Innovation Excellence Awards

Innovation Awards 2017 128

Through its Innovation Excellence Awards, the Stationers’ Company recognises the key role the Communications and Content industries play in the UK economy, highlights outstanding innovation in the sector and offers the opportunity to share best practice.

The Stationers' Innovation Excellence Awards Lunch was held on 20 June and the following awards made:

Overall Innovator of the Year went to the Publishers Licensing Society, which also won the new Digital Technology Application category, for its PLS Permissions, a service powered by PLSclear automating permissions and payment to re-use extracts from published content. The technology impressed the judges as it fills a major gap in the publishing market and represents a clear evolution of rights management into a field suggested by the Hargreaves Report.

Winners of the individual categories were:

Social Development: Calibre Audio Library, a national charity, for its CALdownload, an app that will transform access to books for those with sight difficulties.

Business Development:Dennis Publishing for sustaining a publishing business by successfully linking printed and internet magazine titles to a trading app.

Creative Communication: Hobs Group for its time-sequencing 3D printing technology to facilitate the communication of complex building programmes to non-specialist stakeholders.

Novel Manufacturing: Müller Martini for InfiniTrim, an innovative three-knife trimmer able to handle up to 2,000 books/h in print run or single-book mode with zero setup time.

Designs for Retail Markets: Parkside Flexibles for a new recloseable share bag that represents a step change in packaging and is ideal for the snack market.

Earth Island was highly commended in the Creative Communication category for Print Solutions, a dynamic magazine giving physical examples of what print and paper can do, while Ultimate Digital was highly commended in the Designs for Retail Markets for its use of digital technology to deliver personalised packaging linked to a social media campaign.

Photos of the event can be seen here and videos can be viewed here. Click here to view the full Innovation Excellence Awards 2017 Brochure.

The annual Stationers’ Innovation Excellence Awards are now in their fourth year!

The Stationers’ Company is introducing five new award categories for the 2017 Awards as well as the overall Innovator of the Year Award. To view the press release issued in December please click here and to view the latest release (16 February) click here.

The application form is ready and can be accessed here.

The results of these awards will be announced at a special luncheon and exhibition to be held at Stationers’ Hall on 20 June 2017. All entries must be received by 9 April 2017.

View the full announcement here.

Take a look at the 2016 brochure:

IEA brochure pic

Monday, 27 June 2016 saw Stationers' Hall fill with the shortlisted companies for the Stationers' Innovation Excellence Awards.  Before the lunch there was an exhibition of the innovations shortlisted and the Master presented each company with a certificate marking their achievement.  After the lunch the awards were made and two companies emerged as Innovators of the year.  

They were:

DataLase Ltd for what the judges recognised as significant disruptive technology development. The company had introduced a process for printing detailed packaging labels accurately at high speeds without the use of conventional inks. In the judges’ view, the intriguing combination of digital, chemical and laser technologies has the scope for application across all aspects of the printing world where personalisation is required to be brought closer to the final consumer.


Heidelberg UK  for its Omnifire system for printing on pre-existing three dimensional objects of all shapes and sizes. The combination of robotics and inkjet design impressed the judges who saw the technology as a gateway for the printing industry to expand into new outlets at a time when demand is falling in other sectors.  

A further six awards were made as follows:

Jessica Kingsley Publishers for innovative books and comics that focus on graphic medicine and related areas, and present information about difficult subjects.

Kolbus GmbH & Co KG for a production system that mechanises the manufacturing of luxury packaging items that have so far only been mass-produced by manual labour.

Parkside for Rockpocket®, a novel concept that offers an extremely lightweight pack for the transportation of high value, delicate or breakable items using a combination of flexible laminate and vacuum technologies.

Ravensbourne College for a digital platform linked to on the ground academic communities, which captures, communicates and links networks to innovation and new services. Sun Chemical for

Aquacure, a functional water-based inkjet ink technology that incorporates a hybrid of water-based and energy-curing technologies and offers a reduction in environmental impact.

Troika Systems Ltd for an accurate volumetric measurement device used to ensure aniloxes are in a suitable condition to ensure optimum printing press set-up efficiencies and maximise waste reduction during set-up.

Pictures of the event can be viewed and purchased here.

A brochure of all entrants and their innovations can be read by clicking the image below.

IEA brochure pic

The Stationers' Company is delighted that in 2016 it will once again be holding its Innovation Excellence Awards.  The application form is ready and can be accessed here. To enter, download the entry form and email your completed entry by 15 April 2016 to

A call for entries has been made via a press release which says:

"The Awards, which have attracted a year-on-year increase in entries since they were launched in 2014, invite organisations to demonstrate best practice in product design, services, campaigns or business process development, highlighting the industries’ valuable contribution to the UK economy and society.

Entries are welcome from all sectors of the Communications and Content industries:

  • book, magazine and digital publishing
  • paper, printing and packaging
  • printing supplies including inks and coatings
  • printing machinery
  • office supplies
  • design and advertising
  • website design, computer and mobile games
  • newspapers, telecommunications and broadcasting

The Stationers’ Company is also encouraging entries from educational institutions and public bodies such as museums, as well as nominations from third-party individuals, companies, trade associations, and NGOs.

Tony Mash, the Stationers’ Company Industry Committee Chairman, says: “Our panel of judges will evaluate entries on their innovation, ability to generate economic growth in the sector, and overall positive social impact.”

Winners will be announced at a special luncheon and exhibition of all entries at Stationers’ Hall on 27 June 2016.


The Stationers' Company is delighted that in 2016 it will once again be holding its Innovation Excellence Awards.  The formal launch will take place next week but the application form is ready and can be accessed here.

This was an absolutely fantastic event with Sun Chemical being named Stationers' Innovator of the Year 2015 for their low migration ink for inkjet digital packaging applications.  

Stationers Innovation Excellence Awards

The inaugural awards were presented on Monday, 30 June 2014. Competition entries, many nominated by Trade Associations, came from across the wide spectrum of industry sectors served by the Stationers’ Company and included innovations from the Paper, Ink, Printing, Publishing, Advertising, Marketing, Copyright Licensing and Packaging sectors. While many of the entries took advantage of digital technology and the internet, there were also a number of entries which focused on developments within the traditional spheres of printing and packaging.  Sustainable development also featured in the mix of entries with examples of paper and card recycling and weight reductions in plastic packaging. The team of judges, which included representation from Stationers’ Company, the Technology Strategy Board and the BBC, evaluated the entries on the bases of creativity, economic prospects, social impact and sustainability. Although some thought that the judges would have difficulties comparing innovations across such a wide field of endeavour, there was broad agreement on those companies chosen to receive one of the 10 Innovation Excellence Awards.

The 2014  Awards Day brochure can be viewed here.

The Worshipful Company
of Stationers
and Newspaper Makers

Stationers' Hall
Ave Maria Lane
London EC4M 7DD

Telephone: 020 7248 2934
Fax: 020 7489 1975