TheĀ 2016 Winners & Shortlist

Finance Provider of the Year

This award recognises the bank or mainstream finance institution that has best addressed the needs of smaller businesses, with the judges considering factors such as access to and supply of debt, customer service and SME-focused initiatives.

2016 Winner: Close Brothers Retail Finance

2016 Shortlist:

Barclays Bank
Bibby Financial Services
Boost Capital
Close Brothers Retail Finance
OakNorth Bank
Silicon Valley Bank
Wesleyan Bank

Alternative Finance Provider of the Year

The judges will assess online finance providers such as crowdfunding sites and peer-to-peer lenders. They will look for the operators most notable in financing small companies, considering factors such as volume of funds provided, innovative services and a dedicated SME offering.

2016 Winner: Crowdcube

2016 Shortlist:

Code Investing
Funding Circle
Growth Street

Sponsored by:


Service Provider of the Year

This award acknowledges the service provider that manages the needs of small businesses better than its competitors, with judges considering the best value, customer service, and reliability.

2016 Winner: Yü Energy

2016 Shortlist:

Frontier Voice and Data
Pink Telephone Company (App2Chat)
TalkTalk Business
XLN Telecom
Yü Energy

Sponsored By:

Close Brothers Retail Finance

Technology Provider of the Year

This category rewards the technology provider that has placed an SME service at the heart of its offering, displaying innovation, impressive customer care and a product to help small companies run efficiently and grow.

2016 Winner: Xero

2016 Shortlist:

Miura Systems
Ormsby Street
Scale Computing

Professional Services Firm of the Year

The judges will assess the firm that has gone the furthest to target and help smaller companies, with quality of client service and value for money being prime considerations.

2016 Winner: Crunch

2016 Shortlist:

Legal & General
KPMG Small Business Accounting
Shelley Stock Hutter

Workspace of the Year

In this category, the judges will consider the co-working or serviced office space most attuned to the needs of small businesses. Quality of facilities, location(s), technology-enabling capabilities and value for money will be the key factors discussed, as well as their overall influence on the SME ecosystem.

2016 Winner: Workspace Group

2016 Shortlist:

Office Space in Town
Workspace Group
Workplace Manchester

Sole Trader of the Year

This award recognises the sole trader business that provides a service/product that stands above peers, demonstrating consistent sales over the past year and a niche position in its industry.

2016 Winner: GLB Graphics

2016 Shortlist:

Appleton Baby Massage
Beautiful Ribbon
GLB Graphics
Ma Baker
Pencil Me In
The Bridal Boutique
Secret Halo
ValB’s Wax Jewellery

Sponsored by



Micro Business of the Year

The Micro Business of the Year will be a company of 2-9 people that has demonstrated strong revenue growth and a product or service of a quality that stands above competitors. The identifying of and capitalising on scale opportunities will also be noted by the judges.

2016 Winner: Handrail Creations

2016 Shortlist: 

Bexy Boo
G&J Lee Recruitment
Handrail Creations
Mill House Cottages
No Brainer
Smart Resourcing Solutions
Southsea Bathing Hut

Sponsored by



Small Business of the Year

The judges will look for a small business of 10-50 employees with the most innovative and sector-disrupting service/product combined with strong turnover growth over the past year.

2016 Winner: Inclusion Housing

2016 Shortlist:

Bluebird Tea
Genie Ventures
GEO (Green Energy Options)
Hello Soda
Inclusion Housing
M&M Contractors
Serve Legal
Technical Associates Group

Sponsored by:



Leader of the Year

The judges will consider the small business leader (1-50 employees) that has been most inspirational as the driving force behind the success of the company, with judges considering factors including key business decisions made, contracts won, responsibility for revenue and/or profit growth and marketability.

2016 Winner: Paul Vagg, Bee Naturals 

2016 Shortlist:

Paul Vagg, Bee Naturals
Amanda Rosewarne, CPD Standards Office
Avin Rabheru, Housekeep
Gareth Loye, M&M Contractors
Denise O’Leary, Purpol Marketing
Paul Parkinson, Synergy Automotive

Innovation of the Year

This category will reward the most groundbreaking technology, product or service that has been responsible for strong revenue growth in a small company (1-50 employees) over the past year.

2016 Winner: Azoomee

2016 Shortlist:

Ace Innovation: SuperVisor
Barnbrook Systems: BlueCube
RA Tech: hotun
Synergy Grill

Sponsored by:


Website of the Year

Judges will assess style, functionality, and ease of use as the key considerations for the Website of the Year category for small business entrants.

2016 Winner:

2016 Shortlist:

Business/HR Consultancy of the Year

The judges will reward the HR advisory firm that is deemed by the judges to have provided the best service on all aspects of HR advice, from legal services, to administrative assistance.

2016 Winner: ClearlySo

2016 Shortlist:

Hosking Associates
HR Advise Me
Penisula Business Services
Purple HR
Shelley Stock Hutter

Recruitment Company of the Year

The judges will reward the recruitment company that the judges feel best addresses the recruitment needs of small businesses, helping companies of under 50 employees find the right talent through offering a first-rate service.

2016 Winner: Indeed

2016 Shortlist:

Careers in Audit

Nominations are now closed for the British Small Business Awards 2016.