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Digital elite comes to UKFast Entrepreneur awards

Article date: Wed, 02 Dec 2009 18:19 GMT

Charlie Hodgson presents at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur Award

Pioneers of the modern internet were brought together from all over the country this weekend to celebrate the UK's first annual Digital Entrepreneur of the Year Awards, hosted by UKFast.

The event took place at the Palace Hotel in Manchester on Saturday 28th November, where eight of the Nation's top digital businesses collected awards for excellence in their industry. The winners were presented the awards by England international rugby stars including Matthew Tait, Charlie Hodgson, Richard Wigglesworth and young up-coming star James Gaskell.

Lee Thomas and Selorn Kuadey at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur AwardsEarl and Keeley Barrett at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur AwardsMatthew Tait and Alexa Nazan  at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur Awards

Images: From left to right: Premiership rugby stars Lee Thomas and Selorn Kuadey. Keeley and Earl Barrett. England Rugby star Matthew Tait with Alexa Nazan.

Other high profile guests partying the night away included Nikki Dean and Byron Evans of Channel M, Big Brother's Geoff Beattie and England, Oldham and Everton football star of the nineties Earl Barrett with his wife Keeley. Entertainment was provided by Soul legends, Clem Curtis and The Foundations

Winners of the inaugural awards include Henley's Clothing, Nick Brown of Eazyfone Group and Deloitte Fast 50 high flyers Auros. Other winners travelled from London, Hull, Doncaster, Crewe and The Cotswolds to collect their awards.

The awards were conceived by Lawrence Jones, managing director of internet hosting company UKFast. "Until now, there have been no serious awards dedicated to the UK entrepreneurs who are pushing the boundaries of the internet and challenging the norm in their respective industries. The Digital Entrepreneur of the Year awards recognise the silent heroes behind the scenes as well as those making a high profile difference."

David Boon with Charlie Hodgson at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur AwardsLynsey Emersic and Jonny Kennedy at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur AwardsJohn Jackson with James Gaskell at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur Awards

Images: From left to right: Charlie Hodgson gives David Boon the Green Innovation award as he collects it on behalf of Historic Futures. Jonny Kennedy, Sharks player and son of club owner Brian Kennedy gives the Retail Digital Entrepreneur of the Year award to Lynsey Emersic of Henleys Clothing. James Gaskell presents the Design & Marketing Entrepreneur of the Year award to CSI Media's John Jackson.

Awards results:
1. Retail Entrepreneur of the Year - Henleys Clothing
2. Green Innovation Entrepreneur of the Year - Historic Futures
3. Web Development Entrepreneur of the Year - Dominic Mills of Auros
4. Ecommerce Entrepreneur of the Year - Nick Brown of Eazyfone Group
5. Design and Marketing entrepreneurs of the Year - CSI Media
6. Software Innovation Entrepreneur of the Year - Chris Healy of Clever 4
7. Education Entrepreneurs of the Year - Michael Wilkinson and Steve Holt of i-education.com
8. Travel Entrepreneurs of the Year - Neil Waller and James Street of My Destination Info
Chris healy gets the awards from Richard Wigglesworth at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur AwardsDominic Mills collects his award from Lee Thomas at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur AwardsMy destination Info recieve the award from Chris Jones at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur Awards

Images: From left to right: Chris Healy accepts the Software Innovator Entrepreneur of the Year award from Richard Wigglesworth. Dominic Mills of Auros shakes hands with Welsh rugby star Lee Thomas as he collects the Web Development award. Neil Waller and James Street of My Destination Info pose for a picture with experienced Sharks stalwart Chris Jones

Lynsey Emersic, Ecommerce manager at Henleys Clothing was thrilled to collect the award for the team and is excited about the designer brands online future. "Henleysclothing.co.uk is going from strength-to-strength every day with the site generating a record high in sales and revenue last week. We expect this growth to continue into 2010 and are very excited about the future. As with our fashion range, we endeavour to keep the website at the cutting edge of technology and at the forefront of the digital world."

UKFast has been at the heart of the UK internet industry for ten years and has over 400,000 web domains on its network. With over 3000 direct clients across all industries, this privileged viewpoint offers a great indication of the major movers and shakers online.

I-education collect the award from Jack Forster at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur AwardsPaul Graham collects the award on behalf of Nick Brown at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur AwardsGirls form UKFast celebrate at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur Awards

Images: From left to right: The gents from i-education.com celebrate their award with Jack Forster. Paul Graham and his wife Ann collect the Ecommerce Entrepreneur Award on behalf of Nick Brown and Eazyfone Group. UKFast girls, Sarah Wilson, Katrina Ellis, Charlotte Bentley Crane, Rachael Thompson and Di Schofield.

Details and Quotes from the winners:

Historic Futures - Green Innovation Digital Entrepreneur of the Year.
String, the teams, traceability service is used by some of the world's largest brands. The capability that String gives all manufacturers and retailers has put pressure on the industry to make their supply routes transparent and in turn keep a check on their cultural and social responsibilities.
"We are extremely pleased to be recognised for the work we are doing in providing a world class innovative service to enable some of the biggest brands on the planet to gather more information from their extended supply chains. Our customers are using our services to help eliminate child labour and build sustainable supply chains around the world. It's great to be part of the solution."

Dominic Mills at Auros - Web Development Digital Entrepreneur of the Year.
Dominic Mills' web development agency appeared at 14th in the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 this year. The business has grown by a whopping 3294% over the last 5 years.
"I am delighted that Auros has been recognised in the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur Awards. This recognition is testament to the dedication of Team Auros and also their drive to constantly raise the bar - both in terms of the service level that they provide and through their commitment to innovation."

Nick Brown at Eazyfone - Ecommerce Digital Entrepreneur of the Year.
Since Nick Brown and his board of Directors took charge of envirofone.com just under two years ago they have transformed a great idea into great profit. Under their guidance, sales have gone from £10.5m to £36m with profits at £3.3m.
Nick Brown, CEO at Eazyfone Group, said: "We're absolutely delighted to have received the title of Ecommerce Entrepreneur of the Year. Envirofone.com has proven to be an exceptional success and this accolade is testament to the pioneering vision of our management team."

CSI Media - Design and Marketing Digital Entrepreneurs of the Year
With their Travelberry software, CSI changed the shape of the travel industry online and have continued to provide compelling travel, retail and leisure websites, setting pace for the growth of the web.
"It is a great honour to receive the UKFast Design and Marketing Digital Entrepreneur of the Year Award on behalf of everyone at CSI Media. All CSI Media employees can be proud of the award which is testament to their creativity, hard effort and innovative thinking. I believe it is important that other industry leaders follow UKFast's direction in recognising the talent of UK companies shaping the web."

Geoff Beattie and Laura McGuire at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur AwardsElise and Tyson Dye at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur AwardsChris Leck and Marc Jones at the UKFast Digital Entrepreneur Awards

Images: From left to right: Laura McGuire with Big Brother Psychologist Geoff Beattie. American Opera singer Elise Dye with her husband Tyson. Georgie Shaw with rugby players Chris Leck and Marc Jones.

Chris Healy of Clever 4 - Software Innovation Digital Entrepreneur of the Year.
Chris Healy and his team have developed solutions for government, education and recruitment and are currently working on a large scale public facing project for Royal Bank of Scotland and Natwest.
"Clever4 is delighted to receive the UKFast award for software innovation. Working closely with experts like UKFast we are now able to provide our clients with technical solutions to the most exacting standards of reliability and security. We're looking forward to rolling out some very exciting web applications over the next 12 months."

Michael Wilkinson and Steve Holt of I-education - Education Digital Entrepreneurs of the Year.
Michael Wilkinson and Steve Holt set up I-education two years ago having worked with further education centres in South Yorkshire. The team is now collaborating with organisations across a multitude of sectors to deliver learning opportunities at all levels online.
"UKFast's glittering Digital Entrepreneurs of the Year Awards allow us to celebrate the exponential growth through innovation of i-education ltd. The Education Digital Entrepreneur Award demonstrates the enthusiasm we have to inspire performance."

Neil Waller and James Street of My Destination Info - Travel Digital Entrepreneurs of the Year.
My Destination Info provides the definitive word on 40 of the most popular holiday destinations across the world. In only three years, it has become the trusted portal for over 3 million users.
"Winning the Digital Entrepreneur Award for 'Travel' online is really an honour largely because of the level of competition we were up against. It has been a great year for mydestinationinfo.com and this award is the icing on the cake. It is also our first so will remain particularly memorable. A big thank you from us goes to the whole of the UKFAST team who really provide something unique for such a big business and that is the personal touch. The event was enjoyed by all and the fighting waitresses were a stroke of genius!"

Henleys Clothing - Retail Digital Entrepreneur of the Year.
Henleys Clothing is one of the country's fastest growing designer clothing brands and a strong online presence has contributed to a huge growth in turnover and profit over the last year. E-commerce manager Lynsey Emersic was at the Palace to collect the award.
"Henleysclothing.co.uk is going from strength-to-strength every day with the site generating a record high in sales and revenue last week. We expect this growth to continue into 2010 and are very excited about the future. Here at Henleys Clothing, as with our fashion range, we endeavour to keep the website at the cutting edge of technology and at the forefront of the digital world."

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