Otter Brewery
Business Awards


A host of Devon's top employers and entrepreneurs have been honoured in this years Express & Echo Exeter Business Awards.

The outstanding achievements of companies in the Exeter area were celebrated by more than 250 guests at a black tie gala dinner in the University of Exeter's Great Hall on Friday April 26th.

The brewery was shortlisted in the Family Business of the Year, the Corporate Social Responsibility Award and the Environmental Award.

On the night we were very honoured to be handed the Environmental Award for the ongoing work we do across our eighteen acre site including the series of willow beds we use to treat our waste waste, extensive recycling and constructing the UK's first underground eco cellar.

Acting editor Paul Burton said: "The whole aim of tonight is to recognise and celebrate Exeter's vibrant business community. As we all know Exeter has proved remarkably resilient during the double dip recession, coming in the top 10 locations nationally for job creation between 2008 and 2012.

"Since last year's award ceremony, we have seen the opening of John Lewis, the first new homes occupied at Cranbrook and Exeter Science Park starting to take shape. But these remain difficult times.

"In such a challenging climate, it's all too easy to focus on the doom and gloom, which can have a knock-on effect on business confidence. That is why we believe it's more important than ever to remind people about the many positive stories out there in the Exeter business community."

Guests enjoyed an entertaining after-dinner speech from Welsh rugby coach Sean Holley, who shared his insights into the parallels between building successful teams in sport and business.

The winners included:

Environmental Award - Otter Brewery

Lifetime Achievement Award - Mike Burch (Market Carpets)

Editor's Award - Richard Atkins, Exeter College Principal

Business of the Year - Plastic Surgeon

Young Entrepreneur of the Year - Ben Dunford, EPraise

Tourism & Hospitality Business of the Year - Crealy Great Adventure Park

Excellence in Customer Service - Bluebird Care

Innovation Award - Brain-in-Hand

Family Business of the Year - Market Carpets

Best Creative Business - Plastic Surgeon

Corporate Social Responsibility Award - Exeter Family Friendly

Entrepreneur of the Year - Alastair Banks, Optix Solutions

Small Business of the Year - Plantabox

Employer of the Year Award - Rentshield Direct and Optix Solutions (Joint Winners)

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