Eleven small and medium-sized businesses from across the UK have been crowned winners of the third annual eBay for Business Awards celebrating the most inspiring eBay sellers with the top prize of £5K awarded to a Star Wars figurine seller.
The eBay for Business Awards is a nationwide competition for the best British small businesses trading on the online marketplace platform.
This year’s winners – announced at a ceremony hosted by serial entrepreneur and Dragon from BBC Dragon’s Den Jenny Campbell at Ham Yard Hotel, London – range from a sustainable vintage fashion brand, to a music technology business that counts Snoop Dogg as its fan.
All of the eleven shortlisted sellers each won £1,000 from eBay to invest in their business plus a free eBay Anchor Store subscription to support their online store.
The grand cash prize of £5,000 was awarded to Star Wars Figures – a business selling collectible items from franchises such as Star Wars.
Commenting on the winners Rob Hattrell, Vice President, eBay UK, said: “Both my grandfathers were entrepreneurs, so I fully appreciate the hard work and determination that goes into making a small business a success. It takes someone who’s not afraid of risk, who is open to innovate and who is prepared to challenge the way things have previously been done.
“The eBay for Business awards showcased these three skills in masses. I’m delighted to have had the opportunity to meet and celebrate the very best and brightest of the small British businesses selling on our platform. It’s been inspiring to hear each of their unique stories and I feel privileged to celebrate with them.”
The winners of the eBay for Business Award 2019 are:
Green Shoots Seller Award and winner of the 2019 Grand Prize
- Star Wars Figures – a business selling LEGO and other collectible items from franchises such as Star Wars. The business was set up by a man with the ambition to provide for his ill parents and brother and £50 worth of stock, which he has since turned into £150,000 in sales.
Family Business Award
- Genuine Parts UK Ltd – a rapidly growing business launched by two brothers from Northern Ireland following their gap year, selling automotive parts on eBay.
Sustainability Seller Award
- Sheanies Vintage– a platform for buying, selling and trading second-hand clothing both on eBay and in their physical retail shop. It is owned by two brothers who started with a box clothes and turned it into a business with £100k annual turnover.
‘Be Your Own Boss’ Seller Award
- Pegs and Pearls– a business selling beautiful paper goods and invitations for all occasions. The owner started the business after leaving her management role in retail following the birth of her son, whilst suffering from postnatal depression.
Specialist Seller Award
- Direct Plants– a family business launched from a living room that is now a full-scale online mail-order plant and tree nursery company, set to turnover a staggering £1.5m in 2019.
Large Seller of the Year Award
- The Wright Buy – initially created in his parent’s house, Andrew Wright’s business (and now a brand – Cookology) is one of the most popular, highly-rated brands on eBay selling kitchen appliances.
Prince’s Trust Young Entrepreneur Award
- Into Music– a small business started by 18-year-old Jake Harris, who created a company that sourced quality, affordable music gear and serviced and repaired it before reselling it, all whilst studying at college.
eBay Bright Future Award
- Gates Enterprises – the 18 year-old who turned his life around after finding his passion for business by tapping into his family’s heritage and selling antique jewellery on eBay.
Retail Revival Seller Award
- Just Because – an eBay shop selling decorative and gifting items, which the seller opened alongside her bricks and mortar store in Wolverhampton to gain access to an international customer base.
Charity Seller of the Year Award
- Local Aid Charity – a charitable organisation that supports young people with learning difficulties. With four charity shops and an eBay store to help fund their projects, the organisation runs work placements to develop a range of Agored Cymru Accredited Skills, such as money-handling, retail and communications skills, as well as learning how to use eBay.
Innovation Seller Award
- Editors Keys Ltd – a specialist seller that produces shortcut keyboards and covers for creators. eBay was the first place the products were sold, and his initial £100 investment has now become a multi-channel business, predicted to turn over £750,000 this year, with customers including the BBC, ITV and rapper Snoop Dogg.
Image – Courtesy of eBay
Updated – 5 November 2019