The golden touch: INCA launches 2019 awards to honour leading UK altnets

INCA Golds will recognise the best technical and commercial innovations, rural and urban impact and best community and public sector projects at annual ceremony

London, UK, March 07, 2019The Independent Networks Co-operative Association (INCA) today opened its call for entries into this year’s INCA Golds, the annual awards which shine a spotlight on the UK’s leading independent network providers and highlight the most innovative digital infrastructure developments as part of INCA’s Annual Conference.

Following the success of INCA’s inaugural awards last year, which saw sector heavyweights such as Hyperoptic and KCOM gather together to celebrate the UK’s independent network builders, the 2019 awards are once again inviting submissions from network builders, operators and other independents working hard to improve the UK’s digital infrastructure.


Winners will be announced at a special ceremony, during the dinner which will mark the close of the first day of the INCA Annual Conference, ‘The Road Ahead 2020’. The conference takes place at the Mercure Manchester Piccadilly Hotel on Wednesday, October 16 and Thursday, October 17.


“We were thrilled by the response to last year’s first ever INCA Golds and it was a real honour to be able to give the UK’s altnets the recognition they deserve as they work hard to improve our digital infrastructure,” said INCA CEO Malcolm Corbett. “The important work they are doing in building their networks while ensuring the best operational performance is essential to the UK’s digital future and delivering on rising consumer expectations.”

The award categories for this year’s INCA Golds are Technical Innovation, Commercial Innovation, Urban Impact, Rural Impact, Best Community Project, Best Public Sector Impact, Outstanding Contribution by an Organisation and Outstanding Contribution by an Individual. For the first time this year, equipment manufacturers are also invited to enter the Technical Innovation category in partnership with a service provider or operator.

Last year, Simon Wade, Sales Manager at Emtelle, received the award for Outstanding Individual Contribution. Other winners were Broadway Partners, KCOM, Lothian Broadband, Balquhidder Community Broadband CIC, City of London Corporation & London Law Society and Hyperoptic.

“Being a winner of an award from an organisation as prestigious as INCA was a great personal moment for me as it recognised the hard work carried out to help smaller network operators succeed in a crowded market,” said Wade. “As a company, the award also gives us an additional stamp of approval and lets our customers know that our work and solutions have a strong reputation across the industry. For any company thinking about entering this year, I would say go for it – the evening is a true celebration of the UK’s best digital infrastructure developments.”

The 2019 awards follow INCA’s introduction of its Gold Standard Quality Mark, which highlights best practices in performance, design and operations, enabling consumers to buy with confidence when choosing internet packages.

Applications for the awards are now open at:

The INCA Annual Conference is a two-day event starting on Wednesday, October 16, that will provide industry insight and a platform for discussion among some of the most significant and influential figures from the UK’s broadband industry, including Government representatives, operators and service providers.

For more information on the awards, the seven categories and details of how to apply, please visit:


Notes to editors

About INCA
The Independent Networks Co-operative Association (INCA), was established in 2010 as a co-operative trade association for next generation broadband services. INCA brings together the most innovative thinkers in the independent alternative network sector, creating new digital infrastructure in the UK and Ireland.

Full details about the award categories
Technical innovation
: A project/deployment using technical innovation to achieve objectives, for example, ability to reach hard places. Entries should show how technical ingenuity and innovation have enabled or helped a project, for example, a network deployment, to achieve or exceed commercial or other objectives. Vendors and equipment manufacturers are welcome to enter this category in partnership with a service provider or operator.

Commercial Innovation: A project/deployment making effective use of collaboration between three or more organisations (contractor/client is not collaboration) – for example, public service aggregation-funded build. Entries should show how collaboration between three or more organisations has enabled or helped a project, for example a network or infrastructure deployment, to achieve or exceed shared objectives beyond what would have been achieved using conventional supplier-client contracts. Examples might include collaboration between business competitors and/or independent public sector agencies.

Urban Impact: A (mostly) urban network deployment with greatest social/economic impact. Entries should show how an infrastructure deployment in a city or major town, for example, a new network, has had a significant social or economic impact on the city or town.

Rural Impact: A (mostly) network deployment with greatest social/economic impact. Entries should show how an infrastructure deployment in a rural area or small town, for example, a new network, has had a significant social or economic impact on the area.

Best Community Project: A community project or organisation displaying maximum innovation/impact/collaboration/effectiveness. An entry can be a community-owned, social enterprise or other third-sector agency or a community, voluntary or third sector-led project. Entrants should show how they have achieved exceptional results or progress through efficacy, professionalism, innovation or collaboration, or a combination of these.

Best Public Sector Impact: A public sector organisation that demonstrates an exemplary approach to supporting the deployment of new digital infrastructure (fibre and/or wireless), for example, real progress on barrier busting – street works, wayleaves etc. – or other activities, for example, voucher aggregation or innovative funding approaches.

Outstanding Contribution by an Organisation: An organisation who has done the most to advance independent networks in the last year.

Outstanding Contribution by an Individual: An individual who has done the most to advance independent networks in the last year.

PR contact
Jayne Brooks
Proactive PR
+44 (0)1636 704 888

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