The Apprentice UK Series 6 Winner

Following the interviews with some very rude people (hopefully these people are just putting on a show and aren’t actually like this in real life), three people were sent packing, bringing us down to the final two. As the last person in Britain to realize that Stuart Baggs the brand (TM) should have been fired weeks ago and that Liz should still be on the show, Lord Sugar finally gave up on Stuart after deciding he was a liar, although I thought the reasoning for getting rid of him was rather arbitrary (surely there were other reasons, as presented throughout the season). Joanna Riley then met the end of the road due to her lack of business experience. I felt they were hard on her. To be fair, she was even harder on herself. Lastly, Jamie Lester, who I had assumed was going to be in the running, was eliminated. Not sure why.

That brings us down to a battle between Chris Bates and Stella English, banker vs. banker’s assistant, neither seemingly a good fit for Sugar’s organizations. Between the two, however, the panel has us to believe they have the most distaste for Stella’s corporate background and lack of personality (not that Chris’ somewhat monotone personality has shined either, although him telling Stuart to F off was awesome).

They will be getting some assistance, in the form of eight returning contestants. Stella calls tails. It’s heads, so Chris picks first.

Chris: Jamie, Liz, Alex, Shibby
Stella: Joanna, Chris F, Melissa, Paloma

Their final task is to create a premium alcoholic drink. They will make the drink, design the bottle, and create an ad campaign. The spirit-based drink is intended for over 25s and must retail for £20, not exactly giving them a great deal of flexibility.

Stella’s team is looking at doing a bourbon drink. Nick is worried about this, having the same initial concern Stella raised: will this drink actually appeal to women? The focus group raises the same point. Their decision to overcome this is to add honey and spice. A lot of spice.

Chris and his team will be going with rum with some fruit flavor, such as pomegranate.

Stella stumbles upon a quite good name, Urboun, a bourbon blend for the urban generation. If only bourbon were spelled bourboun. Maybe it is in the UK for all I know. Check and color both have mysterious u’s added to them.

Running with his concept of threes, with his three flavored drink, Chris has come up with both a name and bottle shape, Prism. Certainly different. Meanwhile, Liz and Shibby are creating the product. In spite of Chris’ directive to not get too aggressive with the color, Liz wants to make it pink, which comes with a warning from the person they’re working with that it’s feminine. Afterward, Chris asks for confirmation that the color is clear. No, it’s not.

Having looked up how to spell bourbon, Stella has changed her brand name to Urbon.

Before they can shoot their commercials, they must first get approval from the stupidly strict industry authorities for advertising alcohol. Stella is warned to keep the drinking moderate, no shots and no large bottles. Chris is warned not to imply that the drink has an impact on a guy’s ability to be successful on a date. He also cannot use lips, eyebrows, eyes, or any other body part in a sexual way, and the clothing must be something that the “older generation” (aka people over age 25) would wear.

Since everything he wanted to do was shot down by the ad people, Chris has decided to shoot an ad featuring three friends, rather than two people dating. The problem now is that he hasn’t left himself much time to work, but they finish the commercial just in time. Not that it’s a very good commercial.

The final step of the task is to launch their brands with a pitch to people in the industry.

Speaking of the pitch, Stella’s struggling to come up with anything, with only about 10% of her presentation ready. Chris, however, already has his pitch ready. Now he just needs to work on his presentation skills, which history has shown us are passable but not impressive. Jamie wants Chris to show a bit of personality, to avoid the monotone criticism of presentations past. It seems to work, although Chris’ tone is what it is, so there’s not much they can do to work around it. In the end, both presentations appear to go off without a hitch.

So then Lord Sugar asks for feedback from those who are sitting at his table. Stella’s drink receives criticism for being pungent and overspiced. For the other team, the drawback is the color, pink. In each case, he can’t understand why people other than the project managers were doing the formulating of the products, one of the key components in the task.

As always, each of the teams support their leader for the job. The only exception is Alex, who suggests hiring both of them.

Returning to the feedback, we start with Chris. His advert was not very good, but the 3 thing was good. The bottle is quite clever, whereas Stella’s looks like vinegar. That said, her brand name is very clever.

With all that said and done, it’s now time for the final decision. The Apprentice UK Series 6 winner is Stella English.

While the US version has been flailing about for quite some time, only still around because of the D-list celebrity twist, The Apprentice UK continues to be one of the top rated shows. It will be returning next season for series 7, with the change being that Sugar will give the winner £250,000 toward a new business venture of their choosing, which they will then own 50/50. Seeing as only one winner remains with the company (last year’s winner), this probably makes more sense.

The Apprentice UK Series 5 Winner

The firing of James, Lorraine, and Debra in The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 11 brought us down to the final two: Kate Walsh and Yasmina Siadatan. Kate’s the clear frontrunner here. Yasmina, however, has performed well, despite the fact that I expected her to struggle when she acknowledged she was bitchy and difficult to work for. The other three certainly deserved to be fired, with James seemingly skating by for a while, Lorraine clearly floundering, and Debra just being mean to co-workers because she thinks that’s how the world works.

Returning for the task are some familiar faces. Yasmina wins the coin toss.

Yasmina’s team: Howard, Lorraine, James, Philip
Kate’s team: Ben, Debra, Kim, Rocky (the guy from week two?)

Their task is to create and launch a box of chocolates with an eye catching marketing campaign. The chocolate industry is worth over £3.5 billion.

James suggests aiming their product at males, since there’s less competition. Philip just wants to do something quirky. Yasmina likes the idea, so they aim their chocolates at men.

Ben would like to do a romantic campaign aimed at couples. Ben suggests a his and hers box. Kate likes that idea since it’s unique. However, there is no way in the world Kate will agree to a box with a 69 on it.

Yasmina’s team meets with a focus group. They don’t like the concept. Phil wants to run with it. Like with Pantsman. People will get it eventually. Yeah, he’s still waiting for that to happen. They’ve decided on the name Cocoa Electric. If they say so. Having met with men, they will now meet with women to discuss the concept. The women aren’t impressed either. They’ve abandoned the male focus to one with shocking flavors instead.

Kate’s team has a good idea. They have met with the box designers and are going for a box with three drawers, one for him, one for her, and one to share. Now they just need to come up with a name.

While they’re brainstorming for a name, Debra and Rocky are designing recipes. The ingredients they are looking at will be more expensive than Kate had originally wanted. She wanted £8-9. They want her to go up to £13-16. She is willing to go up to £13 at most, and Debra says that it will be a commercially viable product at that rate.

Yasmina’s team is aiming for a lower price, perhaps around £5 per box.

Kate’s brand name is Intimate. Nick is confused. He thinks it sounds like something about feminine freshness. Debra thinks it looks like a box of Tampax. Okay, perhaps time to change that. They have decided on Choc D’Amour.

When the boxes arrive the next morning, it’s time to shoot their TV ads.

While half of Yasmina’s team tries to figure out how to get people to believe their flavors are worth eating, the other half of her team is auditioning dancers for the next morning. Philip is having quite a bit of fun.

The Choc D’Amour ad is about a romantic night in, while Cocoa Electric is about people looking shocked. Their actors hate the taste, so that should help make them look shocked.

Kate considers Kim’s direction to be a bit cliche, and a bit 1980s. She wants to spice things up. Maybe if they smear chocolate all over the girl’s face and tie the guy up.

Yasmina is editing her commercial, while the rest of the team designs a poster. The poster team has put the logo and the name on a black background and called it a day.

The project managers will be doing their own pitches. Kate seems pretty comfortable. Yasmina is dreading it because she realizes her presentation style is, well, bad.

First up is Kate with Choc D’Amour, branded as a luxury chocolate. With the current economic climate, staying in is the new going out. There are 6 different flavors, and they’ve all been given a romantic name. Sir Alan thinks their price is a lot. Their ad campaign is playful and mischievious. The question she gets from the audience: what was behind the very ambitious pricing?

Next door, I hope somebody likes purple. Cocoa Electric is flavored to shock. Their price is not, though, at £6, putting it at the lower end of the market and less than half that of Choc D’Amour. The question they get: do you think the flavors work? Yasmina insists that everybody has been complimentary (even the actor who wanted to spit it out). As for the pricing, it costs about 7 pence to produce each chocolate, so it should be very commercially viable.

Kate gave a good presentation as expected, and despite being worried how she would do, Yasmina did well, too.

Now it’s time for Sir Alan to get industry feedback. Choc D’Amour is a great new product, but the pricing is the key question mark. As for Cocoa Electric, the brand is good, the pricing is good, but would anyone buy it again after tasting it the first time?

Although there were chocolates in the supermarket for £16, they were from established brands. For a new brand, it’s going to be a tough sell to push a high price. This product would need to establish itself before it would be up with them.

On the other end of the rainbow is Cocoa Electric, which has a cheap price, but it’s also made of the cheapest possible ingredients.

Nick sat next to the marketing director of the biggest chocolate company in Europe, and he said their people would have taken months to get where these girls got in a couple days, so he’d hire both of them.

Kate is looking to develop her 10 year career plan with a company to be a director with a large team. Is she just going to be a presenter who’s good at sales? I’m not sure I get that logic, as Kate’s proved to be more than that.

As for Yasmina, we’re going back to whether she should be giving up her day job as part owner of a restaurant.

The Apprentice UK Series 5 winner is Yasmina. I don’t get hiring someone who has indicated she wants to work for Sir Alan for a few years then go off on her own like she is already, but there you have it.

The Apprentice UK is currently casting for series 6. The series will air in 2010, without Margaret. In addition, a Junior Apprentice for people aged 16-17 is currently casting. Nobody will be hired, but the winner will receive a prize of up to £25,000.

The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 11

Howard was fired in The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 10 due to his unrisky strategy as project manager (ironically, it was the other team, which won, that actually took no risks), while slow burner Lorraine somehow made her way into the final 5.

It’s interview day. Lorraine says she’s scared, with good reason, but indicates the others are not so scared.

Yasmina has only had one or two interviews in her life. She plans to be absolutely brilliant.

Debra realizes she’s made few friends along the way. Her theory is that people dislike her due to her success. My theory is people dislike her because she’s a bitch.

Lorraine considers her CV to be a bit “watery” because she really hasn’t done much in the past decade since she had two kids during that time.

Sir Alan tells them that 1 or 3 of them will be sent home today. His panel consists of Borden Tkachuk of Viglen Computers, Claude Littner who runs companies or something, Karen Brady of Birmingham City Football Club, and city litigator Alan Watts.

Yasmina says that she sometimes can annoy people because she tends to very good at everything. Oh geez. Debra, likewise, is full of herself.

Claude wants to know if Lorraine’s a bit delusional.

James is told that his CV is exceptional. Exceptionally bad. Nobody outside the telecoms industry would understand what he’s talking about.

Borden asks Kate why she’s there since she’s already doing quite well for herself. She responds that she’s looking for a new industry with room for growth, hopefully up to director level within 8 years.

Claude wants to know if Yasmina knows the difference between different types of profit, since she’s written 4.5% gross profit in her resume but now is coming back to say 4.5% net profit. Is she talking nonsense? He’s taken the liberty of getting her business account information. Much to her chagrin, this is public information. They tell a different story than she’s telling about sales and profit. If she doesn’t know the answers to these questions about how much she’s made, that’s a sad indictment of her business.

Lorraine’s CV, meanwhile, has incorrect dates. She’s worked at her current job for one year. She put two. She calls the interview horrendous, but it’s made her think about her CV for the future.

Claude would struggle to consider Debra a team player.

As for James’ CV, he says that he can bring ignorance to the table.

Kate would have a problem working with an all female team. She’d rather work with men, which she’s used to doing, due to the emotional issues that go along with working with women.

Alan has followed up with references. One of Debra’s called her loud, obnoxious, and inexperienced, with a foul mouth. She acknowledges she’s told people to F off at work. Karen runs into the same issue. Another person who works with her calls her aggressive and rude, and lots of people hate her.

Kate’s relationship with Philip has come to the surface again. It only came up originally because Lorraine was desperate to not be fired, and never did prove to be an actual problem.

Alan has a problem that Yasmina asked her mother to remortgage her house to get the business started.

Claude thinks that Kate’s an incredibly competent interviewee with great answers, but he’s concerned there’s not much passion behind that.

Once the interviews are done, the four advisors are able to give their input to Sir Alan.

First is Lorraine. Alan couldn’t shut her up. He found it difficult to get past the talking. If you ask her one question, she’ll still be going ten minutes later without actually telling you anything. Her “special gift” is a combination of intuition and mind reading. In Lorraine’s defense, Margaret says that she has made the right call a few times that others have mised, but her flaw is that she can’t get over the fact that someone else makes a choice she doesn’t like. Claude doesn’t think she could cope with the pressure. Alan thinks she’d drive Sir Alan mad.

Next is Yasmina. Claude likes that she’s actually got entrepreneurial spirit, although she’s not all that credible. Alan, however, felt she came across quite well, but why does she want to work for Sir Alan when she just started her own business a year ago? He and Claude are concerned that the mother put up her house, a big risk, and in return received 1% ownership in the business. Karen considers this comment to be unfair, and it turned out to be a good risk. Sir Alan and Nick are onboard with this theory that, if your children ask you to do something to help them, you do it. Karen could see Yasmina fitting in really well.

Then there’s James. He didn’t have a good interview with Karen, and he admitted it to her when she asked him how he thought it went. He couldn’t stop joking and was touchy. Borden defends him saying that some of his achievements in business have been quite good. Nick thinks he’s lucky to have gotten as far as he has.

Karen was really impressed by Kate. She was very good at answering the questions, albeit perhaps a bit too robotic. It seems she’s just not an emotional person, which perhaps is why she doesn’t like working with women. Karen doesn’t think Kate will let Sir Alan down.

Debra’s references were particularly brutal. These are references she chose herself. Alan’s not convinced she’s actually been changed by this process like she says she has been. Borden says that she will deliver, but will probably try to crush and upset others in the process. Claude likes that she’s young and probably can change. They agree she comes over as very mature despite being 23.

With that done, the candidates return to the boardroom.

Sir Alan wants James to drop his defensive act because people do like him. Debra needs to conquer herself before taking on the world. Kate takes the robotic comment as a compliment because that’s how you should be in an interview. Lorraine has been more critical of her colleagues than anyone else. The question mark with Yasmina is that she’s in business already, so why does she want to work with someone else? She basically admits she plans to work for Sir Alan for a few years, then ditch him to go back to working for herself.

Because he’s a corporate man, an environment that apparently doesn’t exist in Sir Alan’s business, James has been fired. After that’s done, they take a rest because the others are obviously getting emotional.

When they return, they’re told that two more people will be fired.

Sir Alan’s already heard Lorraine’s sad story enough times, so her telling it again won’t help her any. The concern with her is that she doesn’t get along with anyone and would rather fight than work with her team. Her response to this is that she should have pushed her instincts more, but the problem was she kept pushing her instincts long after everyone else already moved on without her. With that said, Lorraine has been fired.

Although she claims she’s desperate to work for Sir Alan, Yasmina’s already running her own business. As for Debra, all of her good sides pale in comparison to her attitude.

Then there’s Kate. With no further ado, she’s in the final. There may be criticism she’s too robotic, but she’s been the obvious frontrunner all along.

So that leaves it between Yasmina and Debra for the final spot. This is the tough decision for him. Debra has been fired. Now it’s just a question of whether she can actually change her spots. That means Yasmina will be advancing to the final with Kate.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another recap of The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 12, where we will find out who The Apprentice UK Series 5 winner is.

The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 10

Ben was finally fired in The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 9. As for Debra, she’s up to like 6 strikes but still isn’t out yet, perhaps in part due to her increased efforts to be a big fat liar.

They’re told to pack an overnight bag. Going to Manchester again? Nope, Peterborough, but this time they get to go on TV (while on a TV show). They will star on Britain’s second biggest TV shopping show.

Howard steps up to lead Ignite. As for Empire, they’ve spent an hour in the car but still don’t know who will be project manager. Yasmina and Debra both want the position. Debra reluctantly allows Yasmina to be the leader. Her concern is that Yasmina sucks just as bad as she does. She’d rather see James lead apparently.

Each candidate will take a turn presenting and directing, giving them an opportunity both in front of and behind the camera.

After what happened last week, Yasmina doesn’t want to be risky. She wants them to hunt for low priced items. Yasmina and James will work together, while Debra chooses her products alone.

Howard’s team is in the studio training. Lorraine’s trying to sell a Sat-Nav safety camera by telling people it’s a great way to get away with breaking the law and continue speeding. Okay, then, if she can’t talk about speeding, how about talking about getting into car wrecks? As for Kate, she’s struggling getting any words out. Then it’s Howard’s turn. He seems like a natural. Despite that and the comments from Lorraine how good Howard looks on camera (which displeases Kate), or perhaps because of it, he will be working with Lorraine, while Kate does the solo presentation. He doesn’t want Lorraine on her own.

Then it’s the other team’s turn to practice. They seem to have already made up their mind. Debra does the solo pitch, perhaps because she doesn’t play well with others, while James and Yasmina pitch together.

Sir Alan doesn’t want team members to sell their own choices, so whatever the other half of the team picked, they’re stuck with.

Lorraine and Howard will be selling Kate’s high ticket real leather jacket, which sells for £149.99, and a chip pan that sells for £139.99.

Debra will be selling products selected by James and Yasmina. They chose a £24.99 leaf grabber, which is their most expensive item. Additionally, they have a £9.99 polo pancho neck warmer, their team’s cheapest product. For their part, James and Yasmina will be selling a cut price remote controlled car that retails for £14.99. They also get a £17.99 three pack of hair clips. Unlike the other team, they are not taking any risks and instead are going for volume.

Kate will be selling £16.99 bejeweled dogs/cats and a £14.99 toy air guitar.

James and Yasmina go on first. Debra wants Yasmina to stop talking and for James to mention the price, which she has to request a few times. Then when they’re selling the hair clips, Yasmina says that it’s £9.99. So is it £9.99 or £17.99? After they repeat the incorrect price half a dozen times, somebody in the booth finally wakes up and realizes the mistake. When they get up to the production area, they’re told that their sales figures are not very good at about £400 so far.

Next up is Debra. Sir Alan’s unimpressed by their first product. Why is everything so cheap? Where is the high priced product to balance this out?

Howard is busy preparing for their pitch, while Lorraine plans to just wing it. They work well together, and Kate’s working well with them behind the scenes. Sir Alan is impressed with the choices. They’ve only gotta sell one of these to compete with 14 of the pancho things. Sir Alan’s concern is that they’re talking so much that they’re not in any hurry to provide a phone number.

Kate goes next. She’s got the low end products to balance out the higher end ones. The infrared air guitar gives her the chance to release her inner rock goddess, and the people in the studio love her.

Howard’s team supports him.

Sir Alan questions Howard and Lorraine about the amount of time they spent on explaining the frier, without spending enough time on the price and how it could be ordered. On the other side, he wasn’t overly impressed with the arts and crafts. With that said, he liked that they had a nice mix of product prices.

As for the other team, they had all cheap products. A cautious approach. Perhaps too cautious. Sir Alan says that James was stumbling a bit, but he does get feedback that his humor wasn’t lost on the audience.

Empire sold £1,541.88. Ignite sold £1,376.73. The cheap way beat the riskier strategy. The panchos sold pretty close to what a professional would have sold, and Debra gets kudos for her performance. Their reward is private flying with aerobatics.

The leather jacket sales were abysmal, while the frier was not sold well enough, although Sir Alan considered it a great product choice. Nick blames bad salesmanship for the loss. Considering what they’re viewing as the reason for the loss, it’s a safe bet that the person to be fired will be Howard or Lorraine, with Kate continuing to go through completely unscathed.

Lorraine and Howard blame each other. Kate can just sit back and watch the fight.

1 animal craft kit was sold. Howard and Lorraine chose that based on how easy it would be to demonstrate. Sir Alan had no clue what the product was. Howard didn’t really know either.

As for the toy air guitar, they sold less than 10% of what the channel would expect to sell. Kate didn’t feel the choices were the easiest products to sell. Speaking of toys, Lorraine really wanted a £229 dinosaur, but she didn’t really make an effort to get her point across. Howard wasn’t comfortable with the product anyway.

The leather jacket sold less than 5% of the projections. That and the frier are among the biggest sellers for the station. Howard didn’t like Lorraine’s lack of preparation for the presentation.

Sir Alan viewed Kate as a programmed robot and just to keep things interesting tries to make out like she’s actually in danger.

Kate blames Lorraine’s lack of understanding of the frier, which she had the night before but failed to bother getting to know.

Lorraine wants Howard fired, due to his lack of personality as a leader.

Sir Alan thinks Lorraine’s always one step behind in getting the plot. He’s concerned that Kate thinks she’s better than what she is. As for Howard, he’s concerned he’s risk averse.

Despite Lorraine being a “slow burner in the thought process,” Howard has been fired due to his unwillingness to take risks.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another recap of The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 11.

The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 9

Mona was fired due to lack of creativity in The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 8, despite Debra’s mistakes.

Sir Alan drags the teams to a maternity ward. He has arranged a stand at the baby show at Earls Court. Prior to that, they will interview suppliers of baby equipment, from which they will choose two to sell.

Ben and Yasmina go to Empire. Howard goes to Ignite.

Sir Alan appoints the mom and dad as project managers. Lorraine is the leader of Ignite. James is the leader of Empire.

Lorraine went to the baby show a few years ago. She wants to get one high end niche product and one impulse purchase.

The teams are given six hours to review the products on day one.

James and Yasmina go to see a home birth pool, which has been sold at the baby show before. They like the product and the fact that it has had previous success.

The other half of the team, Debra and Ben, goes to see a protective head cap for toddlers. They don’t like the product.

Lorraine goes to see a buggy that folds up easily and can be held in one hand. She loves it. After expressing how much she loves it and would buy one herself, it’s then that she decides to haggle over the price. He agrees to knock off £10.

The rest of her team, Kate and Howard, goes to see high heeled shoes for tiny tots. Seriously? They hate them.

Debra and Ben see some thoroughbred toys for high end buyers. Impressive product, but steeply priced at over £1000. That said, if they sell just one, that’s better than they could do with anything else.

Lorraine likes the birth pool and the stroller. They choose the buggy, since the market for home births is only about 2%. Howard and Kate choose the thud guard, which they know is all about guilting parents into buying.

Ben and Debra are betting on the horse, but they would not choose any of the other products. If her life depended on it, Debra would still not choose anything else. When James forces her to pick, she chooses the thud guard. James and Yasmina want the birth pool, with a second choice of a pushchair. Debra says the pushchair sounds great.

Having picked the buggy, which is a nice product, Lorraine now needs to figure out how the heck to use it.

Both teams know that the rocking horse is critical. One sale, and it’s over. No sales, and it’s over.

Lorraine’s team has discovered that they’re not the only ones selling the pushchairs. She knows that the other seller can change their price, whereas she can’t. Howard knows that, if they lose, they’ve got an excuse. Their other issue with this pushchair is that Lorraine still hasn’t figured out how to correctly fold and unfold it.

Debra and James have decided to take the price tag off their £1700+ horse.

Their birthing pool, discounted to £76, is attracting buyers.

On the other team, while some of the kids aren’t overly crazy about the toddler hat, it’s cheaply priced at £16, so there is a market for it.

As for the buggy, they’ve finally figured it out and are starting to sell. There’s another problem, though. The other buggy seller has it priced £35 cheaper.

Without price tags, the rocking horses are starting to attract attention. Not the right attention because the price is still scaring people. As the day goes by, an exhibitor is looking to buy the horse, but he wants to haggle. They are unable to move on the price and give him £200 off, so they lose the sale. The day ends with that.

Ben says that James hasn’t improved much since last time.

To be fair, Ben may already be trying to cover his own butt, knowing the horse didn’t sell. He says that James and Yasmina were keen on the rocking horse over the phone, so it wasn’t just him and Debra to blame. James felt that the buggy was too expensive relative to others on the market, so that’s why he went with the other choice of the birth pool.

Lorraine’s team supports her. Kate says that she’s improved. They quite liked the head gear as a secondary product, which Ben hated. Lorraine acknowledges that she didn’t check to see whether anyone else was selling it (and cheaper).

Empire sold £722. Ignite sold £1660.89, an obvious landslide because no horses sold. Their reward will be to meet a famous cartoonist and get their caricatures drawn.

Debra wants James fired because he didn’t go with the buggy. Ben will push that card as well, since they don’t have another one to play and need to divert attention away from the rocking horse. Based on the final sales numbers, it would be hard to argue that the buggy was that much different a choice than the birth pool, but they’ll try.

James calls the horse a distraction. They should have focused more on the birth pool. Debra says that they would have won with the buggy. Except the other team sold the buggy, too, and they also had helmet sales to go along with it. Yasmina brings up that Debra repeatedly refused to offer another product as an option.

Ben and Debra claim they were unable to get any movement on the price from the rocking horse vendor. Sir Alan’s response: he checked up on this, and if they pushed him, he would have reduced by the price by something like 10%. That would have been enough to get that deal done at the end of the day.

Obviously, Ben and Debra will be returning. If James could, he would take Debra and Debra. This is the fourth time all of them have returned to the bottom three.

Sir Alan thinks Ben’s too full of himself. Margaret has a lot of sympathy for Ben if he had to spend a whole day with Debra.

Why shouldn’t Ben be fired? The response leads to a lot of babbling until Sir Alan gets tired of hearing it.

James says that he could get along with people, whereas if Debra were hired, half the people would be on strike the first day.

So does anyone have the guts to take responsibility for the horse? Ben says that they share responsibility. Debra lies and pretends she said the head gear was a lower risk option that was good.

Ben’s light at the end of the tunnel has gone out, so he has been fired. As for Debra, she has survived yet another week in which she should have been fired.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another recap of The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 10.

The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 8

Philip’s attitude finally got him fired, though Lorraine’s lack of competence was not enough for her to be booted in The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 7.

The task is to rebrand the seaside town of Margate.

Debra and Howard would like to be project manager for Empire. She’s not budging because she doesn’t want him to have a chance to shine (again), and so to get on with things, he agrees to be the subteam manager.

Yasmina is the project manager for Ignite.

Coming from Kent, Mona knows Margate well. She suggests a family theme. Howard points out that’s the same thing it is already, not a rebrand. The rest of the team decides to target a gay market because they will go on more vacations and spend more. Mona doesn’t see this market as a big thing for Kent.

On the other team, Lorraine wants to target the family market, and they agree.

Empire’s first task is to find some models. Apparently there are no gay models, so they will need to find straight guys able to act the most gay.

Ben says that the buildings that aren’t boarded up are quite nice.

Mona and James talk to some of the locals, who seem to be okay with marketing to the gay market.

Yasmina and Kate are looking for their mom and dad, who will apparently need to be not fully clothed because they have the men take off their tops and the women show their legs.

Mona and James make a stop to the local gay bar, where Mona’s first stop is to talk to a man who’s becoming a woman.

The next morning is a photo shoot. It’s terribly foggy everywhere. They will have to take some pictures anyway because this is the only day they have available to them. Luckily, the fog lifts by later in the day.

Ben takes control of directing the family and the framing.

Howard doesn’t want a poster that’s nothing but text, but Debra says they can always pass it around so that people can read it.

When Ben and Lorraine are done with the photos, they send them to London so that Yasmina and Kate can work with them. They’re not happy with them because there’s not enough blank space to put text.

Debra and Howard, however, are happy with Mona’s and James’ photos. Now they just need to figure out what to do with them.

At 7:20, Lorraine would like to change her team’s photos completely. The deadline is 8:00. Lorraine’s giving Yasmina a headache.

With half an hour to go, Debra and Mona begin their work on the leaflet. They have to rush through it. There’s nice blank spaces left over.

First to hear the pitches are two agency chiefs and a tourism expert.

Kate does the pitch for Ignite. They want to see Margate through children’s eyes. They’re asked whether they would actually recognize their campaign amongst a bunch of other posters if it did not have a logo.

Howard does the pitch for Empire. Their concept is that things are changing. They’ve come up with an explanation for their unfinished leaflets: they plan to offer local businesses the chance to advertise. They can tell it’s not finished, though. The excessive words on the posters are brought up as an issue, as Howard said would happen.

Next stop is Margate and its residents. One of the residents offers Ignite criticism about one of their pictures looking an oil slick, whatever that’s supposed to mean. She also expected to see something that pushed boundaries. Their campaign is pretty safe.

For the other team, they’re doing just that. Their campaign is about something different. However, their pictures are criticized. Back to Debra’s excessive words again. Another concern is that just marketing to gays is limited.

When asked who didn’t perform as well, Debra says it was her team in Margate.

The branding experts, officials, and residents of Margate scored their efforts out of 10. This is a pretty dicey task because it’s so subjective.

Empire got a 4 out of 10 from officials and residents, while Ignite received a 7 out of 10. The branding experts gave Empire a 4 out of 10, while they gave Ignite a 7 out of 10 as well. Ignite has easily won the task. Their reward is a visit to a race track where they will be able to drive some cars as fast as they want.

Mona blames her team’s approach. Howard blames Debra, and James seems to be thinking that way as well.

Sir Alan thought the message was pathetic. They approached the gay market, but they did it too subtly.

Mona says that Debra didn’t listen to her. Sir Alan’s response is that Mona does not seem to have too many ideas. She acknowledges that she was not happy with the concept, which stood in the way of her performing well.

Debra’s idea about lying about the leaflet was not received well, as it removed the trust they needed to work together.

Mona and James will be returning to the boardroom with Debra. Sir Alan says that, from his understanding, that’s the right decision because Howard did a lot. He felt that Howard had the ideas, which Debra suppressed. That said, it doesn’t sound like she got a lot of support from her team in Margate.

James calls Debra a nightmare to work with because she’s too aggressive. At least she’s a consistent bulldog, whereas Mona is a lot of hot and cold.

Debra says that the information she received was too limited. She takes responsibility for the posters, almost. The images weren’t good enough, nor was the information.

Sir Alan tells Mona she sits back too much, and he thinks that perhaps James falls into the same category as she does. He tells Debra she’s too loud and bossy.

Due to her lack of creativity, Mona has been fired. Sir Alan will keep his eyes on James. As for Debra, she seems to have escaped her poor performance unscathed.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another recap of The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 9.

The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 7

After both teams came back with a loss, three big mouths squared off in the boardroom in The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 6, and Noorul came out the loser and was fired.

The teams are instructed to pack an overnight bag. They find out after packing they’re going to Manchester and Liverpool. Probably won’t need the flip flops and swimsuit.

The task is to visit 12 companies and choose two products they wish to try to sell to dealers. Everybody will be given an order book and is expected to sell, so that way three people won’t be claiming the same sale like last week.

Mona and Howard go to Empire. Ben and Yasmina go to Ignite.

Mona volunteers to lead Empire because she doesn’t trust anyone else.

Lorraine steps forward for Ignite because she wants to make people do what she wants rather than being ignored. She says she goes with a gut feeling when she gets one, but she’s slow to get ideas.

Mona’s team has made their first decision on a dog leash that allows two people to walk their dog at the same time. Lorraine considers the product embarrassing, so her team is not interested.

They opt for another pet product instead, a cat playhouse. Their second choice is a shopping bag that clips on a bicycle. Yasmina raises concerns about weight distribution, but they go with it since the inventor assures them it’s been tested.

Empire’s second product is a sleeping bag with arms and legs. Howard’s only doubt is that he doesn’t see either of the two retailers that afternoon being interested in either product. They shrug that worry off, but Margaret’s not so sure that’s wise.

The first retail destination is an independently run hardware store. Yasmina and Lorraine will make the pitch there for their team. One of the executives they meet with offers the concern already mentioned about the bicycle bag, that weight distribution will be a problem. Yasmina’s suggestion: buy two. The cat playhouse, however, does generate some interest. They ask for them to order 5-6,000, meaning they would need to sell 400 a week. They disagree that would be possible. Upon leaving, Lorraine says that was her worse pitch in 20 years.

On the other team, Mona and James are trying to line up buyers for the next day.

Debra and Howard, meanwhile, go to the hardware store to make their pitch. The exec responds that he only ever sees one person walking a dog. Their next item is the sleeping bag. They didn’t prepare an answer to how much a regular sleeping bag would cost, as compared to this £89 one. Granted, the question is way too broad, as some sleeping bags are dirt cheap, while higher end ones would be far more expensive than this item. It’s all moot since it’s not like a hardware store could actually sell most of these products anyway.

Their next stop is the Manchester branch of the Designer Home Store. Their initial reaction is they’re too stylish for the sleeping bag. Howard is unsurprised by the lack of enthusiasm from the retailers.

Lorraine and Yasmina try their luck. They do seem interested in the bike bag.

The rest of Lorraine’s team is struggling to try to put the cat playhouse together. They only have one meeting lined up for the morning. If she’s not happy with that, she should have stayed behind with her team. It’s not as if she did anything on the pitches any of them couldn’t have done.

Mona and James hit one of their appointments, a camping store, to sell the sleeping bag. They start him off at a minimum order of 24 for £49.95. He’d like a better deal. Mona works with him to sell 45 for £48.

Lorraine stays in Manchester with Yasmina, while her other team heads off to the other side. Lorraine does not appear to be having any luck on the phones, a task she considered to be so easy, but Ben, Kate, and Philip have managed to book a meeting with the biggest pet retailer in the UK for her. Yasmina suggests that they both do the pitch, but Lorraine wants to take all the credit (but probably not all the blame). Because she’s the project manager, Yasmina’s out. The reason: she’s her boss.

On the other team, Debra and Howard are on their way to the headquarters of the very same pet superstore. They sell about 60 different types of leads, but they’ve never thought of this before. They would be interested in a trial on a regional basis at 50 of their 220 stores with 4 per store, which works out to a sale of 200.

The other half of Lorraine’s team is meeting with a cycle superstore for their bike bag. The guy they’re talking to points out another flaw: it will interfere with pedaling the bike. Philip agrees to ride the bike through the store to prove it will work. He’s still not interested.

Lorraine is heading for her pet meeting, and she’s talking about selling 20,000 units. She thinks big. Way too big. Didn’t she learn her lesson from the guy who told her that her 400 units per week sale was way too aggressive? They’re willing to do a test of 50 units. When Lorraine calls her other team to report her failure at selling at the meeting they booked for her, she turns it around to get upset at them for struggling to sell as well. She just hopes it’s not Kate’s beauty that’s causing them distractions, so she’s apparently letting her jealousy motivate her here.

Mona and James have sold some more dog leads to a local store in Manchester.

Debra has set up a meeting, and she insists on doing the pitch so she will get credit for the sale, unconcerned that Howard still doesn’t have any sales. She admits they’re working as a team, but she still wants the credit. She does, however, finally hand over their one phone so he can start making some calls. This meeting nets a sale of 10 units.

Lorraine goes to make another pitch. The pet store owner is not interested. It’s just a cardboard box. Now that the day’s almost over, Lorraine realizes this was a poor product choice. Shouldn’t her instinct have told her that long before now?

The other half of her team is attempting to sell a cat playhouse to a city center department store, hoping to make at least one sale for the task. No luck.

Mona’s team was reasonably happy with her performance, and she found them to be cooperative.

Both of their appointments that Sir Alan set up bought nothing. They are not overly surprised.

Lorraine mostly gets support from Yasmina, but not so much from the rest of the team. Kate says it lacked some structure.

They got orders for both items from Sir Alan’s retailers.

Empire’s total sales, all made on day two, were £4,501.

Ignite’s total sales were £1,302, despite having sold to the retailers.

Empire’s strategy was very clearly a winning one, despite Sir Alan having given them a hard time for ignoring the retailers. For their reward, they get a helicopter ride over London at sunset.

Ben, Kate, and Philip sold nothing. Lorraine sold the most, though that was mostly because she gave herself the pitch for the retailers and because the other half of the team made an appointment with the pet superstore for her.

Lorraine blames lack of urgency on the subteam for their performance.

Sir Alan questions Lorraine about the quantities she was attempting to sell, which were ridiculous.

Philip says that, if he and Kate were at the Pets At Home meeting, they would have sold more than 50 units. A chimp would have sold more for that matter.

Lorraine again brings up the lack of urgency, and says they sabotaged her so she would go in the boardroom and be sent home.

Philip and Kate will go back to the boardroom with Lorraine.

According to Philip’s application, his worst qualities are stubborn, arrogant, cocky, and a control freak.

Kate believes she’s performed consistently throughout the previous tasks, and she’s right. Unless she sticks her foot in her mouth, she’s safe.

Lorraine blames Philip and Kate’s friendship for their lack of sales. Oh, and their lack of urgency.

Philip has been fired because he won’t fit into the organization due to his attitude. Should have fired both of them, but Lorraine lives to see another day. She’s earned herself a new enemy in Kate, though, having brought up her friendship with Philip in a desperate attempt to not be sent home.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another recap of The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 8.

The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 6

Kimberly’s excuse that she only manages creative people but is not actually creative herself did not fly with Sir Alan, as she was fired in The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 5.

The task is to sell items, some old and some new. They’re warned to not take everything at face value.

Kate goes over to Ignite, while Noorul goes over to Empire. Empire got the bad end of that trade.

Sir Alan appoints Philip to lead Ignite and Ben to lead Empire.

Sir Alan says that he doesn’t expect them to sell all 10 items, but he does want them to sell the ones they do sell for the right price. There are some valuable items among the junk. This is quite the contrast with the typical task on this show, which is to sell as much as possible.

Ben believes he can be great under situations such as heavy gunfire or explosions going off around him. He probably won’t find any of that here.

Philip starts off by trying to get past the fighting with Lorraine from last week. With that said, it’s time for him to start going after her. He doesn’t want her to waste time on that rug. Would this be the £200 rug that was pointed out as one of the gems at the top of the task?

Ben takes 7 items and gives the other half of his team just 3. You could try trusting them a bit more.

Philip splits his items equally, dividing between antiques and more contemporary items.

Philip, Lorraine, and Mona first head off to sell the skeleton because he believes the skeleton has the highest value. The antique shopkeepers tell them it’s just too new.

Ben, Noorul, and Debra start off with the books. The place they take them should be able to sort out the valuable items from the junk, but they can’t be rushed. Since they’ve got to cram so much into the day, they may not have the time to spend doing this. After a couple of valuations, Ben decides to leave.

Philip’s still hung up on the skeleton. At the suggestion of the shopkeepers, they will go to the college. Lorraine still wants to focus on the rug, and Philip still doesn’t want to listen to her.

As for Ben, he’s tired of wasting time with valuations, so he’s just going to sell. They get £100 for their books.

Perhaps if Philip goes to a pub, he can find some doctors having a lunch time drink. Somehow, they actually find someone to buy it for £160, some random guy who wanted one his whole life.

Howard has sold the riding boots for the other half of Philip’s team. Kate’s also selling some small value items.

Yasmina and James have sold their Frank Lampard poster for £40 to a retailer. Their next item is jellied eels. The fishmonger talks them down from £50 to 30.

Philip still thinks the Indian rug is garbage, so he takes it to an east end street market. Margaret calls this one of the most stupid activities they have yet engaged in. They don’t have any luck.

Ben’s team is attempting to unload the skeleton. Noorul has set up a meeting. He’s checked the value is over £150. The guy they have a meeting with is a student. The best he can do is £50. Ben agrees to sell it for £60.

Yasmina and James try to unload their rug, and they’re told to not waste their time in that area because the value is too high for anybody to buy it.

Philip will be going door to door with his rug.

Ben’s struggling to find any takers for the commode. He calls for reinforcements. Perhaps if he’d planned better, he wouldn’t have 5 items left to sell while the other half of his team has just one remaining. Debra is irritated with Yasmina and James, who would rather focus on selling the rug.

They will be heading to Greenwich Market to see what they can get rid of, apparently as cheaply as possible. Ben wants to sell all the shoes for £1, including the vintage shoes worth over £100.

With half an hour left, Philip decides to go into another pub, this time with a rug.

Yasmina and James, likewise, are still lugging around their rug. At least they realize the value of the rug, more than Philip does anyway. They sell it for £55.

Philip sells his rug to someone on the street for £50. Lorraine thought the rug and the shoes were worth the most. Philip asks why she’s bringing it up now, as if she hasn’t been bringing it up all day long.

Ben’s team thought he was a good team leader. He says it was probably the hardest task they’ve come up against, and he’s exhausted and stressed.

Philip’s team also supports him, even Lorraine.

This task will be judged on what they sold the items for, as compared with what they were worth. Rather than just trying to unload them at any price, they’d have been better off simply not selling some of them.

Ignite made a profit of £96 on the items they sold for more than their value, but they undersold two items and ended up with a net loss of £34.

Empire made a profit of £78 on some items, but they had a loss of £242 on the rest, for a net loss of £169.

Despite the fact that they had a loss, Ignite still won because they had less of a loss. Sir Alan wants Philip to have less of a thick head going forward, and perhaps actually listen to someone else for a change.

Ignite gets a reward of truffle tasting and wine. Philip thanks Lorraine for putting up with him for another day.

Sir Alan asks Empire why they didn’t make an effort at finding the gems. They stare at him without speaking.

Nick says that the skeleton probably wouldn’t have sold at all until Ben stepped in and closed the deal. Noorul steps in and tries to take credit. Yeah, credit for the item that caused them to lose half of what they lost. Let it go, dude. You don’t want credit for this.

Debra blames the poor split of items. Yasmina jumps in to defend herself, even though Debra seems to be blaming her project manager. Speaking of taking credit, Debra would like credit for the bulk of the sales from her team. Not content with arguing with Ben, she begins arguing with Nick as well, until Sir Alan tells her not to speak to him like that.

Ben will be bringing Noorul and James back with him. Uh… why James? He’s changed his mind and has decided to bring back Debra instead.

Margaret says that it was the bike and the skeleton that let them down.

Noorul, after much arguing, finally gets to his complaint about the failure of the task. It was the poor split of the items, which Debra also brought up.

Then it’s time for Ben to get into another shouting match, this time with Debra.

Noorul is still taking credit for the rug. He also takes credit for the bike. So basically both the items that Margaret blames for them losing the task.

Debra calls Ben a poor project manager.

Ben would like Noorul fired because he’s sat on the fence throughout the competition. Noorul doesn’t let him get out a complete thought. Could this guy please just shut up already? At least it looks like Debra’s safe because the other two are digging their own graves.

Because Sir Alan doesn’t know what Noorul’s been doing there, he has been fired. As for Debra, if she talks back to Nick like that again, she should not bother coming back.

Stay tuned to dingoRUE for another recap of The Apprentice UK Series 5 Episode 7.