Winning formula secures business title for research centre
An Invergowrie based international scientific research organisation has developed a winning formula to be crowned Perthshire’s top business.
The James Hutton Institute lifted the Perthshire Chamber of Commerce 2016 Business of the Year title at a glittering Star Awards ceremony in Crieff at the weekend.
Dr Pete Iannetta and Euan Caldwell from the Institute celebrated with fellow staff after securing both the Business Innovation and the Contribution to Sustainability category trophies before going on to claim the coveted overall title.
A sell-out audience of nearly 400 heard how the James Hutton Institute, which employs around 300 people at its Perth and Kinross centre and a further 300 elsewhere, captured the judges’ votes for their creativity and drive which have earned them international acclaim.
Chamber President Ross Graham described the winner as a superb example of cutting edge innovation and praised their development of simple – yet highly effective – practical solutions towards sustainability.
“The James Hutton Institute is a very worthy and exciting winner – probably Perth and Kinross’s best kept business secret,” said Mr Graham. “They are at the forefront of meeting the global challenges of providing food, energy and water from finite land and natural resources – working in partnership with people, organisations and governments to deliver practical solutions.
“I’m delighted to see an organisation working within our vital agriculture sector crowned Perthshire’s Business Star,” he added. “The Institute plays a key role in all our futures and is a valuable asset as a local employer and economy driver.”
The institute is a world-leading scientific research organisation focused on land, crops, water and the environment. They have centres at Invergowrie and Aberdeen and work 1600 acres throughout Scotland doing research work and commercial farming.
A delighted Dr Iannetta said the Perthshire Business Of The Year accolade was one all the Institute staff could take huge pride in.
“It’s overwhelming,” he said. “To secure two separate category awards was such a thrill. To then go on and take the top title is really humbling when we see the quality of local businesses we were judged against. We’re absolutely thrilled to receive this accolade from Perthshire Chamber of Commerce and our business peers in Perth and Kinross.”
The glittering event also saw the Chamber present an Outstanding Ahievement Award to recently retired Perth Racecourse Manager and former jocky Sam Morshead.
A standing ovation greeted Sam as he took the stage after guests heard of his outstanding contribution to the local business community, tourism industry and economy during his 25 years at Perth Racecourse where he drove forward a multi-million-pound investment and redevelopment programme to make it one of the country’s leading venues for jockeys and racegoers alike.
Chamber President Ross Graham reflected on “an outstanding evening” which saw 13 businesses shine as new Star category winners, showcasing outstanding contributions across the whole spectrum of local business – from tourism, food and drink production and independent retailing to e-commerce, sustainability and business growth.
“Perthshire Chamber of Commerce Business Star Awards repeatedly delivers a tremendous celebration of the vibrant business community in this area,” he added. “It’s wonderful to be able to give them a platform on which to shine and to showcase the amazing quality of businesses based here.”
This year’s business showcase event – sponsored by the Binn Group – was hosted by journalist Maureen Young and Crieff Hydro Chief Executive Stephen Leckie.
An after-show party – sponsored by DWK Office Solutions – saw the party continue into the early hours with high-flying entertainment by Adventure Circus and dancing to live band Groove Culture.