THE APPRENTICE 2012: MEET THE FINALISTS – TOM GEARING, RICKY MARTIN, JADE NASH & NICK HOLZHERR
After 11 demanding weeks battling it out, only four candidates remain in Lord Sugar’s search for a business partner and it’s time for them to face their toughest challenge yet.
On SUNDAY 3RD JUNE, 8.30PM on BBC ONE, Lord Sugar will decide who will become his new business partner and win an investment to the value of £250,000 founded on the basis of their business idea. A special edition of The Apprentice: You’re Hired! will follow at 9.30PM, also on BBC ONE.
This year, four candidates will battle it out in the final; 23-year-old Director of a Fine Wine Investment Company Tom Gearing, 26-year-old Recruitment Team Manager Ricky Martin, 29-year-old Business Development Manager Jade Nash and 25-year-old Technology Entrepreneur Nick Holzherr will go head to head to impress Lord Sugar with their business ideas as well as facing his four advisors in the tough interview round. The wheat will be separated from the chaff as Lord Sugar prepares to offer one of them a life changing opportunity.
In one of the most closely contested series ever, the four finalists will face the ultimate grilling as they endure the dreaded interview stage where they will be cross-examined by Lord Sugar’s most formidable associates; tough-talking Claude Littner, pioneer of Britain’s free magazine business Mike Soutar, Chief Executive Matthew Riley and, returning to the show, his eyebrow raising confidant Margaret Mountford.
Their business proposals, CVs and personal statements will be dissected, scrutinised and picked apart as they try to negotiate their way over one final hurdle in what has been Lord Sugar’s toughest race yet.
London-born Director of an Investment Company, Tom Gearing, is the youngest of the finalists, aged just 23. Despite his young age, Tom has impressed in the series due to his strong business and strategic sense, intellect and ability to take a risk. However he has also been prone to panicking when things go wrong, causing questions to be asked about his maturity. Tom has led his team to victory two out of three times as Project Manager and only appeared in the final boardroom twice. Tom says: “I came into this process with one objective and that was to win. That goal is in reach now and I’m excited to prove to Lord Sugar that I should be his new business partner.”
Recently married Recruitment Team Manager, Ricky Martin from Portsmouth, has been on the losing team five times, lost as Project Manager twice, and had the most boardroom visits of any of the finalists. However, after being dismissed by some as a bit of a showman, he has proven himself as a serious contender and businessman. He has not only come out fighting in the boardroom, revealing his passion and desire to win, but also proven himself as a strong salesman and strategist, with a real head for figures. Ricky says: “My entire life has been leading up to this moment. I’m educated in what I do. I have worked for and excelled in one of the top companies in the country in my sector. And now it is my time to put all of those years of hard work and achievement in to my own business alongside Lord Sugar, and start getting the return on my career to date. I have always dreamt of running my own company, and right now being in the final gives me that chance and I won’t let it slide past me. Lord Sugar and I are the perfect partnership.”
High-flyer Jade Nash is the last woman standing. A Development Manager from Bedfordshire, she has been on the losing team more than any other finalist. Yet she has impressed from the start with her straightforward nature, enthusiasm and creativity. Although she disappointed as Project Manager in Week 7 when she lost the task due to a lack of strategy, leaving Lord Sugar concerned about her indecisiveness, she redeemed herself with a win as Project Manager in Week 10, where she negotiated a great deal for her team. Jade says: “My infectious enthusiasm, strength of character and creative zest for life makes me the kind of business partner Lord Sugar would not only want to work with, but enjoy making money with. Simply direct, hard working and honest.”
Technology entrepreneur, Nick Holzherr, who spent his childhood in Switzerland, has only faced the boardroom once and only been on the losing team three times. He threw himself into the process by volunteering to be Project Manager in Week One and won both tasks that he led as Project Manager. Nick has kept a level head and a calm and measured approach throughout the series. However, he has caused concern by not voicing his opinion loudly enough on tasks and his lack of boardroom experience, and therefore interaction with Lord Sugar, may prove a disadvantage in the final. Nick says: “My business idea is cutting edge and will revolutionise an entire industry, which should appeal to Lord Sugar as someone who has made his name in technology. I’ve also shown I can lead throughout the process, winning more tasks than any other candidate whilst keeping the respect of the other candidates.”
16 Candidates. Four Finalists. One Opportunity. Lord Sugar’s search for his business partner is almost over…