The Business Awards for Wales are an initiative of the IWA and the Western Mail, in association with PwC
The finalists can be unveiled in the Entrepreneur of the Year category in the inaugural IWA/Western Mail Business Awards.
They are founder and managing director of one of Wales’ fastest-growing law firms NewLaw, Helen Molyneux; co-founder and managing director of translation business Wolfestone Translation, Roy Allkin; and founder and director of forensic science consultancy, Forensic Resources, Abigail Carter.
The three were selected from nearly 40 applications made on behalf of, or from, leading entrepreneurs across Wales – and in a broad range of sectors.
Ms Carter, who is still in her 20s, founded her business in Cardiff in 2008. It has established itself as a leading forensic analysis and expert witness consultancy.
Its expansion strategy includes providing more training expertise to solicitors and police offers, a well as other forensic specialists – as well as driving new business overseas.
High-profile cases include recently working on the ballistics and audio evidence from the Raoul Moat case.
Serial entrepreneur and Ammanford-born Roy Allkin set up Swansea-based translation and language services firm Wolfestone in 2006 with co-director Anna Bastek.
Using innovative software technology the business, which has a global team of translators, allows clients to see the progress in real time of translation work, including technical documents.
Next year the business is looking to achieve a 100% turnover growth rate – with longer-term a plan to exit via a sale or possible flotation.
Former Eversheds partner Ms Molyneux established New Law in 2004. Today the firm, which specialises in the legal insurance market, is looking to expand into other areas such as employment law.
Very much a forward-thinking firm, without a traditional law firm partner structure, it now employs more than 250 staff and increased income by more than nine times since its launch. Caerphilly-born Ms Molyneux is firmly focused on continuing to grow the business.
The Entrepreneur of the Year Award is being sponsored by Cardiff Business School. Its Dean, Professor George Boyne, said: “Welsh entrepreneurs play a vital role in supporting the economy and their contribution is likely to become ever more important in the emerging economic climate.
“At Cardiff Business School we encourage our students to be forward thinking and entrepreneurial in their approach and their attitudes to business. We are therefore delighted to be sponsoring the Entrepreneur of the Year award, which recognises those at the forefront of this crucial business activity in Wales.”
The overall awards, across nine categories, are being sponsored by professional advisory firm PwC.
Its chairman for Wales and the west of England, Rob Lewis, said:
“PwC is delighted to be the headline supporter of The Western Mail and Institute of Welsh Affairs 2011 Business Awards. PwC Wales enjoys a long history of working alongside Welsh companies and organisations, and of supporting their efforts to attain success, achieve profitability and create employment. We all recognise that these businesses have experienced extremely challenging conditions over the past few years as global economic issues have impacted on virtually each and every one of them. We feel there has never been a better time to run a national business awards scheme for Wales. It is essential in the current climate that we identify and recognise the success stories within the Welsh economy.”
The winners will be unveiled at an awards ceremony at Cardiff’s Coal Exchange on November 25.