Tuesday, June 3 2014

Nominations for this year’s awards doubled from last year. The shortlists were chosen by an eminent panel of judges during a three hour judging session held at law firm DWF's central Birmingham headquarters on Thursday.

Altogether 27 different companies will fight it out in 11 awards. The full category shortlists are below with nominated companies in alphabetical order.

AdHic Property Management
Gravity Risk Services
Simkiss Guy

Exporter (Large)
Bridgnorth Aluminium
Grainger & Worrall
Hadley Group

RDM Group
Sign Solutions

Angel Springs

Aston Villa FC
Extra Mile Comminocations

Employer of the Year
Rider Levett Bucknall
Mereway Kitchens

Manufacturer (SME)
Mereway Kitchens
RDM Group
Teal Patents

Listed Business
AFH Financial
National Express
Paragon Group

Manufacturer (Large)
Aston Manor Cider
Brose UK
Hadley Group

Fast Growth Business
ADV Manufacturing
Brose UK
Key Forensic Services

Exporter (SME)
Teal Patents


Gravity Risk Services from the newcomer category give their reasons for nomination:-

From a standing start the company has grown quickly, achieving our first £1m of premiums arranged on the day of our 1st year anniversary. We are told we are one of the fastest growing insurance brokers in the region, purely by organic means.

We have had no investment support to help fund the growth. All growth has been achieved through working capital and a Director loan.

We were targeting to achieve 100 clients by 1/2/14 but managed to achieve this earlier in October 2013. We now have over 130 business clients.

We have achieved a 98% renewal retention rate, which is testament to the support clients have shown in us in a fiercely competitive trading environment.

We operate in a highly regulated industry meaning that the growth has been achieved against a backdrop of heavy due diligence from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and by insurers. We achieved formal approval from the FCA on 1st November 2013, which was a proud landmark in the development of the company. We have achieved our successes, despite not being able to trade with a number of large UK insurers.

We have employed an apprentice on an accredited scheme ran in conjunction with the Chartered Insurance Institute and now employ a total of 5 staff. We are projected to recruit a further 3 members to the team in the next 12 months.

Our Story

Biggest company/individual achievement to date
We were appointed to act for Giro Food a £20m turnover food wholesaler in May 2013

How will the company have driven itself forward in 3/5 years time?
Organic growth in accordance with our business plan. We are centered on being a community broker, by building strong relationships with local businesses and providing 1-2-1 hands on advice. Our brand of ‘down to earth’ insurance reflects our approach;- honest, transparent, traditional advice from a local team (no call centres, minimal outsourcing, no mystique).

We are also looking to extend our range of services by acting as a ‘one stop risk advisor’ via partnership arrangements with other trusted advisors in associated services such as wealth management, health and safety consultancy, employment law support, private medical insurance, foreign currency exchange, finance broking, accountancy services and bookkeeping services.

We also plan to build a range of specialisms with expert advisors and secondary brandings such as ‘gravity risk management’, ‘gravity claims management’ and various trade specialisms.

Impact success in this area has had on the company as a whole
The successes to date have been achieved by a strong culture with our staff contributing to and adhering to ‘core team values’. We have an unswerving commitment and dedication to be better tomorrow than we are today. We operate to the mantra of ‘on time, on spec, on profit’.

The judges were:-

The shortlisted firms will go forward to the gala awards dinner at Edgbaston Stadium in Birmingham on June 18 when the winners will be announced - but only after all the shortlisted businesses are interviewed.

ln addition to the 11 awards listed above, a 12th award -Â Ambassador of the Year -Â will be presented to a person who has worked tirelessly to promote the region.