Past Awards

Celebrating Local Businesses

Inverclyde Chamber of Commerce Awards

Bee's Knees Awards 2019

Kip Marina, Inverkip - Friday 7 June 2019

Dr Gerry McCarthy lifted the top President’s Award in the Inverclyde Chamber of Commerce Bee’s Knees Business Awards 2019, in recognition of his special and significant contribution to Inverclyde business community over his 30+ year career.

The current managing director of Diodes Incorporated joined ten category winners who took the top accolades at the sixteenth annual Bee’s Knees gala dinner and awards ceremony, held in front of an audience of 250 in the Marquee at the Chartroom, Kip Marina.

Category winners were awarded a crystal trophy and framed certificate. For their own promotional purposes, media sponsor Gryffe Studios provides them with a DVD showcasing their business, which was screened for the first time at the gala awards dinner.

Bee’s Knees Business Awards sponsors include The Start-Up Drinks Lab and Love & Humphries. Pictures from Alasdair Bryson of Feature Developments.


Inverclyde Business of the Year

Sponsored by Specsavers Greenock

Winner: Holiday Inn Express

Holiday Inn Express Hotel Greenock is a modern, 71-bedroom hotel located on the main road into Greenock, ideally situated for a variety of local destinations and easy access to the Highlands and Islands. The hotel benefits from an active business and growing leisure market mix, which is sustained and has been developed over the past eight years to assist the hotel in achieving recognition locally, company-wide franchisee and globally. HIE is a local hotel that is staffed by local people who strive together towards ensuring Holiday Inn Express Hotel Greenock delivers excellence in all that they do.

Runners-Up: Ferguson Marine Engineering and Green Oak Funeral Services



Best Use of Innovation or Digital Technology

Sponsored by Waterfront Cinema

Winner: The Balmore Group

Balmore Group (Scotland) is an industry leader in unmanned aviation inspections, providing full though life asset maintenance services from initial inspection, repair and specialist cleaning of high-value assets. Operating in various sectors including construction, rail, offshore and renewables, The Balmore Group offers the expertise of over 40 years in particular high aspect/difficult access works, roofing, rope access, industrial cleaning and drone inspection services. Balmore offers groundbreaking cloud-based inspection software technology to allow clients to access asset inspection data anywhere in the world.

Runners-Up: RIG Arts and Ferguson Marine Engineering



Inspiring Professional of the Year

Sponsored by Inverclyde Council

Winner: Leapmoor LLP

Leapmoor LLP is a land and marine development and management consultancy established in 2017 by partners Gary McCann and Alison McKay, both highly experienced chartered professionals. Working within the ports, energy, infrastructure and regeneration sectors, we act as the client’s representative on construction projects, managing their contractors and consultants. Leapmoor also provides advice and support to clients on development projects including project and contract management as well as ground risk services and environmental due diligence and regulatory compliance. Leapmoor help clients get the best out of their projects while also meeting the needs of funders, regulatory authorities and local communities. Leapmoor supports clients throughout the entire project cycle, adding value, providing efficiency savings and ensuring excellence as standard.

Runners-Up: Quarriers and Mind Mosaic



Best Food And Drink Business

Sponsored by Riverside Inverclyde

Winner: Tonino's Pizzeria

Tonino’s Pizzeria and Delicatessen specialises in top quality Italian cuisine bringing good mood food to Inverclyde, serving up delicious antipasti platters and pasta dishes. Tonino's pizza dough is made fresh on-site daily with a range of toppings including high-quality Italian meats and a selection of cheeses. Whether you’re looking for a delicious sandwich from the deli bar for lunch, a place to relax over a coffee, or somewhere to enjoy pizza with friends, then Tonino’s is the place to be.

Runners-Up: The Start-Up Drinks Lab and The New Chocolate Company



Emerging Young Talent

Sponsored by Holiday Inn Express

Winner: Carys Knox - Waterfront Cinema

Carys joined West Coast Cinemas in 2016 at 18 years old as a part-time Cinema Operative. During this period Carys demonstrated her passion for customer service and all things cinema. In mid-2017, Carys started developing a role for herself within the company by studying marketing and gaining knowledge of tools which could help enhance the business. Since then, Carys’ hard work and determination have seen her take up a new role as Duty Manager and Marketing, helping to motivate the team and helping the company grow and reach its targets across both cinemas in Greenock and Dunoon.

Runners Up: Mhairi McCann (Young Scientists Journal) and Abby Allen (Hartbeeps)



Emerging Young Talent

Sponsored by The Chartroom

Winner: EE/BT Enterprise

BT Enterprise Customer Service, are a recently formed team (previously BT Business and Public Sector) of approx. Seventeen thousand people based around the Globe. ‘Customer Service’ is predominantly based in the UK with approximately 7,500 people. Our extensive portfolio of products provides a wide range of diverse solutions for our customers, from a straightforward telephone line to a sophisticated international IT network.

Runners Up: Mind Mosaic and Holiday Inn Express



Most Inspiring Sole Trader

Sponsored by Succession Wealth

Winner: Nicola Temporal (A Spoonful of Sugar)

A Spoonful of Sugar is a baker of homemade Scottish tablet using 100% Scottish ingredients and a family recipe that is three generations old. Everything is freshly made to order and hand packed, and it specialises in bespoke Wedding Favours and a supplier to local shops, cafes and restaurants within Inverclyde. The business took great pleasure in creating and perfecting the ‘Tablet-Based Cupcake’ - these are bases made from tablet with homemade buttercream and topped with anything you desire. A Spoonful of Sugar plans to carry forward its family traditions in baking and confectionary and aims to inspire people with a passion for baking; anything is possible with hard work and determination.

Runners Up: Penelope Hof (PJH Bookkeeping) and Rory MacDonald (Golden Oak Restoration)



Excellence in Skills and Learning

Sponsored by Diodes Incorporated

Winner: Specsavers (Greenock)

Specsavers Greenock believes in delivering outstanding customer service. It has achieved this through supporting and training its staff, investing in creating a fantastic environment through its 2017 expansion and refit, as well as investment in the latest clinical equipment and technology. Specsavers has expanded to offer its outstanding customer service in both Hear care and Home Eye testing services. It reviews its customer feedback on a daily and weekly basis, using the information to shape training and development plans for the store. It feels that seeing its local market share grow from 41% to 47% in just under three years, is recognition of its outstanding customer service.

Runners Up: IBM and West College Scotland



Most Promising New Business

Sponsored by Auto-Tec Scotland

Winner: The Start-Up Drinks Lab

The Start-Up Drinks Lab is a platform for innovation for all drink companies. Focusing predominantly on craft drinks, SUDL helps its clients to take their ideas from concept to shelf. From its facility in Kelburn Business Park, Port Glasgow, SUDL has worked with clients on recipe development, branding, small batch bottling and distribution. Having launched in June 2018, SUDL has already worked with over 70 clients, produced more than 500,000 bottles and launched more than 15 new products to market. Its clients include start-up and SME brands, large companies looking for NPD, and own label hotels and restaurants.

Runners Up: Clyde Tool Hire and McArthur Scott



Proud to be in Inverclyde

Sponsored by West College Scotland

Winner: Ferguson Marine

Ferguson Marine is leading the race to prove, build and launch some of the world’s most innovative vessels: two of the UK’s first ever dual-fuel marine diesel/LNG ferries; the world’s first air-cushion barge; leading the EU consortium, HySeas III, to launch the world’s first zero-emissions, hydrogen car and passenger ferry; leading project HyDIME – retrofitting hydrogen fuelling into an existing diesel vessel; and in two of the final three consortia bidding for the MoD, £1.25billion Type 31e Frigate contract. Ferguson Marine now has over 300 permanent employees – over 75% living in Inverclyde and a burgeoning Apprenticeship scheme, to help secure a long-term future for shipbuilding and Innovation in Inverclyde.

Runners Up: Ocean Youth Trust and Holiday Inn Express



Presidents Award

Dr Gerry McCarthy

The Chamber awarded Dr McCarthy the highest accolade in recognition of his career at Diodes Incorporated in Greenock, where in his role as Managing Director he helped to secure its recent acquisition from Texas Instruments, having worked at the plant for over 20 years. There was also recognition of his roles in supporting local charities, including Reach for Autism and his role as Chair at regeneration body Ri, which he has held since 2014.



Charity Partner

Mind Mosaic

Mind Mosaic is an Inverclyde based counselling and therapy charity which was founded in July 2012. As a result of growth and success of the charity, Mind Mosaic has split their adult and child services into two new locations in Inverclyde.