A Newry based global rug company has won the Small Business Marketing Award at the Business Eye First Trust Bank Small Business Awards held earlier this month at Belfast’s Crowne Plaza Hotel. also received a Highly Commended from the judges in the overall ‘Small Business of the Year’ category.

Speaking at the awards, Head of First Trust Bank, Des Moore, said: “Together, small and medium businesses and self-employed people account for more than 75% of turnover across NI’s private sector.

“As well as contributing significantly to Northern Ireland’s economic fortunes, they have a momentous impact on the social and cultural fabric of our local communities; supporting the supply chain, employing local people and engaging with schools and charities.”

It was particularly gratifying to see not just a sectoral but a regional spread of businesses taking part. From Ballymena to Belfast and Armagh to Aughnacloy, we received entries from companies working across many industries. While they may have come from different parts of the province and from different sectors, they all shared a common denominator; namely an appetite to innovate and grow. On behalf of First Trust Bank, I offer my congratulations to all the entrants and winners.”

The Awards, which are organised by Business Eye magazine and sponsored by First Trust Bank, aims to shine a light on Northern Ireland’s small business sector and recognises its top performers across 13 different categories. The Awards are open to all businesses in Northern Ireland with less than 50 employees.

Brenda Buckley, Publisher of Business Eye, added “We have been delighted with the success of the Small Business Awards over the past two years, and we’re even more pleased with how they’ve grown year on year. We received a really strong entry from a wide variety of companies based right across Northern Ireland.

“They are already an integral part of the business calendar here, and we’ve every reason to believe that they will go from strength to strength.”

Another Newry business Bluezone Technologies who develop compliance management software solutions also picked up a Highly Commended award in the ‘Start-up Business of the Year’ category.

Caption: John Friel from the Federation of Small Businesses presents the Small Business Marketing Award to Clare & Paul Vallely of at the Business Eye First Trust Bank Small Business Awards.

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