MemberNovember 26, 2015 at 2:43 pm
Reflecting an industry that has gone from strength-to-strength in 2015 and a franchised business that has witnessed one of its best results to date, the Signs Express annual Convention has seen its largest number of sponsors and a record attendance. The event, held on the 20th November at the East Midlands Conference Centre, was a resounding success with everyone who attended.
The event ran all day, kicking off with a speech from Craig Brown, Managing Director of the franchised network on the ‘Vision for Growth’, followed by presentations from other headquarters staff. A special exhibition from the network’s key suppliers followed and talks from headline sponsors and supply partners Metamark, CWE Solutions, Wirehouse employer services and Birch Sign Services going through to the afternoon.
For the second year running, the Signs Express Sign Awards, celebrating the best work from the group, were voted for by the franchisee network. The awards ceremony recognised the brightest and best of the work conducted by centres in the past year. Awards were presented to Signs Express centres in Glasgow (Best Project), Birmingham SW (Best Exterior), Basildon (Most Striking Sign or Design), Harlow (Best Fascia) and Northampton (Best Vehicle Graphic) as well as an award going to Metamark as this year’s best supplier.
The evening event went off in style with a classy Hollywood theme and a performance from TV personality and entertainer Gyles Brandreth. The Franchisee Awards were also presented, with the Newcomer Award going to Ray Allenby and Jane Wiles from Signs Express (Portsmouth), the Outstanding Achievement Award went to the team at Signs Express (Hull) whose dedication has kept the centre performing above expectations despite personal hurdles. The Ambassador Award went to Steve McMurray of Signs Express (Falkirk) who has offered the expertise of his team to other centres in need and for the second year running, the Franchisee of the Year Award went to Lee Eaton of Signs Express (Manchester). Lee has produced amazing results not only in terms of extraordinary projects, but also returns and earlier this year, he was also named as the British Franchise Association’s (BFA’s) B2B Franchisee of the Year as well as the Overall Franchisee of the Year – two national accolades that are well deserved.
This year, the convention was the perfect opportunity to bid farewell to two former directors of the company that recently retired. Peter Sayles, Operations Director had been with the company for almost 20 years and Tony Marsh, Sales Director, had been with the company since 2003. Their invaluable input to the business coupled with the affection everyone felt at their departure, made it a tearful affair for many.
Craig Brown commented, “As a group we have had an extraordinary year and exceeded expectations across the board. This evening has perfectly captured our pride in all of the centres and our vision for the future as a network. I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate all of the award winners and say that all of our franchisees should be immensely proud of what they have achieved this year.”
With over 25 years’ experience occupying the signs and graphics market in the UK and Ireland, the company has utilised its vast knowledge to expand and strengthen its operation with ambitious growth plans for 2016 and beyond. Signs Express works with businesses both large and small and partners with numerous trusted suppliers that provide the quality materials used every day to make premium products.
Here is a full list of the winners:
- Franchisee of the Year
Lee Eaton, Signs Express (Manchester South)
Steve McMurray, Signs Express (Falkirk)
Newcomer of the Year
Ray Allenby and Jane Wiles, Signs Express (Portsmouth)
Outstanding Achievement Award
Rob Gibson, Signs Express (Hull)
Employee of the Year Award
Paul Lidgard, Signs Express (N & NE Lincs)
- Supplier of the Year
Best Vehicle Graphics
Mark Meadowcroft, Signs Express (Northampton), for the MCFC Le Mans Car
Graham Casey, Signs Express (Glasgow), for the Science Centre
Most Striking Sign or Design
Tony and Tina Surface, Signs Express (Basildon), for the Etihad
Best Interior Sign
Steve and Carol Morris, Signs Express (Sheffield), for the Children’s Hospital
Brendan O’Donnell and Cathy Johnston, Signs Express (Belfast), for the Newry Campus
Best Fascia Sign
Paul and Lynda Heywood, Signs Express (Harlow), for the Sia Beauty Salon
Best Exterior Sign
Joe Smith, Signs Express (Birmingham SW), for Network Rail
For further information:
- Franchisee of the Year
MemberDecember 4, 2015 at 1:48 pm
This was indeed a great event. My first one but hopefully first of many. Credit goes to Craig and Justin among all the other that organised it and to all that attended. Suppliers and franchisees alike.
MemberDecember 4, 2015 at 2:12 pmquote Stafford Cox:
Thank you Stafford – what makes the event really work is that everyone gets the chance to be involved throughout the day – it wouldn’t work if suppliers, Centre owners and the Head Office team didn’t all have to "share" best practice along with creating lasting relationships – if you have any suggestions on how we can improve it further please let us know – constructive feedback is always welcomed.
MemberJanuary 4, 2016 at 9:07 am
I would be interested in having a supplier stand if you hold this event again
MemberJanuary 4, 2016 at 10:53 am
we host these events once a year (usually in November) – drop me a line or PM and I’ll make sure you get to talk with one of the team that does all the organisation of the event.
MemberJanuary 4, 2016 at 12:30 pm
This 2015 conference was my second (although the first exhibiting) and I cannot stress enough what a great job was done by all involved. I’m already looking forward to 2016’s event and hope everyone within the group has a prosperous year building up to it.
MemberJanuary 4, 2016 at 4:18 pm
Thanks for that feed back Keven and thanks for the kind wishes – hope 2016 is great for you too :thumbup2:
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