Steven Jackson wins top entrepreneur award

Steven Jackson, the founder of waste and recycling business Recycling Lives, has been named the UK's top entrepreneur and will now represent the country at the international awards.

He won the Societal Impact category at the EY Entrepreneur Of the Year awards, in recognition of the rehabilitation work at the heart of his Preston business. He then went on to take the overall winner's crown.

Launched in 2008, Recycling Lives combines business and charity to support social welfare programmes through commercial waste management solutions, such as the collecting, processing and recycling all waste such as scrap metal, scrap cars, plastics, paper and cardboard.

The nationwide recycling and waste management businesses offer services to public and private sectors, and members of the public across a network of 12 sites. They each deliver their own social enterprise and charity initiatives covering three core programmes; tackling food poverty and reducing food waste by redistributing surplus food to community groups; reducing reoffending by rehabilitating offenders in prison; and tackling homelessness through a residential programme.

The business has also implemented food distribution and homelessness initiatives. Thousands of tonnes of surplus food have been diverted from landfill by delivering 13,000 meals a week to 180 community groups, while the residential programme has supported dozens of men in regaining their independence.

Steve’s energy and passion for changing the lives of others shines through.

Joanna Santinon, partner and EY Entrepreneur Of The Year leader, UK, said: “Steve Jackson truly epitomises what we see across all regions of the programme, with more and more of our country’s successful entrepreneurs building successful businesses with a real focus on profits with purpose. Steve’s energy and passion for changing the lives of others shines through.

“His story and commitment to create social value equal to or greater than 10% of annual sales, which was exceeded this year, reflects the strides Recycling Lives is making to fulfil its goal of commercial growth and real social good.”

Imran Hakim, CEO of Hakim Group, based in Darwen, was a joint winner of the Scale Up award.

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