The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise have been given to fewer than 8,000 companies since their inception in 1965, with winners announced on April 21 – the Queen’s birthday – every year.
Now awarded in five categories, for International Trade, Innovation, Export and Technology, Sustainable Development and Promoting Opportunity (Through Social Mobility), the awards are valid for five years. Winners are invited to a royal reception and are presented with the award at their company premises, usually by the county’s Lord-Lieutenant. Winners are also able to fly the Queen’s Awards flag at their main office and use the emblem on marketing materials such as packaging and adverts.
Niftylift, based in Milton Keynes, designs, develops, manufactures and distributes mobile elevating work platforms (MEWPs) around the world, holds the distinction of winning two Queen’s Awards in the same year twice, in 2013 and in 2019.
In 2019, after being named as a winner of both the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for Innovation and the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for International Trade – two of the UK’s highest accolades for business success.
Roger Bowden, Niftylift’s Chairman and Founder, said: “We are honoured to be recognised for not one, but two prestigious Queen’s Awards for Enterprise in 2019. These awards help to illustrate how our dedication to design and innovation, together with our attention to detail and strong customer focus, have allowed us to compete so successfully in this global marketplace.
“I am very proud of the strong and close-knit team we have here at Niftylift and I’d like to thank them all for their professionalism and commitment to ensuring our worldwide reputation and success over the years.”
Leighton Buzzard firm Peli Biothermal’s achievement was announced with other award winners on the Queen’s birthday on April 21, 2017.
The global leader in the design and manufacture of high-performance protective cases, temperature controlled packaging solutions and advanced portable lighting systems won the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the Innovation category, for demonstrating outstanding results in innovation within the temperature controlled packaging sector serving the pharmaceutical industry. Specifically, the honour was awarded for Peli BioThermal’s Chronos™ Advance, an innovative range of high-performance shipping systems, utilising advanced technology.
When the award was announced, Lyndon Faulkner, CEO of Peli Products, said: “The Queen’s Award recognises our commitment to providing trusted products and services to our customer base worldwide. We celebrate the award with gratitude.”
Maths Circle Ltd, which is based in Ampthill, was awarded the Queen’s Award for Enterprise – Innovation in 2020. The company created Times Tables Rock Stars, a gamified app solution to engage children with the learning of times tables and to increase their confidence and proficiency in maths. The development resulted from a need identified by the company’s founder, Bruno Reddy, a maths teacher, who saw many pupils entering the school lacked basic skills in maths.
It began as a paper-based training aid and was then developed into a software app with gamification features. The system, now used by over 15,000 schools and 30,000 families worldwide, uses artificial intelligence to tailor the questioning and learning to the child, adapting to their progress and building their confidence.
Upon the announcement of the award, Bruno Reddy said: “We’re extremely proud and honoured to win The Queen’s Award for Enterprise for Innovation 2020 and be recognised alongside the very best in British business. It is wonderful recognition of the impact that Times Tables Rock Stars is having on children’s maths learning worldwide”.
Back in 2015, Milton Keynes-based hot melt adhesives firm Beardow and Adams won its fifth Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the International Trade category. The company sells to major global names including Coca-Cola, Nestle, Colgate and Unilever in countries across the world including Indonesia, Singapore and the Philippines.
Speaking at the time, the company’s sales and marketing director Nick Beadow, said: “It’s a great boost for our 85 staff and something they richly deserve. The company started 35 years ago and to win our fifth Queen’s Award in that time and have a turnover of £50m shows that we, all of us, must be doing something right.”
In order to apply for the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise an organisation must be based in the UK; have a good compliance record with HMRC; be a self-contained enterprise that markets its own products and services and is under its own managemen; have at least two full-time UK employees or part-time equivalents; and demonstrate strong corporate social responsibility. There are further criteria for the individual awards, which can be found here.