The businessman named Lancashire’s top entrepreneur has called for greater support to ensure the next generation of business leaders can flourish.
Steve Pearson, the owner of Bamber Bridge-based specialist electronics manufacturer Remvox, won the Entrepreneur of the Year award at the Be Inspired Business Awards (BIBAs) in 2014 and is among the nominees for the prize again this year.
He said the difficult economic climate was ‘fertile ground’ for enterprising individuals to realise their business ambitions, but insisted they needed to be supported.
The awards completed its second round of interviews last week with judges meeting nominees in their business premises as part of an ‘on tour’ round of judging, sponsored by Mad Science North West and Café Fresch.
Mr Pearson said: “Entrepreneurial people have a spirit to succeed no matter what barriers are put in their way and it is crucial we do everything we can to support them.
“I know of many people out there who are setting up businesses for different reasons, some who are already in business and others who are just starting out.
“In Lancashire we are blessed with a great entrepreneurial spirit which has been with us since the days of the Industrial Revolution and we must ensure we look after it for the next generation.
“Awards like the BIBAs throw a spotlight on the successes of entrepreneurial people which can only help to provide inspiration to the next generation.”
The BIBAs has also launched the BIBAs Academy, a partnership with Lancaster University Management School (LUMS) which offers a package of masterclasses, workshops and networking events, which is available to all its winners.
Prof Ellie Hamilton, associate dean at the university’s Institute for Entrepreneurship & Enterprise Development, said she believed the initiative would help accelerate go-ahead businesses in Lancashire.
She said: “To have made it to the finals of an awards of the calibre of the BIBAs is evidence of an excellent business, and we seek to help provide further support to those lucky enough to win through the BIBAs Academy.
“At LUMS, we have worked with entrepreneurs for many years and recognise the enormous role they play in a healthy, growing economy.
“For this reason and many others we are delighted to continue our support for the BIBAs.”
All winners will be unveiled at a prize-giving ceremony held at the iconic Blackpool Tower on Friday, September 11.
A lifetime achievement award, Lancastrian of the Year, will also be handed out on the night, selected by a panel of the prize’s former winners.