Northern Ireland Interforum Award Winner and UK Finalist

E-accolade for freight company From Belfast Telegraph June 2001

Co. Antrim firm Ireland Freight Services has won the Northern Ireland heat of the national 2001 E-Commerce Awards. IFS, which picked up a cheque for £5,000, now goes forward to the UK final in London next month where it will be vying for a possible prize of £30,000. Sponsored here by the Information Age Initiative and the Industrial Research and Technology Unit, the Government-backed awards recognise and reward best practice in the use of electronic business among companies with fewer than 250 employees.

Antrim-based IFS, which employs 23 people, has developed a fully web-based logistics system that allows production companies to outsource their back room services, including their inventory, and it does away with the need for complex warehouse management systems.

Second prize of £2,000 went to Connors Maxol Direct of Newtownabbey for its innovative web-based customer communications system that allows orders for home and commercial heating oil to be placed and tracked. And third prize of £1,000 was awarded to Best Value Community of Antrim, which has developed a platform for delivering and managing rented software applications for local authorities.

Professor Fabian Monds, chairman of IRTU, pointed out: “The range of companies that have put themselves forward for these awards shows that e-solutions are making inroads into very traditional activities as well as new industries. “The three Northern Ireland winners are examples of this diversity and each of them is extending their use of e-solutions.”  And he added: “Even more important is that our local companies are finding that using e-solutions enables them to compete not just nationally, but also allows them to compete on the international stage.”