Joanne Bass Wins Forward Ladies Female Entrepreneur Award
Joanne Bass Wins Forward Ladies Female Entrepreneur Award

Local businesswoman Joanne Bass was crowned the national Female Entrepreneur of the Year at the Forward Ladies Awards on Friday.

Joanne Bass, founder and director of Peterborough based event and exhibition stand supplier XL Displays, was crowned the winner of the Female Entrepreneur Award at the Forward Ladies National Awards on Friday 7 December.

It follows her regional win back in October which saw her fend off competition from other nominees in the Midlands. After winning her regional title, Joanne was entered into the national awards where she faced winners in the same category from other regions.

The prestigious awards evening took place in Leeds at the historic Royal Armouries Museum.

Upon receipt of her award, Joanne said: “I am beyond proud that I have won the Forward Ladies Female Entrepreneur award, it is such a humbling experience to be recognised on a national scale.

“I am a huge advocate for women in business, it’s something we live and breathe at XL Displays, with over 70% of our management team being women.

“Forward Ladies is a fantastic network which encourages, supports and mentors women in business to achieve their full potential and make a difference. There were so many inspiring women at the awards, all of whom have achieved magnificent things. Being a part of this and hearing their stories and sharing their words of wisdom was phenomenal.

I am thrilled to be a part of this network of powerful women, and winning this award has spurred me on to continue to grow the business, myself and support other women who are taking the plunge into the corporate world.”

This award is the fourth such type for Joanne in the last two years. In 2016 she won the NatWest Every Woman Athena Award, and in 2017 she won the Woman Leaders Female Entrepreneur Award in Peterborough.

Forward Ladies is a well-known support network aimed at creating the world’s largest platform for women in business to connect and learn. The Forward Ladies National Awards night is the largest celebration of female entrepreneurship in the UK.

About XL Displays:

XL Displays is a family run event and exhibition stand supplier based in Orton Southgate, Peterborough.

Company director, Joanne Bass, founded the company in 2010 whilst on maternity leave.

XL Displays was initially run from Joanne’s dining table with her being the only member of staff, but the business’ rapid success now sees the company in a 28,000 sq/ft office with nearly 50 employees.

With a turnover exceeding £6 million, XL Displays is the UK’s lead supplier for exhibition and event solutions.

The company manufactures pop up display stands, linked pop up exhibition stands, roller banners, promotional counters, branded tablecloths, fabric displays and more in-house.

This immense amount of growth in such a short space of time has resulted in the business winning several awards, including the Peterborough Telegraph’s customer service award in 2015 and the small business award in both 2014 and 2015.