Voting now open for NW Business Masters

WANT to have a say in who will win the 2012 North West Business Masters Awards? Now you can.

Voting has opened in all categories for’s North West Business Masters Awards, which is due to take place on April 26 at Manchester’s iconic Midland Hotel.

Among the nominees for the North West Ambassador award are the chairman of Greater Manchester’s Local Enterprise Partnership Mike Blackburn, JD Sports Fashion’s executive chairman Peter Cowgill and the founder and chairman of the Betfred bookmakers business, Fred Done.

In the exporter category, Saddleworth-based Applied Language Solutions is up against Knutsford-based Oliver Valves and Heaton Mersey-based temporary bridge maker WFEL.

The shortlist was chosen by an expert panel of judges including the chairman of Liverpool’s Local Enterprise Partnership Robert Hough, CBI regional director Damian Waters, entrepreneur Richard O’Sullivan (Millie’s Cookies, Boost Juice and Barburrito), Bank of England North West agent John Young, David McKeith, the retired North West senior partner of PwC and a non-executive with a number of leading businesses and Laura Wolfe, MD of marketing agency Journey9UK and one of last year’s winners.

However, the winners will be chosen through a public vote, which opens today and will run for two weeks until March 29. To register your vote, click here .

To buy tickets for this exclusive lunchtime event, click here.

A full list of nominees for each category appears below.

North West Ambassador, sponsored by MC2

Mike Blackburn, BT/ Chairman, Greater Manchester LEP
Peter Cowgill, Executive chairman JD Sports Fashion
Fred Done, Chairman Betfred

North West Exporter:

Applied Language Solutions
Oliver Valves

North West Innovator, sponsored by Cobbetts

Belfry Group (EcoPod)
Elite Telecom
MHA Lighting

North West Manufacturer:

Fort Vale Engineering
WEMS International

North West Newcomer:

Goody Good Stuff
RedX Pharma

North West Pride, sponsored by United Utilities

Carole Nash
Factory Youth Zone
The Brink dry bar:  Jacquie Johnston-Lynch

Chris Barry, North West Editor of, said: “The calibre of entrants shortlisted within all of the categories is extremely high, and we expect competition will be fierce. Ultimately, it will be you, our readers, who decide the outcome so cast your vote now.”