• Alex Epstein
  • Chris Bates
  • Christopher Farrell
  • Dan Harris
  • Jamie Lester
  • Joanna Riley
  • Joy Stefanicki
  • Laura Moore
  • Liz Locke
  • Melissa Cohen
  • Paloma Vivanco
  • Raleigh Addington
  • Sandeesh Samra
  • Shibby Robati
  • Stella English
  • Stuart Baggs
Melissa Cohen

Melissa Cohen

Ditched hairdressing to make a snip in food business management

Age: 27
Career: Food Business Manager
Hometown: London

Inspired by entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson

Episode Four: Out of time ...

Melissa's attempts to be Project Manager for a second successive task were thwarted by her Synergy colleagues, who unanimously voted for Jamie to lead them instead. Embarrassment ensued for Melissa as a department store quickly rejected the twin-handle spades and eco-friendly showerheads she was pitching. Karren Brady later reported that her persistence was found to be "annoying" by some retailers.

The selling sub team Melissa formed along with Stella and Stuart failed to muster significant sales, securing only £897 in total. Once Synergy's task loss was announced, Jamie brought her back alongside Stuart to face Lord Sugar. Melissa felt the duo was "ganging up" on her in the boardroom while criticising her pitching abilities. Despite declaring her "professionality", Melissa was fired by Lord Sugar.

Melissa was on the losing team Synergy. Their total sales were £76,518.80.

Episode Three: Mincing her words ...

Melissa was moved to the team Synergy by Lord Sugar and was installed as Project Manager ahead of Jamie after a unanimous vote in her favour. She soon incurred the wrath of Jamie for failing to decide on a main product for the baking task. She eventually plumped for mixed fruit jam croissants.

More struggles ensued with the cost of the products, causing a nightmarish first pitch to a hotelier that her team were forced to adjourn. As part of the selling team for the Le Pain Artisan company in Soho, Melissa argued with Alex over her strategy.

Synergy ultimately won the task, although Melissa admitted the she "minced her words" in the first pitch. Lord Sugar commented that the team's success could not be attributed to her.

Melissa was Project Manager on the winning team Synergy. They took £999.37, spent £139.50 and made a £859.87 profit.

Episode Two: Comfortability zone …

"I can sell ice to the Eskimos," claimed Melissa, prior to shifting zero units of the Book-eeze in three pitches to the retailers in the beach accessory task. Ice was certainly needed to cool down the simmering tensions between her and Joanna, who she labelled "bitchy" for criticising her rehearsal pitch.

Another row with Joanna in a car ensued, but in between all the squabbling Melissa found time to invent a new word during a pitch – "comfortability".

Melissa was on the losing team Apollo. The three retailers placed no orders for their Book-eeze product.

Episode One: Melissa clashes with Joanna ...

After declining a request for her to lead team Apollo in the sausage task because of her food business background, Melissa clashed with Project Manager Joanna over strategy. She was soon delegated packing duties in the sausage factory.

In Leadenhall Market, Melissa formed part of Laura's roaming sub team that enticed a chef into a lucrative deal. However, she locked horns with Joanna again and branded her unprofessional after the Project Manager closed the deal instead of the roaming team.

This sizzling exchange was observed by Nick Hewer, who remarked in the boardroom that Melissa "spent a lot of her time pecking away at Joanna".

Melissa was on the winning team Apollo. They took £860, spent £538.84 and made a profit of £321.16.

About Melissa

Londoner Melissa started her working life as a hairdresser before successfully venturing into food business management, where she single-handedly increased the share of the Kosher food market for a major retail chain.

She is inspired by the entrepreneurial prowess of Sir Richard Branson and Kimora Lee Simmons, and describes herself as "analytical, effervescent and intelligent".

If you get in my way, I'll mow you down

Melissa Cohen

Catch Up

Lord Sugar, Series 5

Relive Series 5

Where business supremo Lord Sugar tested a group of eager candidates in a series of gruelling business tasks.

07 Jun 2009

Next on TV

next episode

Series 6

Lord Sugar returns to our screens with the next batch of hopefuls competing to be his new apprentice.

06 Oct 2010

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