Media release: Beauty and period poverty organisations scoop doubles at BWS/WES Awards


BUSINESSES from all across the country have been recognised at the Business Women Scotland (BWS) and Women’s Enterprise Scotland (WES) 2018 Business Awards (full winners’ list below).

Established and emerging female business owners and operators from Wishaw, Bothwell, Glasgow, Moray, Greenock, Fife, Crieff, Stirling, Aberdeen, Newtongrange, Dundee, Forfar and Dunbar were presented with their awards at a glittering ceremony which took place in Glasgow’s Grand Central Hotel on Friday 2 November 2018.

Double winners on the night included Jo-Anne Chidley, of Wishaw’s Beauty Kitchen, who won Growth Business of the Year and International Growth Business of the Year, and Celia Hodsonl, of Dunbar-based Hey Girls, who scooped both the Social Impact of the Year and Start Up Business of the Year Awards.

Jo-Anne’s business, Beauty Kitchen, seeks to help change the face of beauty for the better. Their mission is to create the most natural, effective and sustainable products in the world and currently they have 120 products, distributed in over 1,400 stores, eight countries and 15 mini-Beauty Kitchens. Beauty Kitchen is acknowledged to  be also the first retail beauty company in the UK to be B Corporation certified and will soon be Cradle to Cradle certified too.

The judges all agreed Jo-Anne’s is a very driven company that has shown impressive growth both domestically and in non-UK markets, describing the results as “phenomenal”. Prior to setting up her business in 2014, Jo-Anne studied chemistry at University of Strathclyde before moving into a career in HR where she held senior posts at Avon Cosmetics Microsoft and Nestle.

Jo-Anne notes: “Inspiration comes from the small daily averages that my team put in everyday to support the overall Beauty Kitchen goal of becoming THE sustainable beauty company. The support given to me by family, friends and other entrepreneurs has been invaluable, and to anyone thinking of setting up their own business, I’d simply say, keep telling yourself, ‘If it has to be, it’s up to me’.”

Celia’s business, Hey Girls, was founded on the belief that access to sanitary products is a right, not a privilege, and that girls and women should be able to live their lives without fear of stigma or shame.

The business is recognised as the UK’s first and only Buy One Give One menstrual product social enterprise company and for every pack of Hey Girls sanitary products sold, the business give a pack away to someone in need in the UK via schools, colleges, foodbanks, women’s shelters and community centres.

Hey Girls also provide educational resources to UK girl’s and women’s support organisations. The judges all loved this business idea and what it stands for, citing it as “very timely and well thought out enterprise with a very dynamic team behind it”, and also expressing their admiration for the disruptive business model , noting that Hey Girls were “doing something different that married business with social awareness”.

Celia notes: “We are still only in our first year of trading, and aside from the recognition we’ve received form BWS/WES, I guess our first container of Hey Girls sani pads arriving into Grangemouth Port filled with 350,000 pads has been my business highlight to date! Moving forward, we hope to increase the Hey Girls team and our donation partners’ capacity, ambitions and collaborations.”

Now in their second year of collaboration, the BWS/WES Awards are hosted jointly by two of Scotland’s leading female business organisations, each dedicated to helping women find support and networking opportunities to allow them to strengthen their business. With the awards, BWS and WES collaborate to celebrate the ongoing achievements of Scottish women in business.

This year’s awards, supported by ScotlandCanDo, and sponsored by Scottish Enterprise, HIE, Business Gateway, Dentons, FSB and Royal Bank of Scotland, received a 200 per cent year-on-year increase in entries giving the judging panel the difficult task of choosing winners in each of the 14 hotly-contested categories.


Best use of social media

  • Kylie Reid – EGG Edinburgh
  • Kirsty Nicholls – Sweet Pea Media Edinburgh
  • WINNER  – Gillian Crawford – WOW (Scotland), Stirling

Board member of the year

  • JOINT WINNER – Ailsa Campbell – Crieff Community Trust, Crieff
  • Tracey Chrystal – Glasgow Credit Union Glasgow
  • JOINT WINNER Gillian Thomson – Inspire (Partnership through Life), Aberdeen
  • Tracy Griffin – Leith Festival Leith

Business woman of the year

  • Ann Johnson – Blaze Manufacturing Solutions Laurencekirk, Aberdeenshire
  • Jillian Anderson – Kilpatrick Blane Services Greenock
  • WINNER – Poonam Gupta OBE – PG Paper Company, Greenock
  • Becky Woodhouse – PURE Spa & Beauty Edinburgh

Change catalyst of the year

  • WINNER – Angie Foreman – Coca-Cola 5by20, Dundee
  • Pamela Stevenson – Fife Economy Partnership Glenrothes

Employer of the year

  • WINNER – Lynne McBurney – Arnold Clark, Glasgow
  • Kirsty Mackenzie – iMultiply Edinburgh
  • Jillian Anderson – Kilpatrick Blane Services Greenock
  • Yvonne Moffat – Net Talent Edinburgh
  • Becky Woodhouse – PURE Spa & Beauty Edinburgh

Growth business of the year

  • Araminta Campbell – Araminta Campbell Edinburgh
  • WINNER – Jo-Anne Chidley – Beauty Kitchen, Wishaw
  • Becky Woodhouse – PURE Spa & Beauty Edinburgh
  • Jude Cook – ShareIn Edinburgh

Innovator of the year

  • Jane MacDonald – Excel Vending East Kilbride
  • Alex Feechan – FINDRA Clothing Innerleithen
  • Kirsty Lunn – Molke Scone
  • Amanda Pickford – Shock Innovations Kelso
  • WINNER – Errin Todd – Todd Fish Tech, Fife

International growth of the year

  • Jo-Anne Chidley – Beauty Kitchen, Wishaw
  • Jennifer Mackenzie – TEFL Org Inverness

Mentor of the year

  • Jackie Flett – Hepburns Nail Lounge St Andrews
  • Liz Hoskin – Positive Qualities Larbert
  • Karen Moore – Karen Moore Biz Edinburgh
  • Jacqui Gale – Jacqui Gale International,  Newtongrange               

Rising star of the year

  • Heather McDaid and Laura Jones – 404 Ink Edinburgh
  • Lucy Ball – Greenroom Films Edinburgh
  • Anneli Ritari – Stewart iProspect Edinburgh
  • WINNER – Olivia Conlon – The Property Stagers, Bothwell

Rural business of the year

  • Emma Macalister Hall – Beinn an Tuirc Distillers Campbelltown
  • Alex Feechan – FINDRA Clothing Innerleithen
  • Kirsten Sinclair – The Hygge Clinic/Orkney Podiatry Orkney
  • WINNER – Jennifer Robertson – Spey, Moray

Social impact of the year

  • WINNER – Celia Hodson – Hey Girls CIC, Dunbar
  • Hermine Mbiku Makangu Kinkela – Mbikudi Glasgow
  • Sara Hawkins – Projekt 42 Edinburgh

Sole trader of the year

  • Gail Bryden – JustBe Botanicals
  • WINNER – Lindsey Anne Knox – Wishing Well Emotional Wellbeing Centre, Forfar

Start-up business of the year

  • HIGHLY COMMENDED – Arti Poddar – Guy & Beard, Glasgow
  • WINNER – Celia Hodson – Hey Girls CIC, Dunbar
  • Kirsty Lunn – Molke Scone


Susan Harkins, head of Business Gateway, Edinburgh

Yvonne Greaves, head of Women in Business, RBS, Nat West, Ulster Bank

Vicky Brock, co-founder of award winning Get Market Fit

Amanda Jones, employment and discrimination law specialist

Jeanette Forbes, founder of award winning, multi-national PCL Group

Celia Tennent, chief executive at Inspiring Scotland

Justine Mitchell, owner/director of award-winning Chamomile Sanctuary


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