Great British Entrepreneur Awards open for entries

Applications for the Great British Entrepreneur Awards are officially open.

The awards, now in the fifth year, are aimed at celebrating the work and inspiring stories of entrepreneurs from across the UK. They don’t just consider their financial success.

There are 11 categories to enter in several host cities, including Cardiff, Birmingham, Manchester, Edinburgh and London. The categories cover a range of different sectors.

This year will also see the introduction of a new category called ‘Family Business Entrepreneur of the Year’. It’ll be handed to someone who’s leading and excelling within a family business.

Founded by Cardiff-based Francesca Russell, the awards have recognised a plethora of outstanding entrepreneurs who have gone on to become household names.

Previous winners include David Buttress, former CEO of Just Eat; Julie Deane, founder of The Cambridge Satchel Company; James Watt, founder of BrewDog; and Alexander Solomou, founder and CEO of TheLADBible Group.

She said: “Family businesses are often considered incompatible with entrepreneurship because they are usually tradition-bound and multi- generational.

“However, for family firms to continually prosper, they need to ensure that they pass on the entrepreneurial mindset and capabilities to create new streams of wealth across future generations.”

“Succession planning is also a big issue in business and, if handled well, can make a massive difference to the future viability of a company.

“Passing on the business baton to the younger generation is a challenge and we want to celebrate those who have successfully managed that transition.”

The 2017 awards have attracted a number of high-profile judges, including James Caan CBE; Hayley Parsons, founder of Gocompare.com; Tony Mascolo, co-founder of TONI&GUY; and Jeff Lynn, co-founder of Seedrs.

As well as attracting some of the UK’s leading business leaders to the judging panel, Francesca and her team have also secured sponsorship from the likes of NatWest and MINI.

Francesca continued: “2017 is an exciting year for the NatWest Great British Entrepreneur Awards. As well as increasing the number of regions that we can cover, we have attracted the best of the best in terms of a judging panel and sponsors.”