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With a grand total of 329 entrants across 16 categories, the 10th annual Kent Excellence in Business awards event has been its most successful ever. Now that the announcements have been made, it's time for a run-down of the finalists for 2018.

Large Business of the Year
• Ecoegg
• Jenner Group
• S Lucas group

Medium Business of the Year
• Burlington Hotel
• Credo Care
• Newton Waterproofing Systems
• Sunways Business and Leisure Travel

Small Business of the Year
• Charles Bainbridge Estate Agents
• Print Junction Ltd
• Progress
• Teaching Support Ltd

Family Business of the Year
• Bedfont Scientific
• Biddenden Vineyards
• Team HARD. Racing Limited
• TPS Global Logistics

Start-Up Business of the Year
• Continuity of Care Services Limited
• Giant Campus Ltd
• Space Between

Manufacturer of the Year
• Colorcon Ltd
• P&B Metal Components Ltd
• Texcel Technology Plc

Tourism & Leisure Business of the Year
• Biddenden Vineyards
• Hever Castle & Gardens
• Port Lympne Hotel & Reserve and Howletts Wild Animal Park

Technology Business of the Year
• Bedfont Scientific
• Dovetail Games
• ER Productions

Construction Project of the Year
• Logan Construction (SE) Ltd
• Royal British Legion Industries
• WW Martin Ltd

Business Commitment to the Community
• Chequers Kitchen Cookery School
• Making Miracles
• The FAR Academy

Commitment to the Environment Award
• Bloomsburys
• Newton Waterproofing Systems
• Winterdale Cheesemakeers

Exporter of the Year
• Atom Brands
• Jewelultra Ltd
• P&B Metal Components Ltd

Employer of the Year
• Fileder Filter Systems Ltd
• HatHats Coffee Company
• KIMS Hospital

Customer Service Award
• Colin Batt Removals
• Master of Malt (Atom Group)
• Priority Freight

Entrepreneur of the Year
• Hectic Lifestyles Ltd – Bal Sandher
• Nim's Fruit & Vegetable Crisps – Nimisha Raja
• S Lucas Group – Danny Lucas

Apprenticeship of the Year
• Infinity Group – Matt Baker
• MRS Lettings CIC – Holly Rose
• TPS Global Logistics – Paige Baldwin

RIFT is sponsoring the Medium Business of the Year category for 2018, and the competition we've seen has been astonishingly strong. Reaching finalist status for any of the awards is an amazing achievement in itself, and both the number and calibre of applications on display were inspirational. As our MD, Bradley Post puts it:

“It's a tall order to pick an overall winner from such an impressive line-up of competitors. It's not just a question of measuring success in raw numbers. What we're setting out to recognise and celebrate is so much broader and more important – from ambition and innovation to commitment and responsibility. That's the heart of the KEiBA awards, and it's been amazing to see feel how powerfully that heart's pumping in 2018.”

With that said, all that remains is to congratulate the finalists for this year's awards and to wish them all the best of luck. We look forward to seeing you all at the ceremony on the 21st of June!

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