The founder of award winning company Cosy Toes,
Tracey Topp, is inspiring other rural women to enter the awards which helped her get her business out of a low point. Award boost venture Cosy Toes
After five years of overcoming obstacles posed by running a small business from a rural location, Topps's innovation and drive resulted in her winning the 2010 South Island Enterprising Rural Women Award.
She is now encouraging other women to become rural entrepreneurs. "I strongly recommend any businesses looking at entering this year's awards to give it a go. I hope that the Cosy Toes story will inspire other women in a similar position."
This is the third year the awards have been run and entries close on 18 March.
Topp's company specialises in producing merino wool socks for babies and children and stocks a range of merino clothing.
The business began out of a need identified by her family when they could not find wool socks for their pre-school boys.
Sales are made over the internet because the family home is in the rural township of Rotherham, in North Canterbury, and has little foot traffic, past the door.
In 2009 she reached a low when she lost her merino sock manufacturer and the merino clothing manufacturer was looking shaky.
Winning the award helped her raise her profile and allowed her to take the business to a new level.
"I wouldn't be where I am today with the business without the exposure I got from winning the award."
Committed merino sock and clothing manufacturers are now firmly in place and new styles of socks are being manufactured.