A sparkling evening at the GBAs | Glasgow Chamber of Commerce
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A sparkling evening at the GBAs

Over the past five years the number of businesses in the City of Glasgow has grown by over 2,300, a 13% increase with the city now hosting just under 20,000 companies.

That means there are many more businesses who can apply for recognition at the Chamber’s Glasgow Business Awards (GBAs), which saw the 2019 event held very successfully on 3rd October.

In front of 630 guests, 12 different Glasgow businesses picked up awards for the excellence of their performance.

Main winner on the evening was Allied Vehicles Group, which picked up three awards, including the Royal Bank of Scotland prize for the most outstanding business overall.

Manufacturing wheelchair accessible vehicles, minibuses and taxis at its headquarters on Balmore Road in Possilpark, this family firm now supplies over 100 vehicles each week and has grown to a turnover of £139m with a team of 680 employees.

The company is a fantastic example of what can be achieved, not just in Glasgow but in one of the districts to have suffered most from the city’s changing economic story in recent decades.

The Lifetime Achievement Award is one of the highlights of the event and this year it went to Ian Curle who retired this year after 15 years as Chief Executive of Edrington, having taken the business on a journey from what was a successful Scotch whisky producer employing 900 people to become a leading international premium spirits brand with 3500 employees, of whom two-thirds are based overseas.

He helped The Macallan become the world’s most valuable single malt in a spirits portfolio that also includes Highland Park, The Famous Grouse and Brugal rum.

I was lucky enough to be invited last year to the grand opening of The Macallan’s new distillery in Craigellachie which demonstrates both the ambition which Ian had for the brand’s growth and the quality of Edrington as a company. Indeed the distillery deservedly won the Andrew Doolan Best Building in Scotland award from the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland the night after the GBAs.

Ian also contributed to the work of the Glasgow Economic Leadership Board, to the Scotch Whisky Association and of course to the Robertson Trust. We were delighted that he accepted the award.

The GBAs has a long list of supporters headed up by our main sponsor Royal Bank of Scotland, who also hosted a reception for the nominees a couple of weeks before the main event.

We are especially grateful to all the category sponsors, the in-kind sponsors and all those who help us deliver the event on the night. You can find all the details of all the winners here.

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