ONE of the best-known and best-loved companies in the region was last night named North East Company of the Year 2012.
Bakery giant Greggs’ chief executive Ken McMeikan was cheered as he picked up the top title in the nebusiness Awards 2012.
The Newcastle company, currently heading a battle with the Government over the “pasty tax,” was given the award after seeing another year of extraordinary growth.
Greggs, which has more take-away outlets in the UK than any other firm, took the top prize at the awards organised by The Journal and the Evening Gazette on Teesside, in association with the North East Chamber of Commerce.
Last month the company, one of the region’s best-known, unveiled plans to create 800 jobs as it continues to expand its business by adding another 90 shops to its 1,571-strong nationwide chain.
It is one of few large retailers to beat the high-street slump and this month reported record annual sales of £701m in 2011 and profits of more than £52m.
Under chief executive Ken McMeikan it has added more strings to its bow over the last year with a link-up with store chain Iceland to sell frozen sausage rolls in the UK and abroad, open outlets at motorway service stations and roll out a new chain of Greggs Moment cafes.