This is exciting stuff. Not content with with the current format of the show, Lord Sugar is overhauling the programme to encourage entrepreneurship, not stoogeship.
This has been coming for some time. Remember Lord Sugar's twinkle at Stuart 'The Brand' Baggs' assertion that he would spearhead a new venture? The young whippersnapper wanted to - ahem - make millions for his Sugarness.
Here's what Lord Sugar has revealed on Twitter:
"no companies grew out of apprentice they got jobs with me.But next series will be about the winner starting a company with me"
"next series of apprentice in May [sic] will end with winner starting a new business with me on a 50/50 basis where I inject £250k."
This ups the ante considerably. The new company will be launched as a 50/50 split between Lord Sugar and the Apprentice winner. Few businesses have a better start in life. If Sugar and his new partner move quickly enough to capitalise on all the Apprentice hype, the new start-up could be in profit before you can't say 'The Bloody Apprentice'.
By moving the goalposts, Sugar is also making the opportunity to appear on the BBC show much more appealing to a wider demographic of business minds and, more importantly, entrepreneurs. Folks who would have balked at being stuck on the payroll and following orders.
Tempted to apply?
Let us know.