The deadline to enter the 2017 Big Chip Awards for digital and technology has been extended.

Companies now have until 5pm on Monday 20th March, an extra week, to enter the not-for-profit awards run by independent trade association Manchester Digital.

The UK's longest-running tech awards have celebrated excellence in digital and technology across the region for almost two decades in areas including animation, search, user experience, eCommerce and digital transformation.

Run by and for the industry, they recognise the North’s digital and tech sector from the Scottish borders down to Derbyshire and are known for the integrity of their judging process.

“Over its 19 years, Big Chip has always been about celebrating the best in digital and tech from the North - from both big businesses and small,” said chair of the Big Chip Steering Group Shaun Fensom.

“That’s why we make the first two entries free of charge. We know this is a very a busy period for many so we’re giving this extra time to make sure everyone has a chance to enter.”

There are 22 gongs up for grabs, including three new categories: Big Chip Transformation Award, Big Chip IoT Impact Award and the Big Chip Leadership Award. The Anthony Wilson award, in honour of the late Tony Wilson, and the Grand Prix award, awarded to the best overall entry, will be chosen from shortlisted entries.

Manchester Digital

Lawrence Jones MBE, CEO of headline sponsor UKFast, said: “The North is alive with digital and technological innovation and the Big Chip awards are the perfect platform to celebrate this.

“The awards are an incredible opportunity to demonstrate exactly why the region is having such a massive impact across the industry."

BCS: The Chartered Institute for IT is also an awards partner. Its deputy president Paul Martynenko said: “BCS are delighted to be partnering with the 2017 Big Chip Awards. The calibre of businesses and individuals here in the North is exceptional and we’re pleased to be part of the celebration.”

As in previous years, entries will be judged by a number of the country’s digital and tech pioneers, led by design guru Malcolm Garrett.

Some of this year’s other confirmed judges include Alastair Cole of The Engine Group, the BBC’s Bill Thompson, Herb Kim from Tech North and Caroline Gorski, Head of IoT at Digital Catapult.

The shortlist will be announced on Thursday 27th April.

BusinessCloud is the official media partner of the awards, which will be held at Manchester’s Hilton Hotel on 15th June 2017. Entries can be submitted online at http://bigchipawards.com. The first two entries are free. Subsequent entries cost £95 each