… I’ve just finished watching another series of The Apprentice; it was, once again, very entertaining. Congratulations. It’s fun watching the ‘best young business brains in Britain‘ (as the narration sometimes reminds us) trying to persuade you to hand your £250,000 over to them. The only person who has more fun than the viewer is the film editor who manages, very cleverly, to make all the budding entrepreneurs look like a bunch of bickering fools. It is, however, a bit of a let down in the final show when they present their business plans… Oh dear. They are all so pitiful & unimaginative; a hedge fund, a recruitment company, a shopping website & (worst of all) a call centre. These guys have had months to come up with an idea, mould it, perfect it, fill in the holes to make it watertight… I could do better! No, really, I could do better. If you have another £250,000 going spare, you might be interested in this.
– I spend six months every summer (well, let’s say April until the end of September) cycling up and down the Eurovelo routes of Europe on my bicycle, Reggie Ridgeback. There are 14 of them in all (Eurovelo 14 doesn’t exist, but Eurovelo 15 does; don’t worry, it makes no sense to me either). I’ve already cycled one of them – the Eurovelo 5 – and have plans to do another in summer 2013 – the Eurovelo 8 – which will take me from Athens to Cadiz in southern Spain. I reckon that in six months, I could probably cycle two or three Eurovelos depending on their length. In five years, I could have all 14 routes cycled!
– In the six months when I’m not on the cycle path, I’m back in the UK, writing ‘wonderful, witty‘ & ‘inspiring‘ books about my travels. I’ve already done one of those too! And I have plans to write another once the Eurovelo 8 trip is done & dusted.
– We sell the books via the usual outlets, online & in high street bookshops. Hang on, I’ve done that too for Good Vibrations: Crossing Europe on a Bike Called Reggie… (have you seen where it is ranked at the moment on Amazon & Apple?!)
– We set up a popular website and call it, let’s say… CyclingEurope.org. What did you say? Oh yes! It’s already up and running. Sorry, I forgot…
– I market the books through radio interviews (been there), personal appearances (done that) & a range of lightweight upper body garments (bought the t-shirt).
– We sell the idea to a TV company who follow me as I cycle. If we are really clever, we can do like most travel documentaries do and I could just pretend to stay in camp-sites whereas really I’m staying in a four-star hotel down the road. Mind you, I actually like roughing it.
– We corner the market and make an absolute fortune while at the same time have a bloody good time on two wheels.
So, Lord Sugar; am I hired or fired? You could join me on one of my cycles if you like (although I’m not such a great fan of Lycra…).