Two new categories for sole traders and sustainability have been added to this year’s Powys Business Awards which were launched on Friday.
Sponsored by the Powys County Times, the Sole Trader Award recognises sole traders who are developing their business or concept on their own – Powys has more than 12,000 sole traders.
The Excellence in Sustainability Award, sponsored by the Welsh Government, is open to Powys organisations that are leading the way to a low carbon, low waste and sustainable future.
Showcasing the diverse range of successful enterprises in the county, Powys Business Awards are organised by Mid Wales Manufacturing Group (MWMG) with support from sponsors.
There are now 13 awards, including the coveted Powys Business of the Year, which are open to companies, organisations, social enterprises and charities.
The launch event was held at Themes Restaurant at NPTC Newtown Campus where Councillor David Selby, Powys County Council’s Cabinet Member for a More Prosperous Powys, said: “We have a unique, varied and thriving business community here in Powys and it is right and correct that success is recognised.”
Referring to the new Excellence in Sustainability Award, he added: “To meet Welsh Government targets and to be on track for net zero by 2050, Mid Wales needs to reduce emissions from its energy system by 55% by 2035.
“Energy modelling contained within the Mid Wales Energy Plan sets out high-level targets to achieve a 48% reduction in commercial and industrial emissions and 54% reduction in road transport emissions.
“Powys County Council is leading the way with our Stronger, Fairer, Greener agenda and is working with Ceredigion Council for the successful implementation of the Mid Wales Regional Investment Plan.”
Powys County Council aims to create better paid job opportunities and increase earnings and Mid Wales Regional Skills Partnership recently launched a three-year employability and skills action plan after engaging closely with businesses.
“This plan addresses the importance of making strong connections between the local learning system and the skills needed across the region, so that we are creating the right conditions for a thriving workforce,” added Cllr Selby.
“Locally, we have appointed a new post 14 education lead tasked with improving links with business to develop apprenticeships and other courses.”
In addition to the new awards, this year’s categories are: Start up Business Award sponsored by EvaBuild, Entrepreneurship Award sponsored by MWMG, Micro Business Award (fewer than 10 employees) sponsored by Welshpool Printing Group, Growth Award sponsored by EDF Renewables, Small Business Award (under 30 employees) sponsored by Wipak, Social Enterprise/ Charity Award sponsored by Myrick Training Services, Small Business Growth Award sponsored by W. R. Partners, Technology & Innovation Award sponsored by CellPath and People Development Award sponsored by NPTC Group of Colleges.
From the category winners, an overall Powys Business of the Year Award, sponsored by Powys County Council, is chosen. In addition, the judging panel can make a discretionary Judges Special Award to recognise an outstanding achievement by a business or person who is not one of the category winners.
Entries must be received by Sunday, July 30 and the awards presentation ceremony will be held on Friday, October 20 at The Hafren, Newtown . Entry forms may be completed online or downloaded at https://www.powysbusinessawards.co.uk .
The awards, which began in 2009, are an opportunity for all businesses, social enterprises and charities of all sizes in Powys to compete for a chance to be a finalist at the county’s main business event of the year.
Ceri Stephens, MWMG’s group manager, said: “The Powys Business Awards provide a fantastic platform for businesses to raise their profile. Those who enter the awards are independently judged on their excellent standards.”