Tracing its earliest beginnings to premises in the heart of Bradford, Acorn Stairlifts is honoured to be a finalist in the 2016 Bradford Means Business Awards this Saturday, June 11th.
After experiencing huge growth over the past 20 years, Acorn is now based at much larger head office and factory premises in Steeton, West Yorkshire, with another factory at nearby Shipley, both within the Bradford Metropolitan District.
It is a finalist in the Manufacturer of the Year category of the prestigious awards, now in their sixth year and organised by the Telegraph and Argus newspaper in partnership with Bradford Council and the West and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce.
Originally based in cramped premises in Sackville Street, Bradford, Acorn Stairlifts has experienced phenomenal growth since it was founded in 1992, now manufacturing around 50,000 stairlifts per year. It has also grown into a truly multinational business, exporting its British-made stairlifts to 80 countries and employing around 1,400 people worldwide.
Achieving a rare feat for any British manufacturer, it not only broke into the American market but is now its market leader for stairlifts, with USA sales surpassing those in its UK home market for the first time in 2015.
With an annual turnover approaching £150 million and continued growth creating new jobs, Acorn remains committed to the West Yorkshire roots which have supported and sustained its growth over almost 25 years.
Perry Austin-Clarke, long-serving Editor of the Bradford Telegraph and Argus newspaper, said: "The Bradford Means Business Awards are a way of rewarding the dedication, determination, achievement and success of both new and established local enterprises. We attracted even more entries this year, ensuring competition for these coveted awards remains keen as local businesses and entrepreneurs vie to have their achievements recognised."
Three finalists have been shortlisted for each of the 10 categories in the Bradford Means Business Awards. Acorn Stairlifts is competing against Haworth-based Airedale Springs and Bradford-based chemicals firm Christeyns UK Ltd in the Manufacture of the Year category. The 10 category winners will also compete for the coveted Winner of Winners Award, chosen by the judging panel.
Dave Belmont, company secretary at Acorn Stairlifts, said: "We're delighted to have reached the finals of this year's Bradford Means Business Awards. To receive this kind of recognition from the area where your company was 'born and bred' is always special."