Search is on for top Edinburgh women entrepreneurs

The search is on for leading women in the world of business in the Edinburgh area, as entries open for this year’s Business Women Scotland Business Awards.

Tuesday, 6th April 2021, 12:30 pm

Back for the seventh year, the awards mark the achievements and talent of the growing number of women-led businesses across Scotland.

Organisers said the categories will reflect the challenges of the pandemic, with new categories in the 2021 up for grabs including Collaboration Award, Sustainable Business Award and Women in Tech Award.

Awards will also go to start-up businesses along with Rising Star of the Year, Established Business of the Year and Inspirational Woman of the Year.

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Sarra Bejaoui of SmartPA, Business Woman of the Year 2020

Previous winner from last year Sarra Bejaoui of SmartsPA scooped Business Woman of the Year. She said: "One of the aspects of SmartPA’s growth I’m immensely proud of is that, in addition to building a company that provides impactful support services to thousands of businesses of all sizes in over 15 countries, we’ve also empowered thousands of females globally to start their own businesses, get back to work and find a career where they’re rewarded and valued.”

Michelle Milnes of Milnes Property studios, Resilient Woman of the Year had to rethink her business model to offer clients virtual and 3D property viewings after the pandemic hit, while Claire Murray of Emotion Works made use of the furlough scheme and funding to develop new online resources that now support 500 schools.

Law student turned fashion designer Francia Boakye, who took sole trader of the year, said she had to think quickly to keep her business on track.

Supported by Scotland Can-Do, Business Gateway, STV, Digital Boost and Azure Global, the awards ceremony will take place online on 19 November.

The overall winner of the awards, selected by the judging panel, will receive the prize of a two-week airtime campaign with Go Radio and production of a commercial. The closing date for entries is 3 September.

Lynne Kennedy MBE, founder of Business Women Scotland said: “We want to showcase some of the most enterprising and successful women from around Scotland: women who’ve had the courage to follow their dreams, whether that be starting their own business, making it to the top in their career, or using their expertise and knowledge to help other women be the best they can be.”

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