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A-Plant Scoops ‘Business Oscar’ And Is Selected As UK Entrant At European Finals

Leading hire company A-Plant has won what has been described by Prime Minister Gordon Brown as a 'Business Oscar' and has successfully qualified to represent the UK at the European Business Awards 2009. A-Plant, which hires out Plant, Tools and Specialist Equipment from depots across the UK, triumphed at the National Business Awards Finals 2008 by winning the 3i Growth Strategy of the Year Award against stiff competition from organisations around the country.

As winner of the 3i Growth Strategy of the Year Award at the North West Regional Finals in July, A-Plant automatically qualified for the National Finals hosted at Grosvenor House Hotel in London and was successful against all of the other regional finalists, including Navman Wireless and Nisa International.

The awards ceremony was attended by a number of the UK's leading business figures, including Peter Mandelson, Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform, and HRH The Earl of Essex. National Business Awards are said to be the UK's most sought after business accolade and celebrate the cream of UK enterprise. Any company within the UK, whether public or private, can enter the awards. A-Plant was also shortlisted for the Chartered Management Institute Customer Focus Award at the National Business Awards. The company has won the Customer Focus Award for an unprecedented three years running at the National Business Awards North West Regional Finals.

Stringently judged by a panel of 230 expert judges from the likes of the Commission for Employment and Skills, the Institute of Customer Service and City & Guilds, the National Business Awards programme is considered to be the benchmark of UK business and the underlying criteria are success, innovation and ethics.

The 3i Growth Strategy of the Year accolade is awarded to the organisation that can best demonstrate an organic growth strategy, rather than merger and acquisition activity, and that has achieved outstanding levels of sales, profit and market share improvement. For its 2007/8 financial year, A-Plant achieved turnover of £214.8 million and increased operating profits by 46% to £30.2 million. A-Plant forms part of FTSE-250 company Ashtead Group plc which achieved annual Group turnover of more than £1 billion.

A-Plant has been selected as one of 10 Ruban d'Honneur recipients for The Atradius Growth Strategy of the Year Award in the European Business Awards 2009. The winner will be announced at a gala presentation being hosted at the Westin Excelsior Rome in Italy on 7th April 2009.

A-Plant has some 30,000 customers in the construction and industrial markets and has over 110,000 items of Plant, Tools and Specialist Equipment available to hire - ranging from large plant such as Dumpers, Excavators and Telehandlers, to smaller equipment including Air Powered Tools, Heaters and Lifting Equipment and specialist equipment such as Powered Access Machines, Accommodation Units and Traffic Control and Management Products.