NatWest everywoman Awards winners announced

The awards honour the diversity and success of female businesswomen across the country

The winners of the NatWest everywoman Awards, honouring the diversity and success of female businesswomen across the country, have been announced.

Marie Claire sponsored one of the awards, the Ambassador Award, which goes to a woman whose high profile and achievements are inspiring young women to excel. This went to Amanda Wakeley OBE, a favoured designer of celebrities including Scarlett Johansson, Kate Winslet and Dame Helen Mirren.

Author of Labyrinth Kate Mosse was given the Spirit Award, given to women who change the landscape of business. She co-founded the Women’s Prize for Fiction (formerly the Orange Prize for Fiction), which has sought to address the gender imbalance within the literary prize world.

The NatWest everywoman Awards are celebrating 10 years of showcasing the diversity and phenomenal success of women business owners across the UK.

In the past decade, these awards have raised the profile of hundreds of women of all ages, across every imaginable sector, demonstrating the impact of female owned enterprises, which contribute £130 billion to the UK economy each year.

The awards were hosted by Olivia Sterns, of Bloomberg Television, at the Dorchester and attended by a host of high profile women entrepreneurs including Cath Kidston MBE; Chrissie Rucker MBE, founder of The White Company; Anna Lee, co-founder of Storm Watches, and Eve Lom MBE.

Other 2012 winners included Jessica Rose, 25, who fought potential bankruptcy to lead her enterprise London Jewellery School to be the largest independent provider of amateur and professional courses in the country.

Hayley Gait-Golding was also recognised for her vision in launching BEAR Nibbles, providing healthy fruit snacks, which are now sold in all major supermarkets.

Winner of the ‘Athena’ category was Julie Deane, who started the Cambridge Satchel Company to fund school fees. Award winner Janis Sinton was forced to run her business alone following her husband’s sudden death, and has grown TasteTech into a global, multi-million pound enterprise providing pioneering solutions for the food industry.

The coveted NatWest everywoman Award, which recognises a passionate and dedicated woman business owner who has overcome significant challenges to achieve outstanding business success went to Liz Doogan-Hobbs MBE of Liz Hobbs Group Ltd.

Commenting on this year’s winners, everywoman co-founder, Karen Gill MBE, said: ‘Over the past ten years we have uncovered incredible stories of professional triumphs, so many of which have been in the face of incredible adversity. This year more than ever the judges were humbled by the extraordinary tenacity and determination shown by the finalists.

‘Drive to succeed takes on new meaning with these women and the word ‘inspiring’ doesn’t do justice to their achievements. We know that there are thousands of women around the UK with a business idea and we are here to support them as their concept turns into reality. Today’s winners are testimony that with hard work and persistence dreams of enterprise can come true.’

Anne McPherson, Managing Director, Diversity in Business at NatWest added: ‘At NatWest, we have long recognised the economic benefit that encouraging more women-owned businesses can bring and are committed to helping women achieve their ambitions through our network of accredited Women in Business Specialist Relationship Managers.

‘Our longstanding relationship with everywoman and 10 year sponsorship of the NatWest everywoman awards is a key part of our strategy to provide opportunities for women to raise their profile and grow their businesses. Our partnership with everywoman also allows us to open up personal development opportunities to our staff and our customers in the areas that women tell us are important to them.’

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