Check out reactions and photos from the awards by searching #newsbizawards on Twitter and Facebook
Hardworking businessman, chairman and leader Walter Cha, managing director at CH4 Consulting, scooped the prize at The News Business Excellence Awards last night.
Walter is known by many throughout the region and it’s his unparalleled reputation that led him to be put forward for the honour.
Six years ago, he played a key role in launching Shaping Portsmouth, a private and public sector initiative.
Walter was the organisation’s original chairman, playing a huge role in boosting our city’s economy.
Having studied law, Walter took a position at local law firm Blake Morgan in 2008 and has overseen a number of major mergers in the region.
His great professional work has been recognised in prestigious guides including The Legal 500.
As well as his work as a consultant, managing partner and now managing director, Walter is also chairman of governors at Portsmouth Grammar School and a council member for the CBI South East region.
Walter said: ‘I’m absolutely thrilled, but it’s all ill-gotten gains! There are so many other people who helped with Shaping Portsmouth and helped me to be in this position today.
‘I want to thank them and thank the businesses that put their volunteers forward to help us with our cause.
‘I had a fantastic time working with Blake Morgan and now I’m going it alone, but I’ll keep trying to assist in my role as chair.’
He added: ‘I’m blown away and I feel very humbled. I used to work on my kitchen counter, but thought I’d treat myself to an office. So now I’m happy I’ve got an appropriate place to put the award.’
The awards were attended by more than 400 people and saw honours handed out in 15 categories.
Another one of the night’s inspirational winners was Matt Fox, managing director of Dynamite Recruitment based in Havant. Matt won the Business Personality of the Year award, much to his surprise.
Matt started the company in 2011 and stood out to the judges for being such a motivational force. Having worked in the recruitment industry for 15 years, Matt built his company from the ground up.
He has been praised by his employees and peers and believes that, if he can recruit people with ‘passion’, most other things can be trained.
Matt said: ‘You can plant the sunflowers seeds but you’re going to need the sunshine, that’s why I spend a lot of time concentrating on my team and hiring the best people. This award is for them too.’
Guests at the event included some of the most influential people from the region, including Portsmouth South MP Stephen Morgan and David Joel from the Chamber of Commerce.