Emerging Europe recognises its champions

LUG, the Polish producer of lighting systems, has been named as emerging Europe’s Global Champion of the Year, an award which recognises companies who strengthened their operations outside the region in 2018, organically or through acquisition.

In a ceremony held at the headquarters of the European Bank of Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) in London, the award for City Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) Promotion Strategy of the Year went to Vilnius in Lithuania, with Estonian Way being named Tourism Campaign of the Year. Hungary’s innovation-driven pharmaceutical company Gedeon Richter won in the Research and Development Category, while Jaguar Land Rover’s state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Nitra, Slovakia, was named the Best FDI Project.

Other winners at the ceremony included Romania’s Grampet Group, the Regional Champion of the Year.

Praga Koneser Center won Best Urban Renewal Project for the transformation of the former Warsaw Vodka Factory into a business and cultural centre, with Poland’s Holo4Labs taking the title of Innovation Initiative of the Year.

In the social categories, there were popular wins for some incredibly innovative programmes.

The City of Ljubljana’s LGBT+ Certificate was the winner of the Equality-Friendly Initiative of the Year, with Pole Mateusz Hołda named the Young Influencer of the Year.

Insignes Lab, a start-up from Poland specialising in the development which develops strategies for novel antimicrobial components was named the Social Impact Start-Up of the Year, and Promocija, from Montenegro, was given the award for Best Young Empowerment Initiative.

The ceremony also saw the World Bank’s CEO Kristalina Georgieva, and two incumbent prime ministers, Alexis Tsipras of Greece and Zoran Zaev of North Macedonia, handed awards for remarkable achievement.

“It is a genuine thrill to receive this award,” said Dr Georgieva, winner of the Princess Marina Sturdza Award, who has built a reputation as a gender equality champion, humanitarian, and leader in the global fight against climate change. “I am grateful for the opportunities I have had in life to serve in public office. I am even more grateful for the chance in recent decades to help create a world of opportunity for young people, especially those from emerging Europe.”

Mr Zaev, the joint winner with Mr Tsipras of the Günter Verheugen Award, for their role in resolving an almost 3o-year dispute regarding use of the term Macedonia, said “I would like to thank Emerging Europe for this award,” also praising the role of the European Union in keeping the peace across the continent. “Our fathers and grandfathers went to war. Today we trust our European neighbours. Eastern and Western Europe are united. Our common European home safeguards peace. We should be extremely thankful.”

The full list of the Emerging Europe Awards Winners:

The Professor Günter Verheugen Remarkable Achievement Award
Alex Tsipras, Prime Minister of Greece, and Zoran Zaev, Prime Minister of North Macedonia

The Princess Marina Sturdza Remarkable Achievement Award
Kristalina Georgieva, CEO, World Bank

FDI project of the Year
1 Jaguar Land Rover, Slovakia
2 Continental, Lithuania
3 Milteks, Georgia

Global Champion of the Year
1 LUG, Poland
2 Adamed, Poland
3 Blue Projects, Romania

Regional Champion of the Year
1 Grampet Group, Romania
2 United Group, Serbia
3 Tucano Coffee, Moldova

Research and Development Project of the Year
1 Richter Gedeon, Hungary
2 Acronis, Bulgaria
3 Hello2, Kosovo

Innovation Initiative of the Year
1 Holo4Labs, Poland
2 ROL, Lithuania & Warsaw Genomics, Poland
3 QuickCash AI, Georgia, and eInspektor, Serbia

Urban Renewal Project of the Year
1 Praga Koneser Centre, Poland
2 Skanderbeg Square Tirana, Albania
3 UBB HQ Gallery, Bulgaria

City FDI Promotion Strategy of the Year
1 Vilnius, Lithuania
2 Poznań, Poland
3 Debrecen, Hungary

Social Impact Start-Up of the Year
1 InsignesLab, Poland
2 Glucocarer, Lithuania, and Genomtec, Poland
3 Echo, Georgia

Equality-Friendly Initiative of the Year
1 LGBT Certificate in Ljubljana, Slovenia
2 “I See” Theatre, Belarus
3 Matra Resort, Hungary

Tourism Campaign of the Year
1 Estonian Way, Estonia
2 G-Spot Vilnius, Lithuania
3 Visit Poland, Poland

Young Empowerment Initiative of the Year
1 Promocija, Montenegro
2 Ukraine Reformers Architecture, Ukraine
3 Go Beyond, Latvia

Young Influencer of the Year
1 Mateusz Hołda, Poland
2 Edvin Kanka Ćudić, Bosnia and Herzegovina
3 Olga Kudinenko, Ukraine

National Investment Promotion Agency of the Year
1 Invest Lithuania, Lithuania
2 Enterprise Estonia, Estonia
3 Czech Invest, Czechia

Business Friendly City of the Year (Final ranking)
1 Warsaw, Poland
2 Vilnius, Lithuania
3 Prague, Czechia

Business Friendly City — Brand
Warsaw, Poland
Business Friendly City — Economic Potential
Łódź, Poland
Business Friendly City — Business Climate
Vilnius, Lithuania
Business Friendly City — Infrastructure & Connectivity
Prague, Czechia
Business Friendly City — Pool of Talent
Warsaw, Poland
Business Friendly City — Quality of Life
Ljubljana, Slovenia and Prague, Czechia
Business Friendly City — Local Authority Support
Poznań, Poland

Click here to check the top ten cities per category

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