thanks but no thanks........


The Interviewers

Enter Alan Sugars team of expert interrogators tasked with picking apart the contestants’s business proposals and reducing the hopefuls into quivering wrecks.

King of the put down, professional pitbull, jedi level interviewer Claude Littern, human lie detector Mike Soutar, The Questioninator Claudine Collins and who can forget Linda Plant who I can assure you is not rooting for anyone, will probably not grow on you and one things for sure thistle be the end of anyone who shows any sign of weakness, lies or simply cannot justify their often pie in the sky business plans until they scream ‘leaf me alone!’ 

So, who are the victims - sorry I meant interviewees?

Enter lady in red Camilla- who aint no Vanilla Camilla.  Mrs Nuts herself who is a bundle of energy and creativity and certainly a one off!  Yoo hoo - you said it sister!

Sabrina who is such a racket and knows how to packet it in verbally should have really been named Annette being she is situated a lot of the time on a tennis court. 

This highly-strung individual sometimes needs to work on her brain to mouth coordination is in her own words a mix of Willy Wonka drinking an espresso martini… classy and sophisticated on the outside; inside, a little bit crazy and wacky but full of brilliant ideas as quoted by the woman herself – New balls please!

Sian who identifies with Coco Chanel as a role model in business and who believes she has been brought up to win saying from the beginning that every task will see her being calculated, collaborative and ruthless – perhaps I need to re-watch from the beginning as have I missed something ?….  She also says she brings both the passion and the fire – in the boardroom being merciless.  Given she is designing and selling swimwear I think she needs to dive into the truth pool a bit more often!

Khadija, the cleaning queen who wants to sweep the nation with her business and who quoted that whatever she says she is going to make happen happens.

This is the woman who is a serious Mumpreneur who doesn’t have time for timewasters and idiocy.  Little does she know she is one of the next few to bite the dust so lets hope she has her Mr Muscle handy!

And finally, the one and only man left in the process Daniel who likens himself to Jordan Belfort, the main character in ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’, because of his entrepreneurial skills and lavish, party lifestyle. He says he has the beauty and the brains, typically people only have one, but in his opinion he was blessed with both in abundance.  Perhaps he should have gone to Specsavers! 

And to their business plans ………

Do nut disturb Camilla who while in Australia for a year, believes she spotted a gap in the market for flavoured milk made from nuts.  She creates her nutty drinks in her own kitchen and then delivers it personally in and around her local area and at times cracks up the nation with her faux pars, nutty puns and sometimes too saucy ideas. 

Are we nuts about her or like her nutty milk is she an acquired taste? 

Reunited with her cashews, after squeezing them a bit too enthusiastically she shared that it’s good luck to be covered in nut juice before an interview.  To be or nut to be is the question and even though I do have another nut pun I’m Nutella you at the mo! 

Sabrina’s enthusiastic and gushy business idea was for family-friendly tennis tournaments minus any courts and in her verbal tsunami to impress she admitted over-booking venues – a major grand slam in ensuring she wouldn’t be picked; Game set and won by Sir Al!

Sian, who is just a girl from Leeds and not the only one in this process as Ms Prickly Plant too is from the area and in sharing this with Sian made the girl from Leeds cry – is Leeds that bad? 

However back to Sian purveyor of fashionable swimwear she aims at wealthy students (a most unusual set of two words ever to have been used) and the 18 – 34 year old market whose designs included reversible bikinis (I like the versatility, but only with a washing machine included in the holiday brief) and all in ones tailored to fit every shape and size. 

Hangover healer Daniel – the man is an absolute saint – he has only gone and invented a cure for hangovers when to date in the whole wide world there is no such thing – what a diamond! 

Wait – its not true – Daniel – AKA Hans Christen Andersen; teller of tales taller than The Shard with the ability to manipulate and stretch the truth more than the most sophisticated and scientifically tested hydrogel. 

UK Laws according to Daniel are draconian rather than the standards put into place to ensure that no Tom, Dick, Harry or Jack Daniels can produce and sell to the public something it really isnt! 

And finally…..Kadija, who you would think would make a clean get away into the final with her business plan which was to upscale her cleaning business to mass proportions after leaving Peterborough take on UK domination.  

The Interviews

We have to start with Daniel as initially he appeared to be holding it together the most – as solid as a rock; no matter how much chipping away these boardroom bruisers did; he wouldn’t break.  Unlike the women who shared their negative experiences along the process, Daniel appeared unfluffed until he met Linda who seemed to have the knack of reducing candidates to tears and hit upon what hurt most – the trigger his Dad – he cracked as it was put to him that, really, all he was trying to do was impress his dear old pops.  

Unfortunately, I think she had enough of his crazy ramblings after claiming his empire operated on three continents – England? Australia – that’s a continent, right? – Imagine if there was a cure for stupid – that really would be worth investing in! But stupid is what stupid does and so Daniel continues on his journey to meet Mike.  Mike didn’t waste any time in pointing out that on his product's Amazon page, it claimed to have sold more than a million units of his magical sachets, yet Daniel said he had sold around 47,000 hangover sticks – a massive difference.  Not wanting to let him off lightly Mike began to question to how the figure used to advertise his produce had come about and by whom.  Daniel who was already looking uncomfortable said he would need to review it as possibly he wrote it.  Pushed further, he admitted it was highly likely he wrote it probably 90% likely.  Mike not taking any prisoners forced Daniel to admit that he was indeed the person and finally pushed into submission as Daniel admitted it was indeed him.  Mike had succeeded in tearing to tatters Daniels creditability. 

Next up to rumble Daniel, was Claude ‘what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, even if you do cry a bit at the time Littner’ as the twinkle in his eye meant he was just about to dissect Daniels business plan and invariably strike at the weak points. But before he did, was the classic moment after  Daniel had boasted to his fellow candidates that he was going to shake Claude’s hand before the interview began.  Poor deluded soul - Did he not see the tumbleweed follow him into the room?  Claude simply stared at the outstretched hand as though it was from an alien being and demanded Daniel sit down in his true no-nonsense style and permanently disappointed look plastered all over his face.  There was indeed more awkwardness to come as he advised Daniel that Lord Sugar wasn’t going to want to invest in someone who was just so bloody untrustworthy. 

With a pained expression and no doubt instant headache reach for the sachets Daniel and increase those imaginary sales and your feeling like this minus any alcohol! Yet Claude did seem to be impressed by Daniel’s franchising strategy, but one felt it wouldn’t be enough to save Daniel!  

Taxi for one! Daniels business plan was dissolving right in front of him like the contents of one of his sachets - was the man who wanted workers not shirkers ever going to sink £250K into something that advocates binge-drinking? And Daniel who claimed to be successful in Dubai where drinking is illegal – nothing added up especially his calculations!

As slippery as a floor without a "Wet Floor" sign, Daniel began to her the engine running and realised it was time to grab his coat as despite his talents and an attractive business plan, he misjudged and under-estimated the power of honesty over spin!

Kadija who previously in the series had been compared Kim Jong-un which she appeared to take as a compliment, not seeming to know who he was broke down as she opened up to Claudine Collins about her reasons for being in the process explaining that everything she did, she did for her two children and what it would mean to her to win. I half expected a choir of char ladies to enter and start singing something out of Oliver! 

As we all know there is a fine line between assertion and aggression and Kadija not recognising Kim Jong-un had not a cat’s hells chance in recognising this fact either!  

Passionate about her business, it is clear she has worked very hard to make it a success having started her company with just £20 in her back pocket. Bet she wished she had bought a bottle of gin and some of Daniels sachets as things weren’t going her way. 

One feels she must have been sniffing the clit bang a bit too long as her ambitions verged on the fantastical which would be her eventual undoing after wanting a London HQ.   Why do you need a London office, you haven't even conquered Peterborough asked Linda to a smug Khadija who stood her ground, declaring, "I'm on my way" with the loudness of a person who knows that they are losing an argument? 

Her Catherine Tate, I can do that attitude to scrubbing skyscrapers higher than a stoned pilot singing a Bee Gees song was laughable!   Claude tried with some psychological warfare to make her have a reality check and asked if others found her difficult to work with? Khadija responded that the other candidates liked her and she was misunderstood; passionate not aggressive. 

But Claude’s sharpness of tongue couldnt wait to burst her washing up bubble as he advised they all hate you!  She had no problem declaring a turnover growth of £1.4 million in the first year rigidly sticking to her polished guns in the face of every single interviewer who all told her the same message that she was dreaming. 

Shouty Kadija shouted at Linda Plant who as tough as the whole crew of the Expendables was a big mistake – massive mistake - no one shouts at Linda! Did she not appreciate that Linda hauls hapless candidates over the coals and rips their business plans to shreds?  Something only wrong with your ears Kadija? Think you need to go with Daniel to Specsavers.

With her business lacking the right USPs and containing high margins she was next to go! Labelled throughout the process as aggressive, the interviews were an emotional roller-coaster for Khadija. 

Next came ‘Yoo-hoo!’ Camilla – who greeted Claude with a "Yoohoo," to which he responded back with a very flat and disappointed "Yoohoo" and whose tone questioned the original and inappropriate Yoohoo first made!  This was as an awk inside a ward if ever I have witnessed it!

Claude had also sniffed out the missing twenty thousand missing from her proposal, which Yoohoo Claude Camilla is sure is in there somewhere. Smile and wave Claude! Smile and Wave! 

Onto Claudine who was alarmed not at Camilla being the first person to use sex to sell products, but her branding which featured a luscious, lipsticked mouth dribbling milk.  It was more like food porn than a healthy nut drink and it was pointed out that this could be an issue regarding its suitability by this sexualised and provocative image rarely seen on the shelves of Waitrose or hanging in one of Sainsburys aisles. 

Claude Littner and Linda Plant dismissed the very idea Camilla was in the same market as what she called her ‘competitors.

Linda told Camilla her she was a long way off getting stocked in supermarkets, nearly ignoring that now she's been on The Apprentice so at least a couple of million people already know about her product. 

Camilla took umbrage at this sex obsessed image she's been painted with, neatly forgetting the slutty Santa she stuck on her chocolates last week and declaring, "Sex sells!". 

Sabrina compared to a drone was the first to be fired after being told her tennis events company was just not feasible after her habitual cancellations put Lord Sugar off, in addition to him struggling with the scalability of her business idea.   

Out of the five, Sabrina came through the interviews with the most integrity still intact. She got off pretty lightly with Linda, who got a bit snooty about her lack of experience.  This made us all wonder why her application was taken on in the first place and made us certain she will be first out of the boardroom for her green as cabbage business outlook.

Mike dug a bit deeper to find out what made Sabrina's tennis tournaments different to everyone else's, and it turns out it’s because of goody bags – ooh how exciting! - Do hope they have that fortune telling fish that rolls over to advise you are dead!  

Always look on the bright side, even if there isn’t one Sabrina doesn’t allow her emotions to get the better of her and throughout the process tried to answer questions despite being shut down at every turn. And so, it was an early shower for Sabrina without even a complimentary Barley water. 

Sian was brought to tears by fellow Leeds inhabitant Linda Plant when she shared her words of wisdom that it was possible to build a brand even if one lived in Leeds.  This stunning information was too much for Sian, especially coming from a woman in the fashion design industry – it was a surprise to a lot of us who only associated Leeds with Asda’s head office.   

In response to Sian’s blubbering Linda advised “Crying is not what is required here!   She wasn’t being sympathetic – merely stating the obvious – let face it no one wants to interview someone who has a snot bubble forming! 

These harsh words were needed and only after Linda had whipped out an identical swimsuit from a supermarket probably Asda given the Leeds connection that looked just like the ones Sian produces and then had grilled her about what made hers so different apart from the colour.  Once again Sian like the other candidates was exposed for her inexperience, naivety and lack of business acumen. 

Linda played an absolute blinder of good cop and bad cop all mixed into one and let’s not forget she was brought in by Lord Sugar to dig and expose any weaknesses so that he doesn’t make a mistake; like the loyal plant she is - her plant motto is take me to your weeder!   

Mike decided to test Sian on her fashion knowledge and wanted to know what was going to be the next big thing in swimsuits. We all sat with bated breath waiting for a swimwear fashion revelation to make a note of so that we could all be prepared for our jollies.  When Sian’s prediction of next season’s trends was big sleeves – the nation turned the volume up thinking they had misheard only to hear Mike scoff that in swimwear this would mean potentially drowning!  Oh dear Sian big sleeves = big boo boo – yoohoo – oh no that’s Camilla!

So in summary three out of the five have been eliminated; Daniel, Sabrina and Kadija – and so onto the finalists Camilla and Sian.

Yoohoo Sir Alan you are so spoilt for choice bet you cant wait to get the money out of the bank!