Staff at Crown Paints are celebrating after clinching a major award for their teamwork and commitment towards creating a more sustainable future.
The company secured The Grichan Partnerships Sustainable Business Award in the 2015 Lloyds Bank National Business Awards.
The UK paint manufacturer was revealed as the winner at the award’s glittering gala dinner held at Park Lane’s Grosvenor House Hotel in London.
Presented by Sky News’ Ian King and Poppy Trowbridge, the Lloyds Bank National Business Awards, played host to over 1,200 business leaders and welcomed former Astronaut and second man on the moon, Buzz Aldrin as headline speaker.
And reflecting the prestigious nature of the awards, the Prime Minister opened proceedings at the ceremony with a powerful video message.
Speaking to the finalists he told the audience: “I want to take this opportunity to say a huge thank you on behalf of the whole country, for all that you’re doing to create jobs and growth in Britain.
“Tonight we celebrate all that you’re doing, from your leadership in digital and innovation, to the Duke of York’s new award for University Entrepreneurship, these awards are rightly the Oscars of great British business.”
Crown Paints, which has been manufacturing paint in the UK for more than 200 years, has more than 1,250 employees. It has its headquarters in Darwen, Lancashire and a further manufacturing site in Hull, as well as a network of more than 130 Crown Decorating Centres operating across the UK and Ireland.
The judges gave the award for the company’s pioneering Earthbalance® sustainability programme.
Developed to rival those in place at some of the world’s leading green companies, Earthbalance® was launched in 2008 and features a target to reduce Crown Paints’ Greenhouse Gas Emissions by 10% for 2015 and 25% by 2020.
Rather than applying environmental benefits to niche products, or compromising on the quality of products to achieve green goals, the company has changed the way it does business, particularly in manufacturing, with the emphasis on innovation and staff engagement to achieve its green goals.
The approach is reflected in Crown Paints’ new advertising campaign ‘Inside This Tin’, which recently aired on TV channels and celebrates the company’s commitment to innovation, colour expertise and heritage, which stretches over more than 200 years. The campaign also showcases their exclusive Breatheasy® formulation, an example of sustainability in action across the Crown Retail product range.
Richard Hewitt at The Grichan Partnership, said: “We found that Crown Paints were exceptional in the way that they promoted sustainability throughout their business.
“They not only showed us how the projects they are involved in are truly transformational, but have inspired us all here on the judging panel. We would like to congratulate them on winning this award.”
Joe Devitt, Managing Director of Crown Paints, said: “We are absolutely delighted with this news.
“It’s a testimony to all the hard work the team have put in across the entire business.
“Crown’s brand is focused on the fact that ‘it’s not just paint, it’s personal’.
“As such, our business is as much about our people as our products and that’s reflected in the way our staff, suppliers and clients have supported the activity.”
The scale of Earthbalance® unites a number of initiatives, including the award-winning ‘Kick Out The Can’ recycling community scheme, which returned this year.
Sheds, cupboards and garages across the country are thought to hold more than 50 million litres of unused paint, so the public was encouraged to return any surplus for recycling at their local Crown Decorating Centre.
The campaign has been a huge success. Thousands of containers of returned paint have been reprocessed and donated to community projects across the UK, with the leftover plastic and metal paint containers also sent for recycling.
NIMTECH, a social enterprise providing employment opportunities for the hard to reach and long-term unemployed, has played a key role in Crown’s sustainable journey - providing the business with waste recovery and recycling services across the UK. It has also reprocessed returned paints from the ‘Kick Out The Can’ initiative.
Geraldine Huxley, Customer Services Director at Crown Paints, went to the stage to collect the award. She said: “The sheer scale and impact of ‘Kick Out The Can’ – and its wide-ranging implications environmentally, socially and economically - make this a truly innovative initiative with the community at its heart.
“The paint that was brought back to Crown Decorating Centres has now been donated to a wide range of good causes. The recycled paint is transforming community halls, youth and sport centres and green spaces. It’s also being used to create community art.
“It’s a superb scheme that reflects how sustainability can make a real difference in business.
“Initiatives like this show the environment is now truly embedded within the entire company - and the efficiencies, engagement and success it has brought to the business overall shows a green approach makes sound business sense.
“Earthbalance® involves everyone from directors to the factory floor and we now have 1,250 members of staff acting as ‘green ambassadors’ who are buying in to a more sustainable future.
“Communication and the sharing of ideas have been crucial to developing this culture and the whole business has the opportunity to present innovative ideas that transform the way Crown does business.”
“Ours is a business about colour – and we are proud that a green approach is at its core. We’re delighted to have won the Grichan Partnership Sustainability Business Award.”
This is the latest awards success for Crown Paints, which earlier this year secured The Future Manufacturing Awards’ Environmental Excellence title for the North West region.
Other recent awards include the Coatings Care Best Performance Award from The British Coatings Federation, which reflects all round excellence in the industry, The Manufacturer’s Sustainable Manufacturer of The Year Award, the Supply Chain Sustainability School Gold standard, Green Apple awards and Insider’s Green Manufacturer of the Year title.
Crown has also flown the flag for manufacturing in Europe as a UK national champion in the European Business Awards 2013/2014.