By Alison Blanchett on 14th December 2013
Alison Blanchett Smart Business Centre held its ﬁrst annual client business awards to celebrate successes such as innovation, technological advances, marketing and service. The annual awards follow on from the Smart Business Centre’s “Client of the Month” proﬁles, which company principal Alison Blanchett started to mark various successes throughout the year.
The Client of the Year Award went to Craig Potton Publishing Ltd for “moving with the times”, and surviving through bad years and good to become the largest independent publisher in New Zealand. “They’re an awesome team,” says Alison. Craig Potton Publishing Ltd, also Client of the Month for August, is a multi-award-winning Nelson company established in 1987. Now it employs 14 people, publishes around 15-20 new titles plus 20 calendars annually, maintains a strong backlist of New Zealand books and provides distribution services to other publishers, including Lonely Planet, Auckland University Press and Hema.
The award for the most innovative idea went to Continuum Architecture Ltd, which was also September Client of the Month. Earlier this year Continuum’s founding architect Richard Sellars’ entry was selected from 90 in an architecture competition to design an ideal house to suit post- earthquake Canterbury. Dubbed The Cantabrian, his winning design will be built as a show home and later sold to Housing New Zealand, with fast-track consent for it to be built anywhere in New Zealand.
July Client of the Month, Plasta Master and owner Shane Waterhouse won the Embracing Technology Award. Starting his business from scratch 8 years ago, Shane admits he was “thrown in at the deep end”. “I didn’t even know I needed an accountant,” he explains. With help from the Smart Business centre he’s started using Xero accounting software, which has helped him focus and grow his core business.
The Caci Clinic won the award for Marketing and Proﬁle, while the May Client of the Month – MiGym Nelson won the award for Client Service. Smart Engineering Services was Client of the Month for June, and Shuttleworth Painters and Decorators for October.