The third annual Wales Start-Up Awards have been launched this week, offering new businesses the opportunity to showcase their successes and demonstrate their contribution to job creation, creativity and innovation in the Welsh economy.
The Start-Up Awards were launched in 2016 by Professor Dylan Jones-Evans OBE (founder of the Wales Fast Growth 50) and Liz Brookes, managing director of one of Wales’s fastest growing event management firms, Grapevine Event Management (which is responsible for such events as Cardiff Business Awards and the Caerphilly Business Forum Annual Awards).
Covering the full spectrum of business sectors including important sectors such as food and drink, social enterprise, digital and life sciences, the Wales Start-Up awards give new enterprises the opportunity to enter 15 awards while shining a light on the Wales’s fast-growing and buoyant start-up community.
As the only regional awards in the UK to focus on start-up firms, they are unique in that only new businesses launched within the last three years are eligible to enter.
All entrants will also be entered automatically for the four regional awards – North Wales, Cardiff Capital Region, Swansea Bay Region and Rural Wales.
The overall sponsor for this year’s awards is Capital Law -a leading provider of commercial legal services to private and public sector clients throughout the UK, Europe and beyond. Other leading organisations involved this yearinclude Abel & Imray, Acceler8me, Bluegg, Clearly PR, IQE PLC, Kukd, WCVA, the Welsh Government, Welsh ICE and Wynne Jones IP.
Commenting on the launch of the 2018 awards, Professor Dylan Jones-Evans, said:
“As we have seen over the last two years, we have a vibrant start-up community here in Wales and are providing more than our fair share of talented entrepreneurs who are making a real difference to the UK economy in a number of key sectors.
“I am particularly proud to be involved in creating the Wales Start-Up Awards as they acknowledge the amazing achievements of new Welsh firms and gives them the recognition they deserve going forward.
“Encouraging and fostering fresh talent is of vital importance and the Wales Start-Up Awards are a celebration of the incredible contribution that entrepreneurs are making to a growing Welsh economy.”
Liz Brookes said:
“We are immensely proud to carry the awards into a third year. Not only can we reflect on the growth of previous winners, but we can acknowledge and welcome new businesses that are making a real impact in their respective industries.
“It’s an event that members of the Welsh business sector look forwards to every year because we provide a more casual and relaxed approach to the typical award ceremony and one in which we can network and congratulate each other whilst having a great time.
“It is the kind of event reflective of the fantastic entrepreneurs and businesses we get to reward and recognise on the night.”
Chris Nott, Senior Partner at headline sponsor Capital Law, said: “Capital Law is delighted to be the main sponsor of the 2018 Wales Start-Up Awards.
“New businesses are proliferating and are growing the Welsh economy so Capital Law, which itself was a Start-Up only 12 years ago, has a team dedicated to helping them get going.”
As in previous years, the awards will be held once more at The Depot in Cardiff in an entrepreneurial and informal atmosphere that is ideal for networking and where attendees will be provided with craft beer and street food, setting the perfect tone for the evening.
Last year’s winner of the 2017 digital start-up category was One Team Logic and the Talbot Green-based company has built on this success by recently being awarded the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for their safeguarding software, MyConcern®
On their win last year, their Managing Director Martin Baker said: “The Wales Start-Up Awards were the first real recognition of the progress we had made as a start-up and winning two awards on the evening was a massive boost to our staff who had been working so hard to achieve that progress.
It also really promoted our credibility as an innovative growing business to current and future customers because of the recognition we had received from these prestigious awards”.
Entries are now open and can be made online via http://www.walesstartupawards.com/
Entries close on Friday 6thJuly, with the awards ceremony taking place on Friday 21stSeptember 2018 at The Depot, Cardiff.
The full list of awards is as follows:
- Construction Start-up of the Year
- Creative and Digital Start-up of the Year
- Financial and Professional Services Start-up of the Year
- Food and Drink Start-up of the Year
- Global Start-up of the Year
- Green Start-up of the Year
- Innovative Start-up of the Year
- Life Sciences Start-up of the Year
- Manufacturing and Engineering Start-up of the Year
- Retail Start-up of the Year
- Services Start-up of the Year
- Social Enterprise start-up of the Year
- Technology Start-up of the Year
- Tourism & Leisure Start-up of the Year
- Young Entrepreneur of the Year
Each company will also automatically be entered into one of the following awards based on their region:
- Cardiff Capital Region Start-up of the Year
- North Wales Start-up of the Year
- Rural Start-up of the Year
- Swansea Bay Region Start-up of the Year