Lee McQueen has won the fourth season of The Apprentice after being hired by Sir Alan Sugar.

The recruitment sales manager was chosen ahead of retail buyer Claire Young in the final of the BBC1 show after two other contestants fell by the wayside.

McQueen, who has earned himself a £100,000-a-year salary, described the win as "unbelievable".

"I can't describe how I'm feeling now," the 30-year-old, whose catchphrase "simple as that" had become a staple of the show, said.

McQueen and Young, 29, had progressed to the final two when their male fragrance – Roulette – was judged a better all round business proposition than Dual for Men from their rivals.

Alex Wotherspoon, 24, and Helene Speight, 32, were shown the door when industry experts voiced concerns at the cost of their innovative two-part perfume container.

Regional sales manager Wotherspoon described falling at the final hurdle as "heartbreaking", while global pricing leader Speight blamed her co-project manager for approving the expensive bottle design.

Before telling McQueen "you're hired", Sir Alan had questioned whether his eventual winner was a "one trick pony".

But despite praising Young's "great attributes" the Amstrad tycoon admitted he would have struggled to "put up with" the feisty candidate.

In his ultimately successful defence of why he should be the apprentice, McQueen had championed his "consistent delivery" after successfully project managing three times during the show's 12 weeks.

12/06/2008 00:15:40