The Entrepreneur Wales Awards, now in its second year, has just announced the 2016 short-list.

Run by the producers of the Great British Entrepreneur Awards, the Entrepreneur Wales Awards is Wales' only awards to acknowledge the hard work and inspiring stories of Welsh entrepreneurs and businesses in Wales, not just the balance sheet.

Among last year's winners were Just Eat CEO David Buttress as Expat Entrepreneur of the Year, Welsh ICE founder Gareth Jones as Entrepreneurs' Champion, Lisa Tobia who designed Admiral's Cardiff reception as Creative Entrepreneur of the Year and social-enterprise founder Jo Ashburner as Manufacturing Entrepreneur of the Year.

Following their success at the inaugural Awards in 2015, previous winners Andy Ling, Darren Thomas and David Buttress join the likes of GoCompare founder Hayley Parsons, author and TV presenter Lyndon Wood and serial investor Ashley Cooper on the judging panel.

The shortlist:

Accelerated Growth Business Entrepreneur of the Year – Sponsored by NatWest Cymru

Owen Derbyshire, Properr

Russell Pearce, Grove Autocare

Benjamin Milsom, Echosec Systems Ltd

Nick Evans, Evabuild

Gemma Richards, SA Flyers


Creative Industries Entrepreneur of the Year – Sponsored by S3 Advertising

Jessica Morgan, Jessica Draws

Ken Bird, West Coast Wales

Jason Stallard & Lyanna Tsakiris, Station Rd. Marketing

Darren Crockett, Do Digital Realities


Eco Entrepreneur of the Year

Gareth Jones, Carbon Zero Renewables

Martyn Popham, Cenin Limited

Katie Hayward, Felin Honey Bees

Richard Allen, Eco Bunker


Entrepreneurs’ Champion of the Year – Sponsored by Entrepreneurial Spark

Gareth Jones, Welsh Ice

Natasha Davies, Because U Can

Emma Wilkins

Mandy Weston, Welsh Ice

Annette Gee, Taskforce paintball


Fashion & Retail Entrepreneur of the Year

Marc Brown, Sporting Hares

Christian Macnamara, The Brogue Trader

Anne Arkle, Jaspersparkle


Food and Drink Entrepreneur of the Year

Jonathan Saunders, Croesy Bars

Kasim Ali, Waterloo Tea


Manufacturing Entrepreneur of the Year

Anne Arkle, Jaspersparkle

Laura Adams, Bespoke Laser UK

Andrew Hicks, Keen Attachments


Micro Business Entrepreneur of the Year – Sponsored by Cardiff and Vale College

Jack James, Pontus Research

Marsha Ward, The Number Hub

Cerys Ashley, Ashley HR

Samantha Davies, IConsult Technical


Service Industries Entrepreneur of the Year - Sponsored by Blake Morgan

Gillian Edwards, A Quality Service

William Scott, Scott Waste

Rob Dance, Rock IT

Ben Wheeler, Copper Bay Creative


Small Business Entrepreneur of the Year

Jonathan Saunders, Croesy Bars

Owain Hopkins, Tree Top Films

Spencer Symmons, CPS Group

Rachel Bedgood, Complete Background Screening

James Hughes, Sphere Solutions


Social Enterprise Entrepreneur of the Year - Sponsored by Cardiff Council

Peter Watkins-Hughes & Andrea Durban, The Market Hall Cinema

Yasmin Sarwar, Cardiff 6th Form College

Mahmuda Khatun & Sha Hoque, Go2GP

Katy Chamberlain, Business in Focus


Start-Up Entrepreneur of the Year - Sponsored by Cardiff FM

Laura Griffin & Kelli Aspland, Solar Buddies

Eoghan Powell & Ceri Butcher, Carreg Adventure

Ben Lloyd, Pure Commercial Finance

Mahmuda Khatun & Shah Hoque, Go2GP


Student Entrepreneur of the Year – Sponsored by Simply Do Ideas

Adam Dixon, Phytoponics Ltd

Puteri Jasni, Bookworm & Mugs

Jack Bevan-Davies, Infinite Void

Jenny Evans, Jenny Evans Designs

David Cooke & Oliver Biggs, Wandering Visuals

Sarah Callaway, House of Callaway

Daniel Huxtable, HDMS


Technology Entrepreneur of the Year – Sponsored by Finance Wales

Benjamin Milsom, Echosec Systems

Simon Pridham & Jeremy Stephens, Aspire 2Be

Ken Bird, West Coast Wales

Stephen Jones, Comparison Creator

Adam Curtis, Hoowla

Kristian Bailey, Computers for Flooring


Young Entrepreneur of the Year – Sponsored by Redrow

James Koash, Seiri

Laura Emily Dunn, LED Media

Damian Williams, Timeless Trowel

Cariann Emanuellie, Wize Virtual Admin

Daniel Shepherd, CanDo Laundry Services

Crowned Entrepreneurs Champion in 2015, Gareth Jones CEO of Welsh ICE has been shortlisted to defend his title, but will also be judging the start-up category in this year’s awards.

He said: Winning the inaugural Entrepreneurs’ Champion award at last year’s Entrepreneur Wales Awards was incredibly humbling and helped cap off a great year for us at ICE. That event has acted as a catalyst and inspired a range of new initiatives over the course of this year to ensure we as ICE cement our status as the champion for founders in Wales. There are a great deal of organisations and partners who help make this possible, it feels like an exciting time for entrepreneurs in Wales.

Alix Popham, former Welsh rugby international and co-founder of the Entrepreneur Wales Awards, said: "The first Entrepreneur Wales Awards in 2015 was a fantastic celebration of the fantastic businesses and entrepreneurs Wales has to offer. Wales is really making a name for itself in business and entrepreneurship, and the entries this year give plenty of optimism for the future."

Co-founder, Welsh entrepreneur and Cardiff Metropolitan university graduate, Francesca Russell said: “This year I had the pleasure of personally letting the shortlisted entrepreneurs know they’d been shortlisted and without exaggeration, it was the most rewarding day of my year. When you get a chance to deliver some great news to someone who’s working relentlessly around the clock in “the thick of” their business daily, it’s inspiring and rewarding.

“Entrepreneurship is thriving in Wales and we need to start acknowledging the people who are driving our economy forward.”

The Entrepreneur Wales Awards gala final takes place on November 9th during Cardiff Business Week at the Principality Stadium.

Tickets can be purchased here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/entrepreneur-wales-awards-tickets-24994581466