Emma Jones MBE launches 2018 WOBAs

Wednesday September 27th 2017

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MP Robert Courts with Emma Jones from Enterprise Nation and WOBA’s Jo Sensecal at the WOBA 2018 launch at Blenheim Palace
Picture: Ric Mellis


The 2018 West Oxfordshire Business Awards (WOBA) is underway following a prestigious launch event at Blenheim Palace, which saw small business champion, Emma Jones MBE and Robert Courts, MP for Witney & West Oxfordshire, declare entries open. Ms Jones is known for starting-up the UK’s most active small business network, Enterprise Nation and is co-founder of StartUp Britain in addition to being a Small Business Crown Representative helping smaller businesses in the UK bid for government contracts. She also leads international trade missions.

Commenting at the WOBA 2018 launch, Emma Jones MBE, said: “Entering Awards is a great way to raise profile and credibility. Writing the application often requires a look-back at business achievements and charting the company’s future, which is a productive exercise for any business owner. Winning could lead to new business opportunities as well as a stunning WOBA trophy, so is definitely time well spent.”

WOBA 2018 has 13 awards with 11 categories and businesses can enter as many as they like for free before the midnight deadline on Monday 4th December 2017. The categories are:

Huffkins Hospitality Leisure & Tourism Award
NFU Retail Award
The Rooflight Company Charity Award
First Sight Media Marketing Excellence Award
Owen Mumford Innovation Award
The MGroup Employer Award
Blenheim Palace New Business Award
Witney BIC Micro Business Award
NatWest Small Business Award
Sandler Training Large Business Award
Wise Investment Business Person of the Year Award

Category winners* will be considered for the STL West Oxfordshire Business of the Year Award and all finalists will be contenders for the Cally Robson Award which is presented by the WOBA Team to the business that best reflects the values of their late colleague Cally Robson, namely entrepreneurship, innovation and an ingrained sense of the community.

Jo Sensecall from the WOBA organising team, said: “It’s been fantastic having Emma launch the 2018 Awards and share some of her experiences with the West Oxfordshire business community. The WOBA team would like to encourage all businesses to enter to make this the best WOBAs yet. There is definitely a category for everyone whether you are a one-man band working from your kitchen table or a large company employing hundreds of people.”

Entries close at midnight, 4 December 2017 and finalists will be revealed at the Celebration of Business Event in February 2018. Winners will be announced at a Gala Dinner the following month at Heythrop Park Resort.

The WOBA 2018 charity is Bridewell Organic Gardens, a mental health charity that provides horticultural and therapeutic care. Having won the Charity Award in 2017, it will benefit from a free video publicising its work at WOBA events in addition to fundraising at the WOBA Gala Dinner.

WOBA is now in its eighth year with previous finalists and winners representing a growing and vibrant business community that proudly fly the flag for West Oxfordshire locally, nationally and in some cases, internationally.

To join the best of the best, download an entry form here