ABDN Awards Evening Helps to Break Down Barriers

It may have been about businesses, but the first ABDN awards evening in South Yorkshire included plenty of entertainment. Guest were met with a drinks reception, before moving into the main auditorium at the Double Tree Hilton in Sheffield. R&R productions a four strong team of Bollywood dancers put in a high energy performance of synchronised moves. A series of inspirational speakers followed including, Sohail Rashid of Leeds based Property Network, Abigail Haruna Musa of 1st Resources Limited, Mike Maddocks of PES ltd. All this was followed by a delicious three course meal of Indian and Pakistani cuisine by Zouk Catering of Bradford and the presentation of 7 awards.

ABDN is a network of influence that promotes enterprises launched by people from ethnic minorities. Its first business awards in South Yorkshire were a sold out success at the Double Tree Hilton in Sheffield attended by over 300 people.

Irshad Akbar Chairman of ABDN said it was now time for businesses from ethnic minority’s community to leave the “comfort zone” of their communities and play a bigger part in the mainstream.

Irshad said,

“The theme of our inaugural event is breaking barriers. Minority communities have done exceptionally well in Business, however the vast majority are still anchored within their comfort zones, inner city ghettos serving predominately their own communities”.

Ethnic minority businesses have exceptional qualities including entrepreneurial flair, hard work, integrity and a strong family support network.

James Newman, chair of the Local Enterprise partnership, urged those attending to join the LEP and influence the Sheffield City region economic future. He said,

“We can offer you skills, money and the chance to influence the agenda. You should join one of the sector groups. We would also like to use your connections overseas with businesses in countries doing well”.

The award winners were as follows; Business of the Year, New Roomstyle; Business Start-up of the Year, Play Arena limited; Female Entrepreneur of the Year, Afshan Islam of Beauty Beneath; Young Entrepreneur of the Year, Ghulam Ijaz UK Legal Estates; Professional of the Year, Jay Bhayani of Bhayani Bracewell; Social Enterprise of the Year, South Yorkshire African Caribbean Centre; Excellence in Customer Service,  Chandni .