Thursday, 22nd April, 2021

The South Canterbury Chamber of Commerce has received 75 entries for the Ara Business Excellence Awards, “a real demonstration of confidence and capability,” said Wendy Smith. The entries are of an extremely high standard and the judges will be challenged to select three to five finalists in each area and then to choose the overall winners.

After the need to postpone the Business Excellence Awards in 2020 due to Covid-19, there was a level of uncertainty re businesses appetite to enter the well-recognized Ara Business Excellence Awards with a new date and format in 2021.  However, business owners, managers and team leaders have engaged enthusiastically, attending the workshops across the three districts in record numbers.

In the same way that our business community and Not For profit sector has battled through the Covid-19 environment, many business teams now wish to engage and showcase their achievements. The entries are well spread across all the categories and the special awards.

With the usual categories now supplemented with a Global Exporter Category supported by PrimePort and the Special Awards featuring key themes for our businesses including workplace safety, innovation and the application of technology, sustainability and environmental practices, support and leadership and a new RSM Supporting Local Award.

The entries are diverse and display the passion and innovation that has ensured South Canterbury has continued to punch above its weight. Wendy Smith said, “It has been humbling to see the work that our businesses have completed and the pride in the extra efforts from their teams.”

The Ara Business Excellence Awards recognises and celebrates business excellence, playing an important role in promoting and strengthening economic development in the region.

Entering these prestigious awards provides businesses with a rare opportunity to take a step back from day to day operations and review the operations from a fresh perspective.

Past winners have found the entry process not only highly rewarding and motivating, but also of immense strategic value in positioning their business for long-term, sustainable growth.

Entrants benefit from significant local media coverage, with category and supreme winners able to leverage their success in on-going advertising and communications activity well past the immediate event period.

 In addition to the benefits for businesses, the awards play an important part in lifting the overall profile of South Canterbury, raising awareness of our business sectors for the economic benefit of all South Cantabrians.

The judging process is currently underway, and finalists will be announced on the 14th May with the Gala Event night being held on the 18th June. “The MC is booked, and we are ready to roll.”

“Every entry and every business that has entered the awards deserves recognition, this has been a tough year for everyone, and the Ara BEA entries are of an extremely high standard,” said Wendy Smith.

“This event would not be possible without our generous family of sponsors and everyone has stayed with us on this journey” said Wendy Smith “recognising the importance of the awards and the need to celebrate so many successes and achievements throughout the year.”

Look out for the Ara Business Excellence Awards tabloid that is distributed in the Timaru Herald and always provides an excellent overview of our finalists and be prepared to vote in the People’s Choice Award  ensuring our businesses and our teams receive recognition.