The inaugural Tees Tech Awards are set go ahead virtually this summer, with organisers appropriately using digital innovation to celebrate the region’s digital sector with a ground-breaking event.
Tees Business publishers Resolution Media and Publishing, in partnership with DigitalCity and Middlesbrough Digital, will beam the first ever Tees Tech Awards to thousands of people across social media.
The awards event was due to be held at Wynyard Hall on April 23 but was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Instead, and with the backing of sponsors, the event will go ahead on digital platforms in what is believed to be a UK first.
It is planned that representatives of all shortlisted candidates will join a representative from each of the category sponsors for a small gathering, with appropriate social distancing measures in place.
There will still be a host and speeches, while viewers will be encouraged to put their glad rags on in the comfort of their own home for the event as multiple cameras capture the live action, which will be screened live on YouTube. Prizes will be given for the best dressed.
The organisers are also looking into the logistics of delivering food to the homes of guests who, in normal times, would have been in attendance at the event but will be unable to attend due to limits on the size of gatherings.
Resolution director Dave Allan said: “We’ve had to face the realistic prospect that large public gatherings won’t be allowed until much later this year, possibly even until 2021.
“But we’re also conscious that, even if events are allowed to go ahead this year, many people will be reluctant to attend such events before there’s a coronavirus vaccine.
“So, when deciding on whether to take an event virtual, we thought what better way to do that than with the Tees Tech Awards?
“We’ll confirm the date of the awards as soon as possible – but we’re absolutely committed to delivering a ground-breaking, professional, fun and memorable event that celebrates our booming tech sector.”
Tees Business received more than 90 entries across 11 categories for the Tees Tech Awards.
Resolution director Martin Walker added: “A tremendous amount of time and energy had gone into launching and promoting the Tees Tech Awards, from everyone involved, including all those who took the time to enter, so we were determined that all that effort would not go to waste.
“We’re confident, just as our sponsors have, that all the entrants and general viewers – friends, family and associates of all the shortlisted candidates – will also embrace the idea, get involved on the night and have some fun.
“Resolution and Tees Business are proud to be leading the way with awards that we believe will represent a UK first, giving all involved publicity and coverage that goes well beyond what was originally planned.”
David Dixon, of the event’s co-sponsors DigitalCity, backed the virtual awards, saying: “Given current circumstances, there’s a need for us all to be adaptable, innovative and, frankly, do things in a very different way to the ‘norm’.
“The Tees Tech Awards going ‘virtual’ has offered an opportunity to do something that is very innovative and, in truth, is probably more befitting of the sectors that we serve. It is an absolute honour to be a key partner and we are excited at the opportunity to play our part.”
Daniel Watson, of co-sponsors Middlesbrough Digital, added: “We’re thrilled to see that the first Tees Tech Awards will be going ahead as a virtual event.
“The businesses and individuals that have applied have put so much effort into applications, and nominations, that it seems only fair that the awards would go ahead this year to celebrate these successes.”
Resolution would like to thank main sponsors DigitalCity and Middlesbrough Digital for their continued support, along with category sponsors Punch Robson Solicitors, Cornerstone Business Solutions, Tracerco, Jacksons Law Firm, Communicate Technology PLC, Baldwins Group, Davies Tracey, Recognition PR and Middlesbrough College.
More details and exact timings will be announced soon.