Lucy Cokes, the creator of Neutralize (*\*), has been short-listed as a finalist for the Demeter category at the prestigious 2005 NatWest everywoman Awards.

30 year-old Lucy from Cornwall beat hundreds of women entrepreneurs for a place as a finalist for the IBM sponsored Demeter Award that honours and recognises the achievements of women in business aged between 26 – 35.

Lucy’s bedroom was the first business address for her fledgling search engine marketing agency when she set up six years ago. With healthy profits to corroborate successful year-on-year business growth, Neutralize (*\*) has never had to rely on external funding to develop.

Commenting on Lucy's achievements, everywoman co-founders, Maxine Benson and Karen Gill said, “Lucy has demonstrated that when starting out on your own perseverance is often the key to success. In the business world determination can reap excellent results – it can be seen that Neutralize (*\*) is going from strength to strength and this can only be attributed to Lucy's determination to succeed. We wish her every luck at the final stage of the everywoman awards.”

Claire Martin, Head of External Affairs, NatWest added “We were delighted to see the variety of industries represented in this year’s awards. Women like Lucy demonstrate that female business owners can lead the way in any sector of industry. We wish Lucy the best of luck in this year’s final.”

Sue McDougall, Commercial and Business Controls Executive IGS UK, Ireland, South Africa, Demeter category sponsor, IBM, said "IBM is delighted to once again be sponsoring the Everywoman Demeter Award for inspirational women, aged between 26 and 35, successfully running their own business in the UK. Women Business Owners are essential to the future prosperity of our country. The women being put forward for this award are the real role models, bringing innovation and inspiration to others by proving the "impossible" can happen and helping to give confidence to other young women starting on the same journey."

For the second year, the NatWest everywoman Awards will support Refuge, a charity dedicated to providing emergency accommodation and emotional and practical support for women and children who experience domestic violence. The awards ceremony will take place on 30 November 2005 at The Savoy Hotel, London.

For more information contact everywoman on 0870 746 1800
or visit www.everywoman.co.uk

-ENDS-

Notes to Editor:
· Founded in September 1999, Everywoman Ltd is the leading independent provider of valuable, practical and relevant resources and services to support women business owners as they start, run and grow their businesses. Our mission is to enhance our members' entrepreneurial skills and aid them in building the best business they can, by providing a range of opportunities for women to grow their businesses and develop their skills through our conference, training, networking and awards programmes. www.everywoman.co.uk is the largest online network for women entrepreneurs with over 20,000 members.
· NatWest is the leading bank for business, with a network of over 1600 branches and 1400 Business Managers no one is better placed to help businesses succeed. NatWest recognise the contribution that female business owners make to the UK economy and are proud to work with organisations that promote women’s enterprise. For more information on NatWest support for Businesses please visit www.NatWest.com/smallbusiness or call the NatWest Business One Stop Shop on 0800 028 2677.
· With over 90 years of leadership in helping businesses innovate, IBM is the world's largest information technology company. IBM is a leading provider of e-business solutions and is dedicated to helping companies, Business Partners and developers leverage the potential of the Internet and network computing across a wide range of businesses and industries. The company offers a host of cross-industry and industry specific solutions designed to meet the needs of companies of all sizes. For more information on IBM please visit: www-1.ibm.com/businesscenter/uk/region/region.jsp
· About Neutralize (*\*) http://www.neutralize.com is one of the UK’s leading full service search engine marketing agencies, specialising in enterprise search engine optimisation and advanced Pay Per Click management, both ways of helping companies and individuals generate more business from the internet by driving qualified customers to their websites. In 2005 they were Finalists for marketing firm of the year in the UK Innovation and Growth Awards and recently placed 6th in the Deloitte Fast 50 business growth awards. An Overture (Yahoo!) Accredited Search Marketing Company on of only 10 in the UK they contribute a great deal to their industry as Members of SEMPO (Search Engine Marketing Professional Organisation), Members of the Nominet Steering Committee and Committee Members of the Search Marketing Association (UK) http://www.sma-uk.org. For more information about Neutralize (*\*) please visit http://www.neutralize.com - Tel: 0870 0630707
· Lucy Cokes grow up in Cornwall. While studying at Kings College London she wrote a thesis on the topic of search engines. In 2005 Lucy was awarded the coveted Cornwall Chamber of Commerce and HUB awards ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ award.

Published on: 12:00AM on 29th November 2005