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Page last updated at 17:12 GMT, Monday, 18 August 2008 18:12 UK
Dragon criticises Apprentice
Theo Paphitis
Theo Paphitis criticised the format of The Apprentice

Dragons' Den star Theo Paphitis has hit out at rival BBC show The Apprentice.

The 48-year-old, who is worth an estimated 125 million, dismissed Sir Alan Sugar's show and branded it as "another version of Big Brother".

He said: "They all live in a house together and are given tasks - where do you recognise that? I don't think it's challenging any more."

The last series of The Apprentice pulled in more than six million viewers for BBC One.

A record audience of almost nine million also tuned into the final, when Lee McQueen walked away with a 100,000-a-year job even though he was caught lying on his CV.

The third episode of the current series of Dragons' Den enjoyed 3.4 million viewers on BBC Two.

The show, which is in its sixth series, sees entrepreneurs pitching for investment from five multi-millionaires willing to invest their own hard earned cash.

"I like Alan Sugar. I think he's fabulous," Theo told the Radio Times.

"But the whole format and the things that the contestants do, it's not a million miles away from what happens in Big Brother, which isn't the most intellectually stimulating programme."

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