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The businesses named 'Best in West' at FSB annual awards

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Written by: Hannah Baker | Posted 11 February 2019 16:24

The businesses named 'Best in West' at FSB annual awards

Four businesses from the Bristol area have been named among the best in the West.

The companies were recognised at the Federation of Small Business’s (FSB) annual awards ceremony, which aims to find the best small businesses in the region.

Among the prize winners were Bristol technology company Simpleweb Studio One (pictured), which won Employer of the Year; and inventors of a unique baby rocker device Rockit (N2M Ltd), which was named International Business of the Year.

The Dr Julian Medical Group, which provides mental health professional support in Bristol and the wider South West, scooped the Digital Innovation trophy and Thomas Coppen of Bristol marketing company Keel Over was crowned South West Young Entrepreneur of the Year.

There were also a number of Bristol and South Gloucestershire companies which were recognised for their achievements on the night.

Read more: Bristol-based Flexology doubles staff numbers and moves to new offices

They included recruitment agency ARV Solutions; electronic design company Cubik Innovation, software firm Sparkol, family ice-cream business Tarr’s Ice Cream; assisted care group Manor Community; and Cryer Coe architects.

On acceptiong the award, Mikey Howe of Simpleweb Studio stressed the importance of businesses of all size looking after and promoting their staff.

He said: “It feels really good to win this award because a lot of work has gone into creating a positive culture and environment.

“Your business is based on the people within it and you need to invest in them so they can drive the business forward.”

Matt Dyson of Rockit said the firm was “thrilled” to have won the competitive International Business of the Year category, which also featured fellow Bristol firm Sparkol.

“We are over the moon – we weren’t expecting it at all,” he said. “We are only a small company – just three of us – and we work really hard so this means a lot to us.”

Meanwhile, Bristol-based Young Entrepreneur of the Year Thomas Coppen said he was also surprised and delighted to win.

Read more: Bristol-based Flexology doubles staff numbers and moves to new offices

“I think the FSB do great things for small businesses and we have used their services a lot ever since we joined.

“For me to have been considered worthy of this award is a proud moment and I could not be more grateful.”

Dr Julian Nesbitt, a former University of Bristol graduate whose business operates throughout the South West including Bristol, said he felt “honoured and privileged” to have won the Digital Innovation award.

“There is an incredible number of doctors and other medical professionals out there with amazing ideas and innovations which are desperately needed in the NHS and I would urge them all to go for it and create businesses that can help the NHS.”

The four Bristol winners will now go through to the UK national FSB Celebrating Small Business Awards 2019 final in London, in May.

Roger Tarrant, FSB regional chairman for the South West, added: “It really was a fabulous day and it was amazing to hear all about the fantastic nominees.

“The businesses in the South West are just so diverse - they really do cover the whole spectrum. I hope we can now go on to see some South West winners at the national finals in London.”

The full list for the South West area FSB Celebrating Small Business Award winners 2019:

Business & Product Innovation Award
Ecosulis Ltd (Bath)

Family Business of the Year
Exmoor Zoo (Devon)

International Business of the Year
Rockit (N2M Limited) (Bristol)

Ethical Green Business
ARCO2 Architecture Ltd (Bodmin, Cornwall)

Start-up Business of the Year
Mooplehog (Oakhampton, Devon)

Digital Innovation Award
Dr Julian Medical Group (Bristol/Swindon/South West)

Micro Business of the Year
Eternal Beauty UK Ltd (Taunton, Somerset)

Employer of the Year
Simpleweb Studio One (Bristol)

Scale Up Business of the Year
Local Food Links (Bridport, Dorset)

Community Award of the Year
Street factory cic (Plymouth, Devon)

Young Entrepreneur of the Year (under 30 years of age)
Thomas Coppen of Keel Over Ltd (Bristol)

The South West final is one of 12 regional finals place across the UK taking place until March. For more details see


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