The ultimate business awards are back for a second year with an Apprentice theme.
The Sheffield City Region business awards take the winners from the area’s five biggest awards and pit them against each other to find the first among winners.
The prestigious event at Ponds Forge International Sports Centre in Sheffield on July 3 promises to showcase the professionalism, innovation, drive and guts so beloved of Nick Hewer, Lord Sugar’s right-hand man on The Apprentice.
He has signed up to host the ceremony which will bring together winners at the four chambers and The Star in Sheffield, to fight it out in 13 categories.
The BBC star is famous for his facial expressions, borne of a wonderfully dry wit and a lifetime’s business experience, which tell you exactly what he thinks of the contestants.
But the City Region Awards offer him a rare night off.
He said: “It is a privilege and an honour to be host. In my years on The Apprentice I have seen those who are good and those who are not so good in business.
“It will be a pleasure, therefore, to spend time with business people who have all proved they are outstanding and the only decision to make is who should be elevated to legendary heights.”
His link with Sir Alan was forged in the 1980s when Hewer’s PR firm was selected to represent Amstrad. It soon became responsible for media handling of all Alan Sugar’s business and charitable activities. For more than 20 years Nick played an integral part in Amstrad’s management structure.
He also built a long and impressive client list, including the Secretariat of The Aga Khan and the wife of the ruler of Dubai, the late Sheikh Maktoum. After selling the business, Nick withdrew to his house in south west France – but having become firm friends with Sir Alan, he was called to negotiate on his behalf with The Apprentice producers.
The tables were turned when Sugar persuaded Nick to take an onscreen role and promised to negotiate his fees.
“I fought hard against it,” he says, “but he cajoled me - in a muscular sort of way.”
* £600+ VAT for a table of 10. To buy tickets call Haroldine Lockwood on 01623 450221 or email firstname.lastname@example.org