A former star of The Apprentice has teamed up with a well known local entrepreneur to develop a business management app aimed at helping start-ups.
Alex Epstein, who featured in series six of the BBC series, has rejoined serial entrepreneur Martin Port at his latest venture Big Change. The company has created Job Watch, an all-in-one business management system that lets companies plan, manage and track their business operations.
Currently Big Change has several large businesses and established SMEs using Job Watch but to help start-ups, no older than 18 months, the firm is offering them the platform for free for 12 months.
Mr Epstein told The Yorkshire Post: “Martin wanted to do something where we can support new emerging businesses, giving them access to tools, advice etc in a period of time when it’s really critical. One thing I’m aware of is the number of start-ups that, very sadly, don’t make it.”
Job Watch is aimed at automating business processes to help save time.
“In essence it supercharges productivity for businesses,” said Mr Epstein. Before going on The Apprentice Mr Epstein worked for Mr Port at Masternaut, a telematics company. After being ‘fired’ by Lord Sugar on week six of the programme, he went on to launch his own cosmetics businesses, which he recently sold.
Mr Epstein said he decided to rejoin Mr Port as he could see how fast Big Change was growing.
Big Change currently has 30 staff and the group will move from its current base at the Leeds Innovation Centre to a headquarters near the Thorpe Park Hotel in the new year.
Speaking about his time on The Apprentice, Mr Epstein said it was a “fun experience” but “a little bit bruising”.
He added: “The show is about business but at the same time it’s very much an entertainment show. In some ways I don’t think it gives people a realistic view of what life is like in the workplace.”