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High profile sponsors assure awards success

A mix of high-profile private sector sponsors with ethical credentials have been announced for this year’s Social Business Wales Awards. The confirmed sponsors are principal sponsor Cowshed, alongside associate sponsor Legal and General, and category sponsors Acuity Law, Perago and Triodos. BIC Innovation and Social Investment Cymru are also supporting the Awards.

By Rhodri McDonagh · 29 June 2021

See this page in: Cymraeg

The Social Business Wales Awards celebrate the impact that social enterprises make in their communities and to the economy of Wales. They recognise the innovation, inspiration and perspiration required to set up, run and grow successful social enterprises. This year’s event comes after a year when social businesses have played a crucial role supporting communities and the NHS during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The principal sponsor for the Awards is Cowshed, a PR, communication, design and media buying agency which specialises in campaigns which have a positive impact on society. Cowshed has been a supporter of the Awards for several years, but this year has increased its investment.

Cowshed’s CEO, Vicki Spencer-Francis said:

“This year, it is more important than ever to recognise the amazing contribution that social businesses make to Wales. The sector has shown remarkable resilience during Covid-19. Not only did it manage to absorb the economic stress and maintain critical functionality, but many businesses expanded their social objectives to meet the needs created by the pandemic.

“In this changing world, we want our work to mean something. Cowshed is proud to be principal sponsor of the Social Business Wales Awards, and to support businesses which are changing communities and even society.”

Financial services provider Legal and General is the associate sponsor of the Awards, continuing an association that started in 2015.

Lynne Sheehy, Corporate Social Responsibility Manager, Legal and General said:

“Working in partnership with Social Business Wales, we support early start -up businesses in Wales through our Social Enterprise Assist fund. We recognise and value the positive impact these small businesses have in the heart of our communities and the significant contribution they make to the economy.

“That’s why we’re delighted to once again be supporting the Awards and joining in celebrating the achievements of these businesses in helping us to build back responsibly.”

This year, the Social Business Wales Awards offers six categories.

  1. Social Enterprise of the Year (sponsored by Cowshed PR): open to social enterprises which have been trading for more than 2 years, in any business sector.
  2. One to Watch (sponsored by Legal & General): open to social enterprises which have been trading for less than 2 years, in any business sector.
  3. Tech for Good: Technology Social Enterprise (sponsored by Perago): open to social enterprises that use technology to achieve social impact.
  4. Community Impact (sponsored by Triodos): open to social enterprises trading for the benefit of the local community.
  5. Social Enterprise Team of the Year (sponsored by Acuity Law): This category acknowledges those teams which, over the course of an extremely challenging year, have demonstrated the strength, passion and resilience which is so characteristic of the social enterprise sector.
  6. ‘Buy Social’ – Market Builder: Open to any social enterprise, third sector organisation, public sector body or private sector organisation that has demonstrably made efforts within its own organisation and remit to create more opportunities to buy from social enterprises.

Digital agency Perago is sponsoring the ‘Tech for Good Award’. Perago works with clients to deliver better digital services, and is also committed to using its skills and experience to support the digital transformation of public services in Wales.

Ethical bank Triodos is sponsoring the ‘Community Impact Award’. Its financial and banking services are for savers, investors and organisations who want to change the world for the better.

Acuity Law is sponsoring the ‘Social Enterprise Team of Year Award’. Acuity Law is a top ranked law firm offering a business-to-business legal service throughout the UK, including to social enterprises.  The firm was established in Wales and has offices in Cardiff, Swansea, London and UAE.

Innovation and business consultants, BIC Innovation, and Social Investment Cymru, which provides grants and loans to social businesses, are providing sponsorship for the Awards ceremony.

Organised by Social Business Wales, which is delivered by the Wales Co-operative Centre and funded by the European Regional Development Fund and the Welsh Government, the Social Business Wales Awards recognise the impact that social enterprises make in the Welsh economy and in Welsh communities.

Application forms can be obtained by registering on the Wales Co-operative Centre website at https://wales.coop/2021-award-applications. Applications close at midnight on Friday 16 July.

Derek Walker, Chief Executive of the Wales Co-operative Centre commented:

“Social businesses in Wales are resilient, dynamic and innovative. These Awards recognise the contribution that businesses with social aims make to the economy of Wales and the real difference they make in our communities.

“We welcome the commitment all seven of our sponsors have made in recognising the very best in social enterprises in Wales”.