ONE of East Lancashire’s ‘big three’ vaping manufacturers has been nominated for four top Lancashire business awards.

Flavour Warehouse, which is behind Vampire Vape, Operation Vape a Base e-liquids, could potentially sweep the board at the BIBAs, organised by North and Western Lancashire Chamber of Commerce.

Their 2019 showing could even outstrip last year’s showing, which saw the Darwen outfit walk away with the manufacturer and exporter prizes.

This time around the Global Way firm gets to defend those two crowns and they are also in contention for the medium-sized business award and the overall best business honour.

Phillip Boyle, company director, said: “I hope our BIBA award nominations will help us take our message further and enable us to assist many more people that want to stop smoking.

“We’ve built our business around certain key values – we are proud to support people so they can use our products as a means of harm reduction, relative to traditional tobacco products.

“This means we have to challenge some of the perceptions about vaping, as we see it as a critical weapon in the armoury of people who use traditional tobacco products and are actively seeking to reduce the harmful effects.

“We see vaping as a means of managing your nicotine habit, whilst radically reducing the harmful effects of smoking.”

The firm has been established for seven years now and has moved on a number of occasions to accommodate expansion. Their brands are now going out to more than 80 countries.

Mr Boyle added: “In the last three years alone, the business has moved premises three times, taking on more space and investing £1m into an ISO grade clean room and state of the art custom made machinery.

“We are continuing to push forward as a category leader and will continue to develop new and unique flavours for vapers to enjoy.”

Flavour Warehouse will be flying the flag for the east of the county for the main prize, as it goes up against GBA Services, Roccia, Utiligroup, Ainscough Industrial Services, Cutting Edge Services, Standfast & Barracks and Evans Vanodine.

Rossendale-based kitchen and bathrooms giant JJO will stand alongside them for the manufacturing gong, and Colne’s print information management system specialists Tharstern, in the medium-sized firm standings, against competition from Blackpool, Preston and Lancaster.

Tharsten, based in Greenfield Road, in the town’s South Valley, has also been listed in the employer of the year section, as has Pendleside Hospice.

Elsewhere Burnley’s Blackburn Distributions and Low Energy Carbon Company, and Media Village, in Altham, are contenders for the small business of the year award. The latter has earned a mention in the environmental award stakes.

Burnley FC in the Community, Rossendale Leisure Trust and Pendleside Hospice have been nominated as would-be third sector businesses of the year.

The leisure trust, which runs the Adrenaline Centre in Haslingden, Marl Pits in Newchurch and Bacup’s Pioneer gym, is also vying for leisure and tourism sector glory.

Sales Geek, in Burnley, wants to be named BIBA’s new business champion for 2019, and Cummins Mellor, the recruitment agency working out of Blackburn’s Cathedral Quarter, is in the running for family business of the year.

All of the nominees will find out whether they have been successful in their respective fields when the awards night is held at Blackpool Tower Ballroom on September 13.