Business rivalries were put aside for the evening as local traders focused instead on beating each other at football.

Hounslow Chamber of Commerce announced its follow up to last year’s inaugural awards with a miniature version of the World Cup played out with the aid of a table football game.

The good-natured clash took place at Chiswick’s stylish iBurbia Studios as a backdrop to the group’s launch of the Hounslow Business Awards 2014.

These will recognise the borough’s best companies across 11 different categories and culminate in a gala dinner and awards ceremony at Holiday Inn Brentford Lock on October 2.

As well as testing their table football skills, about 40 guests at the launch event enjoyed canapés and drinks, provided by launch sponsors iBurbia, and networked with some of the borough’s best businesses.

Hounslow Chamber of Commerce’s chief executive Stephen Fry told the gathered guests he wanted the awards to be a celebration of Hounslow business.

He said: “After the success of last year’s awards, we wanted to carry on working to encourage more businesses in the borough.

“It is about inspiring success. Success breeds success so the more we do it the more successful we are, the more we believe in our economy, the more successful our economy becomes.

“I won’t have our economy or our indeed our businesses sneered upon or put down. We should celebrate success and continue to celebrate success even when success begins to plateau out or things go out of favour.

“Success is what creates our enterprise nation, it is what creates our success in west London, it is what creates our jobs, it is what puts money into peoples’ pockets and money in people’s pockets is what gives them choice.

“It is about celebrating business, celebrating what we do. We do it because we have to pay the rent, but the best businesses are those that are done by people that really enjoy what they do, because if you don’t enjoy what you do, don’t bother doing it. Let’s celebrate our success.”

Mary Macleod and Stephen Fry launching the Hounslow Business Awards 2014
 

Mary Macleod, MP for Brentford & Isleworth, also attended the launch and was delighted to offer her support for the awards.

She said: “It is absolutely brilliant to have these awards, I don’t think we shout loud enough about the great things businesses are doing.

“What I want is to for us to be able to say success is your habit. We should be proud of everything we do in west London.

“In this area we are fortunate. We have lots of brilliant businesses, large and small, and the awards are something we can do to really celebrate the great innovation and ideas and the progress you are all making in each of your businesses.”

Last year's awards saw Chiswick's My Plumber Limited crowned Business of the Year in a ceremony hosted by LBC radio presenter Julia Hartley-Brewer and sponsored by Barclays

Entry for the awards is now open and businesses can register and submit their entry online at www.hounslowawards.co.uk until July 4.

The categories for the 2014 awards, which are open to ALL businesses across the London Borough of Hounslow, are:

Best SME Business

Best Business for Customer Service

Entrepreneur of the Year

Commitment to the Community

Best New Business

Best Business for Training and Development

Best Green Business,

Independent Retailer of the Year

Exporter of the Year

Best Hospitality and Leisure Business

Best Business for Marketing and Social Media.

Sponsorship opportunities are also still available – for more details contact the Awards Team on 020 3282 7198 or visit the awards site here