1st Position dancewear warns a lack of manufacturing capacity and skills in the UK is limiting growth

International Dance Supplies (IDS) which makes its best-selling 1st Position dancewear in the UK has put out a call for more producers – whilst warning that a shortage of skills and support for smaller UK manufacturers is limiting its growth potential.  Producing over 220,000 leotards in the UK last year, the company has been on the hunt for more UK-based manufacturers with the capacity, and specialist skills to help meet the increased demand for its 1st Position ‘Made in Britain’ dancewear range.

Designed at its Devon headquarters and produced by hand-picked manufacturers in the UK, 1st Position dancewear is exported to over 55 countries across the world.  Enjoying its highest-ever level of orders, sales to the US alone, increased by 20% last year.  


New Brand Launch

be unlimited is a new British luxury silk brand that has been launched to celebrate individuality and self expression. be unlimited has taken a fresh look at print and pattern to produce unique items that are made in Britain and designed to be treasured for a lifetime. be unlimited has just launched the bu collection and this is now available online via www.thebucollection.com. This collection offers an explosion of colour in fun ways that open up numerous new possibilities for any wardrobe.


National awards, held in association with Lloyds Bank, highlight British business excellence and innovation

  • London, 26th November, 2014: The Real Business Growing Business Awards, held in association with Lloyds Bank and supported by the CBI, announced the 2014 winners last night at a ceremony held at the London Marriott Hotel.

A wide range of businesses were celebrated at the ceremony, with categories ranging from Retail Hero and Digital Champion to Brand Builder of the Year and Young Company of the Year: manufacturing and engineering continued to defy economic expectations with another string of successes, following a strong showing by the sectors last year.

Winners in this space included Export Champion of the Year Alba Power, Innovator of the Year Plumis, LION Trackhire, which took home Growing Business of the Year: Smaller Company (turnover less than £25m) and HL Plastics, winner of Growing Business of the Year: Mid-Sized Company (turnover £25m-£50m).

Britain’s manufacturing heritage and engineering expertise was also represented by Peter Digby of Xtrac Limited, who was crowned Entrepreneur of the Year. Xtrac is a world leader in the design and manufacturer of transmission systems, with motorsport, transport, marine and defence clients. During Peter’s 28 years at the helm the business has grown to a team of over 260. In 1997, he led a management buyout involving the entire workforce.

Despite pressures including Eurozone uncertainties and increasing regulation, winning companies were able to demonstrate continued success and impressive growth. Innovation was an important theme cited by the judges, with numerous entries commended for having a disruptive impact on their respective sectors.

First Utility, the UK’s largest and fastest-growing independent energy supplier, was awarded Growing Business of the Year: Larger Company (turnover £50m+). Described as “potentially the fastest-growing £1bn revenue company in the UK in the next 12 months” the judges cited its disruptive nature and incredible growth figures, which have seen revenues double year on year for the past four years.

The “Made in Britain” Award was won by high-end tableware company Steelite. Judges commended the company, favoured by hotel chains including Hilton Hotels and Four Seasons, for turning around its industry and demonstrating scale, stating it had “shown real innovation in its products and marketing” with “a clear route map for future growth”.

Multi-award winning global technology company Ve Interactive was presented with the Digital Champion award, having been identified by judges as the business they would most like to invest in.


High-end tableware company Steelite International wins business accolade

The Real Business Growing Business Awards, held in association with Lloyds Bank and supported by the CBI, announced the 2014 winners Tuesday night at a ceremony held at the London Marriott Hotel.

The “Made in Britain” Award was won by Staffordshire based Steelite International. The business, which has a UK workforce of over 1000 at its Middleport factory, is a high-end tableware company favoured by hotel chains including Hilton Hotels and Four Seasons. It also supplies clients as diverse as the Ministry of Defence, Whitebread and Little Chef.

Steelite International has showrooms across the globe and supplies businesses in 140 countries. It has a particularly strong CSR policy, covering everything from industry leading recycling programmes to extensive, education focused staff training schemes.


Blackburn based Meltech is a classic British engineering company with a solid reputation for its expertise in process engineering built over a number of years. Through continuous development in their products Meltech have remained at the forefront of their specialist field

Meltech delivers high performance production and handling equipment and support services to different segments of the worldwide wire, cable and metals processing markets. Meltech’s CRE (Continous Rotary Extrusion) equipment offers an innovative total process solution to ensure fast, successful and safe introduction of the machinery customer’s sites.


Record number of entries for this year’s awards will see businesses from right across the UK compete for prestigious accolade

London, 13 October, 2014: Following a successful quarter for the UK’s SME and entrepreneurial market, the shortlist for this year’s Real Business Growing Business Awards, held in association with Lloyds Bank and supported by the CBI, is announced today.

From Brewdog and Graze to We Are Social and First Utility, the range of businesses and sectors in this year’s 60 strong shortlist demonstrates the vast array of business excellence present across the UK. Now in its 16th year, 2014 has seen a record number of award entries across the 12 categories, which include Retail Hero and Export Champion of the Year. Shortlisted companies include

Shortlisted companies include Orangebox, Rock Chemicals, Steelite, Heck Foods, Meltech, Bulldog Skincare