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Shining a light on our region's brightest and best in business.

Byline: RACHEL RUTHERFORD Business writer rachel.rutherford@reachplc.com @Jnlbusiness

COMPANIES are being urged to enter the North East Business Awards to highlight the best of the region's business community.

Established for 20 years, the awards is a staple in the local business industry's calendar. Applauding ambition and honouring hard work, the event commends those putting the North East on the map as a hub of investment, innovation and inspiration.

Rather than the sub-regional heats held in past years, this year's awards will feature a single final at The Grand Marquee at Hardwick Hall Hotel, Sedgefield, on September 23.

Finalists will not only have their successes celebrated at the grand event by their fellow entrepreneurs, but they will also have their stories showcased to millions of online readers across ChronicleLive, Teesside- Live and BusinessLive and to the tens of thousands of Journal and Gazette readers.

Last year, SockMonkey Studios won the Small Business Award. Reflecting on the big win, CEO Bob Makin said: "Winning the North East Business Awards was an amazing achievement for us. We were delighted to have been nominated, let alone win.

"Not only was it a huge morale boost for all the staff during the lockdowns, the win proved to ourselves and our clients that the steps we've taken over the past few years have been massive strides in creating a high-quality game development studio in the Tees Valley."

A coveted title is more than one night of celebration. It is also a chance for all your team members to see their hard work deservedly admired and appreciated.

To enter your business or one that has impressed you, all you have to do is click on the category that your business could win, and press 'Enter Now'. But make sure you do so before the deadline on July 2, at 3pm or you'll miss your chance of scooping a #nebizawards21 win.

The awards are headline sponsored by Middlesbrough College and associate sponsored by Sage.

| This year's categories are: | Newcomer of the Year (sponsored by Virgin Money) | Small Business Award | Apprenticeship, Training and Skills Award (sponsored by Northern

Skills Group) | High Growth and Ambition Award (sponsored by FW Capital) | Innovation and Technology Award (sponsored by Sage) | Manufacturing Award (sponsored by Nifco) | Services Award | Heart of the Community Award (sponsored by University of Sunderland) | Covid-19 Response Award | Northumberland and Tyneside Company of the Year (sponsored by Newcastle City Council) | Durham, Sunderland and South Tyneside Company of the Year | Teesside Company of the Year | North East Company of the Year (sponsored by Newcastle University) Middlesbrough College is headline sponsor for this year's event, while Sage is associate sponsor.

More details are available at our website nebusinessawards.co.uk. You can also follow updates and more on social media using #nebizawards 21. Businesses can enter a maximum of three categories but entries must relate to activity during 2020.

The company of the year categories will be decided from direct entries to those categories but judges may also consider entries to other categories.

Awards are open to companies and organisations of all sizes with a significant presence in any part of the North East.

The closing date for entries is July 2 at 3pm. Nominations should be made online at nebusinessawards.co.uk Queries can be answered by the Reach North East Events Team on 0191 2016435 or by emailing lesley. hampson@reachplc.com.

The awards dinner will be held at Hardwick Hall in Sedgefield on September 23. Tickets can be obtained from Lesley Hampson at Reach Events on 0191 2016435 or by emailing lesley.hampson@reachplc.com

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Bob Makin of last year's Small Business award winner SockMonkey Studios
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Title Annotation:Business
Author:RACHEL RUTHERFORD Business writer rachel.rutherford@reachplc.com @Jnlbusiness
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:May 12, 2021
Words:597
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