Swindon & Wiltshire Business News

Queen's Awards for Wiltshire life sciences and edu-tech firms

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Sam White and Nicholas Zieleniewski of Glentham Life Sciences Ltd


Corsham-based Glentham Life Sciences Ltd and Westbury-based Scanning Pens Ltd have won Queen's Awards for Enterprise.

Both firms were honoured in the International Trade category.

Glentham Life Sciences Ltd, which sources and supplies fine chemicals, biochemicals and raw materials for use in research development, production and laboratory applications, won its second Queen’s Award for Enterprise, following an honour in 2017.

The company was founded by co-directors Sam White and Nicholas Zieleniewski in Wimbledon in 2013 and moved to Corsham in 2015 after outgrowing the original premises.

In 2017 the company was awarded the Queen’s Award for Enterprise for Outstanding Short Term Growth in the International Trade category.

During the accounting period considered by the 2021 award, the company doubled the number of staff from five to 10, started its own production on a small scale, averaged double the number of dispatched orders per day and is selling to more countries internationally, with key partnerships now active in countries including South Africa and Vietnam.

The company has also continued to grow as an essential supplier for Covid-19 test kits and for research into Covid-19 therapies.

More recently, the firm has moved to larger premises in Corsham, increasing its warehouse space to more than 22,000 sq ft, over four times bigger than its former premises, built additional laboratory and production space to cater for the growth in this side of the business, and employed a further six staff, to 16 in total.

Sam said: “It is an honour to win a Queen’s Award for the second time. The award is a tremendous achievement for our team, whose hard work has continued to drive sustained growth and success for our company."

Scanning Pens Ltd helps dyslexic children and adults across the world – with a teaching device developed in Wiltshire.

Jack Churchill and Toby Sutton founded teaching aid Scanning Pens in 2003. Their ReaderPen – which is just a little larger than a regular ink pen and can be easily handled by children – scans text and reads it aloud or via headphones.

Scanning Pens have dedicated the past twelve months to supporting young people and adults with dyslexia and literacy differences who have been so affected by the Covid-19 pandemic. As well as offering free trials of their technology to schools, they now offer the same scheme to parents to try before they buy.

The company, which is based at Heywood House in Westbury, has remained open for business and has continued expanding into territories such as the US, Australia and Canada as well as developing new markets in other countries all over the globe.

"Socially distant living has created uncertain times in education that Scanning Pens continues to support people through," said Jack.

"The recognition of a dedicated assistive technology business by an office as prestigious as the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise is a statement on the growing worldwide commitment to accessibility.

"It also promotes a powerful message on how vital it is to consider inclusivity during a time when business and education are engaged in a rapid process of change and adapting to a very different set of global norms.

“To be recognised by the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise is the highest honour in business. We’re thrilled that our dedication to literacy and reading accessibility has been acknowledged in such a way that celebrates the commitment of everybody here at Scanning Pens.”

Now in its 55th year, the Queen’s Awards for Enterprise are the most prestigious business awards in the country, with winning businesses able to use the esteemed Queen’s Awards emblem for the next five years.

Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng said: "The past year has been a tough time for many businesses across the UK, which is why it is more important than ever to celebrate the achievements of our wealth creators and recognise the contributions they make to our communities.

"In the last 12 months, British businesses showed the entrepreneurial spirit that this country is renowned for, continuing to drive social mobility, find new markets to export to and produce innovative products and services.

"I congratulate this year’s winners and I wish every business that applied for an award this year every success in the future as we build back better from the pandemic."

Pictured: Sam White and Nicholas Zieleniewski of Glentham Life Sciences Ltd