THE woman behind the Gomersalbased ‘Duvalay’ brand has been named Yorkshire’s Businesswoman of the Year.
Liz Colleran picked up the award at the Forward Ladies event in Leeds on Friday night.
She also collected the Manufacturing Businesswoman of the Year award after impressing judges with the growth of the firm she founded with husband Alan.
Liz said: “I’m delighted to receive these awards in recognition of all the hard work we have put into the business to make it a success.
“Duvalay started in my kitchen and now we have a great team behind us, all working to keep the company moving in the right direction.”
Originally based in Dewsbury, Liz attracted an £80,000 investment from TV Dragons’ Den star Hilary Devey for her original Duvalay product.
The onepiece memory foam sleeping bag, comprising of a bottom pocket with a memory foam mattress and a top pocket that houses a duvet, was developed for the leisure vehicle industry after Liz spent many sleepless nights on caravan mattresses.
The company is now going from strength to strength, seeing a growth of 10 per cent despite the economic downturn. They also continue to push into new markets.
The judges said: “Liz is ambitious and has plenty of drive to grow the business through selective customer targets and exports.
“Targeting large companies like Virgin Atlantic and JML and adapting products to suit their market, increased sales by 30 per cent and presents a strong demonstration of product innovation.”
Liz is currently working on a new Duvalite product range – the first fully recyclable, lightweight memory fibre mattress for the leisure vehicle industry.