MSDUK Awards winners Announced

The winners for the MSDUK Awards have been announced. From one of the largest consulting firms in the world to startup entrepreneurs, the MSDUK Awards winners are clear recognition for those businesses working hard to make supply chains both inclusive and competitive. 
The MSDUK Awards celebrated the outstanding people and organisations in the MSDUK Network and were presented at the 8th bi-annual gala.  The evening was hosted by British entrepreneur, lawyer and presenter Denise Nurse, and we also enjoyed the performances of the Steel Band and Shiamak Dance Company. 

The seven winners beat off the stiff competition, and entries were scrutinised by a global panel of judges, including Nestle, GSK and Supply Nation representatives.

  

The winners are:

Startup of the year – KAMI 
CEO Erika Brodnock knows firsthand the difficulties mothers face pre and post birth, having suffered from postnatal depression following the arrival of her youngest child. Hence, Kami’s technology, alongside its vision of providing all parents with the tools they need to thrive.
High-growth Business – Xalient
Xalient was established in 2015 by Sherry Vaswani, to meet an emerging market need – how to connect global companies securely and rapidly in a world where enterprises were shifting their systems, at speed, to the cloud and has rapidly scaled and now delivers to many Fortune 500 businesses across the globe.
Business Woman of the ear – Julie Chen, Cheeky Panda
The Cheeky Panda was born in the beginning of 2016 and today we are UK’s top 6 startup companies, bestseller on Amazon and are working with some of the biggest companies in the country, including Waitrose, Ocado, Boots etc. Their ambition is to build The Cheeky Panda as one of the best sustainable brands in the world. 
Entrepreneur of the Year – Sonny Sehgal, Transputec
Sonny has been a pioneer within the IT industry for over 30 years, having founded his first company Transputec, whilst a student at Imperial College, London, developing apps for the banking industry. Transputec is still going strong, having grown into a global enterprise with a £25m turnover, blue chip clients and 170 employees. 
Supplier Diversity Excellence – Established Corporate Programme – GSK
At GSK, their mission is to identify, develop and position diverse businesses to support their commercial ambitions while contributing to social responsibility. In addition, GSK has the vision to increase the spend with diverse suppliers and help develop them to be future-ready.
Supplier Diversity Excellence – Emerging Corporate Programme – Co-op
The Co-op and MSDUK only started working together in October 2020. Still, since then, they have demonstrated that they’re keen to make real and lasting change from a supplier diversity perspective across our Goods for Resale (GFR) and their Goods not for Resale (GNFR) supply chains. 
Supplier Diversity Advocate of the Year – Alexandra Tarmo, Unilever
Having joined Unilever in 2011, Alexandra has held several positions within procurement based out of Schaffhausen in Switzerland. She was appointed Head of Partnerships & Social Procurement in February 2021 and is responsible for designing and implementing the new Partnership strategy for Unilever that will embed a new ambition around growth, innovation, environment and social impact. She is also responsible for the global implementation of Unilever Living Wage and Supplier Diversity social commitments.
Speaking about the seven award winners, Mayank Shah, Founder & CEO, Minority Supplier Development UK (MSDUK), said: “It’s great to see that some of the largest and most influential purchasing organisations in the UK, both public and private, have been recognised for their steadfast commitment to inclusive procurement, opening their supply chains to small and minority-owned businesses and making a lasting impact on the growth of these businesses, and ethnic minority businesses from across the UK have been rewarded and recognised for innovation, growth and entrepreneurship.” 
“Looking back to 2006, when MSDUK was formed, the progression over the last 15 years is humbling, says Mayank Shah, Founder & CEO, Minority Supplier Development UK (MSDUK). “It’s great to see how far we have progressed and even more so to see how supplier diversity has now taken centre stage in corporate procurement strategies 2021 has seen over 50 global and British companies join MSDUK and opening up business opportunities for ethnic minority businesses. Supplier diversity programmes help addresses the issue of economic inequality and encourage entrepreneurship in under-represented communities.”
#MSDUK #Diversity #D&I #DandI #diversityandinclusion #SupplyChain #EMBs #inclusiveprocurement #Unilever #GSK #Co-Op #Transputec #CheekyPanda #Xalient #Kami

About the winners

Startup of the year – KAMI
CEO Erika Brodnock knows firsthand the difficulties mothers face pre and post birth, having suffered from postnatal depression following the arrival of her youngest child. The lack of support she experienced when returning to work from maternity leave was detrimental, but led to 18 months of research and validation, resulting in the creation of Kami. The potential of Kami’s technology, alongside its vision of providing all parents with the tools they need to thrive, has been validated by the backing and awards it’s received from names such as Google for Startups, Amazon, and Innovate UK.
High-growth Business – Xalient
Xalient was established in 2015 by Sherry Vaswani to meet an emerging market need – how to connect global companies securely and rapidly in a world where enterprises were shifting their systems, at speed, to the cloud. Xalient was set up to disrupt the market and challenge the established global IT and telecoms players, with an innovative value proposition and client-centred culture that encourages us to challenge conventional thinking. As a result, Xalient has rapidly scaled and now delivers to many Fortune 500 businesses across the globe from UK and US bases.
Business Woman of the ear – Julie Chen, Cheeky Panda
The Cheeky Panda was born at the beginning of 2016. Today, we are UK’s top 6 startup companies, bestseller on Amazon, and are working with some of the biggest companies in the country, including Waitrose, Ocado Boots etc. Their ambition is to build The Cheeky Panda as one of the best sustainable brands in the world. We didn’t have office, staff or funding. Julie designed the branding from a spare bedroom, launched crowdfunding that has secured their first £12K investment, and sold the first product on Amazon half a year later. In 2017 they attended their first trade show and got our first retail customer who had three stores in London; later on, they managed to secure Wholefoods Market listing after one year of talking to the buyer.
Entrepreneur of the Year – Sonny Sehgal, Transputec
Sonny has been a pioneer within the IT industry for over 30 years. He founded his first company Transputec, whilst a student at Imperial College, London, developing apps for the banking industry. Transputec is still going strong, having grown into a global enterprise with a £25m turnover, blue chip clients and 170 employees. All his business ventures have been based on technical or market innovation. Transputec was one of the first companies in the world to develop and promote cloud computing. ITDealer provided a platform for IT users to source hardware products in real time from manufacturers when this type of source data aggregation was unheard of.
Supplier Diversity Excellence – Established Corporate Programme – GSK
At GSK, their mission is to identify, develop and position diverse businesses to support their commercial ambitions while contributing to the social responsibility of improving the economies of the communities they serve. Thus, providing tangible social-economic impact within diverse communities and at the same time driving value to their consumers, patients and workforce. GSK has the vision to increase the spend with diverse suppliers and help develop them to be future-ready.
Supplier Diversity Excellence – Emerging Corporate Programme – Co-op
The Co-op and MSDUK only started working together in October 2020. Still, since then, they have been able to demonstrate that they’re keen to make the real and lasting change from a supplier diversity perspective across both our Goods for Resale (GFR) and their Goods, Not for Resale (GNFR) supply chains. They have also piloted their Endless Inclusion Programme with 9 of our crucial GFR suppliers. They are now creating a scaled-up platform that will be accessed by all of our suppliers, allowing them to share best practices, inclusion calendars and review where they sit against their diversity and inclusion maturity scale.
Supplier Diversity Advocate of the Year – Alexandra Tarmo, Unilever
Having joined Unilever in 2011, Alexandra has held several positions within procurement based out of Schaffhausen in Switzerland. She was appointed Head of Partnerships & Social Procurement in February 2021 and is responsible for designing and implementing the new Partnership strategy for Unilever that will embed a new ambition around growth, innovation, environment and social impact. She is also responsible for the global implementation of Unilever Living Wage and Supplier Diversity social commitments.

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