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Veuve Clicquot business women awards unveil shortlist

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The finalists for the Veuve Clicquot Business Woman Award have been announced today on International Women’s Day. Since 1972, the awards have honoured women impacting different aspects of business today and celebrate those who share the same qualities as Madame Clicquot: an original trailblazer; an enterprising spirit, and her courage and the determination necessary to achieve her business goals.

The distinguished Veuve Clicquot Business Woman Award is the longest running award for female business leaders and has recognised some of the UK’s most notable business women, from Liv Garfield, CEO at Severn Trent and formerly the FTSE 100’s youngest female CEO and Anya Hindmarsh, renowned fashion designer.

The 2019 Business Woman Award finalists are:

  • Alex Mahon, CEO, Channel 4
  • Jo Whitfield, Retail Chief Executive, Co-op

The finalists selected by the panel of judges demonstrated the highest evidence of success against the nomination criteria. The panel outlined Alex Mahon’s determination in strengthening Channel 4 in a changing media environment, whilst being the first female CEO of a major UK broadcaster. The panel also recognised Jo Whitfield’s work innovating in the grocery sector, as well as being the first female CEO of a British food retailer.

This year sees the continuation of the Veuve Clicquot Social Purpose Award, which was introduced in 2017. The Social Purpose Award celebrates business women championing social purpose beyond their core business case, encapsulating Madame Clicquot’s passion for establishing and fostering long-standing business relationships, and a commitment to business beyond profit.

The finalists for the Social Purpose Award are:

  • Sherry Coutu CBE, Founder and CEO, Founders4Schools
  • Cecilia Crossley, Founder, From Babies with Love

Both finalists selected by the judging panel demonstrated strong evidence of core social responsibilities. For Sherry, this is her work enabling young people to make informed decisions about their future by connecting them to leaders of successful businesses across the job market. For Cecilia, her social purpose sits at the heart of her business, with 100% of all profits from baby clothing sales donated to initiatives that help orphaned and abandoned children across the world.

Jude Kelly CBE, first ever winner of the Social Purpose Award and founder of the Southbank Centre’s Women of World Festival said, “The nature of business is fundamentally changing to become more purpose-driven and I’m proud to be part of a platform that champions those women who are leading this change.

“In today’s business environment, it is critical that we not only celebrate those who are innovating and creating new concepts for social good, but those like Cecilia and Sherry who are focused on improving the prospects of the next generation.”

Now in its sixth year, The Veuve Clicquot New Generation Award finalists were also announced today. This award recognises the pioneers of tomorrow’s successful businesses and continues to be synonymous with unearthing and celebrating exciting new female talent in the UK. The shortlist reflects the core attributes that Madame Clicquot exhibited in her formative years, such as a fearless approach and innovative thinking to achieve her goals.

The New Generation Award finalists are:

  • Susie Ma, Founder & CEO, Tropic Skincare
  • Poppy Gustafsson, CEO, Darktrace

Judges were impressed by both candidates’ abilities to drive business growth through innovation. Judges noted that Poppy has driven significant growth for Darktrace by being the first company to offer cybersecurity based on AI. Susie at Tropic Skincare has grown a multi award-winning natural skincare brand in a busy market through her proprietary formulations and social selling framework.

Cassandra Stavrou, member of the judging panel and founder of Propercorn said, “This year’s New Generation shortlist represents the huge breadth of expertise coming into the business world from the next generation of female leaders. Both Poppy and Susie are at the top of their game in their respective sectors, with unique innovation that shines through in the strength of their companies.”

Julie Nollet, marketing & communications director, Moët Hennessy UK said, “We are excited to be announcing the 2019 Business Woman Award shortlist of strong, modern female business leaders on International Women’s Day.

“The nominees this year demonstrate outstanding ability to forge business success in the face of rapidly changing business landscapes, encapsulating the determination shown by our founder, Madame Clicquot in achieving her business goals. She achieved the impossible by being one of the first female entrepreneurs the world had ever seen, and we are proud to continue her legacy of business acumen, innovation and desire to succeed.”

The winners of the three awards will be announced on Thursday 23rd May 2019. The award’s high-profile judging panel is comprised of business leaders from various industries, including Caroline Michel, CEO of Peters, Frasers & Dunlop, Casandra Stavros, CEO of ProperCorn, Sian Westermann, Senior Adviser in Rothschild & Co’s Global Advisory division, Vanessa Kingori, Publisher of British Vogue, and Moira Benigson, Founder of MBS Group.




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