Posted on Thursday 1 May 2014 by Ulster Business

Aer Lingus Viscount Awards winners - Almac and Sixteen South scoop top awards

Doug Cookson, VP Corporate Marketing at Almac Group, Colin Williams, Director, Sixteen South and Julie Davidson, Aer Lingus Cabin Crew.

Five of Northern Ireland's most successful companies as well as two individuals have been recognised for their achievements at the sixth annual Aer Lingus Viscount Awards, in association with Ulster Business.

The ceremony, which took place at the Royal Automobile Club on Pall Mall, London, celebrated Northern Ireland companies that have not only achieved business success in the last 12 months, but that have also contributed to the local economy and the economic links between NI and GB.

Pharmaceutical giant Almac Group scooped the top award on the day; the Aer Lingus Viscount Award for Overall Excellence, while Colin Williams of Sixteen South claimed the coveted 'Entrepreneur of the Year' accolade.

The full list of winners is as follows:

  • Most Innovative Company – Andor Technology
  • Exporter of the Year – Elmgrove Foods Ltd
  • Best Small Business – Export Technologies
  • Best Medium Business – Devenish Nutrition
  • Best Large Business – Almac Group Ltd
  • Entrepreneur of the Year – Colin Williams, Sixteen South Ltd
  • Outstanding Contribution – Anna Moss MBE, Managing Director and General   Counsel, Citigroup in Belfast
  • Aer Lingus Viscount Award for Overall Excellence – Almac Group Ltd

Doug Cookson, VP Corporate Marketing at Almac Group said: "We are delighted to have won two prestigious Aer Lingus Viscount Awards. It's great to be acknowledged for the pioneering work our teams across the globe undertake and we're proud to be recognised among the best of Northern Irish businesses."

"Our heart is very much based in Northern Ireland but our reach is truly global."

"Some of our notable achievements in the last year include significantly increasing our turnover to £300m, the development of a novel, state of the art, diagnostic test to assist in the treatment of breast cancer and enhancing our existing presence in Asia by starting the development of a new facility in Singapore, and opening offices in Japan to further expand support for our customers."

Colin Williams, Director at Sixteen South said: "I am absolutely thrilled to be commended as the Entrepreneur of the Year. I'm first and foremost a creative, and Sixteen South is a creative business. To get such recognition in the business world is really special indeed."

"For a creative business to be successful, both parts - the creative output and the business acumen need to be solid. I am honoured to lead a brilliant team of creative and business people who all love what they do."

Andrea Hunter, Business Development Manager of Aer Lingus in Northern Ireland said: "We were incredibly impressed with the level and variety of business success that has been achieved by Northern Irish companies over the last year. The leadership and entrepreneurial spirit that has been demonstrated by each of the winners is to be commended."

"It is quite clear that local firms have the drive, the ambition and the skill to compete on a global playing field."

"At the heart of these awards is recognition of the companies that forge strong business links between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK and Aer Lingus has been fortunate to witness these relationships grow first hand."

For more information about the 2014 Aer Lingus Viscount Awards, please visit


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