Full list of winners of 2018 Kilkenny Business Awards revealed
CARTOON Saloon’s Nora Twomey received the President’s Award at this year’s Kilkenny Business Awards in acknowledgement of the outstanding contribution she has made to Kilkenny, and on the international stage.
The world-famous cartoon studio now employs over 200 people in Kilkenny and their work has received Academy, BAFTA, Golden Globe and Emmy Nominations.
Nora’s award was just one of the highlights of this year’s glittering gala event at the Lyrath Hotel last Saturday night, which was attended by over 500 people representing every walk of business life throughout the city and county.
Rudolf Hetzel, whose name is synonymous with Irish design, was given a standing ovation as he was announced as the recipient of The Lifetime Achievement Award.
Hughes Farming, the dynamic and growing Kells-based company which employs 41 people, won the Overall Business of the Year Award.
Local broadcaster KCLR 96fm was named Service Provider of the Year, and it was also a night to remember for Ballykeefe Distillery who scooped two separate awards.
Elsewhere, hurling star TJ Reid and some of his team at TJ Reid Fitness entertained the crowd with their unique take on the Haka, while Minister John Paul Phelan gave his tux a dry run ahead of his wedding to his fiancé, Claire McTernan, next month.
A new #ShopKilkenny initiative which has been spearheaded by Kilkenny Chamber of Commerce was another prominent feature of the gala black-tie event, which was hosted by RTE star Mary Kennedy.
Fittingly, the night was wrapped up as Mary led the 500-strong audience in a rousing rendition of The Fields of Athenry to toast Ireland’s incredible victory over the All-Blacks earlier in the evening.
2018 Kilkenny Business Awards: 19 individual category winners
Agri Business of the Year, sponsored by FBD: Hughes Farming
Social Enterprise of the Year, sponsored by Kilkenny Leader Partnership: Castlecomer Discovery Park
Craft Producer of the Year, sponsored by Kilkenny County Council: Yvonne Ross Jewellery
Information and Communications Technology, sponsored by Hermitage Genetics: Square Root Solutions
Excellence in Hospitality, sponsored by PRL Group: Paris Texas
Emerging New Business, sponsored by The Taxback Group: Roche Injury Clinic
Employee of the Year, sponsored by KBC Bank: Eileen Murphy from Appletree Montessori
Employer of the Year, sponsored by T Butler Engineering: CDS Architectural Metalwork
Environmental Award, sponsored by The Environmental Protection Agency: Ballykeefe Distillery
Family Business of the Year Award, sponsored by PWC: Farm & Industrial Supplies
Customer Service Excellence, sponsored by Ulster Bank: Smithwicks Experience
Exporter of the Year, sponsored by Bank of Ireland: Beotanics
Food & Drink Producer of the Year, sponsored by The Wine Centre: Ballykeefe Distillery
Culture, Heritage & Tourism Award, sponsored by The Kilkenny People: Smithwicks Experience
Innovation in Business, sponsored by Glanbia: Dairy Geyser
Investment in Skills, Training & Development of Staff, sponsored by SkillNets: CDS Architectural Metalwork
Retailer of the Year, sponsored by AIB: Belle Femme Lingerie
Service Provider of the Year, sponsored by VHI: KCLR 96fm
Small Business of the Year, sponsored by Kilkenny Local Enterprise Office: McCullagh Lupton Quinn