Stoke Staffs LEP
Congratulations to all our Queen’s Award winners!
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Congratulations to all our Queen’s Award winners!

Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire Local Enterprise Partnership has congratulated five local companies representing a diverse range of sectors who are putting our region on the international map by winning the Queen’s Award for Enterprise 2018.

LEP chairman David Frost CBE commented: “We are delighted to see the achievements of five leading local businesses honoured in the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise 2018.

“These award successes are a superb illustration of the wide range of go-ahead, innovative businesses we can boast in this region.

“It is great to see such a diverse range of firms honoured, from a cutting-edge biologics and pharmaceuticals business to sustainable packaging and early-years education. All of these companies are excellent ambassadors for our area and show that Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire really is a superb place to do business.”

The winners:

The Wool Packaging Company, based in Stone, won the Queen’s Award for Innovation for its Woolcool sustainable and innovative packaging. The insulated packaging, using pure sheep wool, has been developed for the shipment of temperature-sensitive products, including pharmaceuticals and foodstuffs.

Woolcool was launched in 2008 and the sustainable design has already won a string of awards in the packaging, business and environmental arenas. Woolcool remains the only range of sheep’s wool insulated packaging available on a commercial scale.

The Queen’s Award for International Trade went to Addmaster, based in Stafford, for the second time. The firm produces technically innovative additives for polymers, paper, textiles and paints, helping manufacturers add value to products. Addmaster’s range of UK-made procudes includes Biomaster antimicrobial technology, Scentmaster fragrance technology and Verimaster security technology.

Paul Morris, Addmaster founder and CEO, said: “We are delighted to win the Queens Award for International Trade for the second time. Having just completed another record financial year with exports again growing strongly, it is a testament to the staff and all their efforts that we have been recognised again.”

Cobra Biologics, based in Keele, also won an International Trade Award for its work in the development and manufacture of biologics and pharmaceuticals for clinical trials and commercial supply.

Cobra has a 20-year track record of supporting the life science industry with contract development and manufacturing of biopharmaceuticals, from preclinical through to clinical trials and commercial supply and currently exports over 85% of its services.

Peter Coleman, Chief Executive of Cobra Biologics, commented:I am immensely proud of what Cobra has achieved over the last few years, culminating in the Queen’s Award. International Trade is vitally important for Cobra and the work that we do is challenging and requires a committed work force whose skills and dedication attract business from all over the world.

An International Trade Award also went to Swift-Cut Automation Ltd, of Burton-upon on-Trent. The firm produces CNC plasma cutting tables, CNC Waterjet cutting tables, after-sales consumable parts, and service and maintenance contracts.

Swift-Cut was founded in 2011 by Alan Swift following his experience running a business manufacturing parts for the heavy goods vehicle market.  To avoid out-sourcing, he built his own CNC plasma cutting table to handle orders at a faster pace and with more flexibility – and orders for tables from firms across the globe followed, leading to a new business opportunity with business partner Derek Davies.

Busy Bees Nurseries, based in Shenstone, has won the Queen’s Award for Promoting Opportunity for achieving 0utstanding outcomes for apprentices drawn from all backgrounds.

The company’s first nursery was opened in Lichfield in 1984 and it now cares for 50,000 children across nearly 500 sites in the UK, and overseas. The company also operates BB Training Academy, offering management qualifications, apprenticeships and short courses for staff.

Co-founder Marg Randles OBE said: “Receiving the Queen’s Award is the ultimate accolade recognising the commitment of our people. It reflects our drive to provide opportunities for passionate practitioners, unleashing their potential and allowing them to realise their dreams.”