The founder of Archangel Lightworks, Dan Sola, has been named Start-Up Entrepreneur of the Year for the south east at the Great British Entrepreneur Awards.
Using its proprietary laser technology, Archangel Lightworks integrates space, air and ground assets into hybrid architectures designed to accelerate the development of major aerospace market segments.
Now in its eighth year, the Great British Entrepreneur Awards in partnership with Starling Bank celebrate the hard work and inspiring stories of entrepreneurs in the UK, rather than the business’ balance sheet.
The Start-Up Entrepreneur of the Year category recognises the immense pressure associated with the early years of business and the time and effort it takes to get an idea off the ground, and celebrates those who have overcome every hurdle to build something fresh and exciting.
Despite the challenges that the last six months have presented, Archangel Lightworks have had a lot to celebrate from winning Space Florida’s grand prize in the 2020 Aerospace Innovation & Tech Forum, completing the latest milestone of the HALO project with the European Space Agency, and announcing their collaboration with Lockheed Martin, as they look to represent UK space companies on the global stage.
With Covid-19 restrictions preventing the regional finals taking place at a live event, Dan won the award during a virtual award ceremony joined by finalists across every region.
In a video message to finalists, Chancellor Rishi Sunak said: “Entrepreneurs [have shown they] stay strong, even during a global pandemic. Coronavirus hasn’t stifled enterprise.
“Entrepreneurs are creating new businesses and adapting to the crisis, as seen in this year’s entries. And that’s what we need to happen if we want our economy to bounce back. We need all of you to keep inventing, keep taking risks, keep creating new businesses.
“It’s my job as Chancellor to celebrate, champion and support you.
“Congratulations to all the winners. Thank you to all of you for everything you’ve done.”
Francesca James, founder of the Great British Entrepreneur Awards, said: “Dan has a wonderful entrepreneurial story and I’m delighted for him to win this award. I’ll be keeping a very close eye on what he does in the years to come and look forward to welcoming him to the community.”
Anne Boden, founder and CEO of Starling Bank, said: “We’re entrepreneurs and we have spirit. We fight back and we’re very good at dealing with adversity. And Dan is an example to us all, of entrepreneurs that are creative, innovative, and changing the world.
“I’m so excited that Starling, a business I founded in 2014 and now the Best British Bank, is sponsoring such an important Awards. And as one entrepreneur to another, congratulations to getting where you are this evening and best of luck for the future.”
The winners of each category will now go to the National Final of the Great British Entrepreneur Awards, with a date to be announced due to restrictions on large events.
The Great British Entrepreneur Awards
The Great British Entrepreneur Awards acknowledges the hard work and inspiring stories of British entrepreneurs and businesses in the UK. You can find out more about previous years here. You can find the full list of judges here.
Interviews with the winners, creator of the awards and sponsors can be arranged upon request.
About Archangel Lightworks
Archangel Lightworks is a space start-up based on the Harwell Campus in Oxfordshire with a mission to 100x the data downloadable from space. The company was established in 2017 and builds products and services deploying laser (optical) communications for the aerospace sector. These products and services include space terminals that can be mounted on satellites, air terminals that are mounted on drones or other aircraft and ground communications terminals. Using its proprietary laser technology, Archangel Lightworks integrates space, air and ground assets into hybrid architectures designed to accelerate the development of major aerospace market segments.
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