Fylde firms vie for top BIBAs honours

Francis Egan from Cuadrilla.
Francis Egan from Cuadrilla.
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Firms from across Blackpool and Fylde are among those bidding to win one of the county’s leading business awards.

The shortlists for 17 prizes up for grabs at the Be Inspired Business Awards, the BIBAs, have been published following a rigorous selection process which culminated in interviews held over the past fortnight.

Eighteen entries from Blackpool businesses and a further 14 from Fylde firms have been named among the finalists which will find out if they have won at a prize-giving ceremony at the Blackpool Tower in September.

The top award, Business of the Year, has as an eight-strong shortlist including Bispham-based Laila’s Fine Foods, marketing firm ICG Brandbuilders from Warton, and Kirkham energy brokers Inspired Energy.

Francis Egan, (pictured) chief executive of Cuadrilla Resources which is sponsoring the awards’ New Business of the Year category, said each of the shortlisted firms would now receive a visit to their business premises from the judges.

He said: “The decision of the BIBAs to send judges ‘on tour’ to visit businesses which have made the finals an example of the type of innovation which keeps it as Lancashire’s leading business awards.

“There can be no better way to understand what makes a business tick than by going onto the shop floor and meeting the people that make it happen.”

Lytham-based Tangerine Holdings is in the running for three awards, Exporter of the Year, Manufacturer of the Year and Medium Business of the Year, with Blackpool Zoo also in the running for the Medium Business of the Year and Leisure Business of the Year prizes.

Other local finalists include Jim Elliot, co-director of Blackpool firm Hangerworld, who joins Laila’s Fine Foods directors Laila and Nazir Remtulla in the running for the Entrepreneur of the Year award.

The BIBAs judges will start visiting finalists from Monday, June 9 when members of judging panel for the E-Business of the Year category visit their shortlisted businesses.

The judges will continue to go ‘on tour’ until Tuesday, July 1 when the Business of the Year judging panel visits firms on its shortlist.

A panel made up of former winners of the BIBAs’ lifetime achievement prize, Lancastrian of the Year, will meet this month to pick the winner of the 2014 award, with a 19th of the Year, due to be selected by sponsor the Lancashire Community Foundation before the prize-giving ceremony in September.

The Fylde Coast firms and the awards they are competing for:

Business of the year:

I C G Brandbuilders, Warton

Inspired Energy, Kirkham.Lailas Fine foods, Bispham

Small Business of the year:

Inteb Sustainablity, Bilsborrow

Service Business of the year:

I C G Brandbuilders

Micro Business of the year:

Colossal Training, Blackpool

WJF Technical Support, Blackpool

Entrepreneur of the year:

Jim Elliot - Hangerworld, Blackpool

Laila and Nazir Remtulla - Lailas Fine Foods, Bispham

New Business of the year:

Colossal Training, Blackpool

Excellence in Customer Service:

Hesketh Press, Fleetwood

Employer of the year:

Inspired Energy, Kirkham

Business Woman of the year:

Janet Thornton - Inspired

Energy, Kirkham

Michelle Cuffe & Felicity Lacey - Excel Fostering, St Annes

Exporter of the year:

Chelsom Limited, Blackpool

Tangerine Holdings, Lytham

TISS Ltd, Blackpool

E Business of the year:

Hanger World, Blackpool

The Ink Squid, Blackpool

Creative Business of the year:

Chelsom Lighting, Blackpool

SPS EU Ltd, Blackpool

Medium Business of the year:

Blackpool Zoo

Promenade Hotels Ltd, Lytham

SPS EU Ltd, Blackpool

Tangerine Holdings, Lytham

Construction Business:

Homestead CSL, Lytham

Leisure business of the year:

Blackpool Zoo

Fylde Executive Cars, Lytham

Promenade Hotels, Lytham Winter Gardens Blackpool

Manufacturer of the year:

Lailas Fine foods, Blackpool

SPS EU Ltd, Blackpool

Tangerine Holdings, Lytham