Two new awards and 35 winners take centre stage at Scottish EDGE


FOR their 23rd round the awards returned to the Royal Bank of Scotland Conference Centre in Gogarburn, Edinburgh, with winners hailing from across the country, from Orkney to the Borders.

This year’s ceremony saw the introduction of two new awards which are set to open new avenues for aspiring entrepreneurs. The inaugural £80,000 Scale EDGE Award, which is supported by Royal Bank of Scotland and includes access to a high-growth account manager and placement on one of Scale-Up Scotland’s growth programmes, was awarded to Edinburgh based Talonmore Drinks, a family-run business producing ginger-based alcohol alternatives.

Meanwhile a new Creative EDGE Award, facilitated with support from Creative UK, which champions, connects and promotes the development of the creative industries across the United Kingdom, gave a boost of £100,000 to Una Watch, which produces sustainable, repairable-at-home, modular GPS sports watches.

Veteran award categories returned for the 23rd round, with sustainability remaining a key focus. The Circular Economy Award, supported by Zero Waste Scotland, went to Evolve Metals, who secured £90,000 for their development of a copper refinery which refines metals from scrap, while Smart Gym CIC, which supports families through innovative and affordable wellbeing services, won £75,000 in the Social Enterprise category, supported by the Postcode Innovation Trust.

The Young EDGE and Wild Card categories returned this round, with the former supporting companies whose managing directors are under 30 and the latter providing a grant to pre-trading businesses which need support to bring their products to market. Winners of the Scottish EDGE supported Young EDGE award included Lairg-based Candles from the Croft, which won £10,000 for its sustainable, vegan and cruelty-free luxury fragrances, while seven businesses were successful in the Wildcard Category, including West Linton-based Hulk Bio, which was awarded £15,000 towards its production of stem cell-based human milk for infants in cases where breastfeeding is not possible.

The STV supported award of £70,000 plus £75,000 worth of ad airtime, went to Alloa fudge makers Ochil Fudge Ltd, while the women-led business StrEAT Events emerged as winner of the Scottish Government backed Pathways category, winning a £75,000 award for their online catering marketplace.

Judith Cruickshank, MD Commercial Mid-Market at the Royal Bank of Scotland and One Bank Scotland Chair, said: “The Scottish EDGE awards offer a fantastic opportunity to showcase the talent and ingenuity within Scotland’s entrepreneurial community, and the addition of two new categories for this year illustrates how that depth of skill and creativity continues to grow.

“Royal Bank of Scotland once again was delighted to host the finals here at Gogarburn and we would like to congratulate all those businesses who were awarded funding at last night’s awards.

“We are proud to have supported the inaugural Scale EDGE award and extend our special congratulations to the category winner Talonmore Drinks and look forward to supporting the business as it takes its next steps.”

Sir Tom Hunter, entrepreneur and philanthropist said: “Scottish EDGE is a key driver of economic growth, a critical stepping stone for many scaling businesses and its refreshing that earlier this week our Government recognised that with additional funds to support more entrepreneurs intent on building successful businesses. Their success builds Scotland’s success – nothing more needs said.”

Jane Martin, Managing Director of Innovation and Investment at Scottish Enterprise said: “We’re delighted to continue our support for the Young EDGE category, which never fails to deliver a wealth of talented entrepreneurs. It’s incredibly exciting to see these innovative young people turning their ideas into businesses that will develop and flourish, and I’d like to congratulate all this year’s Scottish EDGE award winners, who look set to do amazing things both for Scotland’s economy and society as a whole.”

Evelyn McDonald, CEO of Scottish EDGE, said: “It’s been an honour to help unlock the huge potential within the Scottish business landscape through the 23rd round of the Scottish EDGE. With the introduction of two new awards this year – the Scale Award and the Creative Award – we’ve been able to dedicate more resources than ever to giving promising Scottish entrepreneurs a helping hand on their journeys. We would like to express our gratitude to all our partner organisations and supporters for their contribution towards helping our businesses to thrive”.

Supported by The Hunter Foundation, the Royal Bank of Scotland, the Scottish Government and Scottish Enterprise, Scottish EDGE has a key role to play in facilitating the nation’s economic growth.  

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