Annual search for 2016’s best family businesses gets underway | Wilson Organisation


May 23, 2016

Annual search for 2016’s best family businesses gets underway

Annual search for 2016’s best family businesses gets underway

This year’s search to find the Midlands’ best family businesses and their leaders has begun, as entries for the seventh Midlands Family Business Awards opened in style this week.

The Awards are the Midlands’ only initiative dedicated to celebrating and recognising the region’s family run and owned enterprises, and launched with a drinks reception at Derbyshire’s spectacular Donington Hall on Wednesday 18th May.

The full line-up of categories and their sponsors and supporters were unveiled by the Awards’ organisers’ The Wilson Organisation at the event.

Entries for the 2016 Awards are free, can be made via the Awards website, and open on Monday 23rd May 2016 until the 18th July.

Family business Bonnington Plastics is headline sponsor of the 2016 Awards and its flagship Midlands Family Business of the Year award.

The ten categories for 2016 are:

  • Family Business of the Year – sponsored by Bonnington Plastics
  • Best Small Family Business – sponsored by Bedrock Tax
  • Director of the Year – sponsored by RSA
  • Employer of the Year – sponsored by Royal London
  • Fastest Growing Family Business – sponsored by PwC
  • Manufacturing Excellence
  • Service Excellence

Including three all-new categories added for 2016:

  • Entrepreneur of the Year – sponsored by Barclays
  • Best Use of Digital
  • Corporate Social Responsibility

Brand new for 2106 is the People’s Choice Award sponsored by Streets LLP. The new Award will see all finalists that are shortlisted in the Awards ten judged categories automatically entered into the People’s Choice Award, with the overall Winner and Highly Commended businesses decided purely by public vote.

Speaking at the launch event, Charlotte Perkins, (pictured) MD of Wilsons, said:

“The Awards are now very well established on the Midlands’ awards calendar, and last year attracted entries from an impressive and diverse range of family run and owned businesses.

“The Midlands Family Business Awards are a truly unique, independent, not-for-profit initiative in the region that recognise and celebrate the work and achievements of family owned businesses and their leaders. Year-on-year, the Awards grow in strength, popularity and awareness – they bring together a network of 1,000 family businesses that is also an incredible community of individuals and businesses all with one common goal: to raise awareness of the contribution the family business sector makes both in the Midlands and nationally, and to reward and acknowledge their work, successes and sustainability.

“As their organisers, we continue to strive to build on the Awards’ amazing legacy and incredible support, and this year is no exception with a number of new ideas and a simplified entry process, details of which will be unveiled at our launch.

“As a not for profit set of Awards we are indebted to the support of our sponsors, without whom the Awards would simply not be possible.”

Ian Fisher, Managing Director of Bonnington Plastics, who won the Director of the Year title in 2015, added: “The family and business are proud to be taking a lead role in The Midlands Family Business Awards in 2016, and to helping other family business gain recognition for their achievements.”

Guests at the Awards’ launch event included family business owners from across the Midlands, past Awards’ finalists and winners, as well as this year’s judges, sponsors and supporters.

Prior to the launch, guests were treated to a tour of the Norton Factory as guest of Norton’s MD Stuart Garner, a member of the Awards’ independent judging panel.

For updates, follow @FamilyBizAwards on Twitter and for more information about the Awards, the categories, how to enter, sponsors and judges, visit:

For more information contact: Wilsons’ Ped Briggs: or on 0115 942 7506.

Now in their seventh year, the Awards are organised by Wilsons and since their launch in 2010, the Awards have raised over £20,000 for charities supporting young people and enterprise.

Over 100 years of innovation

  • 1914

    A successful launch! The Wilson Organisation was founded in Nottingham by Harold Wilson and became the first company in the East Midlands to offer a comprehensive insurance policy to the region’s fast-growing band of automobile drivers. Innovation from day one.

  • 1920s

    During the 1920’s, Wilsons developed its commercial insurance offering under the stewardship of Harold Wilson. Hopping forwards 80 years, Wilsons has developed a number of industry specialisms including a particular expertise in the food and drink sector. We created a unique insurance offering called “FoodProtect” and, through this service, have been able to deliver intelligence and cost-effective insurance programmes to a broad spread of leading food producers. The best thing since sliced bread? Maybe not, but we’re working on it.

  • 1949

    John Prow joined Harold Wilson in the business, marking the first generation of the Prow family’s involvement in The Wilson Organisation. Wilsons’ clients included leading Nottingham firm Boots The Chemist plus a number of operators in the burgeoning railway sector. With post-war regeneration beginning apace, the firm’s fledgling construction expertise quickly developed into one of our leading offerings and this continues through to the present day, with clients including national and regional builders, developers, contractors, sub-contractors and architects.

  • 1960s

    The 1960s were the start of a new era for The Wilson Organisation. Harold Wilson and John Prow died on the same day in 1963, Harold of illness and John in a car crash. This left John’s son, John J Prow, to run the growing business at the age of 27. Under his youthful direction, Wilsons benefited from a new energy and direction. John J Prow, who had joined in 1960 in a new business role, led the move into our current premises at Wilson House in 1964 and then launched the financial services division in the following year.

  • 1990s

    The late 1990s heralded the start of the third generation of the Prow family’s involvement in the business. Managing Director Charlotte Prow joined in 1998, to be followed by the firm’s Chief Executive, Annabel Prow, in 2002. Product and service innovation continued apace with the launch of a corporate finance specialism in 1997, which continues to deliver valuable cost-savings and insights to the region’s dealmakers.

  • 2000s

    Now century on from the launch of The Wilson Organisation in 1914, the company continues to encourage innovation and reward good ideas. Within the financial services team, 2008 marked the launch of “Flex”, a powerful employee benefit programme and the development of “WRAP”, an investment tool with a unique level of investor control and transparency. Meanwhile, our insurance advisers worked quickly to bring to market a specialist insurance policy for insolvency practitioners.

  • 2010s

    2010 saw the launch of the Midlands Family Business Awards by Wilsons, the UK’s only independent not-for-profit Awards for family businesses. Now in their fifth year, the Awards have raised almost £20,000 for charities supporting families and young people. In 2014 we are celebrating Wilsons’ centenary, a significant milestone in Wilsons’ history.

Registered Office:
Wilson House, 1/3 Waverley Street, Nottingham, NG7 4HG

Registered in England Number 862690 - Members of British Insurance Brokers Association

Harold Wilson (Insurances) Ltd. and Harold Wilson Financial Services Ltd. are authorised and regulated by the FCA (Financial Conduct Authority)