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FIRST LOOK The Apprentice 2023

Meet the 18 ambitious candidates hoping to impress Lord Sugar as The Apprentice returns for its 17th series.

Lord Sugar’s search for a new business partner is back as The Apprentice returns for its seventeenth series in its now usual January slot and this year, eighteen ambitious candidates will battle it out for a staggering quarter-of-a-million-pound investment with billionaire boss, Lord Alan Sugar.

This year, the candidates kick things off on the magnificent Caribbean Island of Antigua. Under the watchful eye of Baroness Karren Brady and Claude Littner, teams are tasked with selling and running bespoke tours. There’s bickering on the beach and woeful negotiations, back in the boardroom one candidate is sent packing!

Meet the candidates...

Avi Sharma

City Banker, London

"Some say I’m delusional, I prefer the term optimistic."

Avi is the youngest candidate in this year's series of The Apprentice. As an “optimistic” entrepreneur, he believes that Lord Sugar’s investment will get him out of the “rat race” of city banking.

Bradley Johnson

Director, Construction Company, North Yorkshire

“I have a business plan that will see us turn over seven figures after year three and who knows where else that could take us.”

Bradley is a self-made businessman. Priding himself on his determination and work ethic, in his own words, his can-do attitude and approach to business is “something you’ve got to be proud of.”

Dani Donovan

Owner, Hair Salon, Hertfordshire

"I think I’m a different kind of business owner, someone who is a lot more relatable to people."

Dani wants to inspire would-be business owners. She started her business as a teenager and is now doing “something she loves” for a living, showing that having a passion for what you do is the key to success in business.

Denisha Kaur Bharj

Financial Controller, Leicestershire

"I want to build an empire with my first step being business partners with Lord Sugar. I want to be mentored by the best, to be the best."

Denisha’s determination and work ethic have allowed her to reach the peak of her potential, overcoming professional and personal tests.

Emma Browne

Senior Account Executive, County Kildare

"I am disgustingly competitive. I will go to any lengths to win this investment."

Emma is always willing to go the extra-mile and show 100% commitment to anything she puts her hand to. Laser focused on making her unique business idea a resounding success, Emma "will do anything to succeed".

Gregory Ebbs

Owner, Online Antiques Marketplace, Shropshire

"I would say willingness to try different things and being slightly more unusual than most is a massive plus."

Local councillor Gregory owns an online antiques business and has previously worked as a professional cannon-firer.

Joseph Phillips

Safari Guide, South Africa, Worcestershire

"If Lord Sugar wants to invest in a business to help save the ocean, one lip balm at a time, then I’m his guy."

The “James Bond of the business world” with a degree in Zoology. From a Safari guide in South Africa, to businessman.

Kevin D’Arcy

Accountant, Dublin

"I have commercial awareness and the drive and determination to succeed."

Kevin started his water sports equipment business during lockdown, whilst working in his job in the financial services. He is looking to expand his business into the UK and is set on securing Lord Sugar's investment.

Mark Moseley

Owner, Pest Control Company, London

"People like confidence, people buy into that. And that’s why people buy into me."

Mark is a former soldier who has worked all over the world in remote and hostile environments, so thinks he should be more than equipped to handle the boardroom. As the owner of a pest control business, he thinks this is a lucrative industry for Lord Sugar to invest in.

Marnie Swindells

Court Advocate, London

"With my experience in the boxing industry and Lord Sugar’s experience in business, I think that together we would be a winning combination."

A gold medal-winning boxer and imaginative businesswoman, she is ready to face off against her fellow candidates in the boardroom.

Megan Hornby

Owner, Sweet Shop & Café, East Yorkshire

"I will always give one hundred percent the truth, even if it’s hard to hear."

Megan believes she has found success by identifying a gap in the market and running with it.

Reece Donnelly

Owner, Theatre School, Glasgow

"I’m going to be turning over a million pounds before I’m thirty."

Set on being the first Scottish candidate to secure Lord Sugar’s investment, Reece is the marketing savvy owner of a performing arts school.

Rochelle Anthony

Owner, Hair Salon & Academy, Bedfordshire

"I’m always being compared to the Kim Kardashian of the business world because I’m doing business with a hint of glam."

Salon owner Rochelle prides herself on her great intuition and her biggest weakness is not liking the word "no".

Shannon Martin

Owner, Bridal Boutique, West Yorkshire

"Lord Sugar needs to be my next business partner, so I can make him millions."

Shannon is hoping to be the first business partner to bring Lord Sugar into the lucrative bridal industry.

Shazia Hussain

Technology Recruiter, London

"I don't need any friends in business. I am here to win this."

Shazia champions a varied representation of diverse women in the world of business.

Simba Rwambiwa

Senior Sales Representative, Birmingham

"If people can’t buy into you, they’ll never buy anything from you."

Simba is more than ready to challenge the status quo of the business world and is a self-confessed “perfectionist”.

Sohail Chowdhary

Occupation: Owner, Martial Arts School, Southampton

"I am calm and collected, but if they do come at me? I will bite and I will sting, and I will leave my mark."

Martial Arts Instructor Sohail wants other candidates to stay “wary” and describes his biggest weakness as "sometimes not listening to others when on the very rare occasion I might be wrong".

Victoria Goulbourne

Owner, Online Sweet Business, Merseyside

"I know what consumers want. I’ve travelled all over the world and am not afraid to take on a challenge."

Former flight attendant Victoria started her online sweet business during lockdown, which has since become a social media success.

The Apprentice returns Thursday 5th January at 9pm on BBC One


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