PM David Cameron has hired reality TV celebrity Baron Shugs of the BBC* as enterprise tsar, the government confirmed today.
The hairy walnut founded Viglen and Amstrad, but now seems to concentrate on bricks and mortar investments, that and telling deluded, wannabe entrepreneurs on Beeb show The Apprentice their ideas are rubbish en route to firing them.
Off-screen the man will, presumably, adopt a more touchy feely approach to “champion” getting more youngsters to start up businesses or become apprentices.
Shugs, who quit school at 16, said in a canned statement he built his businesses “with the support of hundreds of talented young people who learned skills on the jobs - exactly the kind of skills you learn in an apprenticeship.
“But not enough of our young people know about apprenticeships and what they offer, and too few feel empowered to set up their own business,” he added.
The aim is to help the government “deliver” three million apprenticeships in England by 2020. An employer-led Institute for Apprenticeships will be kicked off next year.
The beardy Baron turned on the Labour Party after the last general election, deriding its “negative business policies and general anti-enterprise concepts” and said it offered “no route out of the recession”.
He was made a business tsar by Labour after claiming the party supported “true enterprise”, and signing up to Tony Blair’s vision of a utopia in 1997.
Skills Minister Nick Boles said today that Shugs has “huge credibility among young people” and he will help “bang the drum for apprenticeships and enterprises”.
* Shugs was made a life peer as Baron Sugar of "Clapton in the London Borough of Hackney" on 20 July 2009. ®