Top award for young entrepreneur

A budding Lancashire businesswoman has been named one of the UK’s most promising young entrepreneurs.

Kelly Bolton, of Preston, was crowned Young Entrepreneur of the Year at the regional final at this year’s ‘Forward Ladies’ awards in Manchester.

The 31-year-old founder and chief executive of international marketing agency Aggressive Growth Marketing (AGM) beat women in business from across the North West, Ireland and Wales to take the award.

She said: “I’m ecstatic to have won this award. It is such an honour. Without my excellent team, AGM would not be where it is today.

 “This award is just as much a testament to the hard work and dedication they deliver daily as it is for me.

“We will continue to innovate and disrupt our sector and fly the flag for northern women in business.”

Judges noted Kelly’s commitment to mentoring small businesses and young people looking to start their own business.

She said: “I’m incredibly excited to be working with the next generation of business owners, ensuring they have all the tools and skills they need to excel in their own marketing strategies.”

Having completed a BTEC National Diploma in performing arts at college in 2006, Kelly decided against going to university.

Instead, she worked as a nursery assistant and an online business owner before launching her career as a freelance marketer in 2012.

She founded AGM, the world’s first integrated growth marketing, business development and sales agency, as a one-woman operation in 2016.

It now has offices in Preston and London, employs seven staff and has worked with more than 700 brands across the world, including multinational private jet firm Vertis Aviation, transport provider Arriva and Inter Voice Over, Europe’s leading voiceover agency.

Earlier this month, AGM secured a six-figure deal to provide training, coaching, mentoring and workshops to Business Growth Hubs in Manchester and Cumbria.

Kelly said: “I hope to show others who might not have got the grades they wanted or just don’t want to go to college or university that you can still succeed if you are passionate and committed to what you want to achieve.”

She will now compete with the best of UK’s budding business leaders for the national title at the grand final in Leeds on November 29.