RAW dog food manufacturer, Poppy’s Picnic has received yet more praise from NatWest’s Great British Entrepreneur Awards for the South West.

The Melksham-based company was crowned runner up in the Entrepreneur’s Team of the Year category.

The accolade follows Poppy's Picnic founder, Dylan Watkins’ shortlisting for Scale-Up Entrepreneur of the Year in 2018.

Mr Watkins said: “My team are the true champions of Poppy’s Picnic. There’s no way we would be achieving the five star reviews we are without their hard work."

Since overfunding during a successful crowdfunding campaign early last year, Poppy’s Picnic, founded in 2016, has won eight national and regional awards and nearly a thousand 5- star reviews.

The GBE awards launched the new ‘Entrepreneur’s Team of the Year’ category to champion teams who are supporting enabling entrepreneurs to achieve their goals.

They note how behind every great entrepreneur is an army of people helping to make the dream a reality and that these players shouldn’t be forgotten.

He added: "From Kayleigh who packs hundreds of orders daily to make sure our food arrives with customers next day, to Deborah in customer service who helps owners trying raw feeding for the first time, the customer experience wouldn’t be what it is without many individuals’ hard work.

"We work in multiple locations - eight in Wiltshire, two in London, one in Wales, and one on the road but our dedication and communication means we’re a solid team. To all be acknowledged together has given us a real boost.”

The team’s win was assisted by glowing testimonials. Jonathan Lawson, Programme Director of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Programme, said: “In all my years, I have never encountered such a unique group of extraordinarily high-level and specialist individuals, so early in the life of a business.

"Perhaps in Silicon Valley, such teams may form, but to gather them around a pet food brand in Wiltshire is almost unbelievable.

"Dylan has torn up the rule book in his team formation strategy and ditched the map on how to set up organisational structures, but this very unconventional approach has clearly paid dividends, in the success of the business and the palpable passion you feel within seconds when you meet his team.”

Even the entry submitted by Poppy’s Picnic was a team effort including contributions from individual team members on why they thought they deserved to win.

For example, Head of Marketing, Laura Blott wrote: “We are united by wanting to make a difference to dogs' lives. We care about the relationships we've built with customers and making their experience easy and enjoyable.

"We are committed to standing out from the rest and pull together to make quirky campaigns happen. We're small but mighty and proud. We’re our own ambassadors, telling people about our brand and product.”

The business is dedicated to putting Melksham on the map and continues to go from strength to strength with national acknowledgment.

The GBE Awards have celebrated some outstanding entrepreneurs over the years, including household names such as BrewDog, JustEat and TangleTeezer.