As we lamented yesterday, everyone’s favourite Apprentice henchperson Margaret Mountford has just revealed this series was her last because she shunning the limelight to finish her PhD in Papyrology.
While Smarta spent much of yesterday in mourning, it woke up today with a more positive outlook and has decided today is a brand new day and it’s time to look to the future.
As such, we’ve drawn up a list of people who might step into Margaret’s formidable shoes. Feel free to have a flutter: we can’t promise our predictions are right, but we’ve given it a damn good try.
Smarta odds: 2-1
The Ultimo lingerie founder featured in the panel of ‘experts’ (which also included business gurus Jonathan Ross and Ruby Wax) on the analysis programme after Sunday’s final, indicating she may be something of a favourite for Suralan. While Mone’s straight-talking personality and proven business track-record are all there, Smarta fears her face lacks the elasticity which makes Mountford so beloved to the Apprentice-watching masses. Our advice: get exercising those eyebrows now, Michelle.
Smarta odds: evens
Having been appointed managing director of Birmingham City Football Club at just 23 years old, Brady has just the kind of go-getting pizzazz we think Suralan would appreciate. Coupled with her appearance as interrogator on the interview episode this series, and her role as team leader of the winning team during 2007’s Comic Relief series, we think Brady is almost a dead cert as Margaret replacement.
Smarta odds: 5-1
Leaving before her year at Amstrad was up may be an indication that Michelle ‘Dewbs’ Dewberry and ‘Shugs’ may not have seen eye-to-eye – but sticking to her convictions might demonstrate a level of spunk Suralan could admire. That said, it doesn’t look hopeful: Dewberry has just launched her new business, Chiconomise, which won’t leave an awful lot of time to make a television series.
Smarta odds: 7-1
As chief executive of Ariadne Capital, Meyer certainly knows a thing or two about business. We would say she’s perfect for the role: experienced, tech-savvy, well connected, great at public speaking and always impeccably turned out, but we fear her role as Dragon in the online version of Dragons’ Den may prevent her from appearing in rival shows. Boo, hiss.
Smarta odds: 20-1
Who said Margaret’s replacement has to be a woman? Prior to Suralan’s most recent appointment, we wouldn’t even have thought of it – but now Suralan is to become Tsaralan, why not introduce some sort of role swap where the advisor becomes the advisee? Mandy’s eyebrows may not be as expressive as, say, Alistair Darling – but we think he could learn a thing or two about enterprise from appearing on The Apprentice.
Smarta odds: 50-1
Call us sycophantic if you must, but Smarta’s straight-talking founder might be just the person Suralan needs to control his wily charges. Mind you – having shared an office with her for a few months now, we can’t help but think she might be less inclined to observe and take notes, and more likely to wade in and take control of the Apprentices’ chaotic attempts at pitching/selling/valuation/feeding themselves properly. Still, though – she might stand an outside chance...
In light of the folowing picture, uncovered today, which shows Smarta founder cuddling up to Sugar henchman Nick Hewer, Wasmund 4 Prez odds have been slashed to 1-1. Get your bets on today, folks - or just enjoy this: