2013 EXETER BUSINESS AWARDS
A host of Devon's top employers and entrepreneurs have been honoured in this years Express & Echo Exeter Business Awards.
achievements of companies in the Exeter area were celebrated by more than 250
guests at a black tie gala dinner in the University of Exeter's Great Hall on Friday April 26th.
Acting editor Paul Burton said: "The whole aim of tonight is to recognise and celebrate Exeter's vibrant business community. As we all know Exeter has proved remarkably resilient during the double dip recession, coming in the top 10 locations nationally for job creation between 2008 and 2012.
"Since last year's award ceremony, we have seen the opening of John Lewis, the first new homes occupied at Cranbrook and Exeter Science Park starting to take shape. But these remain difficult times.
"In such a challenging climate, it's all too easy to focus on the doom and gloom, which can have a knock-on effect on business confidence. That is why we believe it's more important than ever to remind people about the many positive stories out there in the Exeter business community."
Guests enjoyed an entertaining after-dinner speech from Welsh rugby coach Sean Holley, who shared his insights into the parallels between building successful teams in sport and business.
Lifetime Achievement Award - Mike Burch (Market Carpets)
Editor's Award - Richard Atkins, Exeter College Principal
Business of the Year - Plastic Surgeon
Young Entrepreneur of the Year - Ben Dunford, EPraise
Tourism & Hospitality Business of the Year - Crealy Great Adventure Park
Excellence in Customer Service - Bluebird Care
Innovation Award - Brain-in-Hand
Family Business of the Year - Market Carpets
Best Creative Business - Plastic Surgeon
Corporate Social Responsibility Award - Exeter Family Friendly
Entrepreneur of the Year - Alastair Banks, Optix Solutions
Small Business of the Year - Plantabox
Employer of the Year Award - Rentshield Direct and Optix Solutions (Joint Winners)