Phil Turner in a cream suit against a sunny London skyline

Source: BBC/Naked

Turner’s Pies managing director Phil Turner is to appear on the latest series of The Apprentice.

Turner will join 17 other hopeful candidates as they compete for a £250,000 investment from Lord Sugar. The first episode is airing on Thursday 1 February at 9pm on BBC One and will see the candidates head straight to the Scottish Highlands.

There, they will be tasked with a corporate hospitality challenge in which we will see the men’s and women’s teams compete to put on high-end away days for corporate clients in the hope of impressing Lord Sugar.

Turner is part of the third generation to join the family business, which was established in Bognor Regis in 1933. As the name suggests, it specialises in pies which it sells via five shops in West Sussex as well as online via the Pies by Post service. The bakery’s Top Rump Steak & Stilton Pie was named Supreme Champion at the 12th annual British Pie Awards in 2020.

Turner says his biggest business success to date is buying his parents’ small bakery at the age of 21 and building it into a seven-figure profitable firm.

“I deserve Lord Sugar’s investment because I already have a track record of successfully building and scaling a business. I have learnt how to run a business the hard way, and now I feel like it’s time to take my business to the next level,” he told the BBC.

Investing the dough

It’s not the first time a bakery owner has appeared on The Apprentice. In fact, two of the previous winners have been bakery specialists.

Carina Lepore was ‘hired’ by Lord Sugar in the final of the 15th series in 2019 receiving a £250,000 investment. She runs a family bakery in London called Dough Artisan Bakehouse, which has two sites – in Herne Hill and Beckenham – offering a range of breads, cakes, pastries, and indulgent beverages.

Indulgent cake company owner Alana Spencer won the 2016 series, receiving a £250,000 investment plus a 50/50 partnership with Lord Sugar. Her brand named Ridiculously Rich by Alana specialises in gooey chocolate brownies, tiffin, blondies, rocky road, and other traybakes. Spencer bought Lord Sugar out of the business in 2019 and opened a new bakery and shop in Aberystwyth, Wales, shortly afterwards.