Award Categories

Best Social Enterprise Award

Sponsored by Newry & Mourne Enterprise Agency

Open to charitable organisations or community/social enterprises who can demonstrate how they have achieved sustainable social or environmental change over profit maximisation.

This is an online submission award.

In your application please address the following:

  • Positive impact on society and/or environment.
  • Innovation and individuality.
  • A clear breakdown of income.
  • Future growth and sustainability.

Newry & Mourne Co-Operative and Enterprise Agency was established in 1972 with the primary objective of promoting jobs and creating wealth in the Newry & Mourne area. NMEA, which was the first Enterprise Agency to be established in Northern Ireland, has evolved into a diverse organisation offering a wide range of services to its clients. Newry & Mourne Enterprise Agency which manages five enterprise centres and business parks across Newry and Mourne is a member of Enterprise Northern Ireland, the association of Enterprise Agencies in Northern Ireland. Since its launch of the Work In Newry (WIN) initiative in 1975 it has created thousands of jobs generating hundreds of millions of pounds in wages and purchases every year in the district.

Best Pub Award

Sponsored by Q Radio

Open to all licensed premises who can demonstrate a professional, safe and ambient environment adhering to best practice standards of operation in their sector to all customers.

This award is judged on your initial online submission (max. 300 words) and shortlisted entries will then undergo a mystery shop.   

At Q Radio we always have something to say, better music to play and we love to hear from our listeners, so tune in for Better Music, Local News, Sport and Traffic & Travel. We’ll give you a guaranteed laugh in the morning and the well deserved wind down at night. We’re growing bigger and better than ever and we’re delighted to bring you along for the ride.

We’re a local, friendly, genuine bunch and we love hearing from our listeners.  We’re all about more laughs, more music and more winning.  Tune in, click us, like us & follow us for your chance to win some fantastic prizes! 

Best Green Business Award

Sponsored by Canal Court Hotel


Open to businesses that, in the last 2 years have developed and implemented an environmental policy or principle, product or service.

This is an online submission award.

In your application please address the following:

  • Outline the businesses environmental strategies.
  • Detail how these strategies are developed and implemented by management and/or staff.
  • Explain how these strategies have a positive impact on society and/or the local environment.

 On 16 February 1998 the doors to Canal Court Hotel opened to an eagerly awaiting public. Formerly an old Mill, the Hotel was both constructed and continues to be run by local brothers John and Patrick McParland. Development over the past two decades has been such that bedroom numbers have doubled to 110, and a number of new Banqueting and Conference Suites were created to meet the demand. More recently in 2009 CC Spa officially opened adding to the range of Leisure facilities including a roof top hot tub and sun lounge area. Sponsoring this category of the Greater Newry Area Business Awards allows us to show our gratitude to the local community for their ongoing support and also assist Newry Chamber of Commerce and Trade with their continued efforts to promote business and tourism in Newry City. On behalf of the Proprietors, Management and Staff at Canal Court Hotel and Spa we would like to wish you continued success in the future.

Best Tourism Business Award

Sponsored by Ryco Marketing


Open to all tourism related businesses including hotels, guesthouses, bed & breakfasts, parks, leisure complexes, museums, galleries, outdoor activity groups and any other facility that attracts tourists to the area.

This is an online submission award.

In your application please address the following:

  • Outline the profile of the organisation including services offered, details of facilities and description of targeted customer segments.
  • A summary of your marketing and customer service strategies and how you have implemented it to achieve your company objectives; explain how you have overcome any obstacles.
  • How you meet and exceed customer expectations.
  • Define your business’s competitive edge over other industry competitors?
  • Please detail how you contribute to the Greater Newry Area’s Tourism Industry.

Established in 2006, we are a world-class digital marketing and e-commerce development company who specialise in all things Magento. Ryco has a diverse range of clients ranging from local to international and straddling all sectors of the economy. In the interim Ryco has developed and expanded its services to offer customers a one-stop shop for all their e-commerce and Magento requirements. By consistently delivering effective online solutions across all web platforms, with particular emphasis on mobile and responsive Magento solutions, we have provided businesses with the technology and digital marketing strategies to effect greater streams of revenue, best possible conversion rates, increased customer retention and maximum return on investment.

Best Use of Social Media Award

Sponsored by Newry Junior Chamber


The Best Use of Social Media Award recognises outstanding campaigns that leverage social media channels to engage with audiences in new and innovative ways.

Successful entries will show the judges the campaigns where firms have focused on innovative use of social media across all platforms – delivering tangible results and furthering their brands. Judges will wish to see:

  • Clear, relevant social media strategy highlighting specific objectives.
  • Evidence of how the social media campaign(s) played a key role as part of an wider business plan.
  • Presentation of measurements, results and evaluation using the relevant metrics (e.g.) Social Media Metric, Dashboard & Monitoring tools.

Formed in 2002 by the Senior Chamber to cater for the growing band of young influencers in the Newry and Mourne business network, NJC has grown significantly since then. Our members consist of young, local business people from both the employed and self-employed sectors and represent all aspects of business. NJC is dedicated to making a difference to business networks in the area and supporting the development of business leaders of the future. Our ethos is based on encouraging self-development in order to enhance our member’s business lives and their contribution to the local community.

Best Customer Service Award – (Multiple Retailer)

Sponsored by the Quays Shopping & Leisure Centre


Open to all branded retail stores with four or more branches throughout Northern Ireland committed to offering the highest levels of service to all customers.

This award will recognise the contributions of multiple retailers to the local community and retail industry.   

This award is judged on your initial online submission (max 300 words) and shortlisted entries will then undergo a mystery shop.   

The Quays is located at the heart of the city serving the local community with an extensive retail, leisure and dining offering. This includes some of the best known high street retailers alongside local independents as well as housing a number of prolific businesses on the site. The Quays Shopping Centre site provides employment for more than 3000 people from the greater Newry Area. Business excellence and customer service is a very important part of our offering in today’s competitive market. The Greater Newry Area Business Awards are an excellent way of acknowledging the effort that local and national businesses based in and around Newry City put into their service offering, their product delivery or to developing and growing their business.

Best Marketing Initiative Award

Sponsored by the Newry Democrat

Open to all businesses who have delivered an innovative, creative and effective marketing campaign which has delivered measurable business benefits such as increased profit, sales, usage or awareness.

This is an online submission award.

In your application please address the following:

  • An outline profile of your organisation.
  • Outline the key objectives, targets and outcomes of your marketing initiative or campaign including a timeline.
  • How the initiative was researched, implemented, monitored and assessed.
  • What marketing platform(s) did you use to deliver an effective marketing campaign,
  • Entrants should include evidence of successful campaign.
  • Provide detail on the success of this initiative in terms of business growth.

The Newry Democrat is the newest and brightest selling newspaper in the south Down, South Armagh, Louth area. Its circulation is growing continuously and readership is very strong, especially among the younger audience in our catchment area.

As Newry is a border town, the Newry Democrat is in a prime position to cover all local news and sports events both sides of the border. This also is an advantage to our advertisers as they are able to target shoppers south of the border.

The Newry Democrat has a weekly Entertainments supplement, including full TV listings, Sport, Property, Recruitment, Motoring and Entertainment sections. We also have correspondents in different areas of our community to report weekly on issues and events in the Newry and Mourne area.

Best Innovative Business Award

Sponsored by First Derivatives

Open to all businesses who can demonstrate a proven ability to create, nurture and develop innovative ideas or processes that have the potential to improve the overall performance of the business.

This is an online submission award.

In your application please address the following:

  • Outline your objectives in terms of innovation.
  • Give details on how your business has developed, planned & implemented creative and innovative ideas or processes.
  • How has innovation within your business improved performance? Please include tangible measures.
  • What procedures are in place to safeguard the sustainability and growth of innovation?
  • Outline your business’s approach to evaluating and monitoring innovation.

First Derivatives is a leading provider of products and consulting services to the capital markets industry. Focused on financial institutions that work cross-asset, often with multi-system and/or high volume trading activities, the Company scopes, designs, develops, implements and supports a broad range of mission critical data and trading systems across front, middle and back-office operations.

First Derivatives is a publicly held company, trading on the London Stock Exchange and Irish Stock Exchange. The Company is headquartered in Newry from where it has established its research and development centre, its Capital Markets Competency Centre and its near-shore support facilities. The Company has continued to expand its service offering and now has operational bases in Europe, North America, Asia and Australia to service its global client base. It is recognised as one of the fastest growing capital markets service providers in the world. First Derivatives now employs over 1,300 employees worldwide.

Best Export Business Award

Sponsored by Norbrook

The Best Export Award is open to all businesses involved in manufacturing or value added tradable services who sell their products and services outside Northern Ireland. This award recognises export activity in the Greater Newry Area and acknowledges international competitiveness among local businesses. This award will be looking to see how you have expanded your customer base and increased trade in these areas.

This is an online submission award.

In your application please address the following:

  • Outline your company profile.
  • Describe how you identified your export market and how you targeted the market.
  • Outline any key challenges you have faced and how you have overcome these challenges.
  • Detail the percentage of your export business.
  • How do you plan to maintain and expand your export market?

Norbrook was established in 1969, in Newry, Northern Ireland, UK, by the late Lord Ballyedmond. It is one of the largest, family owned, veterinary pharmaceutical companies in the world. Our portfolio of trusted animal health products is distributed in 120 countries through our Regional Sales Team and a network of longstanding distribution partners. We aim to be the first to market with generic veterinary pharmaceutical products with differentiators or enhancements in comparison to pioneer products. We have a history of product innovation; we invest significantly in Research and Development; and we have a strong pipeline of products, a key growth driver for the company.

Best Young Entrepreneur Award

Sponsored by O’Hare & McGovern Ltd

Open to individuals under the age of 35 who can demonstrate exceptional ambition, vision and leadership either within an organisation or operating as a sole trader.

Direct entries or nominations are accepted for this category.

The judges will be looking for an outstanding individual who can clearly demonstrate their experience and success within their business.

This is an online submission award.

In your application please address the following:

  • An outline of the company profile.
  • Details on your contribution to the development of the business over the last two years, including tangible measures and how this was achieved and manage.
  • Describe the key characteristics that you believe have made you a successful entrepreneur.
  • What are the key issues and challenges that you have addressed as a young business person?

O’Hare & McGovern Ltd are a Family owned chartered construction firm with leadership provided by founding members. Over the years second generation family members have worked closely with founding members to develop and expand the business. We have been trading profitably for over 40 years & pride itself on being financially robust with a very strong balance sheet; with zero debt. Experts in delivering excellence in construction, we employ a highly trained and mobile workforce experienced in delivery of complex and high quality projects within inner city locations.

O’Hare & McGovern bring value to each new project by utilising experienced and highly qualified professional staff during all phases of the construction process. On Design & Build projects, value engineering and life cycle costing is explored by our staff in an open and collaborative partnership with Clients and their teams to deliver best value. Our vast experience across a wide range of sectors in the construction industry has provided us with the key skills required to undertake projects throughout the UK and Ireland. 

Best New Business Award

  • Sponsored by Damolly Developments

Open to all businesses that have been established in the last two years and have been successful in transforming a business idea into a viable venture.

This is an online submission award.

In your application please address the following:

  • Outline the profile of your business and its objectives.
  • Describe one or two of your main products and/or services including details of your target market.
  • Outline any key challenges you have faced and how you have responded to these challenges.
  • Indicate the level of business development and performance to date.
  • Indicate the expected levels of growth over the next five years including product/service diversification and revenue.

Damolly Developments is a local property development company primarily set up to develop property in the Newry area. It is a family run Property company run by Father and Son Laurence and Eamon Breen. Laurence Breen has been involved in property development for over thirty years and we are committed to the development of high-quality property that enhances the lives of people in this city. Damolly Developments is proud to sponsor the best new business award.

Best Customer Service Award - Independent Retailer

Sponsored by Newry BID

Open to all independent retailers who are committed to offering excellent levels of service and a commitment to providing the best retail experience to all customers.  Independent retailers with four or less stores will qualify to enter this category.

This award is judged on your initial online submission (max 300 words) and shortlisted entries will then undergo a mystery shop.  

Newry Business Improvement District is a business led partnership dedicated to making Newry a better place to live in, work in, visit and invest in. Supported by our members and working with our partners we are investing in Newry to promote Newry, to support Newry business, to improve how Newry looks and on strategic matters to enable Newry to flourish.

Best Place to Eat Award

Sponsored by Autoline

Open to all premises in the catering sector that wish to be “the best” in the Greater Newry Area offering superb food and outstanding service.

Applicable to restaurants, bistros, hotels, bars and coffee shops!

This award is judged on your initial online submission (max 300 words) and shortlisted entries will then undergo a mystery shop.   

As a condition of entering this award you are required to provide the judges with a complimentary voucher to cover the cost of a meal for two guests plus soft drink/tea/coffee. On receipt of your application you will be issued with a voucher to complete and return to competition organisers to progress with your application.

Autoline Insurance Group is one of the fastest growing financial services companies offering a broad range of insurance, mortgage and financial products to both personal and business clients across Northern Ireland, as well as the broader UK market.

Established since 1975, Autoline is now widely regarded as a leading broker, enjoying strong partnering relationships with Lloyds of London as well as most of the world’s largest insurers, including Allianz, Aviva, AXA, Royal & Sun Alliance and Zurich.

Best Small Business Award

Sponsored by Translink

Open to all small independently owned businesses that have 10 or less full-time equivalent staff who can demonstrate key growth and management techniques that have enabled it to excel and stand out from all other small businesses.

This is an online submission award.

In your application please address the following:

  • Outline your company background.
  • Describe your key areas of growth.
  • Highlight unique aspects of your business either in management style, service or products that set you apart.
  • Outline any key challenges you have faced and how you have responded to these challenges.
  • Describe how you will maintain your current success.

Translink is the brand name of the 3 operating companies which operate scheduled bus and rail services in Northern Ireland, including cross-border and cross-channel links.

 Translink is a convenient shorthand name to describe the combined operations of the 3 companies and effectively communicates the co-ordinated nature of bus and rail services. The operations of Metro, NI Railways and Ulsterbus are managed by a single integrated Executive Team.

Our vision is to be your first Choice for Travel in Northern Ireland. Our mission is to deliver a transformation in public transport, providing integrated services which connect people, enhance the economy and improve the environment, enabling a thriving Northern Ireland.

Best Business Growth Award

Sponsored by Southern Regional College

Open to all businesses that, during the past two years, have experienced growth in the areas of products, services, staff, customers, market share thus securing profitability.

This is an online submission award.

In your application please address the following:

  • Outline the profile of your business and its key objectives.
  • Describe one or two of your main products and/or services including details of target markets that have attributed to your business growth.
  • Outline any key challenges you have faced and how you have responded to these challenges.
  • Detail how you plan to sustain the level of growth achieved.

At Southern Regional College we pride ourselves on being able to offer students a diverse range of Higher Education learning experiences. Our portfolio of higher level professional and technical courses is broad ranging and we ensure that all our programmes, be they degrees, diplomas, certificates or professional qualifications, are of a quality surpassing that offered at university. 

Best Customer Service Award - Service Sector

Sponsored by Boots Ireland

Open to all businesses in the service and hospitality sector; this award recognises the commitment to customer service as core to their business operations.

This award is judged on your initial online submission (max 300 words) and shortlisted entries will then undergo a mystery shop.

Boots Ireland is a leading pharmacy-led health and beauty retailer with 80 Boots Ireland stores and just over 2,000 employees. Boots Ireland’s purpose is to help customers look and feel better than they ever thought possible. Customers are at the heart of the Boots Ireland business. We are committed to providing exceptional customer and patient care, being the first choice for pharmacy and healthcare and offering innovative products ‘only at Boots’, such as No7 – all delivered with the great value our customers love.

Established in Ireland since 1996, the Boots brand is at the heart of the communities it serves.

Boots Ireland is a member of Walgreens Boots Alliance, the first global pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing enterprise, whose purpose is to help people across the world lead healthier and happier lives.

Best Family Business Award

Sponsored by First Trust Bank

This award is for established family businesses across all industry sectors that can demonstrate sustained success across a broad range of measures.

In your application please address the following:

Your business must be managed by family members and you must be able to demonstrate the involvement of at least two generations of family members who are working in the business.

In your application please address the following:

  • Provide an outline of your family business, staff numbers and locations.
  • Explain who the family members are who work in the business, their roles and length of service.
  • Outline your plans for the future, for the next generation and any key succession planning that you have put in place to ensure the business sustains.

This is an online submission award.

With a long history of supporting the local business community in Newry, First Trust Bank believes the Newry Chamber’s pro-business ethos is in line with its own.  In Newry we have a dedicated team of business experts on hand to offer specialist advice across a range of industry sectors – from agriculture to manufacturing to hospitality.  First Trust Bank also offers a diverse range of products and services to suit specific customer needs such as our Business Growth Fund, our AgriFood Fund, Treasury and Foreign Exchange Services, Private Banking and iBusinessBanking.

Best Use of Technology Award

Sponsored by BT

This award seeks to find those businesses that have used various forms of technology to drive efficiencies, sales, profits, and operational excellence throughout their business.

Judges will wish to see how your business has:

  • Used technology to stand out from its competitors.
  • Exceeded the expectations of its customers through use of technology.
  • Embraced new technology to improve efficiency, service levels and quality of end-product.
  • A continuing forward thinking approach to creating business success.
  • Demonstrated a creative and different way of working to keep the business fresh and responsive to changing customer needs.

This is an online submission award.

BT operates across Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland as an all island operation, headquartered in Belfast and Dublin, and employing close to 3,000 people.

We continue to invest significantly in network infrastructure North and South. Northern Ireland has one of the most advanced communications infrastructures in the world and was the first region outside London to achieve 100% broadband availability. 

Our approach is straightforward — everything we do is dedicated to helping our customers thrive in a rapidly changing world. Our priority is clear — customer satisfaction is our number one goal and will ensure our long term success on the island of Ireland.

Best Place to Work Award

Sponsored by The Irish News

This award seeks to find those businesses which provide an excellent, supportive, inclusive, secure and nurturing environment for their employees.

In your application please address the following:

Entrants will be asked to explain their HR policies and the benefits, support structure etc. that they provide for their key asset, their employees.

In your application please address the following:

  • Provide an outline of the business. What it is, where it is and what you do.
  • Outline the team make-up. Provide staff numbers and years of service details.
  • Explain how you look after and appreciate your team. What do you do that goes the ‘extra mile’ for your valued employees.

This is an online submission award.

160,000 people read The Irish News every day – 6,000 more than a year ago.

A daily diet of award winning Business coverage, News, Sport, Opinion and Features!

The Greater Newry Diaspora Award

Sponsored by UK Export Finance

This headline award will be presented to a chosen individual in recognition of achievements abroad in their chosen field of business, commerce and industry.  The chosen recipient will be awarded this prestigious award in recognition of his or her commitment to delivering export growth and success in their chosen field and will be a valuable resource for the Greater Newry Area abroad. 

Our mission is to ensure no viable UK export fails for lack of finance or insurance while operating at no net cost to the taxpayer.

Helping exporters win contracts:
The attractive financing terms we can give to buyers of UK goods and services can help exporters make their offering more competitive.

Helping exporters fulfil contracts:
We help companies access the working capital they need to fulfil a contract, giving them the ability to take on more contracts and increase turnover.

Helping exporters get paid:
We can offer insurance against the risk of not being paid, or of not being able to recover the costs of fulfilling an export contract.

Outstanding Contribution to the Greater Newry Area Award

Sponsored by Buttercrane Shopping Centre

This lifetime dedication award will be presented to an inspiring individual who has made an outstanding contribution to improving the welfare and prosperity of the people of the Greater Newry Area through areas such as business growth, new jobs creation, charitable fundraising or volunteering.  This individual will have empowered generations of local citizens to take control of their own destiny ultimately establishing a tangible legacy in developing the local economy.

Buttercrane has been in the heart of Newry since 1988 and has gone from strength to strength as the largest and most successful shopping destination in the region attracting some 6 million shoppers annually from across the Greater Newry Area and beyond. Anchored by Dunnes Stores, M&S, and Primark and with 50+ other stores, featuring the very best in international and local fashion and services, Buttercrane has universal appeal.

Here for you in the Heart of Newry!