Training Never Stands Still for Stationery Boss Theo

Apprentices’ Champion shows his support for week-long campaign

Theo Paphitis and Bluewater ApprenticesSkillsmart Retail’s Apprentice Champion Theo Paphitis, has thrown his weight behind skills training and qualifications in the lead up to National Apprenticeship Week, running from Monday, 7th February in England.

The Chairman of high-street stationers Ryman and star of BBC TV’s Dragons’ Den, speaking at the exclusive launch of his new lingerie brand Boux Avenue said:

“Work-based learning is something a lot of people have no experience of. They think learning is just for the classroom, which may be somewhere they have not had a positive experience, but to learn whilst you’re actually being paid, in an environment where you know you’re going to progress and, most importantly, see your achievements at work every single day – that’s encouragement everybody needs.”

“I’m opening a business in what could be the beginning of a second recession. More than ever for me, it’s about giving excellent service. That really comes down to passion and training: Apprenticeships are a key part of our business strategy.”

Theo has been Skillsmart Retail’s Apprentice Champion for two years, in which time the programme has become a key part of vocational training in retail.

The Government’s Skills for Sustainable Growth strategy document, published last November, highlighted the leading role Apprenticeships will play in increasing skills across the UK economy in the coming years. This is particularly relevant within retail which is a key employment sector, employing ten per cent of the entire UK workforce.

Anne Seaman, Chief Executive of Skillsmart Retail said:

“Apprenticeships have been around for decades, in which time they have come in and out of favour with employers and governments.”

“Those of us who have worked in retail for many years have always known the benefits of work-based learning and it is great to see the Apprenticeship once again in the vanguard of the training and skills agenda.”

“In Apprenticeship Week, I urge all employers to look into the benefits of hiring a Retail Apprentice.”

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