After ten weeks of tasks, rows about paper skeletons, rows about hot tubs, rows about cutting up lemons, rows about rows…there’s a winner. Yes, Lord Sugar has backed Australian-born Mark Wright and his search engine optimisation business, Climb Online, with a peachy £250,000 investment.
Wright’s idea to help small and medium-sized businesses get a better ranking on search engines only just saw off competition from runner-up Bianca Miller. Her hosiery company, designed to offer a greater variety of skin tone-coloured tights, clearly tempted Sugar. “They’re both credible,” he admitted.
“You’re a product man,” aide Nick Hewer prompted. But it wasn’t to be. The “devil” in Sugar won out and he pointed his hiring finger at Mr Wright.
So what does series eight candidate Adam Corbally – who’s reviewed the whole series for us – make of the final result? RadioTimes.com caught up with him one last time to hear his verdict…
Did Lord Sugar pick the right winner?
“This year, Lord Sugar seems to be concentrating on having someone he doesn’t have to babysit. He really should have gone for Bianca with her unique idea, using his influence and contacts. Lord Sugar was way off picking Mark as a winner, although I’m sure he’ll spin a profit for Lord Sugar.”
Who dealt with the final task best?
“I felt that Bianca performed far better than Mark. The result was based on Lord Sugar’s opinion, not results unfortunately.”
Which returning candidate surprised you the most?
“Sarah Dales surprised me the most with her outburst about Bianca and her business idea in the boardroom. For a moment there she thought she was Lord Sugar.”
Which was your favourite episode?
“As always, for me the highlight was the final. It really was edge-of-your-seat stuff and kept me guessing until the end.”
Which fired candidate would you have like to have seen more of?
“I would have like to have seen Steven Ugoalah reach the final. He made great television. I would have liked to have seen him channel his energy and enthusiasm – who knows where that could have led him?”
Who exceeded your expectations?
“Daniel Lassman completely changed during the process. He went from ‘Desperate Dan’ to ‘Dan the Man’. A great example of what can happen if you close your mouth and open your ears.”
Was this series up to standard?
“I thought that this series was much better than last year’s line-up of glamour-pusses. It was also good to see 20 candidates rather than the usual 16.
“I also thought that the time of year the show was aired [moved to avoid a clash with the World Cup] was much better, too.”
Are you glad the show will be back next year?
“Really glad. They need to keep the format the same, but with a shot in the arm. A good way of doing that would be to introduce former winner Ricky Martin as aide Nick Hewer’s replacement. He is young, keen as mustard and doesn’t suffer fools gladly; a great all-round individual. He even has the raised eyebrow, which will never be able to replace Nick’s gurning, but will be a good second place.
“Also, as I’ve said before, I think Lord Sugar should fire people regardless of whether they’re on the winning team or not, so people can’t fluke their way through the process.”