Mon 4th Dec 2017
NI Chamber members take centre stage at UK Awards Gala
Pictured with NI Chamber President Ellvena Graham are Flynn’s Declan Kearney and Sinead Mullan and Linwood’s John Woods and Sarah Shimmons
Northern Ireland bakery, dairy and health food business Linwoods joined building and maintenance firm Flynn amongst the winners at the British Chambers of Commerce’s annual Chamber Business Awards 2017 in London last Thursday (30 November 2017).
The two Northern Ireland firms took centre stage at The Brewery in London with Linwoods scooping the national award for Exporter of the Year and Flynn picking up the national Health & Wellbeing award.
The Chamber Business Awards, now in its 14th year, is one of the showpiece events in the business calendar, highlighting the role of business in delivering growth and prosperity for the UK and local communities.
The judges were impressed by Linwoods’ use of consumer and market research, and their understanding of the challenges of regulatory changes in the sector.
Flynn was awarded for its ‘Boost’ initiative for their employees and contractors which focuses on seven activators, including physical activity, stress and mental health. Analysis of the initiative showed reduced absenteeism, reduced recruitment costs, improved moral, better succession planning, better communication, reduced injuries and improved financial performance.
Both had previously been crowned regional winners earlier this year during the Northern Ireland heat of the awards held by Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NI Chamber).
Ann McGregor, Chief Executive of Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry said: “The Chamber Business Awards is considered one of the UK’s most hotly contested and prestigious business awards and provide the perfect platform for local businesses to establish themselves on a local and national stage.
“We are delighted that Flynn and Linwoods have received the recognition and profile they deserve by seeing off competition from a number of firms across Northern Ireland, England, Scotland and Wales.”
Aidan Flynn, Managing Director at Flynn, said: “Flynn are delighted to have been recognised for health and wellbeing. In the construction sector, historically employees have been reticent about seeking help and assistance with their health. We decided to change outdated behaviours through our FLYNN-Boost strategy which encourages all staff to avail of health information days, health charity presentations, and individual medical assessments, all of which we have brought onto site. If a regional family business like ours can do this, it shows what could be done more widely to change attitudes and behaviours in our industry.”
Patrick Woods, Director at Linwoods, said: “As a business, exporting is at the heart of everything we do, and we’ve invested heavily in recent years to ensure that we continue to innovate and develop our product offering while pushing ourselves to expand into new markets.
“We take great pride in the quality of products we offer our customers, at home and abroad, and we’re thrilled to have been recognised with this prestigious accolade. Gaining recognition at events such as the British Chamber Awards provides an independent seal of approval for our products and is testament to the hard work and dedication of our entire team.”
The 2017 Chamber Business Awards also presented runner up honours to Ulster University for ‘Education & Business Partnership’ and the Irish FA for ‘Best Use of Social Media.’