The judging panel consisted of business experts, including businesswoman and star of BBC1’s The Apprentice, Karren Brady.
Run by Nectar Business, a loyalty programme designed to help small businesses by offering them the ability to earn rewards on everyday business expenditure, the Nectar Business Small Business Awards were started in 2009 to recognise the cream of Britain’s small business talent.
Neon Play will receive £2,000, together with 50,000 Nectar points and a trophy to recognise its achievement.
Oli Christie, the founder of Neon Play, started the business a year ago in June 2010 following a successful career designing games for over 200 global brands. In less than a year the business has grown to employ 13 people, with over 21 million downloads of its apps.
Oli has ambitious plans for further growth within the booming mobile games market, including producing games and apps for Android platforms and a new publishing division.
Commenting on why Neon Play was chosen for the Award, Karren Brady said: “Neon Play was the outstanding candidate in the Start-Up of the Year category. With excellent growth in its first year, and a clear strategy for development over the forthcoming years, the future looks bright for the firm.”
James Frost, Marketing Director at Nectar says: “Start-Up Business of the Year is a new category for the 2011 Nectar Business Small Business Awards and recognises businesses less than a year old who have shown real potential in their first 12 months of trading. There were hundreds of fantastic new businesses vying for this title, but the panel was particularly impressed with the achievements of Neon Play. We wish Oli and his team a very exciting and profitable future.”
Oli Christie, CEO of Neon Play said; “This is a great award and a huge pat on the back not only for the team, but also for the UK’s growing app economy. This is a new, exciting market that is moving fast and we are competing with some large and well-funded global games developers.”
Christie added “Hopefully making mobile apps will be recognised as an important export industry both in terms of getting tax breaks and increasing app developer skills. There is still a long way to go, but for a mobile games studio to win a prestigious award from Nectar Business is a huge boost and we are absolutely thrilled with the prize money, Nectar points and recognition.”