On the hunt for the powerhouses fueling the nation’s economy

Despite smaller firms often having the competitive edge on innovation compared to larger businesses, the latter was found to contribute disproportionately more to a country’s economic performance, according to an EU-funded report by European Firms in a Global Economy (EFIGE).

Such firms are said to be more productive, pay higher wages, enjoy higher profits and are more successful in international markets. However, the report found that barriers to research and development and to trade are the main culprits that slow down growth.

With that in mind, we strive to champion businesses that have overcome such hurdles through the recognition of our Growing Business Awards.

The awards celebrate the very best of British business and the entrepreneurs that power some of the fastest-growing UK companies.

And the Larger Company of the Year category, sponsored by webexpenses, has been the launchpad for powerhouse firms like LoveFilm, Zoopla, Lastminute.com, Sophos, Wonga.com and Betfair.

Read about last year’s Growing Business Awards winners:

Last year saw First Utility claim the prize. In 2011 the business had about 58,000 households and 5,000 SMEs signed up, generating about £70m of revenues. Fast-forward to present day and, having left behind the SME market to solely target domestic consumers, 700,000 households are now signed up to First Utility and revenue has inched beyond £600m.

It’s therefore no surprise that the company beat off competition from the likes of snack delivery service Graze and software reselling business Softcat to win its category.

We are looking for similar success stories and, as previously stated by Real Business editor Hunter Ruthven, “our task would be much harder were it not for the hundreds of nominations we receive each year from those wanting recognition for their business – or one that they’ve taken a bit of a shining to.”

We have crafted a quick nomination form alongside the full version. So, if you’ve only got a few minutes to let us know who you think should win an award then there’s still an option, but the more information you can give us the better.

Quick nomination page

Full nomination page

Nominations will run until 18 September, after which we’ll collate them all and begin the process of putting the very best before our world-leading judges.

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