Why Lord Sugar needs to fire his "technical expert"

16 Dec 2010

“I’m not interested in  any Steady Eddies or Cautious Carols,” barks Lord Sugar at the start of this week’s Apprentice – indeed, it’s Blundering Bordans that Amstrad Alan’s keen on.

The Bordan in question is Bordan Tkachuk, the CEO of computer firm Viglen, and one of the “trusted associates” dragged in to grill Sugar’s Apprentice candidates. Being the boss of a computer firm, Sugar naturally wants him to test out the technical acumen of Stuart Baggs – a hideous genetic blend of David Brent, Christopher Biggins and a cheap Burton’s suit.

Stuart “The Brand” Baggs runs his own ISP on the Isle of Man, and eagle-eyed Bordan’s spotted something iffy on his CV. Baggs claims he’s running a “fully licensed telecoms company”, but Bordan’s been on the blower to the Isle of Man authorities and found out that he only has a licence for broadband.

“Stuart you’re blagging to me,” said Tkachuk, cornering his prey. “I know what an ISP is. It’s an Internet Service Protocol.”

Erm… not last time I checked it wasn’t.  And given that Tkachuk’s “been running Alan Sugar’s companies for nearly the past 25 years” and so boasts that he knows “a little bit about technology”, he should know that P stands for provider not protocol.

Never mind. Anyone’s allowed a slip of the tongue, especially when they’re verbally beating up on the most irritating thing on television since Noel's Christmas Presents.  Let’s move to the boardroom, where Bordan’s giving his feedback on Baggs to an expectant Lord Sugar of Brentwood.  “He says he has a telecoms licence on the Isle of Man,” snorts Tkachuk, with the Columbo-like flourish of a detective who has his suspect banged to rights.  “What he had was just a very simple broadcom licence.”

Broadcom? Broadcom? Either Viglen’s just invented an entirely new telecommunications protocol (Bordan’s keen on those after all), or Sugar’s technical lieutenant hasn’t got a chuffing clue what he’s talking about.

Sugar takes this news badly. Very badly indeed. He’d previously believed Baggs’ boasts of setting up his own broadband firm by the age of 21 – now it turns out he’s merely running an Internet Service Protocol with a broadcom licence. This young scallywag’s a fraud!

“My guy is not a mug,” said Sugar of Tkachuk. “You’re full of sh*t,”  before ordering Baggs to pack his, well, bags.

As my colleague Alex Watson sagely noted during the show on Twitter: “Given the quality of Sugar's technical advisers, you can see where the em@iler came from.” Quite.

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