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Ellison Innovation Honored at 13th Annual Stevie® Awards for Women in Business

by Brian Harris on January 13, 2017

Company nets prestigious Bronze awards for Most Innovative Company and Best New Product

LAKE FOREST, Calif. (Jan. 13, 2017) – Ellison® Educational Equipment, Inc., the market leader and pioneer in die-cutting, has won Bronze awards in the Most Innovative Company of the Year and Best New Product categories at the 13th Annual Stevie® Awards for Women in Business. The Stevie Award winners were announced during a gala event held last night at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in New York City.

The Stevie Awards for Women in Business honor achievements in business for women executives, entrepreneurs, employees and the companies they run—worldwide. The Stevie Awards have been hailed as the world’s premier business awards.

As a woman-led company run by CEO Kristin Highberg, the granddaughter of company co-founder, LaDorna Ellison Eichenberg, Ellison was awarded Bronze honors for Most Innovative Company of the Year and Best New Consumer Products or Service of the Year for its Sizzix® Big Shot™.

More than 1,400 nominations from organizations of all sizes and in virtually every industry were submitted this year for consideration in more than 90 categories, including Entrepreneur of the Year, Executive of the Year, Company of the Year, Startup of the Year, Women Helping Women, and Women Run Workplace of the Year, among others.

“It is an honor to have Ellison recognized for its innovation as a company and for our newest machine, the Big Shot Plus,” said Kristin Highberg, Chief Executive Officer. “My grandmother built this company to create innovative products that offer many creative possibilities, and I am proud that we continue to honor her vision.”

This year, Ellison dramatically added to its bold approach for education by creating hundreds of curriculum-based lesson plans—free for educators anywhere—for nearly all school subjects. In addition, at ellisoneducation.com, educators can access quick video tutorials with simple step-outs and insightful tips. Highlighting these lessons and videos are new die collections to create shapes for bulletin boards, learning activities and décor projects for enhancing and stimulating any learning environment.

On the craft side, the company’s Sizzix brand makes DIY projects even more accessible to makers of all levels. And this year, two innovative new products debuted to make designing with leather easier than ever. Sizzix Paper Leather Sheets offer endless creative possibilities, while new lambskin and cowhide leather strips are pre-cut in beautiful colors, pastel shades and metallic finishes not commonly found in craft stores.

Other 2016 innovations include a new jewelry line for leather—from esteemed jewelry designer Jill MacKay®—and the brand new Twist & Style™ Tool, which easily twists wire with other materials like fabric, cording and more into stylish, one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces.

Sizzix also made a major splash with its newest collaboration with celebrity wedding planner David Tutera, which will result in his first-ever die-cutting and embossing collection with Sizzix.

Other new key partnerships include Roseann Meehan Kermes (Rosebud’s Cottage) and Jennifer Jangles, both of whom bring their immense and distinctive quilting experience and expertise to hand-crafted designs and patterns that connect with everyday makers.

Rounding out this year’s innovations are brand new die-cutting, stamping and embossing collections for home décor, planner pages and more to expand creativity for both personal and professional crafters. Especially noteworthy are 3-D Textured Impressions™ Embossing Folders to create deeper and bolder embossed impressions in high-definition detail.

The brand’s expansion into Latin America continues its vast global outreach to craft-friendly consumers. The Day of the Dead collection with Mexi-boho DIY brand Crafty Chica™, has been met with an overwhelmingly enthusiastic response for celebrating the cycle of life.

The Big Shot Plus follows the success of the company’s popular Big Shot Machine. In response to huge consumer demand, crafters wanted an easy, economical way to create bigger projects for bigger possibilities. With the Big Shot Plus, Sizzix delivered more than a die-cutting and embossing machine; This versatile, easy-to-use and affordable multipurpose creative system can create unlimited inspirational projects.

With the Plus, there is no more need to cut with scissors or emboss with a stencil and stylus. The Plus is a hand-operated, roller-style machine that easily and perfectly cuts and embosses a wide variety of materials, including paper, leather, metal, magnet, vellum, cardstock, wood, fabric and more. Anyone is free to create everything from one-of-a-kind cards, invitations and scrapbook pages to home décor, jewelry, fashion, altered art, quilts, appliqué and more.

The 9" wide opening of the Big Shot Plus is 3" larger than the Big Shot and Big Shot Express machines. That means it’s compatible with even more Sizzix dies and embossing folders, easily accommodating all materials that are 8 1/2" x 11", as well as European A4-sized paper and materials for wider appeal.

The Big Shot Plus also features a larger working area of 9" x 20", up from the 6" x 20" space of the Big Shot and Big Shot Express machines. The Plus comes with all the essential accessories to get started, including the Big Shot Plus Platform, Adapters A and B and a pair of Cutting Pads. These accessories allow crafters to explore their larger format dies and embossing folders from many other brands in addition to Sizzix.

At 15 3/4" x 11 3/4" x 7 1/2" with a convenient handle, the Big Shot Plus is perfect for creativity on the go. It transports easily from home or school to the studio and beyond.

Complementing the Plus, a brand new line of home décor dies help makers explore their DIY side for uniquely stylizing their homes with charming bags, boxes, banners, framed art and embellishments.

With all that, plus an economical retail price under $200, the increased demand of this product has resulted in approximately 90,000 Big Shot Plus units being sold in the span of a year.

Inspiring the next generation of creativity, the Big Shot Plus offers crafters—from beginners to advanced—endless ways to express themselves for any season or reason, opening up a new world of exciting creative lifestyle possibilities.

To learn more about the Stevie Awards for Women in Business and view the list of winners in all categories, visit www.StevieAwards.com/Women.

About Ellison Educational Equipment Inc.
Since 1977, Ellison Educational Equipment, Inc. has been the recognized global leader of die-cutting machines, die-cutting products and shape-cutting accessories for the education market. The company was founded by an educator and has built its reputation developing high-quality, reliable die-cutting machines, products and accessories, coupled with innovative teaching principles that support all subject matters and grades K-12. For more information about Ellison Educational Equipment and its standards-based curriculum, please visit www.EllisonEducation.com.

About Sizzix
Launched in 2001, Sizzix is a division of Ellison® Educational Equipment Inc., the market pioneer and leader of die-cutting machines and accessories. Through its portfolio of die-cutting machines and die-cutting products, Sizzix leverages Ellison’s 40 years of proven manufacturing and technology heritage to empower creativity among its customer base with new and innovative products. Sizzix is a recognized global brand that can be found in over 100 countries and in major and specialty retailers. For more information on Sizzix and its line of craft-inspiring products, please visit www.sizzix.com/home.

About The Stevie Awards
Stevie Awards are conferred in seven programs: the Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards, the German Stevie Awards, The American Business Awards, The International Business Awards, the Stevie Awards for Great Employers, the Stevie Awards for Women in Business and the Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service. Stevie Awards competitions receive more than 10,000 entries each year from organizations in more than 60 nations. Honoring organizations of all types and sizes and the people behind them, the Stevies recognize outstanding performances in the workplace worldwide. Learn more about the Stevie Awards at http://www.StevieAwards.com.



Media Contact:
Brian Harris
949-598-8822 ext. 394

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