APPRENTICE UK COMES TO BBC AMERICA
Burning ambition meets the school of hard knocks in the Apprentice UK, which gives viewers an exclusive insight into the relentless world of business. Like the U.S. version, 14 young high-fliers are shortlisted from thousands, battling it out through a grueling selection process and competing for a six-figure salary and year-long job with self-made tycoon Sir Alan Sugar. Episodes 1-4 are channel premieres, Episodes 5-12 are U.S. premieres. Apprentice UK, premieres Tuesday, May 5, 8:00 p.m. ET/PT, all following episodes will premiere Tuesdays, 9:00 p.m. ET/PT.
The 14 candidates from varying backgrounds face the biggest challenge of their lives - a 12 week job interview. Throughout the series the candidates live together in a luxury eight bedroom mansion on the banks of the river Thames and experience a taste of the high life they aspire to. Each week their ambition, business flair and wits are tested as they compete in business tasks set by Sir Alan. This season�s challenges include creating an ad campaign to sell his private jets, designing a kid�s toy and even presenting a �live� television show selling real products on air.
The candidates are divided into gendered teams and the team that wins the weekly assignment are given a reward, but the losers must report to the boardroom for a showdown with Sir Alan who grills them on their mistakes. Before entering the boardroom, the losing team's project manager is required to choose two team members to accompany him or her into the interrogation. Aided by his no-nonsense advisers Nick Hewer and Margaret Mountford, Sir Alan singles out one of those three contestants to hear the words they�ll all come to dread: "You're fired.� In the cut throat world of business, the losers walk away empty handed and the winner takes all because only one can be the Apprentice.
BBC AMERICA brings audiences a new generation of award-winning television featuring news with a uniquely global perspective, provocative dramas, razor-sharp comedies and life-changing makeovers. BBC AMERICA pushes the boundaries to deliver high quality, highly addictive and eminently watchable programming to viewers who demand more. BBC AMERICA is distributed by Discovery Networks. It is available on digital cable and satellite TV in more than 63 million homes.
ABOUT THE BOARDROOM
SIR ALAN SUGAR
After leaving school in London at age 16, Sugar sold car parts and electric goods out of a van he bought for $150. In 1968, he founded Amstrad, and now, over 40 years later, he has an estimated worth of over a billion dollars.
In 2000, Sugar was knighted for his services to business and he holds two honorary Doctorates of Science degrees. In July 2007, Sugar sold his Amstrad empire, his other companies include AMSAIR, which offers business and executive jets to a number of high profile clients around the world, AMSPROP, a property investment firm and VIGLEN, a manufacturer specializing in computers, networks and solutions.
He is now an advisor to Gordon Brown on issues affecting enterprise, business and the long term productivity and competitiveness of the economy.
Margaret Mountford has spent over 20 years working with Sir Alan Sugar and is his most trusted adviser. Born in Northern Ireland, she was educated at Cambridge, before becoming a lawyer in private practice. She was a partner at Herbert Smith, a top-tier legal firm and it was at this time she met Sir Alan while she working for Amstrad's flotation on the Stock Exchange.
After retiring in 1999, Margaret took up her current role on the Amstrad board as a non-executive Director. Although never officially employed by Sir Alan, they have worked together on projects for over 20 years.
Former PR impresario, Nick Hewer started off in public relations in the mid 1960s. Nick first came across Sir Alan when his PR company was chosen to represent Amstrad back in 1983. Soon taking care of Sir Alan's profile across all business and personal dealings, Nick became a trusted ally and firm friend to the tycoon, playing an integral part in the management structure at Amstrad.
ABOUT THE WOMEN�S TEAM
Adele - General manager in a retail company selling kitchens and bathrooms
Adenike - Owns and manages a top-end restaurant and runs large events for demanding corporate clients.
Lindsay - Communications manager for an international oil company, founder of the UK's first national car-sharing agency.
Miranda - Managing director of a real estate firm. Previously owned a successful mail order company and funded her own exhibitions company.
Miriam - Manager of an exclusive hotel in the French West Indies. Previously a wedding consultant who then founded an events company.
Rachel - Charity fundraiser and former advertising sales executive.
Saira - Sales manager for an online recruitment company
ABOUT THE MEN�S TEAM
Ben � Involved in his own headhunting firm.
Matthew - Graduate student. Previously, a self-qualified stockbroker, prospective Conservative party parliamentary candidate, computer trainer.
James - Investment banker.
Paul - Property developer. Previously, property management and textiles production manager.
Raj - Internet entrepreneur, founder and managing director of a real estate firm (which went bankrupt when venture capital failed to materialize).
Sebastian- Financial analyst, recent MBA graduate
Tim - Transport manager, London Underground.
14 young entrepreneurs have been short-listed for a fantastic opportunity. But there�s a catch. Tough talking Sir Alan doesn�t suffer fools gladly and the candidates first have to survive a battery of competitive business tasks and avoid being fired by Sir Alan in his boardroom. During the next twelve weeks the candidates live together and work in teams. Their stamina, intelligence and ruthlessness will determine who will be the Apprentice.
Episode 1 premieres Tuesday, May 5, 8:00 p.m. ET/PT
In this episode, Sir Alan gives his candidates the challenge of designing a new product. But there�s a catch: it�s for the most difficult of consumers, kids ages 5 - 9. A toy manufacturer is on hand to help, but the teams have two days in which to come up with an original idea. Children are the toughest markets to crack and Sugar shows he�s the toughest of bosses to impress.
Episode 2 premieres Tuesday, May 12, 9:00 p.m. ET/PT
Twelve candidates are left in the running to become Sir Alan�s Apprentice. The business task sounds simple � buying goods at the lowest possible price � to test the candidate�s skills and flair for negotiation. Both teams have to buy the same items including a dinner jacket, saffron and lobsters for as little money as possible. But where do you find cut-price saffron and cheap lobsters. It�s a race against time as they scramble to meet the deadline. The winning team gets a day at the races, the losers reflect on defeat and one of them is fired.
Episode 3 premieres Tuesday, May 19, 9:00 p.m. ET/PT
In week four of his search for an apprentice, Sir Alan sends his eleven remaining candidates to get a roasting in the catering business. The teams have two days to source, buy and prepare meals to sell to half a million people at an outdoor festival. Tensions run high as Sir Alan, shuffles up the teams. As the teams battle to reach their targets, long hours in hot kitchens frazzle tempers. And with costs high and prices low flogging food turns out to be a tough game. But Sir Alan wants profits and when one team reports a loss; they are in for a boardroom grilling.
Episode 4 premieres Tuesday, May 26, 9:00 p.m. ET/PT
Ten candidates remain as they enter the world of advertising and Sir Alan�s search for an Apprentice continues. The task is to create a TV-ad and billboard poster campaign, to promote a product that makes hiring his private jets easier. To help them, Sir Alan brings in top agency Saatchi and Saatchi. One team struggles to find an idea, and then both teams want to film on his latest jet. They cast themselves as art directors and copywriters but confidence turns to dismay when the results are screened. But the client is always king and Sir Alan will choose the winner.
Episode 5 premieres Tuesday, June 2, 9:00 p.m. ET/PT
Would you buy a used car from one of Sir Alan Sugar�s budding Apprentices? It�s almost half way through Sir Alan�s quest to find the perfect business entrepreneur. This week the nine surviving battle-scarred candidates find themselves dumped on the floor of a giant car lot. They have just ten hours to sell real cars to real people for real money. The sales pitches range from brutal and uncompromising to outright lies. One candidate tells his customer that if he buys today he�ll sell the car at a profit after two years. Naturally his hard nosed Rottweiler sales manager is not impressed. But despite the jaw dropping one liners, the apprentices put up a valiant fight. As the Saturday afternoon rush kicks in, one team begins to produce ever larger wads of cash but as usual, it all ends in back stabbing, insults and tears in the boardroom
Episode 6 premieres Tuesday, June 9, 9:00 p.m. ET/PT
The remaining eight candidates face a tough challenge in Europe�s busiest fashion store � Topshop. In order to succeed in the high pressure environment of high street retailing the teams must get inside the minds of their target audience � teenagers. This week there�s a surprise in store when Sir Alan swings by with billionaire and Top Shop owner Phillip Green. As always, sparks soon fly as the candidates try to cut it in the world of fashion.
Episode 7 premieres Tuesday, June 16, 9:00 p.m. ET/PT
Sir Alan gives the teams his toughest task yet - selling products to trade. To see if they have an eye for a money spinner, the teams must first choose their products. Selling them won�t be easy as they�re not allowed to approach consumers. Instead they must try to appeal to the discerning retailer in the image conscious world of cutting edge design. With only one day to open trade accounts the candidates are under pressure from the start. Some products impress but others are harder to off load forcing the candidates to become ever more resourceful as their deadline closes in.
Episode 8 premieres Tuesday, June 23, 9:00 p.m. ET/PT
This week Sir Alan throws the would-be entrepreneurs into the shark infested world of real estate. In task terms its manna from heaven for these sales terriers and smooth talkers. But as the candidates go into overdrive in a bid to close deals, lost keys and missed appointments soon start to fray tempers. Who will cut it in the commission-only world of property and whose head will be on the chopping block?
Episode 9 premieres Tuesday, June 30, 9:00 p.m. ET/PT
Of the original 14 candidates only five are left in the struggle to become Sir Alan Sugar�s apprentice. This week�s task is presenting a TV show. But it�s a business task � so that means it�s on a TV Shopping Channel and involves selling products �live� on-air. The candidates are free to choose what they sell and there�s a huge range to choose from. But they don�t know which products sell the most and which one�s genuinely require years of experience to shift. There�s barely time to rehearse, then an excruciating hour, live on-screen, in which to talk non-stop and sell. And what they don�t know is that Sir Alan is watching them from the comfort of his own home. The show must go on, so there�s laughter and tears � and, as usual, someone gets fired.
Episode 10 premieres Tuesday, July 7, 9:00 p.m. ET/PT
Locked in a series of grueling interviews with three of Sir Alan�s toughest colleagues the four remaining candidates are forced to explain themselves. The result is a fascinating and revealing insight, as they fight for survival. And after the inquisitors report back to Sir Alan, not one but two candidates will be fired.
Episode 11 premieres Tuesday, July 14, 9:00 p.m. ET/PT
Two candidates are left in the battle to become the Apprentice UK. And for their final task, they�re each told to organize a party on one of two rival luxury riverboats. They have just three days to dream up a theme, sell the tickets, organize the entertainment and manage the event itself. Then things start going wrong. The tickets won�t sell, there are problems with the staff and the weather is unpredictable. One thing that�s certain is that the ships will sail on time, whether or not anyone�s aboard. And someone�s going to get fired. But, for the first time, someone is also going to get hired!
Episode 12 premieres Tuesday, July 21, 9:00 p.m. ET/PT