Entries are now open for this year’s prestigious Thames Valley Business Awards, with eight titles up for grabs.
From Management Team of the Year to the Best Use of Technology and the Best Company to Work For, the search is on to find those organisations who have achieved greatness in their respective fields.
At the same time, local charities have the chance to demonstrate their prowess by entering the Charity of the Year category, won last year by Oxford’s Helen & Douglas House Hospice.
Awards chairman David Murray said: “Now in their 19th year, these awards are the premier event for businesses across our region. Every year we are overwhelmed by the quality, innovation and fabulous stories in the entries we receive and, with the economy gaining in confidence, we expect a very hard-fought contest in 2013. We say to everyone out there, this is your perfect opportunity to stand up and shout about your achievements.”
Among last year’s big winners was Marlow-based Softcat, which won both Management Team and Business of the Year. Encouraging businesses to enter, its managing director, Martin Hellawell said: “The Thames Valley Business Awards set extremely high standards and stringent criteria which makes winning one, or two as was the fortunate case for Softcat last year, extremely meaningful for a business like ours. The Awards have a great reputation and coverage of them is very extensive so we have been delighted by their positive impact on our business.”
His words were echoed by Nikki Singh-Barmi, managing director of GRITIT, from Uxbridge, which won SME of the Year. He said: “The majority of the workforce in head office are based locally, and the largest concentration of our field teams are in the Thames Valley region – so this award is all the more real to them.
“A local award win also helps to build and strengthen relationships with businesses in the local area. We will definitely be applying again this year.”
Ultima Business Solutions, which won Best Company to Work For in 2012, has also come on board as an award sponsor for the first time, with Annette Shuff, its HR manager saying that winning the 2012 award had delivered tangible benefits in helping recruit and attract new staff.
And Helen & Douglas House Hospice, chief executive, Tom Hill, commented: “Receiving the award has greatly improved the charity’s standing in the business community throughout the Thames Valley.”
The full list of categories for 2013 is:
SME of the Year– sponsored by James Cowper
Green Progress of the Year – sponsored by Grundon Waste Management
Management Team of the Year – sponsored by The Royal Bank of Scotland
Charity of the Year – sponsored by James Cowper
Best Company to Work For – sponsored by Hays
Best Use of Technology – sponsored by Ultima Business Solutions
Dynamic Business of the Year – sponsored by Deloitte
Thames Valley Business of the Year Award – sponsored by Pitmans
Entry forms are available online from www.businessawards.co.uk and the closing date is September 27.
Guest of honour at the Awards evening on Thursday, November 21, at the Royal Berkshire Conference Centre, Madejski Stadium, Reading, will be award-winning journalist, broadcaster and author John Sergeant.