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Lord Sugar hires Harpeet Kaur as series 16 of The Apprentice draws to a close

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Lord Sugar hires Harpeet Kaur as series 16 of The Apprentice draws to a close

Sweet treats won out in tonight’s final.

Over the last 12 weeks, 16 budding entrepreneurs have been put through their paces by Lord Sugar in a bid to impress and land a £250,000 investment and the accolade of becoming his new business partner. They have participated in a series of tough tasks including cruise ship marketing, fishing in Cornwall, video game concepts, tourism in Wales, a corporate away day at Silverstone, and the creation of a brand-new baby food.

For the final challenge, finalists Harpreet Kaur and Kathryn Burn went head-to-head to prove to Lord Sugar why they were worthy of his quarter of a million investment as well as a 50/50 partnership with the business mogul.

As ever the final saw previously-fired candidates make a comeback to help the finalists bring their business plans to life and aid them in the lead up to their pitches to Lord Sugar and his panel of industry experts.

In the final boardroom, Karren and Tim gave their thoughts about the finalists’ performance before Lord Sugar made his decision.

Tim noted that “other people in the process really respect Harpeet”, while Karren pondered the scalability of Harpeet’s business: “What is unique that turns her from her two stores, to the 100 stores that she has the ambition to be?” 

Karren felt that Kathryn is “just beginning to build her business” and went on to caution that “she wasn’t having it” when Lord Sugar questioned the jungle trend.  Tim felt she “could be the one” if she was willing to listen.

Kathryn fell at the final hurdle in tonight’s The Apprentice final

After a last impassioned pitch from each finalist for why they should become his business partner, Lord Sugar made his final decision.

“It is a very, very difficult situation for me…Harpreet I’m not sure whether this business is scalable or whether you are trying to do too much and that’s what I’m worried about at the moment. “Kathryn, I’m concerned on the longevity of it, and the popularity of it, it’s very hard, this is difficult for me…

“A lot of the companies that I invest in are a start from scratch situation, basically what Kathryn is proposing, so ladies, I think that I’ve decided now… Harpreet, you’re going to be my business partner.” – Lord Sugar

Harpeet plans to “level up” her successful, six-figure coffee and cakes business to become a leading brand in the UK, while Kathryn was going to use the money to expand her pyjama business.

“I cannot believe Lord Sugar has chosen me to be his business partner! I have dreamed of this moment, and it just completely proves that if you work hard and you believe in yourself, dreams do come true.” – Harpeet Kaur

The Apprentice is a Naked production (a Freemantle label) for BBC One. Viewers can catch up with this years’ series on BBC iPlayer.

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