Saturday 23 September 2017

'Apprentice' makers in race against time to find sponsor

Ken Sweeney

Ken Sweeney

WITH just seven days until business hopefuls return to 'The Apprentice' boardroom, TV producers have yet to sign an overall sponsor for the programme.

The makers of the TV3 programme are having their negotiating skills tested as they try to sign off on a deal against the clock.

The Irish version of the hit reality show returns to screens next Monday, but is still without a flagship sponsor after phone company Meteor pulled out of the series in April.

"We won't be able to do 'The Apprentice' without one -- but it's a case of getting the right fit," said Larry Bass, CEO of Screentime ShinAwil.

However, the programme makers say they are in talks with three companies, and are confident a deal can be struck.

Programme star Bill Cullen has also been feeling the pressure -- but in the boardroom.

"I'm having to assert myself more. Because it's the third series, the contestants know the show backwards and are more prepared to argue with me. It's more entertaining but the rows are something else," he said.

Irish Independent

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