Apprentice boss denies bullying Stella English

Stella English arriving at tribunal
Image caption Stella English won the BBC show in 2010

A business executive has denied showing "bullying behaviour" to a winner of TV's The Apprentice after she got a job in one of Alan Sugar's firms.

Viglen chief executive Bordan Tkachuk told an employment tribunal he had "no problem at all" with Stella English, from Kent.

He recalled she was "a nice girl but probably had a lot to learn".

Ms English, 34, who earned £100,000 a year, claims constructive dismissal and has said she had no real role.

Mr Tkachuk, who also interviews the finalists in the closing stages of the series, denied telling her there was no job for her.

He said: "I do not understand why I would say 'there is no job' because obviously there is a potential job for one of the two candidates.

"I did not say there was no role. For the five previous contestants there was a job for them."

'Running to teacher'

The tribunal was told on Tuesday that Ms English had raised concerns with both Mr Tkachuk and Lord Sugar to say she had seen Viglen had a £60m turnover but only an £800,000-a-year profit, and she had also seen projects worth £1.4m had not been invoiced.

But on Friday, Mr Tkachuk said: "There is no need to ring false alarm bells when you do not understand what you are talking about."

He said it was like "running to a schoolteacher claiming something that is not true".

Mr Tkachuk said Ms English's resignation from Viglen caught him "a bit unawares".

The tribunal heard he took her to lunch to discuss the situation away from the office because she was "clearly a little bit emotional about it".

He said: "She explained that she did not feel that the IT industry or the company location was for her. She was not happy with working in the industry - it was a different culture.

"It was an amicable meeting. We got on well. We were there for a couple of hours or so. There was certainly no animosity to myself or the company."

The tribunal has heard that in May 2011 Ms English resigned from Viglen and Lord Sugar gave her another role at YouView.

Ms English has claimed that in September 2011 Lord Sugar told her he would not be renewing her contract during an unscheduled meeting.

The hearing was adjourned until Tuesday.

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