Would you fire Alan Sugar?

Lord Sugar's description of small businesses that have been denied finance as 'moaners who live in Disney World' has led the Federation of Small Businesses to call for his resignation as business tsar. Here we ask entrepreneurs: is Alan Sugar the right man for the job?

Nigel Richards, managing director of frozen food distributor Pembroke Sea

The whole thing made me really fed up. I suppose he is someone who’s been there and done it, but things are really difficult right now. Considering the position he’s in, I think the remarks were very insensitive.

For us, getting access to finance has been very difficult. The bank reduced our overdraft facility and threatened to increase the charges. Being called a moaner just isn’t fair in the current climate. We really need support and I don’t think Lord Sugar is the right person to provide it.

I would point the finger at Alan Sugar and tell him: you’re fired!

Mark Olbrich, owner of sandwich shop Salade

I accept what Lord Sugar was saying in regards to the futility of moaning. But at the moment small businesses have to get by without moaning and without finance.

I recently tried to obtain a bank loan for a new investment. Even though our business is doing very well, we got no co-operation from the bank at all.

I’m a big fan of Lord Sugar, but I think in his position as business tsar he could be doing a lot more to draw attention to the problems affecting small businesses. Unfortunately he hasn’t, and I don’t think his remarks here were very balanced.

Val Ballis, owner of The Nail Training Company

I was at the event and I think some of the things he said were honest regarding what’s actually going on. But the event had been sold as helping small businesses, and nothing constructive was said in that respect.

He’s obviously very clever at what he does, but he’s someone who talks in terms of millions of pounds. Maybe he could relate to the issues affecting small businesses when he first started up, but I’m not sure he can now.

I think it would be helpful if he took advice from a committee of people from small to medium-sized businesses who could make him aware of the situation we’re in.

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