actnow scoops top awards in national
At the Broadband Britain Challenge Awards Dinner in London
on Friday 12 September, Trish
Jones, Director of Regional Broadband Partnerships for BT,
gave the following speech:
Our champion this evening is an organisation that was created
to provide a comprehensive set of services to businesses operating
in Cornwall. The aim was to get them to adopt broadband and
exploit the benefits of information computer technology and
to do so in greater numbers than is the average elsewhere
in the country. That meant preaching the broadband gospel
far and wide and with SMEs acting as ambassadors for other
SMEs to encourage the wider use of things like teleworking,
supply chain management, sharing information and the use of
the web to both defend existing markets and open up new ones.
Our champion started out with a powerful vision of collaboration
between the public and private sectors. Just 16 months into
a three year programme, they have blown every output target
set to make this a sustainable project. They're currently
60% above their target for the adoption of broadband and have
created 20 jobs within the project itself and 586 new jobs
have been created in Small and Medium Sized Enterprises. They
have also exceeded all their gross revenue and GDP contribution
outputs and this group won the best practice award from the
European Community. The way in which the partnership has pulled
together has proved durable and successful and is an outstanding
example of what a partnership is all about
. and it
goes to actnow.
actnow, the Objective One project which is spearheading the
development of broadband internet in Cornwall, has won a National
Champion award in the Broadband Britain Challenge. The National
Final took place in London on Friday 12th September at a spectacular
gala dinner compered by TV Presenter Paul Ross.
Nigel Ashcroft, Project Director, who received the prestigious
trophy at the ceremony, said: "We are absolutely delighted
to receive this accolade. Growth of broadband in Cornwall
has been ahead of any other rural area in the UK and the service
we are providing to businesses is highly innovative. It is
fantastic to see actnow recognised on a national stage."
The Broadband Britain Challenge, which was supported by UK
Online for Business, BT Wholesale, ecademy, UK.mp3.com and
startups.co.uk, set out to find Britain's best examples of
pioneering activities that can be achieved with this new technology.
The UK Champions were chosen by a panel of experts including
the Institute of Management and University of Cambridge. actnow won its award in the Regional Partnership category, being
recognised for its innovation.
In addition to the actnow project itself, one of actnow's customers also received an award.
Rowett Insurance Group of St Austell received a Highly Commended
award in the Business category and was congratulated on its
pioneering activities. Rowett fought off stiff competition
and was recognised for the scope of the improvements it has
introduced to its business as a result of broadband. Glyn
Rowett, Principal of Rowett's, said: "Broadband has transformed
our business and helped us streamline our operations in Cornwall
and Devon. We have been able to save time and money and improve
our customer service, making us much more efficient and competitive.
It is the icing on the cake to receive this national award
which recognises the strides forward we have made."
The actnow programme is a demand-led initiative to encourage
businesses in Cornwall to gain the support they need to move
into the new broadband economy. Including about £5.25
million from Objective One, it is one of the largest private
and public sector partnerships in Cornwall since Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly was granted Objective One status by the European Union in
2000. Partners include BT, The Objective One Partnership Office,
Cornwall Enterprise, The South West of England Regional Development
Agency, Cornwall County Council, Business Link Devon and Cornwall
and Cornwall College.
For further information, call Emma Lydon 01209 722850
Objective One Partnership Office
Truro TR1 2UD
Tel: 01872 241379
Fax: 01872 241388
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