Last night, hundreds descended on the London Hilton Park Lane to see some of Britain’s best and brightest black business leaders commended at the 2015 Black British Business Awards. Sponsored by EY, the awards recognised both established leaders and rising stars and saw Gary Elden, the CEO of SThree, win Black British Business Person of the Year.
Other winners included Rachel Wang, company director of Chocolate Films, who was awarded Entrepreneur of the Year. Meanwhile in the industry specific categories, Marc Hare, founder, CEO and designer of Mr Hare picked up the gong for consumer & retail; Solomon Wifa, partner at Willkie Farr & Gallagher, nabbed the prize for financial services; Camille Drummond, group head of trading business services at BP was given the award for science, technology, engineering and mathematics; and Tom Lawal, barrister at St Ives Chambers held aloft the trophy for professional services. Finally, Sir Trevor McDonald, the newsreader and journalist, received a lifetime achievement award in recognition of his ground-breaking career.
Prime minister David Cameron said: “This is a celebration of the enormous contribution black entrepreneurs make to our country. Over generations, we have built something extraordinary in Britain – a society where people can come with nothing and in one or two generations can rise as high as their talent allows. The African and Caribbean communities embody that spirit, reaching the top of every field in Britain… our diversity makes us stronger and my one-nation government will go on working hard to end discrimination and finish the fight for real equality in our country today.”
Melanie Eusebe, chair and co-founder of the Black British Business Awards, said: “I congratulate all of the nominees and winners of the second Black British Business Awards – each one of them are role models and demonstrate excellence in the work they do. These individual achievements highlight that diversity in business makes for better business and diversity throughout the workforce is a commercial imperative for businesses in Britain.”