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Telford tycoon takes title

Telford businessman Rob Stone has been named Male Entrepreneur of the Year at the Great British Business Awards.

Rob, who founded loft storage company Instaloft in 2014, was one of 15 finalists at the coveted awards and was recognised for his "drive and diligence’" and determination to empower his team to succeed.

Rob scaled Instaloft from a one-man-band operating from a three-bedroom semi-detached house in Telford, to a £14 million turnover empire, with just a Facebook page and a £200 credit card. The business, which has regional offices in Essex, Reading, Peterborough, Newport, and Wakefield, now employs over 170 people nationwide, and is on track to turnover £30 million in the next three years.

Now in their third year, the Great British Business Awards celebrate businesses, charities, and individuals that have made an outstanding contribution across Great Britain, with notable winners from previous years including Social Chain founder Steven Bartlett, who went on to become the youngest ever investor on BBC’s Dragons' Den.

The winners of this year’s Great British Business Awards were announced at an evening of recognition and celebration at The Hilton, Reading, which was attended by more than 350 business people.

Rob said: “It’s an honour to have been named Entrepreneur of the Year at the Great British Business Awards. When I started Instaloft, I was completely broke. I was having to borrow money from my dad and sell DVDs for £1 each at car boot sales just to keep my head above water.

“This award is testament to how far I and the business have come, and I hope I can help inspire other aspiring entrepreneurs on their own journeys to success by showing what can be achieved through pure hard work and determination."