Contract hire and salary sacrifice car specialist Tusker has been recognised as one of the most innovative companies in the UK after being shortlisted in the Orange Innovation Award category of the 11th annual National Business Awards for its market leading salary sacrifice car scheme, SS4C.

The National Business Awards are the UK’s most prestigious business awards programme, often dubbed the ‘business Oscars’, and celebrate business excellence, innovation and ethics from around the UK.

They cover a variety of categories including small to medium sized business of the year, start-up business of the year, employer award, growth strategy of the year and sustainability award, with over 150 of Britain’s leading businesses and business leaders being announced as finalists in the prestigious awards programme.

The Orange Innovation Award acknowledges firms which have taken extraordinary steps to develop innovation within an organisation, such as driving forward research and development in products, services or company processes.

Prime Minister David Cameron paid tribute to this year’s National Business Awards.  “These awards really do show off the best of British. Category after category, celebrating outstanding achievements. The true pride of Britain and the true wealth creators in our economy,” he said.

David Hosking, Tusker Chief Executive, said: “We are thrilled to be nominated for this award. Innovation is very important to our business and has had a very positive impact on our company.

“Since we developed our SS4C scheme, we have become the market leader in both the corporate and public sectors for this type of employee benefit. This scheme has transformed the flexible benefits market in the UK and has now made new car ownership more widely available to employees who may never previously have qualified to receive a company car.

“We have seen outstanding growth across the business in the last 12 months, led by our success in the salary sacrifice arena where we now have over 90 schemes in operation,” he added.

Martin Stiven, Vice President of Business at Orange, part of Everything Everywhere, said: “The entries this year have really raised the bar. Tusker has shown a great ability in introducing an impactful innovation which has clearly enhanced its business. Firms like these play a crucial role in pushing the economy forward with their great ideas. Orange believes innovation is crucial for growth and the best examples should be celebrated to inspire businesses across the country.”

Shortlisting judge, Gideon Hyde, founder and Director of Market Gravity, said: “Tusker has pioneered the salary sacrifice market with a pipeline of innovative features to deliver impressive business growth.”