Six local companies are set to battle it out for two coveted cash prizes of £5,000.
The event will give Business Gateway’s most successful and ambitious clients the chance to pitch their business to a panel of judges in the hope of winning the money to invest in their company.
Held on Tuesday, 5th April at Inverness Town House the event, which will be hosted by STV’s Highlands and Islands correspondent Nicola McAlley, consists of two categories; Young Business of the Year and Business of the Year.
The candidates – three for each category – have been shortlisted for their impressive growth or ambitious growth plans. They will showcase their company by delivering a ten minute pitch to the judges that will describe their business, their achievements so far and their plans and expectations for the future.
The judging panel will consist of Brian Urquhart, Divisional Director at the Orion Group, Stewart Nicol, Chief Executive of the Inverness Chamber of Commerce and David Owen, Company Manager of Highland Opportunity Ltd.
Experience 4x4 based in Farr, Papa Rock based in Aviemore and RCDAC Group from Elgin have all been trading for under 18 months and will compete the Young Business of the Year award.
Meanwhile Highlands Unbridled based in Brora, Saladworx from Dornoch and Moray First Marine located in Elgin will all be hoping to be named Business of The Year.
As well as the actual competition all six finalists and the businesses that didn’t quite make the short list, have been invited to take a stand that will display information about their company.
There will also be a networking lunch giving the entrepreneurs in attendance the chance not only to find out about other local businesses but also to make important contacts that could benefit their business.
Donald Mackenzie, Services Manager, Business Gateway said: “We have been privileged to work with hundreds of local businesses in the two years Business Gateway has been operating in the Highlands and Moray. Our ongoing support, whether it be the one-to-one advice from our advisers, our web resources or our free workshops, has helped these companies start up, develop and expand.
“Any business we have assisted in the last two years was eligible to enter and our selection panel drew up a shortlist of the six businesses that we felt had really excelled. We look forward to hearing from all six business owners and picking two very worthy winners.”
One of last year’s winners Margaret Edwards of the Kilthanger Co Ltd from Grantown on Spey, said: “We were delighted to win the prize money last year and since then have put it to good use. We invested the money into the business by developing other prototypes to enhance our revolutionary and specially made “Kilthanger”. The prototypes have received very positive customer acclaim, and will soon be available on line from our new website www.kilthangercompany.com”
Business Gateway provides practical help, advice and support for new and growing businesses.
To find out more about how Business Gateway can help you set up and develop your own business as well as find out when and where workshops are taking place, visit www.bgateway.com or call 0845 609 6611.