EUROPEAN BUSINESS AWARDS 2014/15 PR TOOLKIT NATIONAL CHAMPION Contents Section 1 OVERVIEW Section 2 KEY MESSAGES AND KEY FACTS ABOUT AWARDS Section 3 MEDIA ACTION LIST Section 4 MEDIA RELEASE – OVERVIEW AND DRAFT RELEASE Section 5 BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON THE AWARDS Section 6 KEY CONTACT 1. SECTION 1 OVERVIEW First, may we take this opportunity to offer huge CONGRATULATIONS on being named a National Champion for your country in the 2014/15 European Business Awards. You are one of Europe’s most dynamic and exciting businesses, actively demonstrating the core principles of the European Business Awards: Success, Innovation, Ethics and an International mind-set. The news of your achievement presents you with opportunities to generate media coverage for your company’s projects and services. You have been recognised in Europe’s leading Business Awards programme as a top business in Europe and it’s definitely time to SHOUT ABOUT YOUR SUCCESS and let your target audiences: clients, staff, stakeholders and supporters, know that your work is being celebrated by leading business professionals, politicians, academics and entrepreneurs across Europe. You are flag bearer for your country and a case study for European business success. Companies like yours will continually raise the standard benchmark for business excellence across Europe. The purpose of this PR Toolkit: The purpose of this toolkit is to provide you with the background materials and media templates to help you to gain coverage and exposure for your organisation as easily as possible. It also suggests ways in which to promote your achievement as widely as possible. SECTION 2 EUROPEAN BUSINESS AWARDS - KEY MESSAGES AND KEY FACTS To help you summarise the main aims, and the importance, of the European Business Awards below are some of the key messages and key facts you can use in your PR activity. The European Business Awards: is an independent Awards programme, sponsored by RSM International, designed to recognise and promote excellence, best practice and innovation in the European business community connects the best in European business, across borders, business size and sector celebrates excellence, innovation, entrepreneurship and best practice among business The programme has rapidly established itself as the major accolade in European business and is widely recognised as the premier business platform across the continent. The Awards have attracted support from significantly influential individuals and some truly dynamic organisations. The guiding principles of the Awards are Innovation, Ethics and Financial Success. These are the values which underpin the achievements of thriving businesses and very much align with the values of RSM. Ethics - businesses need to demonstrate how they operate with a broad awareness of their role and impact in wider society Innovation – the ability to innovate, pioneer and in some cases regenerate their operations Financial Success – the ability to generate a financial surplus 2. These three points provide the framework for the judging process and enable organisations of all sizes to compete on a common set of principles that are applicable to all. THE 2014/5 EUROPEAN BUSINESS AWARDS FACT SHEET The European Business Awards recognises and rewards excellence, best practice and innovation in companies across the European Union. The competition is free to enter and open to organisations of all sizes and from any industry sector RSM International is the lead sponsor of the Awards, and has supported them since their inception. RSM is the seventh largest audit, tax and advisory network worldwide with a major presence across Europe The European Business Awards is now in its 8th year It is Europe’s largest and most significant cross-sector business recognition programme This year it has engaged with over 24,000 businesses in 33 countries across Europe during the entries campaign There are 3 phases of judging There are 2 phases of public voting There are 132 judges and the equivalent of 285 days of judging There are 10 categories (see section 5 for details) There are 709 ‘National Champions’ across 33 European countries The 2013/14 competition generated widespread GLOBAL media coverage, leading to over 4,000 items of coverage across print, broadcast, online and social media, resulting in a PR value of over €5million. The PR campaign has reached over 300 million people The public voting phase for 2013/14 competition generated 93,425 votes (more than double the amount received in the 2012/13 competition) There were over 400,000 unique visits to the EBA website www.businessawardseurope.com during the competition 3. SECTION 3 MEDIA ACTION LIST News about the successful National Champions is being released on Thursday 4th September 2014 at 00:01 BST (GMT+1) / 01:01 CET At this time a central press release will be released and promoted on the European Business Awards website www.businessawardseurope.com THINGS YOU CAN DO FROM 4 SEPTEMBER ONWARDS: Contact local and professional press and media – issue a press release to your local/national and trade media: including print, online and broadcast press. If you can, engage a local PR company to help you. Follow up with offers on interview where possible. Update your website – post the news on your website and feature the European Business Awards logo prominently on the site stating your achievement within the Awards programme. Write/email all your clients, stakeholders, funding bodies and associations and notify them of your achievement in the Awards. Social Media Do you have presence on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube? Do you have a blog? If not then consider starting pages and ensure that you keep the information up to date and upload press releases and images as and when you send them. Join the European Business Awards on our new Twitter handle/name: @rsmEBA, and don’t forget to hash tag us in your tweet: #rsmEBA. We will be tweeting live regarding the announcements so retweet our tweets and tweet your own reactions. This is a great way to be seen by your peers. Join the EBAs on LinkedIn and Facebook and comment or start a discussion in the European Business Awards group. The group in LinkedIn is called “The European Business Awards” and find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/businessawardseurope We also have a YouTube channel on http://www.youtube.com/user/BusinessAwardsEurope Our lead sponsor RSM International will also be posting and updating information so please join their sites too: Twitter - @rsm_world Blog – rsmworldblog.com LinkedIn – RSM company/group page Create an email signature for your organisation promoting your achievement within the Awards programme including the European Business Awards winners’ logo. Include the EBA winners’ logo on stationery (letterhead paper, business cards, etc). A link to where you can be download the logo from will be sent to you via email from the EBA. 4. Approach industry and relevant category conferences throughout Europe and explain your achievement in the Awards and offer to speak at their conferences about your business and what has made it successful. Host your own breakfast, lunch or seminar for potential and existing customers showcasing your achievement in the Awards programme and why you were selected. And importantly: keep us up to date on the successes you have had in generating coverage by forwarding any coverage to our PR Manager, Vanessa Wood at firstname.lastname@example.org SECTION 4 MEDIA RELEASE AND STRATEGY Last year’s European Business Awards generated over 4000 items of media coverage. Companies like yours received global exposure for their company by doing proactive PR campaigns and working hard to get their name in the press – this also helped them when it came to the public voting part of the competition. We are here to provide central guidance to help you achieve this for your company so please find below a draft press release with key messages and a central quote for you to use. DRAFT MEDIA PRESS RELEASE TEMPLATE FOR WINNERS ANNOUNCEMENT: Must not be released before central news has been released by The European Business Awards newsroom on 4th September 2014 at 00:01 BST (GMT+1) / 01:01 CET [INSERT COMPANY NAME] FROM [INSERT COUNTRY] NAMED NATIONAL CHAMPION IN THE EUROPEAN BUSINESS AWARDS 2014/15 [Insert Company Name] Wins for [Country] in Prestigious Awards competition Xxxx from xxxx (town/country) has today been named as a National Champion in The European Business Awards sponsored by RSM International; a prestigious competition supported by businesses leaders, academics, media and political representatives from across Europe. The European Business Awards now in its 8th year engaged with over 24,000 business from 33 European countries this year and 709 companies from across Europe have been named today as National Champions; going through to the second phase of the competition. [Insert a sentence or two about your company] [Suggested quote from your company, insert name and title of person] “We’re very proud to be selected to represent [insert country] as a National Champion. The European Business Awards is widely recognised as the showcase for Europe’s most dynamic companies and we are now looking forward to the next round of the judging process where we can explain in more depth how we are achieving business success.” 5. Adrian Tripp, CEO of the European Business Awards said: “Congratulations to [insert company name], it is a great achievement to be named National Champion and we wish them luck in the next stage. The European Business Awards is going from strength to strength, inspiring businesses to greater success and helping to improve the competitive edge of companies across Europe.” Jean Stephens, CEO of RSM International, said: “Every year this competition gets tougher and more competitive as more companies, of varied sizes and across all sectors, chose to compete in this prestigious competition. With the increased number of entries and countries, this year looks to become the toughest Awards yet. It will be exciting to watch as we move through to the next round.” A panel of judges made up of Europe-wide business leaders, academics and entrepreneurs will view the National Champions’ videos, and award the best of this group the coveted ‘Ruban d’Honneur’ status. Ruban d’Honneur recipients will then go on to the grand final in 2015. All of the National Champions will also take part in a public vote to decide ‘Public Champions’ for each country. Last year over 93,000 votes were cast, and over 400,000 people visited the EBA website during the competition. Supported since their inception by lead sponsor and promoter RSM International, the seventh largest audit, tax and advisory network worldwide with a major presence across Europe , the European Business Awards was set up to recognise and reward excellence, best practice and innovation across the European business community. For more information on the Awards and its winners, please visit www.businessawardseurope.com and follow us on twitter at @rsmEBA ENDS For further press information, please contact: Insert company contact information EBA: The Newsroom at the European Business Awards on +44 (0) 796 6666 657 or email email@example.com About the European Business Awards: The European Business Awards recognises and rewards excellence, best practice and innovation. The competition is free to enter and open to organisations of all sizes and from any industry sector. The European Business Awards programme serves three purposes for the European business community: • It provides examples for the business community to aspire to • It celebrates and endorses individual’s and organisation’s success • It provides an active platform for debate About RSM International RSM International is the lead sponsor of the European Business Awards and has sponsored the Awards programme since its inception. RSM International is a worldwide network of independent accounting and consulting firms. RSM and its member firms are separate and independent legal entities. RSM does not provide accounting or consultancy services, all such services are provided by member firms practicing on their own account. The network’s total fee income of US$3.8 billion places it amongst the top six international accounting organisations worldwide. 6. Member firms are driven by a common vision of providing high quality professional services, both in their domestic markets and in serving the international professional service needs of their client base. RSM is a member of the Forum of Firms. The objective of the Forum of Firms is to promote consistent and high quality standards of financial and auditing practices worldwide. 2014 marks an exceptional year for RSM International as it celebrates its 50th Anniversary. www.rsmi.com SECTION 5 BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON THE AWARDS 1) The Categories The RSM Entrepreneur of the Year Award Entrepreneurs are visionaries who are instrumental in the success of a business. Their tireless approach to enterprise expansion places them at the crux of the business. Understanding objectives, formulating ideas and making decisions are part of the role. This award recognises those special traits that make successful entrepreneurs so inspiring. The International Award for Environmental and Corporate Responsibility As an evolving business approach, this award considers business operations in a social, cultural, economic and environmental context. Valuing consumer, employee and eco-friendly issues amongst their core values, these corporations operate transparently and actively nurture employee development and involvement. Winning models look beyond the legislative requirements and endeavour to improve a company’s green credentials through innovation and moral modernisation. This award celebrates businesses that have conscientiously implemented and evolved these practices. (Open to Public and Private Sector organisations.) The UKTI Award for Innovation Innovative individuals and organisations drive the economy. Recognising the evolving nature of business, true innovators originate forward-thinking concepts to instigate improvement. This award acknowledges the importance of innovation as a strategy to influence ongoing business development. The Business of the Year Award (T/O €0-25m) This award will go to the outstanding company that best demonstrates exceptional financial returns, strong growth and innovation strategies, and market leadership in its sector. Judges will look for evidence of inventiveness, ethical credentials, good stakeholder relationships and long term planning balanced by the flexibility to deliver consistent results in dynamic market conditions. The Business of the Year Award (T/O €26-150m) This award will go to the outstanding company that best demonstrates exceptional financial returns, strong growth and innovation strategies, and market leadership in its sector. Judges will look for evidence of inventiveness, ethical credentials, good stakeholder relationships and long term planning balanced by the flexibility to deliver consistent results in dynamic market conditions. The Business of the Year Award (T/O €150m+) This award will go to the outstanding company that best demonstrates exceptional financial returns, strong growth and innovation strategies, and market leadership in its sector. Judges will look for evidence of inventiveness, ethical credentials, good stakeholder relationships and long term planning balanced by the flexibility to deliver consistent results in dynamic market conditions. 7. The Growth Strategy of the Year Award International growth has enormous benefits for local and global economies. This Award will go to the organisation that best demonstrates an international organic growth strategy that has achieved outstanding levels of sales, profit and market share improvement. The Award for Customer Focus An important aspect of business development, customer focus ensures that services provided are useful and relevant to current and potential customers. As a core practice, it drives growth through a deep understanding of customer values. This award celebrates organisations that have enhanced their prospects and profitability by putting the customer at the heart of its business. The Employer of the Year Award Businesses can reap rewards by offering employees outstanding training programmes, progression monitoring and continuous career prospects. Employers recognised in this award category have the ability to inspire and motivate their staff by enabling career expansion, operating equal opportunity schemes and understanding the importance of a work-life balance. The Import/Export Award This award recognises organisations that can demonstrate a continuously positive trend in the export/import or re-export of goods, demonstrate the expansion of coverage in existing or new markets and, through the introduction of creative and innovative operational processes, show robustness in managing and developing international trade and maintaining and improving market position in the face of competition. 2) THE JUDGES An elite panel of judges including leading business figures, academics, entrepreneurs, thought leaders and political leaders presides over the judging process, previous support has been provided by: Karel De Gucht (EU Trade Commissioner) Yves Leterme (former Belgian Prime Minister) Jose Aznar (former Prime Minister of Spain) Arnold Rüütel (former Prime Minister of Estonia) Emil Constantinescu (former President of Romania) Petar Stoyanov (former President of Bulgaria) Isidoro Unda (CEO of Atradius) Peter Brabeck-Lethmathe (former CEO of Nestle) Gilbert Ghostine (Managing Director of Diageo Continental Europe) Judges are allocated specific panels and represent different nationalities who are naturally well versed in the cultural aspects of each of the finalists’ countries. The judges are fully independent and receive no personal or financial benefit from their participation, other than first-hand experience of finalists’ success stories, and the opportunity to influence, encourage and promote the highest standards of business. From the National Champions shortlisted in September, the judges will name the Ruban D’Honneur winners in February 2015. Public voting In addition to the standard judging process, there are two stages of public voting: 1. One National Public Champion per European country to be selected and announced on the 3rd March 2015 2. One overall European Public Champion to be selected and announced at the Gala ceremony in June 2015 8. Please note that public voting does not in any way influence the overall judging results. The two are separate Awards. 3) BIOGRAPHIES OF KEY SPOKESPEOPLE Jean Stephens, CEO, RSM Jean has been Chief Executive Officer of RSM International, the world’s 7th largest audit, tax and advisory network, since January 2006. Under her leadership, RSM has grown by over 120% by both acquisitive and organic growth. Jean currently spends over 70% of her time on international business trips in countries around the world. In 2007, she established the RSM Academy – a highly rated international leadership programme with an emphasis on cultural diversity, cross border client business strategy, and promoting best practice in the development of sustainable successful internationally dynamic enterprises. Ms Stephens is passionate about international business and in creating environments that promote opportunity and development for RSM’s young professionals. Jean is frequently asked to contribute to both print and broadcast international business media, such as CNBC, European CFO, European Business Review and BBC Radio 4. She has held leadership positions in a variety of organisations including the San Bernardino Chamber of Commerce, Rotary International, United Way, YWCA and the Inland Empire Symphony. She has received the Athena Award for Outstanding Business Woman - San Bernardino Area Chamber of Commerce and is also a recipient of the California State University Alumni of the Year Award. In May 2009, she received an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from her Alma Mater, University of Redlands, in recognition of her international career with RSM. She is a member of the AICPA, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting and a Masters degree in Finance. She qualified as a Certified Public Accountant in 1984. Adrian Tripp, CEO, European Business Awards Adrian Tripp is CEO and founder of the European Business Awards. He is dedicated to fostering a European Entrepreneurial Spirit and believes strongly in rewarding and recognising success and sharing good practices with the broader business community. Regarded by many as a thought leader, he has developed some unique insights into entrepreneurship and has lectured at establishments such as Harvard Business School. In addition, his approach to delivering innovative commercial marketing solutions has attracted organisations such as 3i and the European Commission to engage Adrian to help them develop alternative customer engagement strategies. Adrian’s commercial DNA has resulted in a series of innovative ventures and in 2007 he sold Quest Media, the highly regarded publisher and turned his attention to film. He spotted a gap in the market of business films and twinned with some inventive commercial and journalistic insights he established Tracc Films. In less than 3 years of operation, Tracc has made over 300 short documentary films for global brands such as IKEA, Land Rover, Ebay and Accenture. With offices now in the UK, USA and 9. India, Tracc is on course to grow by over 300% in the year ahead. He now combines his role as CEO of Tracc Films with that of running the European Business Awards. Born in 1969 in South Africa and educated in the UK, he graduated with a degree in Economics and Public Policy. He set up his first business whilst at university and has been self-employed ever since. Adrian lives in Hertfordshire with his young family and spends time skiing, mountain biking or practising martial arts. 4) ADDITIONAL QUOTES FROM HGH PROFILE SUPPORTERS FOR PR Jean Stephens, CEO, RSM International, “I believe that exceptional business talent needs to be recognised and rewarded. RSM’s continued support for the European Business Awards programme as lead sponsor, and our specific focus on the Entrepreneur of the Year category, reflects our commitment to partnering with, and sharing best practice from, some of the most successful business professionals in Europe and the rest of the world.” Karel De Gucht, European Commissioner for Trade, “I realise very well how difficult it is to run a business under the current circumstances with international competition ever more fierce and tangible in practically all sectors. The pressure on our companies is huge, and yet they manage to perform at the highest level in the world. Europe is still the place where people want to do business. The success of Europe is to a large extent thanks to all of you.” Philip Forrest, Chairman of Judges “It is a privilege for me to serve as the Chairman of Judges for the European Business Awards. It has been very difficult to choose between so many highly successful and resourceful companies who have shown that they are the best at what they do.” Prime Minister Yves Leterme, Former Prime Minister of Belgium (2009-2011), “I pay a lot of respect to what is happening in European companies, we have excellent people in our businesses and the achievements are really impressive. I think the European Business Awards is a very good stimulus for companies to always try to improve their results... it’s a way of rewarding them for their great efforts.” José María Aznar, former Prime Minister of Spain, “I have the highest opinion of the European Business Awards. It is a great initiative to promote the values and principles we believe in: liberty, democracy, freedom of speech, open markets and open societies.” Petar Stoyanov, former President of Bulgaria, “This event inspires and stimulates European Business to reaching exacting criteria, where not only annual turnover and sales count, but also factors with high social importance – what we call business ethics.” 5. QUOTES FROM PREVIOUS WINNERS “Taking part of the European Business Awards allowed us to share our success with different sectors both nationally and internationally. Our future plans include expansion to Europe and UAE, so having won the “National Public Champion Trophy and Ruban d’Honour Trophy” assures our current and future customers of our determination. Thanks to this event and all the networking opportunities it provided, we have met the best in the business and plan on expanding our relationship to innovative together and create sustainable business partnerships. European Business Awards is a big opportunity for every company!” Doga Koleji, of Tugba Yuksel, Turkey 10. “Receiving the European Business Award was a fantastic recognition of our everyday dedication in making our organization better..it allowed us to increase our position with our shareholders, namely our customers and employees, ..reinforced our culture and values, and the pursuit of our mission; allowing faster networking and public affairs and in the end…commercial results. This will be a unique critical success factor for our organization in our 2020 strategy!” Nelson Pires, General Manager of Jaba Recordati, Portugal “FxPro Financial Services Limited was not only delighted to enter the 2013/14 European Business Awards, we were also honoured to have been voted the National Public Champion of Cyprus. It is a real privilege to be recognised in such a public way and especially amongst such distinguished companies. We are very proud to be part of this European family of successful businesses and we will continue to strive towards excellence in everything we do. The organisation of the event was smooth and professional from start to finish and we eagerly await next year’s event.” Charalambos Psimolophitis, CEO at FxPro, Cyprus "From the beginning of our bid process for the European Business Awards, the entry guidelines and procedures provided us with a unique opportunity to examine our own business model from a different perspective. This was incredibly useful in terms of future opportunity and growth planning. As a company with a global presence, particularly throughout Europe, we saw an increase in profile, especially in terms of business as a direct result of the publicity gained after reaching the grand final. In particular, the European Business Awards provided a perfect platform for networking peers and industry experts throughout the whole process. I would actively encourage any business, regardless of size or turnover to enter the European Business Awards to pit your company against the elite in Europe.' Mike Rowland, Managing Director/Founder FCS Global, UK “We are proud to win Ruban d'Honneur title, competing with some of the most dynamic and bestperforming organizations on our continent and sharing best practices within European business community. These achievements are an incentive for us to keep our work level at the highest standards. We highly appreciate the initiative of EBA organizers to introduce also an online public voting system. It gave the European companies the opportunity to highlight their achievements in front of a new, very large audience, both nationally and continentally. Thus, our partners, clients and all those who know our work had the opportunity to see our achievements presented at a regional scale. They made us win the National Champion title, which is an exceptional distinction for us. We are aware of the fact that very few companies manage to be selected for representing their country in the final stages of European competition, and this was a special honor for us.” Doina Binig, SIVECO, Romania “We have had a very positive experienced in the EBA Awards. Thanks to it, we had a lot of exposure and publicity not only from our side but also due to the involvement of our clients, customer and business partners who promoted us and spread the word to their network by believing in us. Being National Public Champion of the Netherlands was more than a positive experience. Having the vector of EBA in all our letters, correspondence, e-mails and folders has given us much more prominence and recognition amongst the business world.” Piet Sijm, President of VWS, Holland “Being awarded as The Infosys Business of the Year (26-150M€) 2013/14 has been a great honour, and a wonderful opportunity to explain who we are and who we do aspire to be. The media coverage and the prestige of the European Business Awards will undoubtedly be a great impulse to our international expansion process, and will help us to consolidate Galenicum as one of the most innovative and successful companies among the European business panorama, that we think will became a great stimulus for our commercial objectives. On the other hand, we are convinced that this award is a shared acknowledgement to all the Galenicum team, because without their professionalism, 11. commitment and spirit of overcoming none of this would have been possible.” Àlex Ollé, founding partner at Galenicum, Spain “Becoming one of the top one hundred most innovative companies in Europe at the European Business Awards is a distinction undoubtedly noticeable and appreciated by business partners and customers. It contributes to the increase of consumer confidence in our company.” Agata Zawadzka, Marketing Specialist, Neurosoft Sp. z o.o., Poland SECTION 6 KEY CONTACT/S If you would like any further assistance or advice on your media and PR work, please contact: Vanessa Wood on +44 (0) 796 6666 657 or firstname.lastname@example.org ENDS 12.