18th November 2021 | IN DESIGN EVENTS | BY SBID ShareTweetPinterestLinkedIn With a commitment to recognising excellence and championing the creative industries, the SBID International Design Awards presented its annual Fellow of the Year award to TV Dragon and retail entrepreneur, Theo Paphitis for his outstanding professional achievements. With a business empire that now spans retail, property, finance and consumer goods, he began his career from a low-income background with no formal qualifications due to his dyslexia. Dr Vanessa Brady OBE, Founder & CEO of the Society of British and International Interior Design (SBID) explains: “The SBID Fellow of the Year is awarded to a successful public figure who has broken through personal and professional challenges, and in some cases prejudices, then progressed to become a household name in a specific field of business or the creative industries. Theo exemplifies the journey and struggles that many young designers and creatives are faced with. His personal and professional success is recognised in this award and acts as inspiration to the next generation of emerging talent to persevere through life’s challenges.” At the age of 16 Theo started working as a filing clerk in a Lloyds of London brokerage before discovering his passion for retail at Watches of Switzerland. He later went on to carve his reputation in business and retail when he revived the fortunes of notable high street names such as Ryman, Partners the Stationers, Stationery Box, La Senza, Contessa Lingerie and more recently, Robert Dyas. Theo also bought Red Letter Days out of administration in 2005 with fellow TV Dragon, Peter Jones, and in the Spring of 2011, launched what has now become the multi-award winning, global lingerie brand, Boux Avenue. In 2015 he launched Theo Paphitis Retail Group which encompasses Ryman Stationery, Robert Dyas, Boux Avenue and London Graphic Centre. The combined group comprises over 300 stores and 4,000 employees, serving millions of customers a year! Theo Paphitis said: “Winning any award is wonderful, but to be recognised for the SBID Fellow of the Year award, amongst so many well-known design individuals, was beyond that. Retail is such a visual medium, whether it is the product, the brand or the store windows and inspiration can come in so many forms. My award is for all of those design specialists who have inspired me and so many of my retail colleagues over the years, helping us to put design front and centre in our businesses.” The SBID Awards strives to empower design industry talent to exhibit their creative work and celebrate their achievements on its global stage, as a testament to the incredible outcomes that can be accomplished through the power of good design and quality craftsmanship. Click here to explore the full line-up of this year’s SBID Awards winners across Interior Design, Product Design and Fit Out. About SBID International Design Awards The SBID International Design Awards attracts entries from over 85 countries worldwide, serving to recognise, reward and celebrate design excellence across Interior Design, Product Design and Fit-Out. Showcasing the world’s best design talent on its globally respected stage each year, the SBID Awards champions and challenges design standards – a parallel it shares its exceptional entrants. Winning a SBID International Design Award signifies outstanding industry achievement, with recognition that is second to none for the deserving winners. If you’d like to become SBID Accredited, click here for more information.