THE North East’s top exporting companies were honoured at a ceremony last night which saw a County Durham cheese supplier pick up the prize for overall achievement in the foreign markets.
Seaham-based Prima Cheese, which supplies to fast-food outlets and restaurants across Europe and now into the Middle East, was recognised for the top prize and as New Exporter after growing exports to build its £20m-plus revenues.
The North East Exporters Awards recognise the efforts of individuals who have helped their company boost its international sales performance.
Hundreds of business people cheered on the winners at the Hilton Newcastle Gateshead at the finals of export agency UKTI’s awards.
Guests also welcomed Barbara Stephenson, deputy chief of Mission at the United States Embassy in London, who gave a keynote speech highlighting the special relationship between the UK and the USA, which is the North East’s single largest export market.
UKTI regional director David Coppock said: “Tonight’s winners have all demonstrated success in exporting and, hopefully, their achievements will encourage other firms in the North East to venture into foreign markets.
“UKTI is proud to have assisted them and I hope that, in the months to come, together with our partners, we can work with other North East firms to achieve their exporting and growth ambitions.” The chief executive of sponsor North East Chamber of Commerce, James Ramsbotham, said: “The North East boasts a wealth of fantastic businesses who continued to perform in overseas markets and managed to grow exports through one of the worst recessions in generations.
“Our region’s unparalleled success in exports is something that must be celebrated and I would like to congratulate all of the winners who took home awards.”
The North East Exporters Awards winners 2012 were:
Winner: Prima Cheese (Seaham)
Global Manufacturing Supplies (Prudhoe)
Winner: Jordan Valley Semiconductors (Durham)
NTE Ltd (Peterlee)
Datawright Computer Services (Washington)
Export Team of the Year
Winner: Pinnacle Re-Tec (Consett)
John Liliey and Gillie (North Shields)
Hardy and Greys (Alnwick)
Winner: Prima Cheese
Jordan Valley Semiconductors
Special Award – Outstanding Contribution to North East Exports
Komatsu UK Ltd (Birtley)