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Soft drinks company pledges support for Powys Business Awards

Radnor Hills managing director Simon Knight speaking at the launch of the Powys Business Awards 2024

MULTI-AWARD-winning soft drinks manufacturer Radnor Hills, which won the Powys Business of the Year 2023 Award, has spoken of the importance of acknowledging business success in the county.

The family-owned soft drinks manufacturer, which has a workforce of 262 at Heartsease, near Knighton, will be sponsoring a new Business in the Community category to recognise businesses that put something back into their community.

Last year, Radnor Hills won both the Powys Business of the Year and Excellence in Sustainability Awards.

“Powys Business Awards are very important for the county because they acknowledge and recognise those businesses, organisations and social enterprises that have made a huge effort to grow and develop,” said Radnor Hills’ new managing director Simon Knight.

“Supporting our local community has always been an important part of the Radnor Hills ethos. Whether that is sponsoring local events, taking part in charity fundraisers or donating supplies of bottled and canned water to key local events, such as the Royal Welsh Show.

“We are delighted to sponsor a new Business in the Community category that reflects the ethos of our business, and we’re looking forward to seeing the entrants.”

Simon joined Radnor Hills on the Business Wales Mentoring Programme two years ago, having previously worked for Wrigley Mars for 20 years, Burt Snacks and, more recently, run his own business consultancy. William Watkins, who established the company on the family farm in 1990, has become chief executive.

“I joined Radnor Hills to do a full business analysis, looking at all areas of the business and to pull together a comprehensive strategy to grow the company’s turnover,” explained Simon.

Supported by William, sales and marketing director Chris Sanders and the rest of the Radnor Hills team, Simon has helped to grow all areas of the business in the past two years.

The business now occupies a 14-acre site which includes a £1.8 million solar farm that supplies 25% of the energy used.

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Radnor Hills is constantly striving to become more sustainable to protect the local environment. By recycling everything it possibly can, the company has achieved a “zero to landfill” commitment, having introduced straw-free cartons, 100% recycled plastic bottles and planted more than 14,000 trees.

“We want to be ahead of the game and do the right thing for the company and the environment,” added Simon. “What we take out, we want to put back in.”

Organised by Mid Wales Manufacturing Group (MWMG) with support from sponsors, the awards are open to companies, organisations, social enterprises and charities.

There are 12 award categories this year as well as the overall Powys Business of the Year and discretionary Judges Award. Closing date for entries is July 21 and the awards ceremony will be held at Derring Lines, Brecon on October 4. More information at the Powys Business Awards website.