Media Release: Countdown to celebrating women of achievement

THE search for the 2010 ‘Women of the Year’ – including candidates for the coveted Businesswoman of the Year title – is now underway, as the countdown to the Annual Women of the Year Luncheon and Awards event begins.

The gala ceremony takes place on 15 October 2010 in the heart of England, at the Hilton Metropole, adjacent to the NEC.

A sell-out year-on-year and attended by several hundred high-profile and talented guests, the Luncheon and Awards is the best kept secret outside of London.

Now in its 28th year of fund raising for official charity, Vitalise, this prestigious event presents a formidable networking opportunity for all who attend.

The organisers have an awesome line up in 2010, with speakers led by household name and businesswoman, Emma Bridgewater, of design and pottery fame – and an exclusively choreographed catwalk show of Harvey Nichols’ international fashions.

The events sponsors are led by premium brands: Barclays Wealth; British Airways; Harvey Nichols; Hilton Birmingham Metropole; Jaguar Cars; SCC and The Challenge Factor.

A former Businesswoman of the Year award winner is Hilary Devey, the entrepreneur who has become a national figure head for all women of achievement, following television appearances on Channel 4’s Secret Millionaire and Channel Five’s The Business Inspector.

As founder and CEO of Pall-Ex, the number one UK pallet haulage firm, Hilary gained the Businesswoman of the Year title in 2008 and has also won a string of prestigious industry accolades.

Former Businesswoman of the Year, Hilary Devey, said: “I would encourage all business women to consider entering Businesswoman of the Year.

“Awards are a great way of building your profile and putting your business in the spotlight. As a former winner of the title, I wish everyone who enters the very best of luck.”

Last year’s Businesswoman award was won by Asha Khemka OBE. As principal and chief executive of West Nottinghamshire College, she exemplified the drive and passion shown by all the finalists.

Other former winners of the Businesswoman title have included Karren Brady, managing director of Birmingham City FC; Sarah Tremellen, founder and chief executive of Bravissimo; and Perween Warsi, founder of S&A Foods.

The awards chair, Judy Groves added: “Every year, we receive nominations for the most talented, inspiring and incredible women drawn from every walk of life and leaders in their respective fields – I anticipate this again in 2010.

“Don’t miss out on the opportunity to join us at our annual event, which has raised hundreds of thousands of pounds for charity.

“Please don’t pass by on the chance to raise your profile as a potential Businesswoman awards finalist. As this accolade has proven time and again, it’s an invaluable award that so often sign posts to future success. ”

For more about Women of the Year Luncheon & Awards; to book event tickets – with ten per cent early bird discount offer before 30 June; or to nominate a candidate visit:

Follow Woman of the Year on



Twitter: @2010WOTY

Media information and images

Iain Bruce 07929 466 152 /

Caroline Sanger Davies 07854 835 171 /

Clare Gore / Louise Acton telephone 0121 766 2594 / /

Notes to Editor

The 28th annual Woman of the Year Luncheon and Awards recognises and honours success and aims to create role models for the future. Sponsors of and nominations from women running their own company or occupying senior positions within private or public sector organisations are invited to apply for this year’s Businesswoman title.

2010 Businesswoman award nominations close on 17 September and the six finalists will meet judges during week commencing 4 October to choose a winner, announced exclusively at the Luncheon and Awards event at the Hilton Metropole, adjacent to the NEC, on Friday 15 October.

The 2010 sponsors of The Women of the Year Luncheon and Awards are:

Barclays Wealth

Barclays Wealth is a leading global wealth manager, and recognised as the UK’s largest, with total client assets of £151.2bn, as at 31 December 2009. With offices in over 20 countries, Barclays Wealth focuses on private and intermediary clients worldwide, providing international and private banking, investment management, fiduciary services and brokerage. Barclays Wealth is the wealth management division of Barclays.

British Airways

British Airways plc is the flag carrier airline of the United Kingdom. BA has its headquarters in Waterside near its main hub at London Heathrow Airport and is the largest airline in the UK based on fleet size, international flights and international destinations.

Harvey Nichols

Harvey Nichols is an international luxury lifestyle store, renowned both in the UK and internationally for the breadth and depth of its exclusive fashion merchandise. It offers many of the world’s most prestigious brands in womenswear, menswear, accessories, beauty, food and home.

Hilton Birmingham Metropole

As a leading global hospitality company, Hilton Worldwide has more than 3,400 hotels in 79 countries, and its portfolio of hotel brands includes the Waldorf Astoria, Conrad, Hilton, Doubletree, Embassy Suites, Hilton Garden Inn, Hampton Inn & Suites, Homewood Suites by Hilton, Home2 Suites by Hilton and Hilton Grand Vacations. The Hilton Birmingham Metropole is one of the UK’s largest conference hotels, and can accommodate upto 2,000 delegates.

Jaguar Cars

Headquartered in Coventry, Jaguar Cars Ltd is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tata Motors Ltd, and is operated as part of the Jaguar Land Rover business. This year marks the 75th anniversary of the Jaguar name, and 75 years of designing and building luxury cars that represent the very best of technical innovation, design leadership and sporting success.


SCC is the technology enabler brand of one of Europe’s largest independent technology groups, Specialist Computer Holdings plc. SCC employs approaching 7,000 professional staff, has regional operations spanning seven countries and annually turns over more than £2.5billion. A best of breed solutions provider around the infrastructure, SCC has an enviable track record in helping European based companies and government organisations source, integrate and manage their technology investment to deliver more for less.

The Challenge Factor

The experienced team behind The Challenge Factor deliver solutions for conferences, events, videos and exhibitions. Having begun their business with the cult TV show The Krypton Factor, the team relish taking on innovative projects which require dynamism and creativity.


Sponsors of nominees, or Businesswoman candidates themselves, can contact Judy Groves, awards chair, on email;visit or telephone 0121 766 2594.

Tickets to the event, including a three-course a la carte lunch, cost £55.00 and may be purchased individually or as tables of ten with corporate bookings welcome. Places reserved before 30 June 2010 attract a ten per cent early bird discount. To book your seat, visit or telephone the events department at Vitalise on: (020) 7017 3433.

Vitalise is a national charity providing short breaks (respite care) and other services for disabled people, visually impaired people, and carers.

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