Now in its tenth year, the annual event which recognises excellence, innovation and ethics among UK plc, saw the best of British business celebrate the hard won achievements of exemplary organisations and individuals throughout the public and private sectors.
The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rt Hon George Osborne MP delivered the welcome address saying: “The National Business Awards are a celebration of the very best in British business. They are a unique opportunity to recognise the hard work you all do, as small businesses or multi-national companies, to achieve commercial success”.
“Day in and day out I meet the sorts of businesses that are up for an Award this year and they all have one thing in common: a relentless capacity to focus on results. It is from that effort and endeavour that great things emerge – new ideas, new products and new jobs”, the Chancellor added.
ShortList Media, the three year old media company, won the Small too Medium sized business award in what was a hotly contested category. Richard Alvin, Group Managing Director of Capital Business Media, owners of Business Matters, judge said: “ShortList Media were worthy winners, but all of the finalists showed us that the UK SME sector is so strong that they should be proud of being some of the best businesses in the UK”.
Martin Stiven, Vice President of Business, Orange, said: “Looking at the quality of award entries, the UK is overflowing with businesses that are consistently delivering outstanding performance – from sole traders to large corporates. The economy needs companies like these – world-leading businesses that employ some of the UK’s most talented people. That’s why we’ve partnered with the National Business Awards for the last decade – to recognise and reward great British businesses.”
Liverpool’s Bibby Line Group won the 3i Private Business of the Year category; London-based Johnson Matthey seized the Coutts & Co Large-Cap Business of the Year Award; while Gloucestershire-based Renishaw, was presented with the Grant Thornton Mid-Cap Business of the Year accolade.
Paul Lindley, Founder and CEO of Ella’s Kitchen was awarded with the Entrepreneur of the Year award, online wine retailer Naked Wines secured the WorldPay Online Business of the Year, while publishers ShortList Media triumphed with the Santander Small to Medium Sized Business of the Year honour.
“The National Business Awards are unique in that any organisation – from the smallest SME to the largest FTSE, and from charities and social enterprises to government agencies – can compete for recognition on the same playing field”, said Baroness Virginia Bottomley, Chair of Judges at the National Business Awards. “It’s vitally important, as many seek to transform in the post-recession economy, that good ideas and approaches are shared between the public, commercial and third sectors”, Bottomley added.
Nearly 100 eminent judges across multi disciplines brought their insight and expertise to the judging which saw over 150 of the UK’s most exceptional organisations from the public, private and third sectors complete a three-stage judging process culminating in ‘Dragon’s Den’ style presentations.
Commenting on the quality of entries, Baroness Bottomley concluded: “Now in their tenth year, and continually growing in relevance and status, the National Business Awards are the most prestigious accolades within the business community. Huge congratulations to all the winners and finalists – those who are recognised this year should consider themselves the very best of the best.”
The Orange Innovation Award
Harvard Engineering, Wakefield
The Daily Telegraph Award for a Decade of Excellence in Business
Lord Wolfson, Chief Executive, Next
Transformational Change of the Year
Warwickshire & Northamptonshire Air Ambulance, Rugby
The Huawei Customer Focus Award
Ovo Energy, Kemble
The Croner Employer of the Year
The Excellence in Marketing Award
British Heart Foundation, London
The ICAEW Sustainability Award
The BlackBerry Growth Strategy of the Year
Unruly Media, London
The Entrepreneur of the Year
Paul Lindley, Founder & CEO, Ella’s Kitchen, Henley-on-Thames
The BlackBerry Business Enabler of the Year
Chemistry Group, Binfield
Advansys Small Online Business of the Year
The WorldPay Online Business of the Year
Naked Wines, Norwich
The Santander Small to Medium Sized Business of the Year
ShortList Media, London
The 3i Private Business of the Year
Bibby Line Group, Liverpool
The Grant Thornton Mid-Cap Business of the Year
The Coutts & Co Large-Cap Business of the Year
Johnson Matthey, London
The Orange Leader of the Year
Ruby McGregor-Smith, CEO, MITIE Group