Our former business growth clients, The Branded Items Group (aka BIG), wins North-West Family Business of the Year at the prestigious E3 Business Awards held at the University of Bolton Stadium.

The St Helens based business, which has been trading for just over two years, impressed a panel of independent business leaders, with their growth, personal approach to customers and their overall business story.

Louise and Steve Fairhurst, co-founders of BIG were presented
with the award by Tracy Heatley, MD of Business over Breakfast.

The family-owned business, run by husband and wife Steve & Louise Fairhurst, Manchester and now provides over 15,000 promotional items and branded merchandise products, from USB sticks and pens to branded clothing.  After launching in January 2017 initially selling just one range of products, BIG has grown and expanded to now supply over 500 customers across the UK,  as well as companies in Sweden, Germany and Ireland.

Speaking on behalf of 1 Events Media, organiser of the awards, Managing Director Mubarak Chati said: “We’ve seen fast-growing businesses, dedicated staff and employers and fantastic examples of innovation at this year’s awards. To win an award in the face of such impressive competition is an achievement of which Branded Items Group should feel justly proud, and I congratulate them.”
Louise Fairhurst, Co-Director of BIG, said: “We took a big risk when we set the business up and we made several sacrifices. I left a well-paid secure job, with no guarantee of a salary to work in the business, but our goal is to build a family business that could create a legacy for our children. We were shocked but delighted to win the award as it’s recognition of the hard work we have put in.”
“The support from The Womens’ Org has been great.  The support provided allowed us to step away from the company and help develop the forward business strategy.”
The business itself, was over two years in the making and only launched after considerable preparation and research into the promotional items industry.
Steve Fairhurst, Co-Director of BIG, said: “We ran an online test company for two years, selling a narrow band of promotional items before launching the Branded Items Group. In the process, we constantly mystery-shopped some of the largest companies in our sector and learned a lot about how they operated.  We felt there was a market for a company that delivered old-fashioned customer service and advice, in an industry that, at times, can be too transactional and e-commerce driven.”
Despite working UK wide and with customers like NHS England, Cancer Research and Ministry of Defence, the business is now focused on raising the profile in the North West
Steve continued: “We like to meet and advise many of our customers, so it makes sense to try and raise our profile in this locality.  We do already work with lots of great businesses in the North West, but in next 12 months, we would like to double the number.”
You can find out more about BIG’s services by visiting them online at: https://brandeditemsgroup.co.uk/
If you’d like to hear more about our business growth support for businesses under three years old in the Liverpool City Region, please contact hello@thewo.org.uk or call 0151 706 8111.