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North and north-east energy firms rake in Queen’s Award success

© Supplied by Marine Developmentsqueens award
North-east firm Marine Developments is among the winners of this year's Queen's Awards for Enterprise.

Nearly half of the latest Scottish winners of Queen’s Awards for Enterprise are from the north and north-east.

The region boasts no fewer than six winning companies from Dingwall to Montrose.

Three of them won in the category for international trade, two were recognised for sustainable development and the other for innovation.

Aberdeen-based Kaseum Technology, winner of the innovation award, is a specialist design and manufacturing company producing a range of well intervention tools for the oil and gas industry.

Its accolade recognises its work on K-Set, an electro-mechanical power delivery system.

The two sustainable development category winners are AES Solar, based in Forres, and Montrose company John Lawrie Tubulars (JLT).

AES Solar has carved itself a sizable part of the UK solar thermal and Scottish microgeneration solar PV markets.

© Supplied by John Lawrie Tubulars
Vic Sinclair, chief executive, John Lawrie Tubulars.

It was described by Queen’s Awards judges as “a company with sustainability at its core and with a long-term record with major positive impacts”.

JLT, which was until recently part of Aberdeen-based John Lawrie Group, is focused on the purchase and repurposing of oil and gas tubulars directly from operators for use as piling by the construction industry.

Queen’s Awards judges said it was demonstrating a “measured and positive impact to the circular economy”.

The trio of companies winning awards in the international trade category are Maritime Developments, based in Westhill, near Aberdeen, Dingwall firm WoodBlocX and TEFL Org, of Inverness.

Maritime Developments operates in the energy industry, particularly in the subsea sector, supplying cables and flexibles for the oil and gas sector. It is pivoting towards renewables, offshore power generation, asset maintenance and engineering.

Overseas sales have rocketed in recent years, with top markets including Norway, China, Angola, India and the Netherlands.

© Supplied by Highlands and Island
Henry Blake, who started WoodBlocX.

WoodBlocX is a designer and manufacturer of a patented, modular system of wooden blocks that can be used to build almost any structure in a garden.

It is also enjoying fast-growing demand for its products overseas, with sales now made to 12 territories across Europe.

TEFL Org was founded in 2008 to train people how to teach English as a foreign language. It now trains more than 20,000 people around the world every year.

In 2020 the company sold courses into 154 counties, with market share in North America and Europe growing from 0.2% and 0.7% in 2017 to 22.5% and 52.7% in 2021 respectively. Top markets are the US, Ireland, Spain, France and Italy.

Awards go to 13 Scottish companies

The latest Queen’s Awards honour a total of 13 Scottish companies, with one firm – Linlithgow-based Calnex Solutions getting two gongs.

More than 230 winners throughout the UK are celebrating success in this years edition of the prestigious accolades recognising business achievements.

© Supplied by Holyrood PR
Jennifer MacKenzie and Joe Hallwood, founders of Inverness-based TEFL Org.

Applications for the 2023 Queen’s Awards for Enterprise open on May 1.

Scotland Office Minister Iain Stewart said: “From TEFL equipping tutors to teach English from their base in Inverness to the Bladnoch independent distillery making world-class whisky in Dumfries and Galloway, these firms showcase the excellence Scottish business is renowned for.

“Their innovation, contribution to sustainable development and achievements in trade prove once again that Scotland is a major player on the global business stage.”

Lord Lieutenants will be presenting the awards to businesses throughout the year.

Maritime Developments chief executive Derek Smith said: “A Queen’s Award is a fantastic recognition for any business in the UK and I am extremely proud to be able
to say Maritime Developments has achieved this prestigious nod of approval.”

JLT CEO Vic Sinclair said: “This award means everything to us. Our aim is always to keep our business moving forward and to make a real difference, so to receive this acknowledgment is a deeply proud moment.”

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