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They will battle boardroom showdowns while cooking up bizarre new products and business plans to impress Lord Alan Sugar.
These are the 16 ambitious entrepreneurs who will compete on Series 16 of the Apprentice for a life-changing £250,000 investment in their business.
The new series is set to air on BBC One at 9pm on Thursday, January 6.
Willis, 38, is a Flight Operations Instructor from Chorley in Lancashire.
Having served in the RAF for 12 years as a Flight Operations Instructor, Aaron has set out to start his own security business.
From travelling all around the world and previously working as a milkman, horseman and butcher, this outgoing salesman won’t ‘let anyone stand in his way’ on the road to success.
The 38-year-old, from Chorley, Lancashire, said: “My strongest point is that I can sell to anybody, and I think that’s the reason why my business will be a success, because people will buy from me.”
Akeem, from London, considers himself a people’s person who loves being around others. The self-described “numbers guy” has hyped up his analytical ability which, he says, allows him to take a “calculated point of view”.
The 29-year-old, who works as a Strategy Manager for a financial firm, says: “My growing up has made me who I am, I’m able to converse with everyone, but also able to show that financial, business side to myself.”
Akshay says sleeping is a ‘waste of time’ and believes he’s been put on earth to do one thing – make money.
The 28-year-old business owner, who claims his first word as a new-born was ‘profit’, is a polyglot who can speak seven languages.
“My friends call me AK47 because I’m a killer salesperson,” he says.
Starting her beauty business a little later in life, the 48-year-old has now found what she really loves doing after previously working in sales, showbiz and jingles. Amy takes business very seriously, and describes herself as determined, persistent and a ‘tough boss’.
Describing herself as kind, sociable, and enthusiastic, the gregarious 25-year-old has a positive outlook on life and is looking for Lord Sugar’s help launching the first ever alcoholic protein drink in the UK. Brittany is ready to learn as much as possible throughout the process and is confident she’ll make it to the final.
The hotel manager says: “My motto for life is ‘always look on the bright side and be grateful for everything’ – every day when I wake up, I write ten things that am grateful for and when I go to sleep, I reflect on 5 things I am grateful for from that day.”
With big goals for his cleaning business, Alex is driven, focused and “not going to stop” until he gets what he wants. Despite leaving school after the first year of sixth form and encountering a few hurdles along the way, he is now on the way to tripling his turnover – which he views as the “most impressive” thing he’s done in business so far.
The 27-year-old, from Hertford, boasts: “I would compare myself to a Ferrari, shiny on the outside but under the bonnet, there is a lot of fire and I’m coming for you.”
Ex-rugby player Conor, 28, describes himself as a ‘corporate panther’ who is ‘hyper motivated by money’.
His business idea consists of a fleet of quirky food and beverage vendors targeted at music and sports events.
Francesca Kennedy Wallbank
The eco-conscious maths graduate, 26, is looking for investment for her product which provides carbon footprint services to businesses.
‘There are two types of people in the world – there’s people that say they are going to do things and people that actually do them, and I’m a doer.”
Inspired by the kindness of his grandparents, Harry wants to help and support people. Describing himself as ‘the Asian version of Lord Sugar’, he hopes they can work together to develop his bath bomb business and become ‘the bad boys ofthe bath bomb world together’.
Describing herself as a born leader, fearless and funny, Harpreet plans to “level up” her successful, six-figure coffee and cakes business to become a leading brand in the UK. Motivated by her need to be the best version of herself, she says she isn’t on the show to make friends and is ready to be Lord Sugar’s next business partner.
‘I’m definitely not in business to make friends, I’m here to make money, and I’m pretty sure Lord Sugar isn’t looking for a new mate’, the 30-year-old says.
Kathryn Louise Burn
Having worked jobs from mortgage advisor to events manager, Kathryn, 29, now has ambitious plans for her online pyjama business and is confident that they will one day be ‘worn by everyone’. Describing herself as ambitious, kind, and often ’savage’, she says she’s there to win, not to make friends.
Qualified pharmacist and Nicki Minaj superfan Navid aspires to create a successful pharmacy business with the help and expertise of Lord Sugar. Describing himself as quirky and unique, Navid plans to stay true to himself throughout the process.
The 27-year-old adds: ‘Nothing intimidates me because I just feel like I’m a strong character, strong person, strong mindset.’
After ‘working in the shadow of his family’s business’, the 31-yearold accountant hopes to make a name for himself in the drinks industry with his line of flavoured water. Nick’s plan to beat the competition is to ‘kill them with kindness’.
The Londoner says: ‘In business I’m a bit of a force to be reckoned with. I know what I’m talking about, I know how things work, and I’m extremely experienced. So, I’m a bit of an animal in the boardroom.’
The 32-year-old businesswoman describes herself as magical and enchanting. The cocktail bar owner adds: ‘Failure is not an option, winning is part of my DNA.’
Shama, a 41-year-old mother-of-five, is passionate about childcare and describes herself as loyal, determined and outspoken.
She adds: ‘Being a lady of colour, wearing a headscarf as well, and the challenges that we face on a daily basis, I just want to be a living example for the Asian women and South Asian women out there.’
Describing herself as confident, decisive and brutally honest, Stephanie is looking for funding and support to develop her designer childrenswear store. With a no-nonsense attitude towards business, the 28-year-old wants to be part of the rapidly growing pre-loved fashion industry and make a difference in the world.”
She says: ‘I’m an East London girl, and I’ve got that no nonsense sort of work ethic. I’ve got grit, determination – and I’m determined to be successful.’