10 November 2020

• Lewis Hamilton MBE praises the Mercedes AMG team for building 10,000 ventilators for the NHS

• Businesses from across the UK show resilience, innovation and kindness to survive and thrive in the face of COVID-19 

• View the full winners list here


Mercedes-AMG Petronas and Mindful Chef are among a host of altruistic enterprises recognised as the pinnacle of British business this afternoon as they were awarded with prestigious Lloyds Bank National Business Awards, which surprised viewers with a host of special guests including Lewis Hamilton MBE, Dame Joanna Lumley, Ruby Wax, Baroness Karren Brady and Kate Garraway.

Mercedes-AMG Petronas was presented with The inews Pivot for Purpose Corporate Award in recognition of its astounding work, in partnership with University College London, to manufacture 10,000 ventilators in just one month to support the nation’s battle against Covid-19.

F1 Champion and Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton MBE said on the night: “I’m very proud to hear that Mercedes AMG HPP will receive the Pivot for Purpose Award – we celebrated our seventh consecutive Constructors’ Championship last week and the power units that powered us to this historical achievement were built by HPP in Brixworth.

“These engines were designed and built by an incredibly impressive group of women and men who are passionate, determined and innovative. They’re engineers and technicians who don’t take no for an answer. That’s why they stepped up when the world went into lockdown and completely transformed their business, building breathing aids instead of F1 engines. In less than four weeks they engineered and built 10,000 devices for the NHS. This award could not have gone to a better group of people.”

The recipient of The inews Pivot for Purpose Community Award was Cynthia Stroud. Originally from Nigeria, Cynthia moved to England in 2004 with just £10 to her name and nowhere to live. She began making cakes as a way to relax before turning this into a successful business – Pretty Gorgeous Jams. All of that was put on hold this year to create food parcels for those in need. She is now delivering 100,000 meals every month to 1,500 families through 47 schools and was decorated in the Queen’s New Year's Honours List with an OBE for services to business and community.

London-based recipe box success story Mindful Chef, which has gone from a standing start five years ago to delivering over 30,000 boxes per week, has just donated its five millionth free school meal to a child in poverty. The team was presented with The Lloyds Bank Small to Medium Sized Business of the Year Award. Fellow food-box stalwart Riverford Organic Farmers, based in Devon, won The Lloyds Bank Mid-Market Business of the Year Award.

Feeding the nation’s favourite pets with 100 per cent natural raw food, Yorkshire’s ProDog Raw received The Virgin Atlantic Customer Experience & Loyalty Award in recognition for its customer focus. The company was set up following the death of the founders’ dog Drago to cancer, which they believe was caused by his diet.

The UK’s technology sector was also well represented on the winners’ podium:

  • Touchlight (The LDC Growth Through Innovation Award) is disrupting the pharmaceutical sector with the development of DNA vaccines for cancer and infectious diseases including Covid-19

  • was crowned The Artificial Intelligence Business of the year: the company has pivoted during the pandemic to manufacture UV robots that can remotely disinfect public spaces against Covid-19

  • nDreams (The Lloyds Bank Exporter of the Year Award) is one of the top three virtual reality game developers and publishers in the world and was praised for its exporting prowess

The two individual awards were presented to online entrepreneurs:

  • The New Entrepreneur of the Year Award : Deirdre MGettrick, CEO of, founded the online furniture retail aggregator after struggling to furnish her first home and has over 100 suppliers already on board

  • The Inflexion Entrepreneur of the Year Award : Justin Whitston, CEO,, the global vehicle hire company, which aims to help lower emissions, reduce traffic congestion and become Yorkshire’s first £1 billion business

The programme’s organiser Informa Markets and headline sponsor Lloyds Bank both praised British businesses for their resilience, agility and innovation over the last 12 months, despite being faced with untold economic and logistical challenges as a result of COVID-19.

“2020 has been a challenging but inspiring year; a year in which we’ve witnessed just how innovative, adaptive and kind the UK business community can be, whether that means helping employees adjust to new ways of working or shifting production towards masks, ventilators and handwash – our winners’ stories have been a real source of goosebump moments,” said Sarah Austin, Awards Director.

Paul Gordon, Managing Director, SME & Mid Corporates, Commercial Banking at Lloyds Banking Group, added: “It is fantastic to see all of the great stories from this year’s winners. It has been a challenging year as businesses have faced the uncertainty driven by Covid, so it great to hear all of the stories from our winners around how they have grown their businesses, supported their customers, been there for their staff and supported those most in need and vulnerable in their local communities– a really inspirational read. Congratulations to all those who either won awards this year or who were highly commended on this fantastic achievement.”

The Lloyds Bank National Business Awards 2020 winners are:

  • The inews Pivot for Purpose Corporate Award: Mercedes-AMG Petronas (Brackley, Northamptonshire)

  • The inews Pivot for Purpose Community Award: Cynthia Stroud, Pretty Gorgeous Jams (Hertfordshire)

  • The Castle Corporate Finance Scale-Up Award: Corndel (London)
    The fastest growing regulated training business in the UK

  • The Inflexion Entrepreneur of the Year Award: Justin Whitston, CEO/Founder, Fleetondemand (Saltaire, Yorkshire)
    See above

  • The Business Enabler of the Year Award: fulfilmentcrowd (Chorley, Lancashire)
    fulfilmentcrowd is a world-leading provider of fulfilment services and technology, trusted by online retailers to fulfil orders on time, every time

  • The Give A Grad A Go Employer of the Year Award: Invopak (Hyde, Greater Manchester)
    Family-owned, 80-employee agent, distributor and manufacturer of packaging to over 5,000 B2B/B2C customers. Inspiring story of passionate and kind leadership following CEO Arjen Cooper-Rolfe’s take over following the death of his father, mother and brother

  • The Lloyds Bank Small to Medium Sized Business of the Year Award: Mindful Chef (London)
    See above

  • The Lloyds Bank Exporter of the Year Award: nDreams (Farnborough, Hampshire)
    See above

  • The Lloyds Bank New Business of the Year Award: Powersheds (Bradford, Yorkshire)
    Launched in February 2019, Powersheds manufacturer sustainably and responsibly sourced wooden garden sheds that can be delivered anywhere in Europe within a week

  • The Virgin Atlantic Customer Experience & Loyalty Award: ProDog Raw (Hull, Yorkshire)
    See above

  • The Lloyds Bank Mid-Market Business of the Year Award: Riverford Organic Farmers (Buckfastleigh, Devon)
    See above

  • The Lloyds Bank Positive Social Impact Award: Sanctuary Personnel (Ipswich, East Anglia)

Sanctuary Personnel was founded in 2006 with one ambition; to set a new standard in health and social care recruitment; offering trusted, healthier and more resilient resourcing solutions

  • The Data Excellence Award: SEC Group (Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire)
    Formed in 1998, SEC Group has grown to become one of the largest independent providers of warehouse storage systems, commercial fit-out and cleanroom solutions in the UK

  • The Artificial Intelligence Award: (Halesowen, West Midlands)
    See above

  • The LDC Growth Through Innovation Award: Touchlight (London)
    See above

  • The New Entrepreneur of the Year Award: Diedre McGettrick, CEO, (London)
    See above


There were a number of businesses that were praised by the judges and highly commended:

· Brie Read, CEO and Founder of Snag Group Ltd was awarded ‘Highly Commended’ for The Inflexion Entrepreneur of the Year Award

· Invopak received ‘Highly Commended’ for The Virgin Atlantic Customer Experience & Loyalty Award

· Lintbells received ‘Highly Commended’ for The Castle Corporate Finance Scale-Up Award

· Senseye received ‘Highly Commended’ for The Artificial Intelligence Business Award

· Faith in Nature received ‘Highly Commended’ for the The Lloyds Bank Small to Medium Sized Business of the Year Award

The Lloyds Bank National Business Awards is the UK's premier cross-industry awards programme for enterprise excellence. Previous winners include fitness sensation Joe Wicks, Timpson CEO James Timpson OBE, DPD UK, Hotel Chocolat, dementia newspaper Daily Sparkle and online fast fashion success story Missguided.