The 17 winners at Sunderland Echo Portfolio Business Awards

AWARDS NIGHT: Award winners celebrate their success following the event at the Stadium of Light in Sunderland Picture: DAVID WOOD
AWARDS NIGHT: Award winners celebrate their success following the event at the Stadium of Light in Sunderland Picture: DAVID WOOD
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Champions all.

That’s the 17 winners of trophies at this year’s Sunderland Echo Portfolio Business Awards. Scroll down to see the winners.

What a glittering occasion it was as the best in Wearside learned their fate at the Stadium of Light last night.

Scroll back through our live blog to see how the night unfolded
Highlights of a wonderful occasion included Washington-based Expert Tooling & Automation lifting the title of Overall Business of the Year, as well as the Best Training Provider category.

Judges were impressed by the dynamism of everyone within the company, which is a supplier working within the fields of Assembly Tooling, Special Purpose Machinery and Automation Products .

Judges loved the whole ethos of the company and the feel of the place.

But the standing ovation for Wearside’s best business was only one of many memorable moments.

The winner of this year’s lifetime achievement award was Kevin Fitzpatrick, who rose through the ranks to become Nissan’s Vice President for Manufacturing in the UK.

He’s the man who comes up with the strategies to make sure Sunderland keeps winning contracts for new cars.

There were awards too for Hadrian Technology, which was honoured as the small business of the year, Sweet Tooth Delivery in the medium business category and Andrew James as the large business of the year.

Employer of the Year is Pebbletree while Adam Walmsley – who combined a fantastic working life with helping to run a football team – was the apprentice/trainee of the year.

Unified Software lifted the Technology title and the Social Enterprise Award went to The Funky Indian.

City Centre Business of the Year was Serendipity, while Katie’s Garden is this year’s New Business of the Year.

Age UK Sunderland won the special community award, while Elm Electric Vehicle Charging Solutions was judged the winner of the Best Green Business Award.

Exporter of the year was Designerchildrenswear.com – Avenue, while the leisure award went to the Roker Hotel.

And the creative Industries Award title was handed to Viztek.

The awards would not have been possible without the help of our fantastic backers.

Make it Sunderland was our headline sponsor, and sponsored our overall Business of the Year Award, as well as a Lifetime Achievement award, which is in the sponsor’s gift.

This year saw a new category, also sponsored by Make It Sunderland, which recognised the contribution social enterprises make to the city.

Sponsors are Gentoo, Stagecoach, Andrew James, Station Taxis, TTR Barnes, Thompson Waste, Sunderland BID and Maxim Facilities Management Ltd, The Bridges, Telfer Carpets and Flooring, while Sunderland College is our partner sponsor.

We will be bringing you further coverage on Tuesday next week when we publish a supplement filled with interviews with every winner.

The winners

Small Business of the Year, (sponsored by The Bridges) - Hadrian Technology.

Medium Business of the Year, sponsored by Thompson Skips & Environmental Services -

Sweet Tooth Delivery.

Large Business of the Year, (sponsored by 
Sunderland College) - Andrew James UK.

Employer of the Year, (sponsored by TTR Barnes) - Pebbletree Ltd.

Technology of the year, (sponsored by 
Sunderland Echo) - Unified Software Ltd.

New Business Award, (sponsored by Maxim) - Katie’s Garden.

City Centre Business, (sponsored by 
Sunderland BID) - Serendipity.

Special Community Award, (sponsored by Gentoo) - Age UK Sunderland.

Best Green Business, (sponsored by 
Stagecoach) - Elm Electric Vehicle Charging Solutions.

Best Training Provider, (sponsored by TTR Barnes) - Expert Tooling and Automation.

Exporter of the Year, (sponsored by Andrew James) - Designerchildrenswear.com.

Leisure Award, (sponsored by Station Taxis) - The Roker Hotel.

Creative Industries Award, (sponsored by Sunderland Echo) - Viztek.

Apprentice/Trainee of the Year, (sponsored by Telfer Carpets) - Adam Walmsley.

Social Enterprise Award, (sponsored by 
Sunderland City Council)- Kam Chera, The Funky Indian.

Lifetime Achievement Award (sponsored by Make It Sunderland)- Kevin Fitzpatrick.

Overall Business of the Year (sponsored by Make It Sunderland)- Expert Tooling & Automation.