The shortlist has been revealed for the Merseyside Independent Business Awards 2018 following a record number of entries.
Healthy lifestyles feature strongly in this year’s list of local businesses, which includes White Wolf Yoga, Absolute Body Solutions, Fit Food Shack, The Brink and Health@Work in a range of categories.
The region’s bustling food scene is also well represented, with Silk Rd among the contenders for Best Start Up as well as Restaurant of the Year, where it will vie with Wreckfish, Slim’s Pork Chop Express and Belzan. Helen Wynn of Carringtons Catering is among the Business Person of the Year nominees.
The MIB Awards is organised by Morecrofts Solicitors and headline sponsored by Liverpool BID Company. The shortlist and eventual winners are decided by an independent panel of judges drawn from within the regional business community.
Now in its sixth year, it aims to celebrate the achievements of local entrepreneurs and independent businesses and showcase the enduring impact they have on the regional economy.
Liverpool has the largest number of companies on the shortlist and there are more finalists than ever before from each of the other Merseyside boroughs.
Knowsley has five shortlisted nominees, with Sovereign Transport Services, Suites Hotel & Spa, social enterprise First Ark, Citrus Electrical Supplies and online security specialist Nexus Protect all nominated in different categories.
Five Wirral businesses – digital agency Maxweb, Owen Drew Candles, Anne Roberts Hair & Beauty, Hitch Marketing and Leasowe Castle – make the shortlist, while community organisation Tomorrow’s Women Wirral also features.
Sefton has two finalists – advanced machinery manufacturer CNC Robotics and social media agency Cattington – while St Helens is represented by glazing specialist Universal Arches.
Alison Lobb, managing partner at Morecrofts Solicitors, said: “The judges were blown away yet again this year by the incredible volume and quality of nominated businesses.
“Not only do we have the largest number of nominations to date and an increasing number of businesses promoting a healthy lifestyle, but it is also especially pleasing to see such a wide spread of shortlisted businesses from every corner of Merseyside.”
The full shortlist is detailed below and the winners will be announced at a ceremony at the Rum Warehouse on Thursday, October 18.
MIB Awards 2018 shortlist:
Best Place to Stay (Sponsored by Royal Albert Dock)
- Suites Hotel & Spa
- Elegant House
- Leasowe Castle
Retailer of the Year (Sponsored by Wirral Chamber of Commerce)
- Owen Drew Candles
- Blankstone Opticians
- Walton Flooring Centre
Culture & Tourism Business of the Year (Sponsored by Merseyrail)
- Everyman and Playhouse
- Otterspool Adventure Centre
- Western Approaches
Health and Beauty Business of the Year (Sponsored by Titanic Hotel)
- Absolute Body Solutions
- Anne Roberts Hair & Beauty
- White Wolf Yoga
Employer of the Year (Sponsored by Elliot Fletcher)
- Doris IT
- The Interesting Eating Company Group
- Pink Media
- Suites Hotel and Spa
Best Creative Business (Sponsored by Forresters)
- The Guide Liverpool
- Branchwork Media
- hi-impact Consultancy
- Hitch Marketing
The Community Impact Award (Sponsored by Handelsbanken)
- The Brink
- Tomorrow’s Women Wirral
- VIP Me
- The Open Door Centre
- First Ark
Best Start Up (2 years or under) (Sponsored by Bruntwood)
- Ava and Harrison
- Fit Food Shack
- Ghetto Golf
- Nexus Protect
- Owen Drew Candles
- Silk Rd
Business Person of the Year (Sponsored by InfoTrack)
- Helen Wynn – Carringtons Catering
- Jay Hynd – The Guide Liverpool
- Rachael Forshaw – Sovereign Transport Services
Restaurant of the Year (Sponsored by Bolland & Lowe)
- Silk Rd
- Slim’s Pork Chop Express
Business & Professional Services Company of the Year (Sponsored by Butterworth Spengler)
- Courtney Recruitment
- McIver Scott Recruitment
Trades or Manufacturing Business of the Year (Sponsored by Wesleyan)
- Citrus Electrical
- Universal Arches
- CNC Robotics
Digital & technology Business of the Year (Sponsored by DSG)
Main photo – Overall Merseyside Independent Business of the Year in 2017 was Inciner8