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Steelite International honoured with Queen’s Award

22 April 2013

Staffordshire tableware manufacturer Steelite International has been given one of the most prestigious business awards in the world.

The group’s success in selling overseas has been recognised with a Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the International Trade category.

Steelite International makes and supplies tabletop ranges for the international hospitality industry. It has annual sales of about £70 million, and 85 per cent of those come from export markets.

Kevin Oakes, Chief Executive of Steelite International, said: “We are absolutely thrilled with this recognition. It’s testament to our amazing teams here and abroad and I would like to thank everyone for their passion and hard work.

“It’s also testament to the skills of the Stoke-on-Trent workforce and to our commitment to keep production here.

“There is really strong demand for British-made products and we’ve been proving that year after year. Everyone involved should be very proud of themselves.”

To be considered for the international trade award, companies have to demonstrate years of export success.

Growing markets for Steelite International include the U.S., Eastern Europe and Asia, and the Queen’s Award follows years of investment in overseas sales and distribution as well as product development.

Mr Oakes said: “Exporting isn’t easy. It takes a lot of effort and it’s expensive – but it’s worth it.

“Our Stoke-on-Trent factory can produce about 500,000 pieces a week. Most of those end up on tables abroad. That’s a very visible and very effective advertisement for UK manufacturing.”

Michael Fallon, Business and Energy Minister, said:  “The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise are one of the most internationally-recognised and sought after awards that a UK business can achieve. They give companies prestige, an edge overseas and a well-deserved boost.

“The Queen’s Awards highlight our strong entrepreneurial streak and the excellent businesses we have up and down the country who are growing, creating jobs, making a valuable contribution to the economy and helping us to compete in the global race. I applaud each and every one of the winners.”

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