OWNER-MANAGED businesses are the backbone of the economy.

Accountants Moore Stephens are once more sponsoring the Owner Managed Business of the Year category which made its debut at last year’s Echo-backed South Coast Business Awards.

“The awards will act as a fantastic gateway for businesses across the South region to showcase their talent”, said Stuart Datlen, managing partner of the Moore Stephens Southampton office.

Celebrating the contribution of OMBs to the UK economy, this award recognises small to medium sized businesses which have demonstrated solid growth and strong financial performance, understands its customer, has an engaged workforce with effective leadership and is continually innovating to support future growth. It is open to organisations with £750,000 to £10m turnover in their last financial year.

Last year’s winner was SB Joinery from Stockbridge which scored a hat-trick of wins, taking home the overall award Trethowans Business of the Year and the Employer of the Year title.

The closing date for entries is April 12. The awards are run in conjunction with main sponsors Trethowans Solicitors and partners Destination Southampton, Santander and Business South.

They will take place at the Hilton at the Ageas Bowl on July 13. To book tickets email scba@dailyecho.co.uk or call 02380 424715.