Apprentice available to stream via the BBC's YouTube channel. It is unknown whether any future series will be released.

YouTube releases

In 2009, a DVD called "The Apprentice: The Best of Series 1–4" was released.

The Apprentice has included various pieces of classical and popular music throughout. Numerous pieces from film soundtracks are used as well as music featured in the BBC TV series Doctor Who. Examples of the music used include the opening theme ("Dance of the Knights" from Romeo and Juliet by Prokofiev) and "The Boardroom", "You're Fired" and "Closing Credits" from The Apprentice (Original Theme) by Dru Masters. An official soundtrack was released on 4 June 2007.[206] At the beginning of the first episode of Series 6, the iconic string phrase from the first movement of Gustav Mahler's Sixth Symphony can be heard in, one might surmise, a numerological nod. Further episodes in Series 6, include an extract from a piece by the French composer and pianist, Erik Satie, (from his "Gymnopédies No 1"), music from the Disney-Pixar 2009 film, Up, composed by Michael Giacchino, and a famous extract from Benjamin Britten's opera, Peter Grimes. A number of episodes also featured brief snippets of several tracks from The Sims series of games, such as the neighbourhood theme from The Sims 3, was briefly used in the last episode of series 6 and one of the build tracks from Makin' Magic was used in Series 7 episode 8.

On 10 February 2005, Sir Alan Sugar released a book to coincide with the first series, called The Apprentice: How to Get Hired Not Fired.[201] On 16 February 2006, the book was revised with additional information relating to the second series.[202] An official magazine was first released on 23 May 2007.[14] It includes items about business, interviews with candidates from the programme and other Apprentice-related features.[203][204][205]


Series have expanded outside television with a number of University student groups recreating local competitions by sticking to the format of tasks. What is known as Student Apprentice competitions have been hosted across the country in a number of Universities, especially in London. Events became so popular competitions joined as Regional Student Apprentice in London and other regions in UK. In 2013, these were joined to form National Student Apprentice,[200] which became a competition bringing together six regions for a national event.

Lord Sugar starred in a mock clip of The Apprentice within the 2012 Doctor Who episode, "The Power of Three".

The chidlren's comedy sketch show "Horrible Histories" features "Historical Apprentice" as a recurring sketch. This directly references "The Apprentice" and Lord Sugar, and features two different teams from different historical periods.

In the fourth series of Charlie Brooker's Screenwipe, Brooker parodied The Apprentice, with Brooker taking on the role of a Sugar-like character dressed in a crown and gown, and replacing the catchphrase, "You're fired" with "You're fucked."[199]

[198][197], rival UK channel The Apprentice In June 2007, shortly after the conclusion of Series Three of

In early 2007, the show was mocked in the television programme Kombat Opera Presents The Applicants.[190] The series has been lampooned on the Boleg Bros website, where it is shot in Lego.[191] Paul Merton and Ian Hislop also parodied the show during a promotional advert for the 2007 and 2008 series of Have I Got News for You.[192]

Rory Bremner did an impression of Sir Alan on the show Bremner Bird and Fortune; he was in the boardroom with the main London Mayoral candidates, Boris Johnson, Ken Livingstone and Brian Paddick, and after each of the candidates failed to get a single vote according to his results, he hired himself for the job claiming he "would make a profit on City Hall". In Dead Ringers Bremner also impersonated a Sir Alan with magic powers castigating a contestant over an event akin to what occurred to The Sorcerer's Apprentice.

The show has been imitated in the ITV programme Harry Hill's TV Burp.[188] It was also mocked in the BBC impression programme Dead Ringers, in which Sir Alan Sugar turns fired contestants into frogs and the candidates are portrayed as failed applicants of Strictly Come Dancing and Big Brother who are seeking their 15 minutes of fame.[189]

Parodies and imitations

Other awards that the programme has won include:[187]

The Apprentice won the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) for "Best Feature" during the 2006 awards, beating Top Gear, Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares and Dragons' Den.[184] It was also nominated for a BAFTA for "Best Feature" at the 2007 awards,[185] but was beaten by The Choir.[186]


Number Series Episode Broadcast
7 Day Consolidated
1 7 12 17 July 2011 10.24 million
2 5 11 03 June 2009 09.76 million
3 7 11 13 July 2011 09.73 million
4 7 10 06 July 2011 09.42 million
5 5 12 07 June 2009 09.31 million
6 4 12 11 June 2008 09.29 million
7 7 9 29 Jun 2011 08.98 million
8 5 9 20 May 2009 08.90 million
9 7 1 10 May 2011 08.79 million
10 7 8 22 June 2011 08.77 million

According to BARB, the 10 highest rating episodes[183] to date are

The first episode of series five of The Apprentice averaged 8.11m (33.3% share). The previous highest-rating instalment was the opening programme of series four, which achieved 6.4m (25.6%) on 26 March 2008. The Apprentice: You're Fired! garnered 3.01m (15.2%) for BBC Two in the 30 minutes from 10:00 pm.

The Apprentice has received high rating figures in its run.[179] The first series, broadcast in 2005, achieved an average of 2.5 million viewers, with a peak of 3.8 million people watching throughout the series.[179] It had an 11% share of the audience and some episodes managed to beat more popular programmes, such as Desperate Housewives, and some films, such as Ali G Indahouse, which were airing on rival channels at the time.[179][180] Series Two achieved 4.4 million viewers on average, with a peak audience of 5.95 and a 27% audience share.[179] Episodes of this series achieved higher ratings than the 2005 UEFA Cup Final and the film Pearl Harbor.[49] Series Three, airing on the "more mainstream" BBC One, attracted 6.8 million viewers at its peak, with a 27% audience share.[52][56] This series managed to attract more viewers than City Lights, Grand Designs and Big Brother.[56][181] Prior to the airing of the third series, Comic Relief Does The Apprentice attracted 6.72 million viewers, becoming the fifth most-watched programme on BBC One the week it aired.[182] The fourth series opened to 6.4 million viewers,[64] and the series peaked at 9.7 million during the last episode.[65]

Viewing figures

The producers of the show have also been criticized by some for being unimaginative by continuing to use Prokofiev's "Dance of the Knights" as a signature tune following Sugar's promotion to the Lords.

The show received criticism from viewers during series six after it was revealed that orders placed in the programme were not genuine.[178]

Media Watch has voiced concerns over inclusion of company names and products such as Chrysler in the programme, accusing the producers of breaking BBC policy.[177] Despite these claims, Talkback Thames has denied any suggestion of product placement.[177]

A number of people have criticised the show's editing and production methods. Contestants Syed Ahmed and Tre Azam accused the show of dumbing down their appearances for entertainment.[174] Gerri Blackwood said that her boardroom scene was filmed again to make it look better.[175] Alan Sugar himself revealed in his autobiography (but did not criticise) that the boardroom scenes are edited to create tension. Jokes and light hearted encounters are cut out, and Alan is seen "banging the table".[176]

Former contestants Lucinda Ledgerwood and James Max have criticised the tasks on the show as being too heavily sales-focused and designed for entertainment rather than as tests of all-round business skills.[171][172][173]

Former contestant and runner-up Saira Khan has criticised the programme because the final two candidates both work with Sir Alan Sugar for a few months before he decides whom he will hire. Khan stated that "Sir Alan Sugar's final decision is not based on the programme that people see, his final decision is based on these two people who have been working with him for the six months." Khan also said that the show is more concerned with giving viewers a rags-to-riches ending than employing the most able candidate, and that the show promotes bullying in the workplace.[170] The series has been notably edited afterwards to show the winner in a different light. This has led to some viewers correctly guessing the winner of the series partway through the series.

The premise of the show itself has been called into question by some members of the business world. Steve Carter, the head of recruitment firm Nigel Lynn, described the "brutality" of the recruitment process as being unrealistic.[169] In response to these criticisms, a spokesperson for The Apprentice has been quoted as saying "The show isn't designed as a tool for recruiters... but it does highlight and thoroughly test key business skills such as leadership, teamwork, dedication and strategic thinking – integral skills most recruiters are looking for".[169]

The programme has been criticised in the British media for suggesting that success in the business world requires possession of unsavoury qualities. Terence Blacker of The Independent newspaper, for example, said that he believed that the programme falsely linked success with being "nasty, disloyal, greedy and selfish".[167] Talk show host Sir Michael Parkinson has also expressed misgivings about the programme, describing it as being "full of vulgar, loud people who, for all the wrong reasons, are dobbing each other in".[168]


According to a report released by Ernst & Young in August 2013, the rise of popular television programmes like The Apprentice, have helped to encourage and foster an entrepreneurial culture across the UK. The report revealed that 71% of entrepreneurs surveyed thought the UK encourages an entrepreneurial spirit.[166]

The programme has been given positive reviews by several newspapers. In the popular press, The Sun newspaper has called it "The thinking man's reality show", and The Daily Mirror described it as "jaw-dropping viewing".[165] Broadsheet newspapers have given the programme a similarly positive reception, with The Daily Telegraph calling it "The most addictive show in years",[165] and The Guardian saying that it provided "A salutary lesson in aggressive buying and selling, hiring and firing". The Sunday Times said that it was "not just a game show: it's a business school."[165] The Evening Standard was also favourable, describing the programme as "terribly compelling".[165]



The Apprentice: The Final Five were documentaries about the remaining final five contestants. It has its debut in series 4.

The Apprentice: Why I Fired Them were documentaries in which Sir Alan Sugar looks back over the series so far, discussed the merits and shortcomings of the candidates, and explained in more detail why he fired each candidate when he did.[163] It featured the former participants' views of their time on the programme and what they had learnt from the experience.[164] Sugar's assistants Nick Hewer and Margaret Mountford also spoke about the former contestants.[164] At the end of the programme, Sugar reviews the performances of the two finalists. It had its debut in series 3. However, it did not broadcast during series 7 and was replaced by How To Get Hired, presented by Dara O Brian. It returned in Series 8.


An Apprentice Special of The Weakest Link aired on BBC One on 30 May 2008. It featured memorable candidates from past series of The Apprentice along with Apprentice narrator Mark Halliley replacing Jon Briggs as gameplay voiceover.

The Apprentice: Motor Mouths was a one-off special which was screened on BBC Two on 18 April 2008 in which celebrity fans and former contenders remembered those "motor mouth" candidates who only just failed to become "The Apprentice".

The Apprentice: The Worst Decisions Ever was a one-off special which was screened on BBC Two on 3 April 2008. It revisited some of the poor decisions made by candidates in previous series.

The Apprentice: Beyond the Boardroom was a one-off special shown on BBC Two on 2 June 2007.[161] The programme featured interviews with the final five candidates from Series Three. Nick Hewer and Margaret Mountford also gave their opinions on the final five, along with some of the previously fired candidates.[162] The programme spoke about the candidates' private lives, revealing that Kristina Grimes was sent to a convent at age 17 owing 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 managed to complete the New York Marathon whilst she was pregnant.[161][162] Friends of the candidates and members of their families, including parents, children, and partners, aired their views.[162]

The Apprentice: Tim in the Firing Line was an hour-long documentary which aired on 19 February 2006, days before the launch of the second series. It followed Tim Campbell, the winner of Series One, during the first twelve months of the job that he won on The Apprentice. Working within Amstrad's health and beauty division, his task was to market a new anti-wrinkle product, named The Integra.[146][157] The programme also documented the reaction of Campbell's family,[158] including mother Una Campbell, fiancée Jasmine Johnson, and daughter Kayla Campbell.[159] As a result of his impressive performance, he was offered a permanent position within Amstrad.[160] Sir Alan Sugar later said that Campbell's job would not have been in danger had he failed to make the product a success, and that the project was a "joint responsibility".[157]


Special programmes

It was confirmed in February 2013 via Lord Sugar's Twitter account that the BBC decided not to renew a further series of Young Apprentice, making Series 3 its last.

On 28 August 2010, the BBC confirmed that a second series of the Junior Apprentice had been commissioned. The new series once again featured 16- to 17-year-olds, this time increased to twelve candidates, and featured an extended 8 episode format, but with the title being changed to Young Apprentice. The first episode aired on BBC One on 24 October 2011.[156] Zara Brownless won the second series, with James McCullagh being the runner-up. A third series began airing on 1 November 2012, and was won by Ashleigh Porter-Exley, with Lucy Beauvallet being the runner-up.

The first series started on BBC One on 12 May 2010,[154] and consisted of 10 candidates – 5 boys and 5 girls.[155] It was won by 17-year-old Arjun Rajyagor, with the runner-up being Tim Ankers. Instead of the six figure salary and job working for Lord Sugar, the winner received £25,000 in funding for his future prospects and further education. Margaret Mountford's replacement, Karren Brady, made her debut on Junior Apprentice, having begun appearing on the adult version on 6 October 2010 in series six.

In May 2009, after episode 5 of The Apprentice: You're Fired!, it was announced that the application process had begun for a new spin-off for candidates aged sixteen and seventeen.

Young Apprentice

After the first celebrity version proved to be successful, the BBC decided to schedule a second celebrity edition in March 2008, to raise money for Sport Relief.[150] Once again, five male and five female celebrities competed for charity to sell the most celebrity memorabilia. Viewers saw Hardeep Singh Kohli get fired by Sugar.[151] The other celebrities participating in this edition were Phil Tufnell, Nick Hancock, Lembit Öpik, Kelvin MacKenzie, Lisa Snowdon, Jacqueline Gold, Louise Redknapp, Clare Balding and Kirstie Allsopp.[150][152] The show aired on BBC1 on 12 and 14 March 2008 and was won by the girls' team.[153]

Sport Relief Does The Apprentice

Another Comic Relief Does The Apprentice celebrity special aired on 12 and 13 March 2009. The "boys' team" were Alan Carr, Jack Dee, Gerald Ratner, Jonathan Ross and Gok Wan, and the "girls' team" Michelle Mone, Patsy Palmer, Fiona Phillips, Carol Vorderman and Ruby Wax. At the time the show was recorded, Jonathan Ross was suspended by the BBC over a prank telephone call row, but he was nevertheless permitted to appear since the programme would not be aired until after the suspension had been lifted.[149] Alan Carr was eventually fired for being "too happy", relieving him from the "two grumpy ones", Dee and Ratner.

Between the airing of the second and third series of The Apprentice, it was announced that a celebrity version of the programme was to be recorded in aid of the charity Celebrity Apprentice. The other celebrities participating in the programme were Alastair Campbell, Cheryl Cole, Danny Baker, Jo Brand, Karren Brady, Maureen Lipman, Ross Kemp, Rupert Everett, Tim Campbell and Trinny Woodall.[12][146] Tim Campbell, winner of the first series of The Apprentice, was not in the original line-up, but was brought in when Everett decided to leave after the first day.[146][147] The celebrities managed to raise over £1 million for charity.[148]

Comic Relief Does The Apprentice

For the 2009 series, an independent weekly podcast was also released, hosted by first series contestant James Max, in conjunction with London talk station LBC (on which Max hosts his own show).

The beginning of the third series saw the launch of a weekly podcast called The Apprenticast, and a radio programme on BBC Five Live, both hosted by former Blue Peter presenter Richard Bacon and running for thirty minutes.[140] Both programmes featured former candidates being questioned by members of the public, comedians, and those who work in business.[141] Some critics have described Bacon's performance as better than that of Adrian Chiles, who presented the similar, but television-based, programme The Apprentice: You're Fired![15]

The Apprenticast

This 30-minute programme, originally aired on BBC Three but now broadcast on BBC Two, immediately follows an airing of The Apprentice, and performs an in-depth look into the recent task of the programme, as well as featuring guests who informally interview the most recently fired candidate(s) and analyse their performance. It was hosted initially by Adrian Chiles when it began alongside the beginning of the second series of the Apprentice, but after his departure before the sixth series when he took a contract with ITV, it was later hosted by Dara Ó Briain from the sixth series to the tenth series. Following Ó Briain's departure, the show is now currently hosted by Jack Dee. The shows are recorded at Riverside Studios.[137] Celebrities who have appeared on the show include those from the worlds of television, comedy, radio and business, such as Dominic Littlewood, Trevor Nelson, Michael Mcintyre and Michelle Mone.[138][139]

The Apprentice: You're Fired!

Related programmes

The candidates' "walk of shame" exit sequences are actually filmed at the beginning of the series,[135] at the same time as the scene in which they are shown entering the headquarters building at the start of the first episode. This explains why the clothes worn by fired candidates in their exit sequences sometimes differ from those worn in the boardroom scene ostensibly filmed only moments earlier.[136] In more noticeable cases, hairstyles have also been different.[136] The post-firing taxi ride merely takes the candidate around the block to allow their taxi interview to be filmed. They are then taken to a local hotel to stay the night and finally leave after packing their belongings from the house.[135]

The "boardroom" (and the reception area outside) is in fact a custom-built set in a West London television studio,[26] and the boardroom receptionist ("Frances" in Series One, Three, Four and Five, "Jenny" in Series Two) is an employee at the production company Talkback Thames, not Sugar's real secretary. However, Sugar's actual PA is called Frances.[135]

The Apprentice regularly features clips of aerial footage over the skyscrapers of the Square Mile and Canary Wharf financial districts, such as the 180-metre Gherkin, HSBC Tower, One Canada Square, the Citigroup Centre, although neither Amstrad or Alan Sugar has offices in any of these locations.[133] More recently, aerial footage has included skyscrapers outside these districts, namely Strata SE1, in Elephant and Castle, and the Shard, in Southwark.[134] For the series introduction, and for the post-firing "walk of shame" exit sequences the Amstrad HQ building in Brentwood was used in Series 1–3. Following Amstrad's sale to BSkyB in 2007 this changed to the Viglen HQ building in St Albans, Hertfordshire from Series 4 onward – this location is also used for the Week 11 interviews task.

The tasks are mostly filmed in and around the London area, though the contestants have on occasion been sent as far afield as France, the Mediterranean, Morocco, Dubai and the USA. In Series One, the team house was located in Chiswick.[124] A location in Hampstead Heath was used in Series 2 and another in Notting Hill for the third series.[125][126] In Series 4, the candidates' accommodation was a converted glass factory in Battersea[127] and in Series 5, the candidates lived in a penthouse house at Portobello Lofts, Ladbroke Grove.[128] In Series 6, the candidates lived in Bedford Square and in Series 7, they lived in an 8 bedroom mansion in East Sheen.[129][130] In Series 8, they lived in a town house in Porchester Terrace, Bayswater.[131] Series 9 saw the candidates living in a Grade II listed property at 6, Lincoln's Inn Fields in Holborn [132]

Filming locations

Record Record holder Record information Series
Most consecutive victories Helen Milligan 9 consecutive victories Seven
Most consecutive losses Harry Maxwell 7 consecutive losses Young Apprentice Series 2
Most final boardroom appearances Syed Ahmed
Claire Young
5 boardroom appearances Two
Most consecutive boardroom appearances Adam Hosker
Michael Sophocles
4 boardroom appearances Three
Largest victory Team Venture Winners by 800,000 orders against none, a ratio of 800000:0 Seven
Smallest victory Team Eclipse Winners by just a £0.97 difference Three

Series records and statistics

Claude Littner is a business executive and chairman of Viglen, and has previously worked as Tottenham Hotspur's chief executive. He has previously starred on the show in the "Interview" stages of the show, which were often referred to as interviews "from hell", due to Claude's aggressive style of interviewing. He replaced Nick Hewer for the 2015 series of the show, following his predecessor's decision to leave.

Karren Brady is best known for being the former managing director of Birmingham City Football Club. She was appointed in March 1993,[118] when only 23 years old.[119] She was responsible for the company's flotation in 1997, thus becoming the youngest managing director of a British plc.[120] In 2007, Brady took part in Comic Relief Does The Apprentice where she was chosen as a team leader and took the women to victory, raising over £1,000,000 for charity,[121] and has since made recurring appearances on The Apprentice's sister show, You're Fired!.[122] In January 2010 she was appointed vice-chairman of West Ham United following a change of ownership of the club.[123] Karren is currently Lord Sugar's advisor on the show, who replaced Margaret for the 2010 series, following her predecessor's decision to leave.

Between series 6 through to 9, she returned to work in the "Interviews" task in the penultimate week. [117][116], on 1 June 2009, that series 5 would be her last full-time appearance on the show, in order to devote more time to her studies. She went on to study for a PhD in papyrology at University College London, studying documents found in Egypt and written in ancient Greek.Daily Telegraph Margaret worked as an adviser to Lord Sugar until she announced in her column for the [115]

Nick Hewer is a former public relations officer, who lives in France. His involvement with Lord Sugar began when his company was chosen to represent Amstrad in 1983. Hewer's role was as a PR manager, working with the media and press. He also became an integral part of Amstrad's corporate management.[112] Hewer operated as an advisor throughout the show as well as on Young Apprentice, until on 18 December 2014 he revealed on his Twitter page his decision to leave the show after the tenth series, believing that the tenth year was "the appropriate time".[113][114]

Early series of the show made frequent reference to Sugar's connection with Amstrad, but in the fourth series, following the deal with BSkyB, reference to Amstrad was dropped. Sugar is now billed simply as controlling a "vast business empire" (most of which is actually in property).[111]

Alan Sugar is a businessman and the founder of electronics company Amstrad. He has an estimated fortune of £770m[104] and was ranked 84th in the Sunday Times Rich List 2007.[105] Sugar was knighted in 2000 for services to business and holds two honorary Doctorate of Science degrees, awarded in 1988 by City University and in 2005 by Brunel University.[106] He is a donor to the British Labour Party[107] and has given money to charities such as Jewish Care and Great Ormond Street Hospital.[108] In July 2007, Sugar sold his stake in Amstrad to BSkyB[109] and has since left the business.[110]

Along with "the boss", Alan Sugar, two advisors follow the contestants during their weekly activities. In series 1–5, Nick Hewer and Margaret Mountford took on these roles. Mountford resigned at the end of series 5 and was replaced by Karren Brady in series 6, while Nick resigned at the end of series 10, and was replaced by Claude Littner. Lord Sugar and his two advisors constitute "The Board"—the panel that evaluates the teams' performance.

Starring Series 1 Series 2 Series 3 Series 4 Series 5 Series 6 Series 7 Series 8 Series 9 Series 10 Series 11
Alan Sugar
Karren Brady
Claude Littner
Nick Hewer
Margaret Mountford
     Currently stars
     Previously starred


The Board

Mark Wright won series ten, having been chosen ahead of Bianca Miller. He started an SEO business called climb online.

Series Ten

Leah Totton won series nine, having been chosen ahead of Luisa Zissman. Again, the prize was a partnership in business and a cash investment from Lord Sugar. On 22 January 2014, Leah opened her first cosmetic skin clinic.[102][103]

Series Nine

Ricky Martin won series eight, having been chosen ahead of Jade Nash, Nick Holzherr & Tom Gearing. As per series seven, the prize was partnership in business and a cash investment. On 23 October 2012 Ricky launched his joint venture recruitment company,[101] Hyper Recruitment Solutions (HRS) which deals with recruitment in the field of science.

Series Eight

Series seven of the Apprentice was won by 31-year old inventor Tom Pellereau[99] with Helen Milligan coming second. Due to the new format of the winning candidate receiving a £250,000 investment from Lord Sugar and a 50% partnership. Pellereau and Lord Sugar launched a range of manicure products which are currently available in Boots, Tescos and Sainsburys. The range includes a range of curved nail files, which includes the S-file, the S-Buffer and the Emergency File, two curved nail clippers, the S-Clipper and S-Clipper mini and a curved foot exfoliator, the S-Ped.[100] Despite fellow contestant Susan Ma being fired by Lord Sugar, he admitted he did like her business plan and since then he has worked with Susan in their company Tropic creating skin care products.

Series Seven

The series was won by Stella English, beating runner-up Chris Bates.[94] After winning, English worked at Sugar's company Viglen,[95] but in May 2011 she requested a new role, saying that she was just a "glorified PA".[96] After a year of employment she was told her contract would not be renewed and in February 2012 it was reported that she was suing Sugar for wrongful dismissal[97] but this action was ultimately unsuccessful.[98]

Series Six

Sugar hired Yasmina Siadatan over the runner up Kate Walsh. Weeks after taking the job she started a relationship with fellow development manager 31-year-old Andrew Hepburn and became pregnant. She went on maternity leave, then gave her notice in shortly before she was due to return, announcing she was pregnant again.[93]

Series Five

The series was won by Lee McQueen, who initially worked for Sugar's company AMSHOLD where he phoned in sick on his first day.[91] He then went on to work for AMSCREEN as development director, reporting to Sir Alan's son, Simon Sugar. He left Sugar's employment in 2010.[92]

Series Four

The series was won by Simon Ambrose, who went on to work at Sugar's property company Amsprop. He left in 2010.[90]

Series Three

Michelle Dewberry briefly took up a post under Sugar but left in September 2006 after a series of personal problems.[89]

Series Two

The winner was Tim Campbell, who became Project Director of Amstrad's new Health and Beauty division. He has since left the company to pursue other interests.[88]

Series One

Subsequent activity of winning candidates

None of the winners of the first six adult series stayed with Sugar's companies for longer than three years and two - Michelle and Yasmina - stayed only a matter of weeks.[84] In this light The Apprentice has been criticised as "an entertainment show with no real aspect of business to it".[85] The winner of series six, Stella English described the job as a "sham",[86] but later lost a case of constructive dismissal against Lord Sugar, with the tribunal judge John Warren saying that "Ms English, instead of appreciating a job with enormous scope for advancement, had been more interested in a glamorous role, and travelling in private jets".[87] In the following series, the prize was changed from employment with Sugar to an investment.

Criticism of process

Owing to the 2015 General Election, the show began showing in mid-October, the first episode airing on 14 October. As Nick Hewer had departed after the last series, his replacement was confirmed to be Claude Littner before the eleventh series was aired, and introduced in the first episode. Unlike the previous series (except the tenth series), the maximum number of candidates in the process was increased to 18, with older candidates amongst them.

Series Eleven (2015)

The tenth series of The Apprentice commenced in October 2014, later than usual in order to avoid clashes with the 2014 FIFA World Cup and 2014 Commonwealth Games.[82] It started on 14 October 2014.[83] The winner of the series was Mark Wright, with Bianca Miller as the runner-up.

Series Ten (2014)

The final was aired on 17 July 2013. The series was won by Leah Totton, with Luisa Zissman as runner-up. It also featured the first abdication in the history of the programme as Luisa Zissman took over from Jason Leech as project manager halfway through a task.

Series Nine (2013)

The final was aired on 3 June 2012. Like the previous series, the final round was the interviews round, and did not feature fired candidates. The series was won by Ricky Martin, with Tom Gearing as runner-up. Nick Holzherr came in third place, and Jade Nash in fourth place.[81]

On 10 March 2012, Lord Sugar confirmed that series eight would start on 21 March 2012 on BBC One.[80]

Series Eight (2012)

The Grand Finale aired on 17 July 2011. Like series four there were four finalists, but, unlike previous series, the contest concluded with the "interviews" round, with the final head-to-head task dropped. Lord Sugar decided to make Thomas Pellereau his new business partner over runner-up Helen Milligan. He did mention that had he been hiring an employee, Milligan would have won. Susan Ma, another finalist, was praised, and Lord Sugar commented that he looked forward to becoming a partner in business with her.

The seventh series premiered on 10 May 2011.[79] The series seven candidates were revealed on 3 May 2011, via the official website and in a press launch.

In April 2010, applications were made for series seven, to be aired in 2011. Lord Sugar announced a change to the prize for the 2011 series, whereby the winner would go into business with Lord Sugar as a partner, with the investment by Lord Sugar of £250,000.

Series Seven (2011)

The Grand Finale aired on 19 December 2010, in which Lord Sugar hired Stella English over the runner-up Chris Bates.

Before the series aired, it was reported that contestant Christopher Farrell was on bail for fraud, had been sacked from a previous mortgage company for misconduct[74] and that in September 2009 he had admitted to two charges of possessing an offensive weapon.[75] [76] It was also reported that contestant Joanna Riley had been convicted for racially abusing three taxi drivers in October 2005 and it was also alleged that contestant Shibby Robati had received a formal warning from the General Medical Council for "unprofessional behaviour".[77][78]

Arcadia Group director[72] Karren Brady confirmed in a newspaper interview that the contestants would no longer refer to Alan Sugar as 'Sir Alan', but instead must call him 'Lord Sugar', following his elevation to the House of Lords.[73]

It was confirmed by the BBC that series 6 would not be shown in March 2010 (as originally scheduled), but delayed until after the general election as Sugar was the government's "business tsar".[68] Although Sugar stated that he did not view the position as partisan,[69] the running of The Apprentice during the general election could have been a "risk to impartiality".[70] The day after the results of the general election were announced, the BBC began advertising for the new series. Series six commenced on 6 October 2010.[71]

In May 2009, after an episode of The Apprentice: You're Fired!, it was announced that the application process had begun for a sixth UK series to be filmed in Autumn 2009. Margaret Mountford did not return for series six.[66] Karren Brady was named as Mountford's replacement on 30 August 2009.[67]

Series Six (2010)

Series Five began its run on BBC One on 25 March 2009 with 15 contestants. A sixteenth participant, Adam Freeman, had to pull out the day before filming began. Sir Alan commented that it was due to "family matters".[22] The Grand Finale aired on 7 June 2009, where Sir Alan hired Yasmina Siadatan over the runner up Kate Walsh.

Series Five (2009)

Series Four began airing on BBC One on 26 March 2008,[62][63] and ran for twelve weekly episodes. It debuted with 6.4 million viewers.[64] This series saw a change in the boardroom design and it was the first series where the candidates were not allowed to visit the house before the tasks commenced, instead beginning the first task immediately after the first boardroom briefing. This was subsequently the case in Series Five. The series was won by Lee McQueen, who beat Claire Young, Helene Speight and Alex Wotherspoon in the final. The final saw a new record of 8.9 million viewers, and a peak of 9.7 million viewers during the final 15 minutes.[65]

In May 2007, a fourth and fifth series were commissioned by the BBC,[9] and prospective candidates were invited to apply for the fourth series through the official website.[59] Auditions and interviews were held during the first two weeks of July 2007 in London, Manchester and Birmingham (interviews were also to have been held in Bristol but these were subsequently moved to London).[60] A record 20,000 applications were received.[61]

Series Four (2008)

When a third series was announced, it was revealed that it would be shown on BBC One,[8] which is aimed at a more "mainstream audience,"[52] and that The Apprentice: You're Fired! would move from BBC Three to BBC Two.[53] The third series attracted 10,000 applicants and promised "tougher tasks and better people" — Sugar had expressed concerns that the show was becoming Big Brother.[54] Series Three ran from 28 March 2007 to 13 June 2007, starting with 4.5 million viewers,[55] with the audience increasing throughout the run to peak with 6.8 million people watching the final.[56] The series was won by Simon Ambrose, who was chosen over Kristina Grimes.[57][58] Ambrose went on to work at Sugar's property company Amsprop. Unlike previous series, there were 16 candidates (rather than 14).

Series Three (2007)

The second series finished with a record 5.7 million viewers[49] tuning in to see Michelle Dewberry defeat Ruth Badger in the final.[50] Dewberry briefly took up a post under Sugar but left in September 2006 after a series of personal problems.[51]

The day after the conclusion of Series One, the BBC confirmed that a second series would be broadcast in early 2006 and, despite initial doubts, Sugar's involvement was confirmed soon afterwards.[46][47] The second series began on 22 February 2006 and a spin-off programme was introduced on BBC Three, called The Apprentice: You're Fired! and hosted by Adrian Chiles.[48]

Series Two (2006)

The opening theme was "Montagues and Capulets".

In August 2008, the American cable channel CNBC began to present the first series on Monday nights.[45] However, the programme aired in disparate time slots or not at all due to the network's abrupt shifting of their programme schedule in order to cover developments regarding the global financial crisis of 2008–2009. The series did not air in full, and eventually as CNBC decided to focus their prime time schedule on financial news programming, the programme's rights moved to BBC America, where it started transmission on 5 May 2009.

The first series began on February 2005 and lasted for twelve episodes. The viewer ratings climbed[41] to almost 4 million viewers for the final episode on 4 May 2005. The winner was Tim Campbell,[42] who had previously worked as a Senior Planner within the Marketing and Planning Department of London Underground. After his victory he went on to become Project Director of Amstrad's new Health and Beauty division, but has subsequently left the company to pursue other interests.[43] He started the Bright Ideas Trust in 2008 which offers funding and support for young people wishing to start their own business.[44]

[40], has also said he was approached but declined as it was "too much of a distraction".Ryanair, boss of Irish airline Michael O'Leary [39]

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.