Fans have had to wait two years for the 16th series, after Covid kept it off air in 2020 and 2021, and the first episode sees the candidates challenged to design a marketing campaign for a new cruise brand.
This season's budding entrepreneurs include a dessert shop owner, a pyjama retailer and a pharmacist – while three have a reality TV background.
Lord Sugar told The Sun: “Your initial reaction to some of the candidates are, ‘Bloody hell. How useless is that one or how useless is this one’.
"But, and it goes without saying, every single year, the cream rises to the top and we are wrong."
Many Apprentice stars have gone on to achieve great things in the world of business – while others have remained in the limelight for different reasons.
Here we take a look at what some of the most memorable alumni are up to now.
She might have managed to impress Lord Sugar, but the 2016 winner of The Apprentice has been less successful at winning over locals to her cafe.
Alana Spencer’s Ridiculously Rich, which serves cakes and sweet treats, was recently ranked bottom out of 132 restaurants in Llandudno, Wales on Trip Advisor, just six months after opening.
13 One of Alana's Ridiculously Rich cafes Credit: ridicrichbyalana/Instagram
Residents complained of having to pay £4 for a hot chocolate and one reviewer described it as “nothing more than a posh Gregg’s”.
The 29-year-old, from Aberystwyth, has also been battling staff shortages at her other Welsh cafe branches.
Addressing the bad reviews, Alana said: “I think what we’ve learnt is that when you get a bad comment you need to act on it and that’s something we probably haven’t been the best at dealing with."
Alana received a £250,000 investment from Lord Sugar for her luxury cake and chocolate business, Ridiculously Rich by Alana, when she won the BBC One reality show five years ago.
She has since launched ambassador and "cakepreneur" schemes to attract other cake enthusiasts to come on-board and run Ridiculously Rich franchises. There are now around 50 across the UK.
Alana bought back all of Lord Sugar's shares in Ridiculously Rich in 2019, with the tycoon insisting he will follow his protege's progress "with much affection".
Camilla, from Lancashire, was runner up to swimwear designer Sian Gabbidon in the 2019 contest for a £250,000 investment from Lord Sugar, 74.
She later teamed up with high street chain Holland and Barrett to launch gourmet nut milk brand M+LKPLUS.
Last week it emerged the 24-year-old is cashing in by posting racy videos of herself on subscription site OnlyFans – much to the ire of BBC bosses.
Images on the site described as “too naughty for Instagram” show Camilla in a bikini, thong, basque, bra and yoga work-out gear.
But Camilla insisted she has not posed fully naked on the popular app and only shares snaps she puts on her social media.
The entrepreneur, who used to date Hollyoaks actor Owen Warner, 22, told fans: “I feel it’s time to start posting unapologetically and to have a close-knit community of fans who are interested in getting to know me more personally.”
A BBC source said: “Lord Sugar was 50-50 about making Camilla his business partner, and now she’s followed the route of Love Island stars by stripping online.
"It’s not the money-spinning career envisaged.”
Elle, who lives near Windsor in Berkshire, was fired in week six of the 11th series of the Apprentice back in 2015 after failing to win a single task.
She was the youngest contestant at 21 and worked in the construction industry, describing herself as a "geezer bird".
Elle went on to work for the waste disposal firm Eden Beck as an office manager on £30,000 a year, and became its regional accounts manager.
In 2018 she was left with broken cheekbones and suffered severe damage to one her eyes after two thugs attacked her in London while trying to steal her phone.
The violent assault left her unable to sleep and she slammed police afterwards, claiming they "did nothing" to catch her muggers.
In April, Elle won close to £40,000 in compensation at a sex discrimination hearing.
The 27-year-old was banned from a £7,000 work trip to Las Vegas in 2017 over fears there would be “hanky panky”, forced to pick up her boss's dog mess and had sexually explicit notes left on her computer.
A tribunal also heard how she was called a “s*** employee” who “couldn't arrange a period in a vagina”.
Elle and her female colleagues complained the male dominated office was "Dickensian".
Elle left Eden Beck in June 2019. According to her LinkedIn profile she went on to work at Renson UK, an architecture and planning firm, and most recently was head of client relations at Maxwood Washrooms Ltd.
Runner-up on the ninth series of The Apprentice in 2013, Luisa went on to appear on Celebrity Big Brother a year later, earning a six-figure sum.
She launched an online bakery shop, but she put the business into liquidation in 2016, days before giving birth to her second child. She ended up losing almost £200,000 of her own money.
At its peak, The Baker Shop had a turnover of over £3million and employed 30 staff.
In September she was called up by the government to help with the HGV driver shortage, after gaining her license in 2015.
Luisa regularly appears on This Morning and Good Morning Britain as a guest to debate current affairs.
She hit the headlines recently for having her beloved dead horse Madrono stuffed.
Breaking down in tears after being “reunited” in April, she said: “Seeing him again today was so incredible.
“He’s perfect, his kind eyes are exactly the same, the little swirls in his coat, his beautiful mane all so perfect.”
Luisa also co-hosts the LuAnna: The Podcast with her pal Anna Williamson and lives in a Hertfordshire mansion with her Irish businessman husband Andrew Collins and her three children.
In 2010, 21-year-old Stuart, from the Isle of Man, became the Apprentice’s youngest ever candidate.
The entrepreneur – aka Stuart Baggs "The Brand" – became well-known for his cheeky boasts, including “everything I touch turns to sold”.
Despite being knocked out in the semi-final, Lord Sugar described him as “one of the stand-out characters of The Apprentice”.
Stuart, who worked in telecommunications, shockingly died in July 2015 after suffering an asthma attack days after his 27th birthday.
Pals had raised concerns that he had been working 18-hour days and was only sleeping for around four hours a night.
The businessman had launched a new 4G internet hub that was set to revolutionise communications on the Island days before he passed.
Stuart made an eerie prediction about his death a year before on Come Dine With Me.
He told his fellow contestants: “I'm not here for a long time, I'm here for a good time and I want to live hard, die young.”
Frances appeared on the 12th series of the Apprentice in 2016 – two years after launching The Pud Store, a children's high street clothing retailer.
She described herself as the "anti-wag", after marrying semi-professional footballer Neal Bishop, 40, in 2014. The couple had welcomed a son, Oscar, in 2013.
In 2017 Frances, from Yorkshire, blasted the BBC show, claiming it “ruins lives” and likening it to "psychological torture".
She told OK! Online: "It's like the Hunger Games… it's so stressful."
Frances continues to run The Pud Store in Sheffield and Doncaster. In 2018 she waived the bill of a single mum who was struggling to pay for Christmas presents for her children.
In 2020 the 30-year-old split from her husband after finding out he cheated on her.
Fran posted the shocking news on Instagram admitted she "stayed silent" for months after learning about his affair.
Despite "struggling in the aftermath" she said they are now on really good terms and are focussed on co-parenting Oscar.
Lottie, then aged 19, was one of the most controversial characters on the 2019 series of The Apprentice, and reached the final five.
The former Librarian from Somerset was embroiled in a racism row after she told fellow contestant and sparring partner Lubna Farhan – whose parents are Pakistani – "Shut up, Gandhi", in a WhatsApp group for the contestants.
Lottie was quick to deny accusations of being racist, but later admitted to the Gandhi comment, insisting it was "taken out of context".
She also hooked up digital marketing manager Lewis Ellis, 28, during a night abroad while on a task.
Lottie was also accused of making negative comments about transgender women.
Lottie lost her job as a business analyst in Bristol during the pandemic and signed up to hook-up site Seeking Arrangement to meet a sugar daddy to help her keep up her lavish lifestyle.
But her time on the site ended with her contacting police over “threats”.
Fighting back tears, she previously told The Sun: “I thought maybe being on there could buy me a bag or holiday.”
Lottie blamed her spiralling life on The Apprentice and called for a minimum age of contestants of 21.
She said she was scared to go out in public after being targeted by trolls over her stint on the show.
Lottie recently came out as bisexual, revealing she had enjoyed a three month fling with a female Love Island star.
But she was turned down by Love Island bisexual Megan Barton Hanson, 27, after she plucked up courage to ask her on a date.
Lottie, 21, said: “I have asked Megan on a date. We have exchanged messages. She is openly bisexual. I asked her out but she had a boyfriend at the time.
“But there was another girl who I went on a few dates with. She was on Love Island too and high profile, but is not openly bisexual. Everyone thinks she’s straight.”
Lottie recently revealed revealed she was sexually assaulted by a man while travelling on the train.
Bravely waiving her right to anonymity as the victim of a sex crime, she explained that a group of men approached her, with one pulling down her top and taking a photo of her chest at Reading train station.
Tom, from Southampton, featured in series 13 of the Apprentice in 2018 hoping to win funding for his tree surgery business, but was fired in week nine.
Afterwards it emerged that the property investor was once jailed for violent assault.
Tom, 31, spent four months in prison in Sweden for an attack on a man who required bruises and stitches.
He has since spoken of his “deep regret” over the incident and now runs his own property development firm Woodworx.
He also married his girlfriend Kelly in 2019 and they have since welcomed their son Chase, one.
On the 2018 series of the Apprentice, Rick described himself as a “wolf in sheep’s clothing”.
But fans of the show were left shocked when it was revealed that Rick had previously worked as a £200-an-hour escort with his partner Katie.
The pair serviced punters in the Lancashire area, with Rick saying the couple were “sexually adventurous people”.
Quality controller Rick, 36, got given the boot from the show after failing to impress Lord Sugar in a shoe designing challenge.
The business brain behind Tropic Skincare came third in the seventh series of the show in 2011.
But she is now considered to be the most successful Apprentice candidate of all time.
Shanghai-born Susan's business is reported to be worth £4.6 million after securing investment from Lord Sugar when the show ended.
The 32-year-old employs over 400 people directly, and has over 20,000 as ambassadors who run their own businesses selling Tropic products
Susan set up the business when she was 15 from the kitchen of her family home in Croydon and completely sold out of all her handmade body scrubs and made a staggering £1,000 on her first day in the job.
She ran Tropic for five years alongside her studies before shutting it down in her final year of university to concentrate on her degree.
Susie landed a job with City Group trading Foreign Exchange in 2010, aged 21, but quickly started dreaming of relaunching Tropic.
She applied for The Apprentice and narrowly lost out on Lord Sugar’s investment to Tom Pellereau.
Susie invested £8,000 of her personal savings to take Tropic to the Ideal Home show in London.
In December 2011, Lord Sugar invested £200,000 for a 50 per cent share of Tropic.
The company became the UK’s fastest growing skincare brand and boasts profits of £10.7million.
Former trader Stella might have won the Apprentice back in 2010, but there was soon bad blood between Stella and Lord Sugar.
In 2013 she sued him for unfair dismissal after resigning from the £100,000-a-year job that was her prize for winning series six of the show.
She complained that she was treated like an "overpaid lackey".
Stella, now 42, lost the case against her old boss – who sued her for £35,000 of legal costs – and revealed that the trial had left her struggling to survive and reliant on handouts from friends.
Having previously lived a privileged life where she thought nothing of splashing £200 on a bottle of Champagne, Stella claimed she was left with just £90 in her bank after the court battle.
She also claimed she was abused by strangers, spat at and traded her Porsche for a bicycle because she could no longer afford to drive it.
Stella also claimed her two-year marriage broke down due to the strain of the court case.
She said she couldn't work because of her reputation and was forced to claim Jobseekers Allowance and benefits.
She told The Daily Mail: 'I'm being treated like a criminal. I can't work, I've been called awful things, my marriage has broken down. I'm on my knees.'
She now works as a public speaker but keeps a low profile on social media.
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