Swindon-based construction group Beard has been named as the West of England’s top company in the prestigious Business of the Year awards.
The firm beat five other finalists to claim the prestigious title in the annual awards sponsored by international accountants PwC.
Beard chief executive Mark Beard was presented with the coveted trophy at a glittering awards dinner in Bristol last night.
It was second time lucky for the firm, which missed out last year despite being among the finalists.
The family-run business has had a busy year in challenging trading conditions and has already won a number of awards. The firm, which also has offices in Oxford and Guildford, is increasingly winning work in Bath and Bristol. In the year to December 31 it achieved a 21% rise in pre-tax profits to £1.4m on revenues up 13% at £77.3m.
The judging panel, which was drawn from leading businesses and financial institutions in the region, was impressed with Beard’s significant and continued investment in training and developing staff to ensure the long-term success of the business for future generations – a strategy it has followed since the company started in 1892.
Mr Beard said: “I am deeply grateful to all our people whose hard work and commitment have contributed to this tremendous achievement.
“Beard’s long-term business strategy has historically focused on two key areas: investing in training and developing our people because they drive our success, and a company-wide commitment to prompt and faultless project delivery.”
Beard now joins the ranks of some of the region’s most-respected companies by claiming the award. Previous winners read like a who’s who of business in the West of England and have included Dyson, Mitie and, two years ago, Swindon-based Smiths News.
The firm clinched victory in the category for businesses turning over more than £25m.
Other finalists in the category were Chippenham-based green energy pioneers Good Energy, Cornwall-based workshop equipment manufacturer Bott, Bristol neighbourhood food-led cafe/bars Loungers, Pendennis Shipyard in Falmouth and Plymouth-based luxury bed manufacturer Vi-Spring.
Pictured: Mark Beard, left, receives the West of England Business of the Year trophy from PwC tax partner and chair of judges Nick Morgan