A west London businessman is backing 15 young people to compete for £1,000,000 as part of a new online series, Millionaire Mentor.
Roy Ledgister, 46, will launch the Millionaire Mentor show on YouTube later this year to “highlight undiscovered and ambitious talent in poorer areas across the UK.”
Mr Ledgister grew up in Shepherd’s Bush, relying on free school meals before employing classmates at his car washing business at 14 and becoming the UK’s youngest senior partner at 24 after qualifying in law.
He now aims to help self-starting young people, offering £200,000 of his own money to five winners to start the businesses they design on the show.
Mr Ledgister said: “The series will give me the ability to get the message out there – that we are thinking too small and looking in the wrong places for talented people.
“Some of these people will have solutions to problems that they encounter in life that the privileged will not be able to understand.
“I am looking for people with resolve and commitment – that’s the only criteria.”
Contestants will face challenges while developing business plans under the guidance of a millionaire mentor.
Claire Williams, 45, former deputy team principal of the Williams Formula One racing team, and several other public figures have signed up to mentor participants.
Ms Williams told SWL: “I am delighted to be involved in a project which has the ability to positively impact the lives of young people.”
Mr Ledgister said it was listening to his mother’s self-help tapes as a child that taught him to aim high and inspire others.
Joyce Ledgister, 71, arrived in London from the Caribbean in the 1960s and received an MBE in 2012 after decades of work as a civil servant.
Her son said: “[My mum] instilled a set of rules and discipline to follow, taught me to work hard and keep my head down.”
But it was finding David J Schwartz’ book, ‘The Magic of Thinking Big’ at the age of 12 that inspired Mr Legister to change his life.
“I had that intervention early enough in my life. […] I never blamed anything and that is the philosophy I am trying to demonstrate to these kids.
“People always find excuses,” he said. “They say ‘I am too old or too young, Black, female…’
“In reality, these are your superpowers. But people run away from opportunities because they feel that these things hold us back.
“I was able to go into the courtroom as a young black guy from London and have a certain rapport with juries or witnesses that my adversaries could not do because they were public school educated.
“Your strength is actually what you consider to be a weakness most of the time.
“And that’s what I’m trying to do with the series: to show these kids that your disadvantage or perceived disadvantage is really your greatest strength.”
Londoners aged between 18 – 24 will be able to apply to take part in Millionaire Mentor from April 2022.
Those interested can keep up with announcements via Instagram.
Image: Roy Ledgister