Friday 25 June 2021

Literacy campaign wins the Innovation Excellence Awards 2021

For the first time since its launch in 2014, the Stationers’ Innovation Excellence Awards ‘Innovator of the Year 2021’ winner is a campaign and not a product. Turn on the Subtitles aimed to get the message across that turning on the TV subtitles can double the chances of a child becoming good at reading. It targeted parents, broadcasters, and programme providers.

Yesterday the team behind the campaign were presented with the award at the live hybrid awards ceremony, attended by an audience of over 150.

The Turn on the Subtitles campaign was launched on World Book Day in March 2021 with a budget of just £1,000. It was started by two British entrepreneurs, Henry Warren and Oli Barrett, who managed to persuade celebrities such as Stephen Fry, Sandi Toksvig and Lenny Henry to lend the support in person.

In addition to the Innovator of the Year, Turn on the Subtitles was also the winner of the Award for Communications including Marketing category.

It was chosen from 47 entries to this year’s Innovation Excellence Awards. Jill Jones, an independent non-executive director within the EdTech and publishing sectors, was chair of the judges’ panel. She says: “In January it was clear that innovation was being stimulated as a result of the global crisis, but the quality, and number, of entries for the awards outstripped our expectations. Variety was married with really strong social benefit themes around delivering innovation to address customer need, community building and collaboration, diversity, inclusion, attention to environmental impact, and customer and employee safety.” 

Other category winners were:

Award for Business Process: Troika Systems with its AniCAM HD product which monitors and measures anilox 3D volumetric and cell geometry results.

Award for Customer Experience: Class Professional Publishing for Para Pass, an app which supports paramedic learning and development. 

Award for Service Development: World Textile Information Network for WTiN Discovery which harnesses technology artificial learning and machine learning to help readers discover content faster and uncover data and trends that may have passed them by if they weren’t using the tools.

Award for Product Design: Kogan Page for its Kogan Page Accessible Ebooks programme which puts books into a useful and accessible format for all readers including those who are blind, cognitively impaired, have low vision or are otherwise print impaired.   

Award for Start-Ups: Trust Elevate for Making the internet a safer place for children with a solution that securely verifies the age or identity of users under the age of 16 via their telco using anonymous tokens. 

Pandemic Response Exceptional Performance Award: All entries were reviewed again to recognise outstanding achievement in adapting to the pandemic.

The incredible range of achievement included many companies who had refocused, scaled up, developed new product lines, and most importantly, pivoted to retain customers and provide excellent goods and services throughout this challenging time.

Renz UK entered the Awards with their product the Renz AIR2COLOUR. However, it was the significant response by this long-established company (founded in 1882) which is a leading designer and manufacturer of punching and binding equipment to quickly pivot to produce quality PPE and other office supplies for managing business in a Covid environment that made a strong impression on the judges, who were unanimous in their decision.

All winners were brought on to the stage to accept their award and to be interviewed by former BBC Radio 4 In Business presenter Peter Day.

The Innovation Excellence Awards were sponsored by Mathys & Squire and Picon.


For further information please contact: Ruxandra Oprea, Membership Engagement Officer, The Stationers’ Company

T: 020 7246 2513 E: and follow @stationerscomms

The Stationers’ Company, Stationers’ Hall, Ave Maria Lane, London, EC4M 7DD.

About The Stationers’ Company
The Stationers' Company is the City of London Livery Company for the Communications and Content industries. The Company’s mission is to be the most effective independent forum in the UK Communications and Content industries, actively contributing to the strategic development, success and education of these industries. The majority of our members work in or supply the paper, print, publishing, packaging, office products, newspaper, broadcasting and online media industries.


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