The awards just keep on coming for custom digital learning provider, Sponge, with double cause for celebration at the Western Morning News Business Awards 2018. Sponge won Best Technological or Creative Business and was also highly commended in the Exporter of the Year category.
The judges were looking for “an outstanding business…producing cutting-edge creative media and/or technology that has made a big noise in the creative world and beyond” and “a company that has demonstrated skill, creativity and innovation in the development of a unique product, service or design”.
As well as demonstrating how it had “increased its potential over the last financial year”, Sponge exhibited winning attributes such as “a clever business strategy, a determined leader and a strong motivated team”.
The award comes hot on the heels of Sponge scooping the Learning Technologies Company of the Year silver award – one of the most coveted and competitive awards in the industry. The LT judges described Sponge as “the most inspirational” of all the 11 category finalists.
The annual Western Morning News Business Awards scheme recognises businesses of all sizes, across all industries and sectors in the South West region. More than 300 business leaders attended the event, which took place at the Crowne Plaza in Plymouth on 22 November.
Sponge’s founder and managing director, Louise Pasterfield, commented: “What an honour to win the Best Technological or Creative Business award, as well as being highly commended as Exporter of the Year, when up against such stiff local competition. Plymouth is increasingly becoming known as a digital hub, coupled with a strong history in export that is evolving to encompass service industries. To be recognised in both award categories really sums up our business strengths and ambitions in tandem with the region’s growing reputation in these respects.”
Sponge is a real South West success story. Founded in Plymouth in 2004, the company has since opened offices in London, Nottingham and, in 2018, Bristol and Dublin.
The Dublin base provides a physical foothold in the EU and enables Sponge to grow its European footprint. The company plans to open its first office in mainland Europe in 2019, to further support its overseas expansion and build on its existing client base on the continent. In 2018, sales to companies outside the UK has grown to 40%.
Overall, company growth has quadrupled since 2014. Sponge now employs over 116 people and 40% of the workforce is Plymouth University alumni. The company is currently on a recruitment drive to attract new talent.
Louise Pasterfield said: “Today, we are proud to say that we are one of Europe’s largest independent custom digital learning providers, headquartered in Plymouth and drawing much of our talent from the region, while providing solutions to multi-national brands. We continue to see strong demand and opportunities for growth in both the UK and overseas.
In the next five years, we expect Sponge to be a global leader in our industry, employing 300 people in offices in the UK, Europe and the USA. To achieve these expansion goals, we need the very best talent; we are currently looking for more than 30 people to fill over 20 different job roles, based out of our Plymouth office or one of four other UK and Ireland offices, with potential to work remotely.”
Visit our current vacancies page to find out more about employment opportunities.