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30 April 2013

The Apprentice: Meet the Board



Lord Sugar

After leaving school in Hackney aged 16, Lord Sugar started selling car aerials and electric goods out of a van he bought for £50. In 1968, he founded Amstrad, and now, over 40 years later, he has an estimated worth of £730 million, and was ranked 85th in the 2010 Sunday Times Rich List.

A former Chairman of Tottenham Hotspur FC, Sugar sold his Amstrad empire to Sky in July 2007. Sugar's other companies include AMSCREEN, which offers digital screen media advertising networks, 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 specialising in computers, networks and solutions.

In 2000, Sugar was knighted for his services to business and he holds two honorary Doctorates of Science degrees, awarded by City University and Brunel University respectively.

Having previously sat on the Business Council for Britain and fronted a campaign promoting the benefits of apprenticeships, in 2009 he was named as Enterprise Champion and appointed to the House of Lords as Baron Sugar of Clapton in the London Borough of Hackney.

In 2010, Lord Sugar released his autobiography, What You See Is What You Get and in 2011, he released The Way I See It.

Lord Sugar is a philanthropist who donates to a number of charities including Great Ormond Street Hospital and Jewish Care.


Nick Hewer

Former PR impresario Nick Hewer started off in public relations in the mid 1960s. Heading up his own PR company for over 30 years until its sale in 1997, Nick built an impressive corporate client list which included many British and international companies and organisations.

Nick first came across Lord Sugar when his PR company was chosen to represent Amstrad in 1983. Soon taking care of his 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.

Friends throughout their careers, Lord Sugar laid on a dinner at The Dorchester for Nick and 100 guests to celebrate his official retirement. Says Nick: “Alan is a very generous friend. The best thing about working for him was there was always something going on - he has vibrancy about him.”

Nick's career has taken him all over the world and he has a lifelong passion for world travel. He has driven a 20-year-old Renault 4L solo from London to Mongolia for charity and has taken part in the BBC Children In Need trek from Istanbul to Almaty in Kazakhstan. As a patron of Hope and Homes for Children, Nick helps promote the British charity and has worked for them in Romania, Rwanda and Sierra Leone. He has a home in France where he indulges a passion for old tractors.

Nick’s much-loved dry wit and legendary facial expressions have taken him through eight series of The Apprentice and have also seen him appear on comedy panel shows such as Would I Lie To You? and Have I Got News For You. In January 2012 he became the presenter of Channel 4’s Countdown and recently appeared in the documentary Nick Hewer: Countdown To Freetown, also on Channel 4, in which he embarked on a mission to tow an industrial saw and generator to the capital of Sierra Leone to present to a young carpenter.


Karren Brady

Karren Brady began her career at Saatchi & Saatchi when she was 18 years old and swiftly moved on to London Broadcasting Company as a sales executive. She joined Sport Newspapers Ltd in 1988 and became Director within a year.

Karren is known as the first woman of football. She was Managing Director of Birmingham City Football Club from 1993 to 2009 and during that time turned the Club's fortunes around. She took over Birmingham City FC when it was in administration, and in her first year at the helm, the club recorded a financial trading profit. In January 2010, Karren was appointed Vice Chairman of West Ham United FC.

Karren has attracted much media attention in her career, and was the subject of an hour-long documentary, Inside Story - The Real Life Manageress shown on BBC One. She has hosted her own TV show, and has also presented shows on ITV. Karren has written four books and her autobiography, Strong Woman: Ambition, Grit And A Great Pair Of Heels, was released in March 2012.

Karren is a columnist for The Sun newspaper and also writes for the popular lifestyle magazine Woman & Home. She is a judge of the Cosmopolitan Women Of Achievement Awards and is an Ambassador for the Stroke Association, WellChild and Wellbeing of Women. Previously on the Board of Mothercare PLC, Channel 4 Television and Sport England, Karren currently holds the position of a non-Executive Director of Arcadia. She is an honoree Fellow of the Institute of Sales and Marketing and in 2010 was awarded an honorary Doctorate from the University of Birmingham.

In March 2006, she was chosen as the Project Manager of the girls team on BBC One’s The Apprentice, for Comic Relief, where she led her team to a resounding victory over the boys, raising over £750k for charity.

In 2010, following appearances as one of Lord Sugar's interrogators in the final interview round of The Apprentice, Karren replaced Margaret Mountford as Lord Sugar's aide on the series.

Karren has won various awards including Business Woman of the Year, Cosmopolitan Woman Of The Year, the Spirit of Everywoman Award, Britain’s Most Influential Woman Award as well as two National Reality TV Awards for her role in The Apprentice.


Related posts:
Let the boardroom battle to become Lord Sugar’s next business partner begin
Meet the Girls
Meet the Boys

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