Five early-stage businesses scooped the awards – run by Leeds Beckett University in partnership with solicitors Lupton Fawcett, WGN Accountants and Yorkshire Bank – with each of them receiving £5,000 worth of legal support and mentoring, £1,000 of accountancy advice and 36 months’ free business banking.
The awards were presented at the Innovation Network event in Leeds. The quarterly events are held at each of the University Businesses Centres in Leeds, Halifax and Wakefield and bring together start-up and early stage businesses to explore key themes and make connections.
Candle Digital, set up by Andy Jack and Mark Langdale, was delighted to be rewarded with a prize just two years after starting up.
Working with training providers and coaching professionals Candle Digital provides expertise to help create digital training products online.
The business has recently taken office space in the Leeds Beckett University Business Centre in Halifax.
Mr Jack said: “We’re thrilled to have been given this opportunity. The awards, expertise and support will make a real impact on our business and help us take the next step in our growth.”
Other winners included Krishna Patel owner of Dilishque, a manufacturer of authentic curry paste pots, Sophie Mei Lan Hale from Evoke Media Group, a film and media production company, Lemonbalm - a therapeutic horticulture social enterprise run by LBU student Isabel Swift - and Binary Forge, a new software consultancy business specialising in Internet of Things devices recently set up by Glenn Pugh and Matthew Roberts.
The Business Advantage Awards began in 2015 and are open to students and graduates of Leeds Beckett, within five years of graduation, clients of the University’s Business Centres in Leeds, Wakefield and Halifax and businesses receiving support from AdVenture – a European, ERDF funded programme which helps early stage businesses in the Leeds City Region to grow.
Simon Baldwin, head of research and enterprise at Leeds Beckett University, said: “We are delighted to work again with our partners Lupton Fawcett, WGN and Yorkshire Bank on our annual Business Advantage Awards which have now provided invaluable support to over 25 early stage businesses in the last four years.
“The number and standard of entries continues to grow each year and we look forward to working with this year’s cohort.”