The Herald launches eighth Family Business Awards

SCOTLAND’S finest family-owned firms will again be recognised with the return of a major annual awards scheme.

Today marks the launch of the eighth Herald Scottish Family Business Awards. Held in association with Business Gateway, the contest is designed to celebrate the huge contribution made by family firms and their leading executives to local communities and the wider Scottish economy.

There are 12 categories in this year’s awards, which again strive to acknowledge excellence in a wide range of sectors. Sponsors include Burness Paull, Clydesdale Bank, Craig Corporate, Campbell Dallas, University of Strathclyde Business School, STAND, Supplier Development Programme and TL Dallas.

Hugh Lightbody, chief officer of Business Gateway National Unit, said: “The Herald Scottish Family Business Awards… acknowledges the breadth and depth of the skills and expertise within Scotland’s thriving family business community.”

This year’s Customer Service Excellence Award is supported by TL Dallas. The firm’s Bernard Dunn said: “We are thrilled to be sponsoring The Herald’s Scottish Family Business Awards for another year.”

An Outstanding Contribution Award, supported by Strathclyde Business School, will reward an individual or team for their commitment and contribution to a Scottish family business over the years.

John Anderson, of Strathclyde Business School, said the institution is “committed to the advancement of family business”.

The Business Innovation award, supported by Campbell Dallas. The firm’s Fraser Campbell said: “The awards recognise and celebrate family businesses and their vital contribution to the Scottish and wider economy.”

Deyrick Smith of Clydesdale Bank, sponsor of the Scottish Family Business of the Year (small/medium) Award, said the awards recognise that family-owned SMEs are the “backbone of our economy.”

Neil Grimmond of Craig Corporate, sponsor of the Scottish Family Business of the Year (large), category, said: “Craig Corporate has been working with family companies since 1985. We’ve consistently seen the impact that they can have, both within their businesses and across the wider community.”

Maggie Croft of STAND said the firm “recognises the positive impact that winning awards has on your business.”

Gillian Cameron at SDP said the organisation offers free support to SMEs “to build their skills and become “tender ready” to bid for public sector work.”

The closing date for entries is Thursday, October 10. Visit or Kirsty Loughlin on 0141 302 6016 for details.


Almost two thirds of businesses in Scotland are family enterprises and are an important source of employment as well as being massive contributors to the wealth of the country. These awards aim to celebrate those Scottish family businesses and individuals who are working tirelessly to ensure their business succeeds in the Scottish economy.


This category is for a family business headquartered in Scotland with 100 employees or fewer, operating in any sector of the economy, which has enjoyed outstanding success.

A business which makes a sustainable contribution to the community in which they operate. Examples of this could include supporting local initiatives, charity work, demonstrating commitment to their industry sector or taking extra care of employees and their families.


This category will recognise a company which has excelled in the provision of customer service as an integral part of their business. Judges will be looking for evidence of how this has been achieved and contributed to the success and development of the organisation.


This category is for family business headquartered in Scotland with more than 100 employees, operating in any sector of the economy, which has enjoyed outstanding success.


A business which has achieved sustained expansion over recent years, against the toughest economic backdrop for decades. Growth could be in terms of turnover and profit, an increase in employee numbers, and/or through expansion into new market-places at home or abroad.

RURAL FAMILY BUSINESS OF THE YEAR – Supporter by Supplier Development Programme 

Businesses in rural areas play a vital role in providing employment and wealth in the communities in which they operate. This category recognises family businesses in rural Scotland (outwith Glasgow City, City of Edinburgh, Aberdeen City and Dundee City) from any sector.

This category looks to recognise family businesses who have demonstrated an innovative approach and made it their goal to reduce their environmental impact on the world.

INTERNATIONAL GROWTH AWARD supported by Burness Paull

This category will recognise a business which has enjoyed major success in overseas market-places in recent times. Such success could have been achieved with the launch or significant expansion of international operations, through new or existing products and services.

BUSINESS INNOVATION AWARD supported by Campbell Dallas –

This category will reward a company which have embraced innovation, whether through the development of products and services, or by making changes to service delivery, production processes, or working practices, or by altering the direction of the business radically to adapt to a changing environment.


This award will be presented to an individual who plays a pivotal role in shaping and securing the future of their family business for the next generation. The award will highlight an individual who has demonstrated commitment to and understanding of their family business and the successful future of that enterprise. Individuals can enter this themselves or be nominated by a colleague.


This award will be presented to an individual who has shown loyalty and dedication to the family business in which they work in. We understand that most businesses wouldn’t be where they are without the strong workforce behind them. We want to hear about an employee that has gone above and beyond the call of duty over the last year. Let’s celebrate their hard work, achievements and outstanding contribution to their role and business. The award will highlight an individual who has become “one of the family”.

OUTSTANDING CONTRIBUTION supported by Strathclyde Business School

This award recognises an individual or team which has made an outstanding contribution to a Scottish-headquartered family business over the years, from any level of seniority within the business.