Written by Scott Wright, Deputy Business Editor, The Herald


FAMILY firms are being invited once again to enter one of Scotland’s most prestigious awards schemes.

The Herald Scottish Family Business Awards are being staged for a fifth year, celebrating once more the invaluable contribution family-owned companies make to the Scottish economy, with prizes up for grabs across eleven categories.

This year’s awards, held in association with Business Gateway, invites entries to a broad range of categories, from rural family business and positive customer service to international growth. A new award, celebrating family firms which demonstrate eco-friendly initiatives, has been introduced for the first time.
The judging panel is chaired by Herald business editor Ian McConnell.

Hugh Lightbody, chief officer at the Business Gateway National Unit said: “Winning a business award is far more than simply receiving the accolade. It is a clear demonstration of the business’s hard work and quality and shows that the company is at the top of its game. It also provides a strong platform for the company to continue its success into the future.

“Business Gateway works with thousands of SMEs and family businesses every year and would encourage all eligible businesses to enter.”

Fraser Campbell, of accountancy firm Campbell Dallas, sponsor of the business innovation category, said: “Entrants in the business innovation category should be able to showcase how they have embraced innovation and overcome the challenges they have faced, demonstrating how innovation has directly led to a competitive advantage”.

Brian Colquhoun of Clydesdale Bank said: “Family firms continue to play a significant role in Scotland’s economic prosperity, and it’s fantastic to be celebrating the success of these businesses as sponsor of the Scottish family business of the year category (small/medium).

“The Scottish Family Business Awards provide a platform to showcase what are many of the best businesses in the country and we’d encourage all family businesses, big or small, to enter.”
John Anderson, of Strathclyde Business School, sponsor of the award for outstanding contribution to family business, noted: “From our work as one of the UK’s largest family business research teams we know that family businesses make a significant contribution to the Scottish economy.

“They take a long view, have a loyal workforce and a well-developed sense of social responsibility.

“We are committed to raising the profile of this vital sector with the Scottish Government and its agencies and would urge family business to enter the awards and demonstrate why this is arguably the most important part of the Scottish economy.”

Gillian Cameron, of the Supplier Development Programme, supporter of the rural family business of the year (small/medium) award, said: “Supplier Development Programme works closely with SMEs to help them win work with the public sector and grow their business. We believe that small businesses play an essential role in providing employment and support in rural areas, which is essential to creating a thriving community.

“We would encourage any family business to enter the awards and be recognised for their success and the contribution they make to their communities year on year.”

Bernard Dunn of TL Dallas, sponsor of the customer service excellence award, said: “As sponsors for the fourth year running, we have seen first-hand just how much family businesses have enjoyed and benefited from entering the Herald Family Business Awards.
“First, it’s a great opportunity to meet other family companies and the judges to share experiences, and keep learning for the future. Second, it’s an excellent project for the next generation to undertake, to profile the company, and generate new contacts and prospects.

“Last but not least, the awards evening is a great chance to celebrate family businesses, and for your staff to enjoy a glittering evening and cheer on their colleagues. I would strongly encourage family businesses to enrol. The time invested will be rewarded in lots of ways.”

Tom Craig, chairman of Craig Corporate, said: “Craig Corporate are delighted to once again sponsor the family company of the year (large Companies) award. Family companies are vitally important to the Scottish economy and they should be encouraged and nurtured to be successful and grow.

“Last year’s winners GAP Group are an excellent example of the potential of family businesses. It has been heartening to see the numbers of large family companies participating in the awards over the years – it is important that they showcase their achievements so that others are motivated to emulate their success.”

“Family businesses often operate on a global stage, showcasing the best Scotland has to offer throughout the world. Whether setting foot abroad for the first time or having a long established history trading in international markets, the ambition and vision of those looking to grow internationally and fly the flag for Scotland should be celebrated.
“I look forward to finding out more about this year’s nominees across all categories, and would encourage family businesses in any sector to consider entering.”

Graeme Gibson, general manager of The Grand Central Hotel added: “We are thrilled to be able to highlight Scotland’s successful family businesses across the country. Family companies are at the very heart of the Scottish economy and significantly contribute towards our employment and income.

“The awards offer a fantastic platform for local companies to showcase and gain recognition for their on-going achievements and we are delighted to be involved this year as well as host the awards in the Grand Central Ballroom.”

To enter visit herald-events.com/familybusiness. For more information please contact Lynsay Wong on 0141 302 6082. All entries must be submitted by Wednesday, October 19, 2016.