The room is tense, quiet at Nachural's Entrepreneurship Awards as the final award of the evening, the big one, Entrepreneur of the Year, is about to be announced. As a team, our eyes flitter in anticipation, shifting from our MD Matt Jones (up for the award) to the stage where eight previous winners have stood to claim their awards.
Our leader's cool as a cucumber, oozing charm all great leaders ooze. Then in one swift moment, the words Matt Jones are spoken, resonate across the room, and for the briefest of moments, we look at each other before the realisation hits Our leader's done it again; Matt's been crowned Entrepreneur of the Year for the second time.
As our leader wades through waves of claps, cheers and finely adorned tables, we barely contain our excitement. He takes to the stage, a twinkle in his eye as he accepts his award against competitors Shahid Sheikh and Russell Copley. As a pioneer of digital learning, Matt's everything the award celebrates: leaders and businesses who are driving the region forward.
This second award comes weeks after our leader was named 'Entrepreneur of the Year' at Nachural's Business Awards, as well as one of the Top 50 Entrepreneurs to look out for, especially in education, in a feature article by the Midlands Insider. It's a stirring moment, and we're still celebrating his victory and his devotion to learning.
The Entrepreneur of the Year category recognises business leaders who create prosperity and employment in the community - leaders who are the cornerstone of the economy within the Midlands. We're mighty proud of our leader, and on the night, we all dressed up in a little more than our Sunday best to impress at the ceremony.
As our leader, Matt's guided us to help thousands of students to find the success they deserve through education. Devoted to research, technology and innovation, he's invested in creating an enterprise that changes lives and allows our hardworking Oxbridge students to learn without limits.
Upon receiving his award, a very happy Matt commented: "I am over the moon to have received this award, thank you so much to everyone at Nachural Events and especially to Ninder Johal [Nachural's President] for believing in me.
"The Midlands is a great place to be doing business, and I feel that we are making waves as a region. Although this is an award in my name, I always remember that I'd never be in this position without a world-class team at Oxbridge behind me every step of the way. It's another massive achievement for us all, we're ecstatic!
"Going forward, we are going to continue doing what we do best: create award-winning learning experiences that maximise student potential and save the world from boring learning."
The Nachural Entrepreneurship Awards took place on Friday 28th September at the Maher Centre, Leicester.