Meet The Apprentice candidates: The women

The contestants on The Apprentice come from a wide range of business backgrounds.

The new series of The Apprentice is about to get under way, with 18 more hopefuls vying to win.

Meet the nine women hoping to win Lord Sugar’s business investment:

:: Anisa Topan

Anisa Topan
Anisa Topan (BBC)

Age: 36
Occupation: Owner, PR Fashion Agency
Lives: Surrey
Key information: Topan owns her own fashion PR consultancy and says she is all action – she gets irritated if people are slow to grasp concepts.
She says: “I’ve got everything Lord Sugar needs in a business partner. I’m passionate, dynamic and persistent – he’ll love that.”

:: Bushra Shaikh

Bushra Shaikh
Bushra Shaikh (BBC)

Age: 34
Occupation: Owner, Clothing Company
Lives: Surrey
Key information: Shaikh is owner and designer of her own modest fashion label, creating luxury apparel for Muslim women. Inspired by Coco Chanel, she believes her skills and determination are all she needs to succeed in The Apprentice.
She says: “I’ve been raised not to be a pushover – in the words of Destiny’s Child, ‘I’m an independent woman’.”

:: Elizabeth McKenna

Elizabeth McKenna
Elizabeth McKenna (BBC)

Age: 39
Occupation: Owner, Florist Chain
Lives: Nottinghamshire
Key information: McKenna describes herself as a “slightly bonkers country girl” and has a love of dogs and horses. She thinks her killer business instincts mean she’s good at making snap decisions.
She says: “My big feet are good for two things; getting me into trouble as they’re as big as my mouth and I constantly get them stuck in it, but… they also kick butt.”

:: Jade English

Jade English
Jade English (BBC)

Age: 25
Occupation: PR & Marketing Manager
Lives: Manchester
Key information: In her role as PR and marketing manager, English creates content to advertise and enhance her clients’ presence on social media. She thinks her greatest business skills are her creativity and passion.
She says: “I’m extremely emotionally intelligent and able to get the best out of people. I am a brilliant negotiator and I’m not all talk – I put every weird idea into action and gets results.”

:: Joanna Jarjue

Joanna Jarjue
Joanna Jarjue (BBC)

Age: 23
Occupation: Digital Marketing Manager
Lives: Manchester
Key information: Jarjue creates multi-channel strategies to improve the digital footprint of companies. She considers being determined and a great talker to be her best qualities. She hates being patronised, but insists she will remain resilient on the show.
She says: “My demeanour can be related to the saying ‘Don’t wake a sleeping lion’ – if you underestimate me I might just bite.”

:: Michaela Wain

Michaela Wain
Michaela Wain (BBC)

Age: 33
Occupation: Business Owner, Construction
Lives: Bolton
Key information: Wain works on the day-to-day operations of a construction magazine, alongside her role at several other companies in the building sector. Working as a woman in a very male-dominated industry, she says she despises men who talk down to her.
She says: “I have no patience for people who say stupid stuff, and I can’t cope with lazy people.”

:: Sarah Jayne Clark

Sarah Jayne Clark
Sarah Jayne Clark (BBC)

Age: 25
Occupation: Owner, Clothing Company
Lives: Derbyshire
Key information: Clark owns a ladies’ fashion shop and believes her loyalty is one of her best qualities. She thinks it’s vital to be determined and strong-willed in business and says never letting her guard down will help her win.
She says: “I am the definition of a girl boss – I get things done and make things happen.”

:: Sarah Lynn

Sarah Lynn
Sarah Lynn (BBC)

Age: 35
Occupation: Owner, Confectionery Company
Lives: London
Key information: Lynn, who created and leads a sweet gifting business that focuses on confectionery products for retailers and corporate clients, considers herself to be a “people person”. She doesn’t think she needs tactics to win The Apprentice and intends to just be herself.
She says: “Women are like tea bags – you don’t know how strong they are until you put them in hot water.”

:: Siobhan Smith

Siobhan Smith
Siobhan Smith (BBC)

Age: 34
Occupation: Owner, Wedding Company
Lives: London
Key information: Smith owns and runs a wedding service company for couples in the UK who want to get married in Dubai. Her role model is Colonel Sanders, founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken, as “at the age of 65, he had knocked on over 1,000 doors over a period of two years trying to sell his recipe before getting his first yes, he never gave up on his dream”.
She says: “I fly aeroplanes, scuba dive, jump off cliffs, paraglide; I’m a blogger and a mother – as well as running my wedding planning business. A lot of people call me superwoman.”

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