The British Promotional Merchandise Association (BPMA) held its annual Christmas lunch on December 15, where the UK association’s leadership and members discussed end-user awareness and education initiatives, and awarded the industry accomplishments of several members.

In his address, BPMA Chairman Graeme Smith spoke on recent high-profile liquidations in the UK’s promotional products industry and noted steps to avoid similar situations in the future. He also discussed BPMA’s research investments, including participating in pan-European programs, mystery shoppers and end-user studies. The BPMA is also re-launching its education program, which will play a significant part in the association’s plans to drive industry standards.

Awards presented at the event included the Richard Dyson Award and the Victor Rosewell Sword of Honour. The former, sponsored by the Briman Group, recognizes a distributor’s work to promote UK manufacturers, and this year it went to Jamie Marshall from Premier Print & Promotions. The Sword of Honour is presented to individuals who have given a considerable amount of the time to support the association. This year’s sword was presented to Matt Franks, CEO of Fluid Branding, who is a past chair, president and director of the BPMA. Franks will now become a fellow of the BPMA.