Entries for CBA’s Cork Business of the Year Awards are now open

The annual awards recognise Cork City’s outstanding, unique & resilient businesses

Cork Business Association’s prestigious Cork Business of the Year Awards have been launched, proudly sponsored by JCD and Centra.

Now in its 67th year, the CBA awards are a beacon of recognition for exceptional, unique, and resilient businesses across Cork City.  From pioneering ventures to those demonstrating remarkable growth, or adapting in the face of ongoing challenges, these awards spotlight the very best businesses in Cork City over the past year.

Moreover, they acknowledge the dedication of business owners and managers who work diligently to shape the future of Cork City, ensuring its status as a vibrant hub for commerce, community, and culture.

March 29, 2022 The Cork Business Association has announced Kevin Herlihy of Herlihy Centra Group as their new President. Pic: Brian Lougheed

There are 12 different categories of awards that businesses can enter into.  An experienced panel of leading business, civic and industry experts will provide independent judging and the shortlist will be announced on March 14th 2024.

Three businesses will be shortlisted in each category and the overall winners will be decided by the judges and public vote. The judges will also choose an Overall Company of the Year Award for SME’s and Large Businesses, as well as a Champion of Cork.

Entries for the CBA Cork Business of the Year Awards are now open and can be submitted for FREE online at corkbusiness.ie until Monday March 4th. All businesses in Cork City are encouraged to participate and celebrate their achievements.

The awards will be presented at the CBA President’s Dinner at The Radisson Blu Hotel and Spa, Little Island, on Saturday April 13th 2024, which is always a highlight of Cork City’s business calendar. Top chefs and award-winning producers will again unite to create a tasting dinner of the finest Cork produce. Tickets for this event are always in huge demand and are now on sale at corkbusiness.ie.

With a legacy spanning over six decades, the CBA Cork Business of the Year Awards continue to spotlight excellence in Cork’s business,” remarked Kevin Herlihy, President of the Cork Business Association.

Amidst the diverse challenges of 2023, it’s imperative to not only recognise businesses who have gone from strength to strength, but we must also honour businesses of all sizes that have displayed resilience, adaptability, and a steadfast commitment to excellence.  It has never been more important to highlight businesses who are leading the way and setting precedents for others to aspire to.”

 The 12 individual award categories include:

●      Sustainable Business Innovation

Open to all businesses in Cork City who have prioritised and embraced sustainable business innovation practices and are now using these strategies to drive sustainable business growth. Entrants will need to demonstrate that new strategies are significantly more sustainable than previous practices and set their company on a path to a more sustainable future. 

●      Best New Business in Cork

Open to all businesses that have been founded or are new to Cork since 1st January 2016. Entrants will be asked to explain their business and to demonstrate how they have translated a great idea into a viable and successful business venture. They will also be asked to outline their plans for the future. 

●      Best Cork Family Business

Open to all family owned and run businesses in the greater Cork city area. Your business must be managed by family members and you must be able to demonstrate the involvement of at least two generations of family members who are working in the business.

●      Best Cork Hotel

The Best Hotel award acknowledges excellence in service and accommodation. Entrants will demonstrate high class, flawless service in a comfortable, quality establishment, while both meeting and exceeding guest expectations, and how they have helped to promote Cork as a destination nationally and internationally.

●      Best Cork Restaurant

The best Restaurant award acknowledges excellence in quality, service, price and ambiance. Entrants will demonstrate high standards in food quality, cost, efficiency, customer service, imagination, attention to detail, marketing and how well the establishment functions as a business.

●      Best Cork Café

The best Café award will recognise excellence in customer service, business innovation, premises ambiance and atmosphere. Entrants will demonstrate high standards in food quality, cost, efficiency, imagination, attention to detail, marketing and how they have raised the profile of their business in this ever increasingly competitive sector.

●      Best Cork VFI Pub

The award for Best Cork Pub will be awarded to the pub that, in the opinion of the judges, demonstrates ‘best in class’ in the areas of innovation, creativity,ambiance, operational excellence and customer service.  Open to VFI Members only. 

●      Best Cork Retail Business

The best Cork Retail Business will be awarded to the business that routinely strives for the highest standards across a number of key metrics such as customer service, value, visual merchandising, premises maintenance, marketing, and adaptability. High standards are particularly important given the very severe challenges currently facing Ireland’s retail industry. It is critical that the retail industry plays its part in consistently improving its offering to attract more customers, keep retail workers in jobs and simultaneously keep Cork city centre vibrant which in turn will re-engage citizens and customers alike.

●      Best Tourism Art Event

This award is designed to recognise and reward an organisation, attraction, business or event that has excelled in tourism, contributing to growing tourist numbers and /or the visitor experience in Cork.

●      Best Professional Services Business

This category is open to all businesses that provide a professional business service in the greater Cork city area. They include banking, legal, accounting, HR, recruitment, PR, marketing, architects, financial advisers, engineers, consultants, training providers, strategic advice etc. They can be any organisation or profession that offers customised, knowledge-based services to clients.  Entrants must be able to explain what their professional business service is and demonstrate their commitment to customer service excellence within their particular service provide.

●      Best Cork Digital Business, sponsored by Cork Airport

This award will be presented to a company or organisation that can practically demonstrate how they have embraced the digital age and built their company around, or adapted their business strategy to adopt a more future focused, digitally powered approach.  This category is open to all businesses, regardless of their stage in the business life-cycle.

●      Champion of Cork Award

This award recognises a Corkonian whom the judges believe has made a real difference to Cork and its people, be it through driving business, their contribution to the arts, their charitable work, their efforts in developing our city or their passion and drive for promoting all things Cork.

Sponsors for the individual awards include AIB,  LEO Cork City, Cork City Council, MTU, VFI Cork, IHF Cork Branch, Cork Airport, Failte Ireland and B2B signs.

Cork Business Association is a voluntary, not-for-profit, organisation for Cork Business by Cork Business.  The local voluntary collective of businesspeople provide a support network for members and personal one-to-one advice.  They champion a vibrant, safe, clean, welcoming, sustainable and living Cork City.  By working together, the organisation believes that businesses in the city will have a stronger voice when dealing with local and national issues.

Businesses can enter the awards or book tickets to the Presidents Dinner on corkbusiness.ie

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