Some of the region’s most established firms are joined by smaller up-and-coming companies in the shortlist for this year’s Birmingham Post Business Awards.
The ceremony, which takes place at Edgbaston Stadium on October 17, is one of the major events in the West Midlands business calendar.
Growing legal firm Shakespeares, former winner Pailton Engineering, Deutsche Bank Operations International and listed property firm St Modwen Properties are among those shortlisted.
They sit alongside some less well-known names, like instrument-maker Warwick Music, leadership event firm Top Banana and Learning Labs, an education resource company, vying for 11 awards.
The 12th award on the night will be the big one – Company Of The Year – which will be selected as the best of the best.
The shortlist was selected by an expert panel of judges ahead of the business showcase.
Eighty companies entered the awards and the shortlist highlights the emerging strength of firm across many sectors as the region fights its way back from economic gloom.
Post Editor Stacey Barnfield, who chaired the judging panel, said: “We have been taken aback by the quality of entries in this year’s business awards.
“The Post has been reporting a lot about improvements in the local economy of late and this was really reinforced in the applications.
“It was a fascinating process whittling down dozens of entries into what we think is a very impressive shortlist. There were a lot of difficult decisions to be made and many a heated debate between the judges.
“The Birmingham Post Business Awards is always a fantastic night, and we are sure this year’s will be the best yet.”
The judges spent hours debating before deciding on the final shortlist.
Fellow judges included Professor David Bailey, a noted academic and Post columnist, David Caro from the Federation of Small Businesses in the West Midlands, and KPMG partner Narinder Paul.
Creative sector expert Ruth Pipkin, managing director of city firm Rewired PR, and Anthony McCourt, founder of property company Court Collaboration, made up the rest of the judging panel.
This year the awards will be hosted by television news reader Natasha Kaplinsky, and sponsored by Turkish Airlines, Bournville College, Birmingham Airport, Court Collaboration, Jaguar Land Rover, Jerroms, Investec Wealth and Management, Lloyds TSB and Wesleyan Assurance Society.
Last year IM Properties won Company of the Year and also scooped the Property & Regeneration award, impressing judges with how directors dealt with the sector’s downturn.
Fellow winners were WH Smith & Sons (Tools), Travel de Courcey, OWB Creative Communications, Wesleyan Assurance Society, Just Checking, Damien Hayward-Bradley, Chiltern Railways and SGH Martineau.
* To book a table at the Birmingham Post Business Awards visit www.bpbusinessawards.co.uk
Communications and marketing
Gary Blowers – Viva Aspire
Paul Ellis – Deutsche Bank
PJ Ellis – Pro Golf Tours
Bullwell Trailer Solutions
Citysave Credit Union
Deutsche Bank Operations International UK
Kennet Equipment Leasing
Medium to Large
Gleeson Recruitment Group
Willmott Dixon 4Life Academy
St Modwen Properties
Serious Games International