Hey Girls boss scoops entrepreneur prize

The founder of Hey Girls – an East Lothian-based social enterprise tackling period poverty – has been named Great British Entrepreneur of the Year at the 2019 Royal Bank of Scotland Great British Entrepreneur Awards.

Hodson said the accolade will make a massive difference to Hey Girls. Picture: Jamie McFadyen Photography.

Celia Hodson scooped the prize at the Scottish regional heat in October, but took the UK title at the national final – which coincided with Social Enterprise Day.

She follows in the footsteps of entrepreneurs who have won the title since the awards were launched in 2013, including James Watt of Ellon-based BrewDog, Julie Deane of The Cambridge Satchel Company, and Tangle Teezer’s Shaun Pulfrey.

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Based near Musselburgh, Hey Girls sells sustainable sanitary products with the “buy one give one” concept of giving a pack to a girl or woman every time one is bought.

Hodson said the accolade will make a “massive” difference to Hey Girls.

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Great British Entrepreneur Awards founder Francesca James said Hodson’s win reflects the growth of businesses with a purpose. “Celia’s journey is incredible powerful and inspirational.

“From going through life as a single parent on benefits, struggling to make ends meet and buy sanitary products, to forging a successful career and applying her knowledge and experience to create and build this fantastic social enterprise encompasses everything it means to be a Great British entrepreneur.”