By Claire West

With massive public sector cuts announced in the Chancellor’s Spending Review last week, the importance of the small business community to drive economic growth and create new jobs was emphasised more than ever. And with talent such as that displayed by this year’s Startups Awards finalists, who have triumphed through tough times, the UK’s business future looks promising.

Startups Awards 2010 today announced its finalists, recognising the most successful new businesses in the UK. The businesses that made this year’s shortlist, demonstrate innovation, determination and utter brilliance.

“We were overwhelmed with the quality and quantity of the entries this year. This shortlist identifies smart entrepreneurs who have grown impressive, thriving businesses. They are the future of the British economy and an inspiration to the UK’s business community” says Sara Rizk, editor, Startups.co.uk.

•Shutl - a web service that is set to change the way we shop online. Shutl lets you shop at your favourite online stores but receive delivery of your purchases in as little as 90 minutes with prices comparable to standard delivery.

•Grannies, Inc. is an online company specialising in bespoke knitwear accessories, hand-made by grannies around the UK. Each product in the Grannies, Inc. range is a true one-of-a-kind, with customers given the opportunity to tailor their design via a simple online designer tool before having it transformed into a one-off article by an eagerly awaiting granny.

•Dig IT - design and Install 'Allotment style Gardens' into Schools and Community groups to allow them to grow their own fresh Fruit and Vegetables. They also deliver 'Growing Workshops' to the children and parents to access through after school clubs.

•Mask-arade Ltd - is a unique company that produces personalised, celebrity and fun party masks. Customers simply upload an image via the web site and Maskateers take care of the rest! They also produce life sized and desk top personalised cut-outs and personalised greetings cards. Suppliers to the BBC, ITV, Kelloggs, Slimming World...

The Startups Awards 2010 is organised by Startups.co.uk and comprises of 13 categories, each showcasing the best new businesses in the UK.

The winners will be unveiled at a prestigious awards ceremony and three-course luncheon to be held at the Kensington Roof Gardens, 2nd December.

This year’s judging panel consists of some of the UK’s most successful entrepreneurs, including Toni Mascolo, founder of Toni & Guy and Julie Meyer, founder of Adrienne Capital. The awards were sponsored by Gooroo, specialists in providing business software.

The judges look at a wide range of criteria, such as; business success either by increase in sales and unit volume, market research and identification of customer focus, organisational and team building effectiveness, strategic planning, overcoming obstacles and barriers to success, visionary leadership, social and community responsibility.

For further information about Startups Awards 2010 visit www.startupsawards.co.uk or telephone 020 8334 1680