“It was one of those moments where you just say ‘Wow’. I did not expect this.”
Those are the words of Shaun Pulfrey, inventor of the famous Tangle Teezer, in response to winning the Great British & Northern Irish Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2016.
“For me, the Tangle Teezer [was] about self-belief in the product. I never actually went out to start a big business and win lots of awards. It’s more a case of it coming to me. I never set out to be an entrepreneur; I became one,” he adds.
Shaun’s assessment applies to many walks of life – work hard enough for long enough and reward will tap you on the shoulder. Perhaps not when or where you might have anticipated, but the signs will come to tell you that you’re on the right track.
We’re going through a similar experience here at the Great British & Northern Irish Entrepreneur Awards. Now in our sixth year, we’ve spent over half a decade nurturing Britain’s best business talent, and now we’re having our heads turned by surprises on a daily basis.
You might head out of our office in Cardiff for a bite to eat and look down to discover that Ingenico – our ecommerce partner – is taking care of your card payment. Strolling down the high street you can see shop windows set to dazzle by the make-up products of Spectrum Collections – founders Sophie and Hannah Pycroft were named named overall GBEA winners last year.
Need refreshment? You’ll probably notice BrewDog or Tiny Rebel beers on sale. Check your social media history and you’re bound to have shared banter created by Alexander Solomou’s Lad Bible. Out on the road, might see the adverts of Dragons’ Den contestant, Ed Hollands, decorating the sides of passing HGVs.
Whether it’s GBEA alumni, associates, partners, even the moustached face of our opera-singing host, Wynne Evans, dominating the adverts, or Britain’s most connected man, ambassador and host, Oli Barrett MBE, we’re amazed and proud every time we’re reminded of progress enjoyed by those connected with the Great British Entrepreneur Brand.
The effect is clear to see not just in business, but in society as a whole. In giving celebrating business owners, we are helping to develop the entrepreneurial fabric of Britain. We’re proud to be part of this success, we’re creating something truly special and we want you to be involved to.
This year is set to be our biggest yet, with over 3,000 business owners expected to put their story before our roster of industry-leading judges of the Great British & Northern Irish Entrepreneur Awards which includes former Dragons’ Den investor, James Caan CBE, Go Compare founder, Hayley Parsons OBE and Kanya King CBE, creator of the MOBO Awards.
And remember, this competition isn’t about the balance sheet, it’s about the story behind the business. So what are you waiting for?