A closer look at the Queen's Enterprise Award winners

The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise are considered by many to be the most prestigious business awards in the UK

The awards were first established in 1965 and since then 7114 companies have achieved a Queen’s Award.

The awards celebrate the success of exciting and innovative businesses, which are leading the way with pioneering products or services, delivering impressive social mobility programmes or showing their commitment to excellent sustainable development practices. 

This year 238 UK businesses have been recognised for their contribution to international trade, innovation, sustainable development and promoting opportunity (through social mobility).

Successful businesses include:

  • 152 winners for the international trade award
  • 72 winners of the innovation award
  • 8 winners of the sustainable development award
  • 6 winners for the promoting opportunity award

Here Manufacturing Chemist takes a closer look at some of the companies who received an award this year. Providing more information about three products that were awarded the innovation award and two companies that received the international trade award.

Winners of the Queen's Enterprise Awards for Innovation

Watson-Marlow Qdos pump technology

UK based Watson-Marlow received an innovation award for the development of its Qdos pump technology, a self-contained, chemical metering pump. This category rewards world class innovation coupled with proof of five years of sustained sales.  

Qdos pumps provide more accurate, linear and repeatable metering than conventional diaphragm metering pumps and feature a single, no-tools component change with integral leak detection, reducing process downtime and lowering the overall cost of ownership.

Simon Nicholson, Managing Director of Watson-Marlow Limited, said: “To win a Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the category of Innovation is fantastic news for our business. Qdos provides a solution to a wide range of industrial and environmental applications that require chemical dosing. The market demanded cost effective systems, offering increased safety and low operational expenditure.”

This is precisely what we delivered and as such, Qdos – which is manufactured here in our Falmouth factory - is now deployed all over the world.

Endomag, a British breast cancer company providing more accurate tools for breast cancer removal won the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in Innovation. The award recognises the company’s efforts in developing novel surgical tools for more accurate removal of breast cancer.

Endomag has developed a minimally invasive surgical guidance system, using its expertise in magnetic sensing and nanotechnology, which allows surgeons to locate early-stage breast cancers that cannot be felt, with greater precision.

The system helps to maximise the amount of healthy tissue left behind and determine whether the cancer has spread. These techniques greatly improve the experience for patients, could save vital hospital resources and have been demonstrated to be as accurate as the current gold standards, in numerous clinical trials.

Launched in Europe in 2013, Endomag’s device has been used in more than 30,000 breast cancer procedures, at 300 hospitals in 30 countries. More recently the company has launched the device in the US and Canada where it has already been used in thousands of procedures across North America and is currently being evaluated by more than a hundred hospitals.

Major cancer centres including University of California, San Francisco and University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center, Cleveland have already adopted the system into routine use.

Eric Mayes, CEO at Endomag said: “It is a particularly proud moment for me to know that UK businesses, like Endomag, are developing products that have real impact on people’s lives."

It is vitally important that we can demonstrate that the UK is able to lead on innovation and develop products and services that improve lives in all corners of the world.

Durham-based, Honeyman Group, a pharmaceutical water specialist, also received a Queen’s Award for Innovation for HydroGienic, its high purity water storage and distribution system.

Tom Honeyman, MD at Honeyman Group, said: “We are deeply honoured to have been recognised by the Queen’s Award for our continued work as pharmaceutical water system specialists. There is constant commercial pressure on manufacturing facility managers to maximise efficiencies and output performance, while minimising costs and overheads. HydroGienic enables revenue savings, as well as added-value improvement to production efficiency, performance and reliability.”

Honeyman added: “The HydroGienic system is tried, tested and trusted, it is a pure water distribution system for forward-thinking pharmaceutical manufacturers.”

A recent adopter of the HydroGienic system is Quotient, a commercial-stage transfusion diagnostics company. The company recently inaugurated its state-of-the-art Allan-Robb Campus, just outside of Edinburgh, which houses the company’s R&D, reagent manufacturing and management.

“The new HydroGienic system flexibility fits with our growth plans. When we need to expand the system, we can increase the number of distribution points with minimal impact on the business. We can now easily add to or isolate parts of the system,” said Gordon Robb, VP of Operations of Quotient.

Winners of the Queen's Enterprise Awards for International Trade

Cobra Biologics, a contract development and manufacturing organisation received the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the international trade category.

The award was granted in recognition of the companies' achievement in the export of services for gene and immunotherapy products and it’s commercial success in providing services to its global customer base.

Cobra has a 20 year track record of supporting the life science industry with contract development and manufacturing of biopharmaceuticals, from preclinical through to clinical trials and commercial supply and currently exports over 85% of its services from its facilities based in the UK and Sweden.

Peter Coleman, chief executive of Cobra Biologics, said: “I am immensely proud of what Cobra has achieved over the last few years, culminating in the Queen’s Award. International Trade is vitally important for Cobra and the work that we do is challenging and requires a committed work force whose skills and dedication attract business from all over the world.”

Peli BioThermal team 2017 when presented with their first Queen's Award

Peli BioThermal, specialists of temperature controlled packaging, won the Queen's Award for Enterprise: International Trade 2018. Awarded for the companies' export expertise, providing the global life sciences industry with thermal protection packaging solutions for the safe transportation of pharmaceuticals.

Overseas sales have grown significantly, by 122%, over the past three years and 61% of sales is exported for the company based in Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire.

Peli BioThermal President David Williams said: “We are proud to receive this auspicious award again, this time for International Trade. It is an absolute honour to receive Royal recognition for our outstanding performance exporting our pioneering products worldwide.”

The judging panel highlighted how thePeli Biothermal’s “introduction of a reusable and rental product range, offers significant customer return on investment and the ability to obtain and use products at short notice, but without investing large sums of money upfront."

The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise 2019 are open to applications from 8 May 2018. Almost all UK businesses (including non profit) can apply and the application process is free.

All applications must be made online and you may apply for more than one category. All entry forms, eligibility criteria and information on how to apply is available at goo.gl/aVpgX6.

Featured Companies

Watson Marlow Fluid Technology Group (more information, website)

See also