‘Apprentice’ quits £100,000-a-year job to pursue his own projects
THE first Apprentice winner, Tim Campbell, has quit his £100,000-a-year job with Sir Alan Sugar.
He was hired in 2005 and given a job in the health and beauty division of Sir Alan’s electronics firm Amstrad, proving so successful that the tycoon kept him on at the end of his year-long contract.
Now the former London Transport manager is branching out on his own with two new projects: a male grooming business and a social enterprise initiative called The Bright Ideas Trust that will give away at least £1m a year to budding entrepreneurs.
And unlike series two winner Michelle Dewberry, from Hull, who lasted only a few months in the job, Mr Campbell has Sir Alan’s full backing.
‘Tim has left Amstrad to pursue his own personal projects,’ the former Tottenham Hotspur chairman said yesterday.
‘He has been a great asset to the company and I wish him the best of luck for the future. He was the right choice and I will be there to offer help and guidance should he need it.’
Mr Campbell said Sir Alan had been ‘inspirational’. He ‘has been my motivation in both starting a business and creating a fund for budding entrepreneurs to do the same… From him I’ve learned how to take risks. More importantly, he has built my self-confidence and taught me practical skills that have helped me to look at new challenges.’
He added: ‘Now I want to share what I have learnt with others as well as grow my own company. I’m relishing my future.’
The Bright Ideas Trust aims to start at least 250 new businesses every year.
Mr Campbell said: ‘I want the trust to unleash a wave of creativity among people in the UK and give them an opportunity to run their own enterprise in a practical, hands-on way.’
At Tuesday’s launch of the new Apprentice series Sir Alan was full of praise for him but took a veiled swipe at Miss Dewberry.
Asked if he regretted not choosing runner-up Ruth Badger he said: ‘There’s a lot of regrets about last year.’
He said he had not been ‘particularly impressed with the calibre’ of last year’s contestants. Many were only interested in fame.
Miss Dewberry had a well-publicised affair with fellow contestant Syed Ahmed but they split when she lost their unborn baby.
Since quitting her Apprentice job she has published her autobiography and appeared on a BBC celebrity hairdressing show.