Hamilton, Bermuda 20 September 2018 – The Bermuda Economic Development Corporation (BEDC) today announced it will now be accepting nominations for its 2nd Annual Small Business Awards, an event held in conjunction with Global Entrepreneurship Week in November.
Members of the community are encouraged to cast their vote with their suggestions for the Island’s best small businesses – from now until the deadline, which has been extended to Monday, October 8, 2018, by emailing [email protected]. Categories for the 2018 awards will include: Entrepreneur of the Year, New Business of the Year, Most Enterprising Young Entrepreneur, BEDC Client of the Year, and People’s Choice. A separate award for top Vendor of the Year will also be given out on that occasion for the micro-enterprise with the best Bermuda made or inspired product, who displays stellar customer service, as well as excellent packaging and merchandising.
Ondreyah Rochester, BEDC’s Junior Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise Officer, said: “We are thrilled to once again be able to recognise Bermuda’s talented and dedicated small business owners in this way. Behind the scenes, these entrepreneurs are working hard to build a brand that people love and that their clients trust – and while many do so quietly and without much attention, we are excited to be able to shine a spotlight on these small business owners and their contribution to the Island.”
“We encourage the general public to get involved over the next four weeks by casting their votes and nominating those enterprises they feel are most deserving of an award. We will be accepting suggestions up until Monday, October 8, 2018, and look forward to announcing the winners at our awards dinner on Sunday, November 11.”
In 2017, the inaugural Small Business Awards were hosted at Elbow Beachon Sunday, November 12th. Several businesses were nominated in multiple categories, but ultimately prizes were given to the entrepreneurs/small businesses which scored the highest based on the BEDC’s set criteria.
All nominees must be in good standing with their Government Obligations. The criteria for 2018 are as follows:
- Entrepreneur of the Year: Nominees have to offer an innovative product/ service; offer good customer service; have no negative complaints issued to Consumer Affairs; and have a high level of community involvement/ social responsibility.
- New Business of the Year: Nominees have to have opened up after September 1st, 2017, have an innovative product or service; have an increasing number of clients monthly.
- Most Enterprising Young Entrepreneur: Nominees must be under the age of 25; have a creative business idea and sound business model; and be able to demonstrate entrepreneurial potential necessary for long term success.
- BEDC Client of the Year: Nominees will be someone with a paid BEDC loan or current BEDC loan or someone who has attended at least three BEDC courses; they must have no negative feedback issued to Consumer Affairs.
- People’s Choice: Nominees need to offer an innovative product or service; have Bermudian employees; no negative complaints issued to Consumer Affairs; and have a high level of community involvement/ social responsibility. This category will be operated by poll on the BEDC Facebook page.
- Vendor of the Year: Nominees must offer a Bermuda made or inspired product/ service; demonstrate excellent customer service and quality merchandising/ packaging; have no unresolved complaints (Consumer Affairs) and showcase a high level of community involvement and engagement.
Last year’s winners included: Mark Prior of the Bermuda Combat Club (Entrepreneur of the Year); Beach Boys Ltd., Operators of Tobacco Bay (Business of the Year); Cire Bean, of Pay-A-Kid, (Most Enterprising Young Entrepreneur); and Alexandra Mosher, of Alexandra Mosher Studio Jewellery (BEDC’s Client of the Year). In addition, the People’s Choice Award went to Jolessa Holdipp, of Klassiq Kids, who garnered 326 votes from the public.
This year’s 2nd Annual Small Business Awards event will be held on Sunday, November 11th – with more details on the ceremony and gala dinner, including the location, to be released at a later stage.
According to Erica Smith, BEDC’s Executive Director, the Small Business Awards have proven to be a fantastic way to celebrate the accomplishments and great work carried out by small business owners around the Island. “For years, we had discussed the possibility of setting up an award ceremony with the goal of highlighting Bermuda’s small business owners and entrepreneurs,” Mrs Smith explained. “Seeing the event come to fruition last year was an extremely proud moment for us and we look forward to making this year’s event even bigger and better. We know that small businesses are crucial to our local economy and encourage individuals to nominate those entrepreneurs and enterprises that stand out for making a positive difference to the Bermuda community.”
Bermuda Economic Development Corporation (BEDC) is Bermuda’s premier source of free confidential business advice for entrepreneurs. The mission is to serve Bermuda’s local business community with the highest degree of professionalism by providing, authoritative business advice; counsel and loan guarantee support. Bermuda Business Starts Here! For more information visit www.bedc.bm.