Friday evening saw the winners of the 2018 Cardiff Business Awards announced at a lavish ceremony held at City Hall.
The event – hosted by BBC journalist and presenter, Sian Lloyd and with a live performance from Welsh Broadway and West End musical theatre actor and singer, John Owen-Jones – celebrated the significant achievements of many of the capital’s foremost businesses from across a multitude of sectors.
With a full house of over 400 people, 21 awards were handed out with the Cardiff Business of the Year accolade going to CELSA Steel UK, while the Outstanding Contribution to Cardiff award went to Cardiff Start – the capital city’s digital and technology start-up network.
In their fourth year, the Cardiff Business Awards recognised those companies and individuals who have enjoyed impressive success over the last year and have made an outstanding contribution both to their respective sectors and to the wider Cardiff economy itself.
2018 was a record year for entries, making the decision-making process tricky for the judging panels.
Jessica Shipman, NatWest Cymru Director for Commercial and Corporate Banking in Cardiff and South East Wales, said:
“NatWest Cymru is both proud and honoured to once again be supporting the prestigious Cardiff Business Awards.
“As ever, the high standard of entries has proven that our capital city has a thriving business community built upon a culture of strong entrepreneurialism and we are proud that nearly one in three of all Welsh start-ups have chosen NatWest Cymru as their partner bank.
“We believe in Welsh businesses, which is why we are supporting more than ever before. In South Wales alone we have provided funding totalling more than £1.5bn to over 5,000 businesses.
“These companies are creating jobs and supporting the wider eco-systems within their communities and we are proud to be supporting their growth and recognising the success of those in Cardiff at this year’s awards.”
Liz Brookes of Grapevine Events and co-founder of Cardiff Business Awards, said:
“Again, I am blown away by the volume and calibre of the entries. Year on year the standards continue to increase and overwhelm us with the evident range great talent, drive and success that runs through every sector or the capital economy.
“A huge congratulations to this year’s winners as well as each of the finalists who are also recognised for their hard work and the success this has delivered for them.
“These companies are not only the pride of Cardiff, but they also are supporting the Welsh economy as a whole.”
Commenting on the winner of the Outstanding Contribution to Cardiff, Professor Jones-Evans, chairman of the judging panel, said:
“Cardiff Start is a fantastic and unique organisation that not only do offers a hub of connectivity for young Welsh entrepreneurs, students, creatives and start-up founders, but also encourages innovation and connectivity across the city and beyond.
“Since it was formed five years ago, it has been the key driver behind the creative and digital sectors that are vital to the growth of the city and its presence will continue to inspire and develop individuals and businesses within Cardiff for years to come.”
The Winners of the Cardiff Business Awards 2018 are:
Cardiff Business of the Year
- CELSA Steel UK
Outstanding Contribution to Cardiff
- Cardiff Start
Construction Business of the Year (sponsored by Clearly PR, Marketing and Communications)
- Encon Construction
Creative & Digital Business of the Year (sponsored by University of South Wales)
Employer of the Year (sponsored by CPS Group)
- Apollo Wales
Entrepreneur of the Year (sponsored by Cardiff Metropolitan University)
- Dale Williams – Yolk Recruitment
Family Business of the Year (sponsored by ClearTech)
- The Print Centre Group
Financial & Professional Services Business of the Year (sponsored by Odgers Berndtson)
- CJCH Solicitors
Green Business of the Year (sponsored by Wales Environmental)
- CELSA Steel UK
ICAEW Community Business of the Year (sponsored by the ICAEW)
- Tramshed Tech
International Business of the Year (sponsored by Eversheds Sutherland)
Leisure, Hospitality and Retail Business of the Year (sponsored by For Cardiff)
- Clayton Hotel Cardiff
Innovation Business of the Year (sponsored by Welsh Government)
- Thermal Compaction Group
SME of the Year (sponsored by Yard)
- CP Hire
Social Enterprise of the Year (sponsored by JR Smart)
- Cycle Training Wales
Start-Up of the Year (sponsored by LexisNexis Risk Solutions)
- CDB Design & Build
Technology Business of the Year (sponsored by Cardiff University)
Young Business Person of the Year (sponsored by Bluegg)
- Nick Saunders – DEPOT Cardiff
Highly Commended (sponsored by Cardiff Council)
- Big Learning Company
- Heath Windows & Doors
- The Studio
- Scott Jones – Illustrate Digital