A whanau-owned early childcare provider, Tui Early Learners, has taken out the distinguished Supreme Award at the 2018 Westpac Manawatu Business Awards in Palmerston North, on Friday evening.

Tui Early Learners owns five childcare centres in Palmerston North and in addition to the Supreme Award, the business won the Powerco – Education, Research and Technology Award and the Massey Business School – Large Business Award.

The judges say Tui Early Learners have a clear guiding vision, which is key for all business decisions and actions. They not only focus on the child, but the whole family group, and exemplify best practice in everything they do. In addition to very strong business practices within their operation, they have an enviable business mindset of continuous improvement with the follow-through to implementation.

The prestigious Lifetime Service Award, sponsored by the Manawatu Standard, was awarded to OBO and founder, Simon Barnett. OBO manufactures and exports protective sports gear to 72 countries and Manawatu Standard Editor Matthew Dallas says the company is Manawatu through and through.

“OBO’s contribution to local projects belies their international reach. OBO’s commitment to business innovation and evolution is inspirational to anyone with a big idea and the guts to try and pull it off. And their ambition for the past 25 years has been unwavering; to be the best in the world at what they do.”

The biennial Westpac Manawatu Business Awards are designed to celebrate the best in business in Palmerston North and Manawatu district. Twenty-two finalists were selected from 115 unique nominations and 10 winners have been named across several categories.

The Central Economic Development Agency delivers the Awards and Chief Executive Linda Stewart says the Awards showcase those at the forefront of leading-edge thinking, innovation and excellence.

“This process isn’t only about celebrating success. The businesses who went through the Awards’ process were willing to open their doors to outside expertise; to be analysed, questioned and critiqued. They should be acknowledged for their willingness to learn and their contribution to the vibrancy of the local business community.”

More than 26 volunteer judges made running the Awards possible and CEDA would like to sincerely thank them for their time.

Area Manager, Commercial & Agribusiness – Manawatu, Commercial Corporate & Institutional, Christine Jones says the Awards provide businesses with a chance to reflect on their achievements and celebrate their successes.

“As an organisation that’s on a mission to help businesses to grow, we couldn’t be more inspired by the 2018 winners. These are businesses who know where they want to go and have a plan to get there. Our heartiest congratulations to all of the winners.”

See a full list of the 2018 Westpac Manawatu Business Award Winners here.

CEDA would like to thank and recognise all of our sponsors, without them the Westpac Manawatu Business Awards would not be possible.