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Wine companies vying for business awards

A fine wine broker and an online specialist in Indian wines are among the contenders for this year’s Orange National Business Awards.

Fine + Rare has been shortlisted for the Blackberry Growth Strategy Award, while Soul Tree Wines is among the nominees for the Start-up Business of the Year Award.

Both companies face a Dragon’s Den-style interview with a panel of judges before the final winners of the awards are announced at the National Business Awards dinner on 13 November in London.

Soul Tree Wines is up against fellow nominees including Crowdcube, Shutl and Toxic Fox, while Fine + Rare faces competition from companies including Ella’s Kitchen, Joseph Joseph and Lycamobile.

‘This is an endorsement of our vision, plans and efforts,’ said Alok Mathur, co-founder of Solihull-based Soul Tree, which produces wines in India and distributes them around the world.

‘Being a part of this fantastic community will not only present superb networking opportunities, but will strengthen our credibility, prove our excellence and give the Soul Tree team the motivation to take Soul Tree Wines to new heights,’ he added.

Fine + Rare is a fine wine broker where more than 45,000 wines are valued, bought and sold to trade and private customers in over 60 countries from offices in London and Hong Kong.

International sales have increased from £17.6m to £37.9m over the past three years, with CEO Graham Sumeray saying that he ‘relished the opportunity’ to present the company’s plans to the judges.

‘We are revolutionising a traditional market by providing more than 10 times as many wines as our largest competitor, which is a dream to our customers,’ he said.

Chair of judges Baroness Virginia Bottomley said: ‘This year has been a challenging environment for British businesses: these finalists demonstrate how companies are succeeding in the current climate through innovation, originality and tenacity.’

Written by Richard Woodard

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