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Carina wins investment for her family-run bakery business – Lord Sugar admires those who stay true to their passion and vision

Written by Alana Spencer on Monday, 23 December 2019. Posted in Reviews

Alana Spencer, winner of 2016’s The Apprentice, talks about how Carina Lepore outshone her competitors as she is crowned the winner of this season’s The Apprentice

Carina wins investment for her family-run bakery business – Lord Sugar admires those who stay true to their passion and vision

Alana Spencer, winner of 2016’s The Apprentice, talks about how Carina Lepore outshone her competitors as she is crowned the winner of this season’s The Apprentice

I’m really pleased with who won, though in all honesty I think Lord Sugar could have chosen either of them and would have a worthy winner. Both Carina and Scarlett were stronger at different points in this final task.

Scarlet chose the worst team. Carina’s definitely chose the better group I think to represent her in the final. However, I think it’s ultimately down to what you do. Who you pick does play a big bearing on how you’re perceived in the final.

I think it’s quite tempting to choose your friends at that point, but actually the most sensible thing to do is to pick a varied type of person so you’ve got someone that knows about branding, someone that knows about sales, ect. I’m pretty sure Scarlett had a tougher team and she also had Lottie, which I’m sure she was quite nervous about, as she was picked last.

The teams then went away to discuss their game plans. Carina and her team decided to go with the name “Lepore” for her bakery, which is her last name. I think it was a good choice and reflective of her family-run business, as her father is the head baker in her company, the name would definitely suit the family and homely vibe she is going for. It represents her brand and what she stands for. For Scarlett’s team, I wasn’t too fond of the name they chose. They had a good idea in mind but it just didn’t reflect their brand clearly enough. It was obvious from the get go that Scarlett and her team didn’t really get on as well as Carina’s team had. There was definitely tension in the air. And that brings me back to my first point on how who you pick has an impact on the final task.

The teams went off to do their digital branding task. Carina’s team did a quite fun clip of Ryan-Mark sniffing bread. I thought the concept and idea behind it was good but Ryan-Mark didn’t eat the bread, and that showed quite clearly. Though I really liked their advertisement I thought it was really funny and creative, and it really did wow the panel during Carina’s pitch. Thomas’ idea of the jail cell advertisement video was absolutely brilliant. I think Thomas is great and having him in the team was a real asset to them. The video was creative, interesting, funny and I loved the slogan “The delicious taste of fresh bread from Lepore’s is worth the time”. It was very well scripted and Ryan-Mark is a really good actor. He definitely has a lot of talents he was hiding.

I thought Scarlett’s advertising video was quite bland. Coming from her, I thought she would have come up with something a little more imaginative. Lottie, Lewis and Marianne were pretending to be seated in a car with Lottie at the wheel. To me I don’t think the video really showed off her brand as well as it could have. Scarlett’s recruiting firm talked about diversity and empowering women and those videos didn’t show that at all. I think they could have done better especially having Lewis on their team, who essentially has a background in branding.

Carina’s logo I thought was pretty good, wasn’t very creative in the terms of colours or design. The logo for Scarlett’s team didn’t work at all in my opinion. I understood the idea she was going for as she deals with the manufacturing industry, and that’s why she went with the cogs. I wasn’t too fond of it. To me it looked to me a bit like a psychometric testing workshop. I think they could have been slightly more creative than that. However, props to them for trying. It’s quite hard to be very creative when it comes to designing for a recruitment agency, as you can’t get too crazy with colours and design as you still want it to look professional.

When it came to their pitches, I think Carina did win the crowd. She was genuine and explained her brand really well, as well as her plans to scale up and open two stores. She was a bit nervous at first but she found her footing in the end. Scarlett was very professional and presented her pitch in a very clear way. She definitely prepared for this very well, and it shows. She’s been in recruitment for 10 years so she knows the industry well.

I’m ecstatic that Lord Sugar picked Carina. I think her business model and branding was very family-oriented and true to herself. It was a wise move on Lord Sugar to give her the investment. She has plans to open two new stores and scale up her business. Scarlett’s business plan involved a lot more costs with hiring new staff and managers, which could effectively not see a profit straight away. Lord Sugar already has two recruitment businesses, which are both very successful. What I think was Scarlett’s downfall was her advertising video and her branding, it didn’t really showcase what her recruitment company really stands for. However, I think both of them did an amazing job in the circumstances and timeframe they were given. I think Carina would make a fabulous business partner and I'm very excited for what her future holds. And her bread looks absolutely delicious, I’ll definitely have to get my hands on that at some point. I’m sure she will see great success and I'm very proud of how far she has come throughout the competition. Scarlett has done a fantastic job throughout this season. She’s show she is a great leader and is determined and doesn’t let obstacles get in her way. Even though she didn’t win, I’m sure she will be successful and I wish her all the best with her recruitment business. Her idea of bringing diversity and empowering women is absolutely fantastic and we need more companies who champion this in the workforce.

 

About the Author

Alana Spencer

Alana Spencer

Since securing a business partnership with Alan Sugar in The Apprentice 2016, Alana Spencer's cake company Ridiculously Rich has been doing ridiculously well. As a winner of the series, she's writing a weekly round-up detailing the performance of The Apprentice 2019 candidates exclusively for Elite Business.

Follow Alana Spencer on Twitter @alana_spencer_, Instagram @ridicrichbyalana and her Facebook page Ridiculously Rich by Alana.

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