Breaking free from the pin-striped world of creaming off fortunes from the markets, City market analyst Conor Woodman attempts a more decent lifestyle – logging off from his computer screens and trading face-to-face throughout the world, using £25,000 of “his own” money.
What was good about it?
• Conor defies the loathesome stereotype of City workers (ie the ones who got us into the recession, fiddling while the world got burned). He seems to have a conscience and a nice, non-patronising personality and looks a bit like a younger, thinner Shane Richie. We’d expected to come across a monster – the sort of businessperson who appears on the Apprentice, the ones with no scruples but plenty of slogans about how brilliant they are, despite plentiful evidence to the contrary.
• The format is easy to follow and interesting, there’s a little bit of drama and some great footage as Conor heads off to buy and sell throughout the world, a task that involves a lot more effort than making a mouse click and no collateralised debt obligations, futures betting etc. After the getting the hump with Sudan’s camel owners, he headed to Zambia where he bought coffee that earned him a slender profit in South Africa. Now he’s got South African wine and chilli sauce on his hands which, next week, he’ll be trying to offload in Asia.
What was bad about it?
• Conor didn’t speak entirely in clichés, unlike those Apprentice idiots, but he let himself down with his references to his “comfort zone” and “journey”.
• The pretentious, spitty South African coffee tasters (or evangelists as they styled themselves), coming over all Jilly Goolden to describe the beans Conor had bought from Zambia.