And so the Apprentices rush off to a Chiswick Auction house to meet Sir Alan for their new task.
Ignite’s project manager is Phillip Taylor, estate agent and Human Bulldozer and Empire’s is Ben Clarke, Rotweiller, Rot talker and aptly named Captain Squawk.
And the task is for the teams to sell 10 items and naturally the team which comes back with the most cash wins. And as their deadline is 6pm they don’t have much time.
Sir Alan adds a word of warning, “not everything is as it seems.” Who will take odds that nobody picks up on that throw away remark?
The Valuation Task
This is an opportunity for the Apprentices to demonstrate their valuation, sales and management abilities. So what do they need to do to display their talents?
- Find the VALUE of what they have
- Decide where they can be sold
- Allocate the items to the teams
- Sell for at least the cost, preferably more!
That seems to indicate that some form of research and planning is needed…
And what do the Apprentice’s do?
10 Items The Apprentices Had To Sell
The items the teams had to sell were as follows:
- Skeleton (quoted price £159.95+VAT)
- Indian rug (valued at £200)
- Shoes (including vintage shoes worth £100)
- 8Kg Jellied eels
- Books (including first edition of James Bond’s Octopussy, worth £80-£100)
- A pair of fire dogs
- Commode chair
- Autographed footballers picture
- something else…
Ignite Fails To Find The Gems
The relationship between Phillip and Lorraine hasn’t improved much at all during this task. Phillip assumes he knows more than she does, as demonstrated when she suggests the rug and shoes (vintage) may be worth quite a bit of money and Phillip suggests the rug’s made of nylon!.
Neither team really got to grips with the valuations of the items. Lorraine was the one who was most on the ball as she suggested that the rug and the vintage shoes were the most likely items to be valuable.
Later in the boardroom Margaret says that Lorraine is the teams Cassandra and explains that Cassandra means she gets it right but no one listens to her. I think we can all agree that’s exactly the case!
Phillip claims that he has improved since last week. It’s patently obvious that he hasn’t.
To give Phillipe his due he did manage to sell the skeleton, although he was extremely lucky to find the one man in England, in a pub, who’d been looking to own a skeleton all his life!
Feathers Fly With Captain Squawk
Ben, aka Captain Squawk, knows he’s a leader because he was offered a scholarship to Sandhurst! Was it a Captain Squawk commission?
Ben does try and do some valuation but it all seems pretty rudimentary and the most important thing they think is to just get rid of the stuff!
Later in the boardroom Captain Squawk claims to have had a strategy – I think not…
Yasmina And James Miss Hints
While Jasmina and James do their best to sell the most expensive item in a streeet of carpet shops they’re told, at least twice, that the rug is TOO EXPENSIVE, for the owner’s shop.
That’s a massive hint. That means the rug is worth some money. Why didn’t they ask the carpet dealers ow much they thought it was worth? Ten why didn’t they also ask if they could point them at a dealer willing to buy such a rug?
Eventually they end up selling it to someone who could sell it on and who you could see was rubbing his hands with glee at getting such a carpet at such a fantastically low price.
Back To The Boardroom
Ignite managed to make a net loss of £34, whilst Empire managed to make a “thumping” loss of over £200.
Ben squawks that he was partly responsible for the Octopussy book sale that Debra had made. Which completely gobsmacks Debra.
Then when he’s asked who he’s bringing into the boardroom he says Noorul and James, after first telling Sir Alan to take account of performance over the last 6 weeks!
Then when Sir Alan and James express surprise he backtracks and says he meant Noorul and Debra. What a rat.
So Debra gets the opportunity to have a good go at Nick, and displays her utter contempt for anything that moves. Maybe Sir Alan’s right and she considers herself the chosen one, already the annointed Apprentice and why go on if she’s been picked!
Noorul meantime blusters and points out that Ben has been relishing the opportunity for magazine deals when the series finishes. In fact he protests so much that he just digs himself deeper into his hole.
Finally, Sir Alan makes his choice and Noorul is fired.
Was The Apprentice Firing Fair?
I was pleased that Noorul was fired, he obviously didn’t understand business and seemed unable to work in a team properly. And that’s been obvious from the beginning and even more so when he was exposed as a poor project manager.
Actually I would have fired Ben in this task too because he lied about what he’d done, claimed to have a strategy when there was none, had tried to make the most profit by taking the majority of the items and tried to bring James into the boardroom because he knew Debra would make mincemeat of him.
Who’s The Favourite To Win At The Moment?
Kate Walsh is still doing very well, smiling and getting the job done. So for me she remains the definite favourite.
Phillip is coming across as thinking he knows it all and again is too complacent, so I don’t think he’ll win. Unless he can really change his spots and let other people make their point, actually take it on board and run with it.
Ben and Debra also need to look cooly at what they’re doing because Sir Alan has given both of them great feedback on their personalities and the way they’re presenting themselves. After all part of this game is seeing how people develop – witness The Badger from a previous series!