The RNIB See Differently Awards 2019 are proudly supported by sponsors from across a range of sectors and industries.

Bayer, Headline sponsor
Bayer logo

Bayer is one of the largest speciality pharmaceutical companies in the UK, with a portfolio spanning oncology, ophthalmology, stroke prevention and women’s health. We focus on researching and developing medicines that provide significant clinical benefit to address the growing requirements of patients, physicians, health care payers and regulatory agencies.

A spokesman from Bayer said: “Bayer is proud to be a part of the RNIB See Differently Awards 2019. In celebrating the community, the awards reiterate our shared objectives of reducing vision loss, supporting patients, and raising awareness of eye conditions. Together, we can do more.”

*Bayer PLC are the headline sponsor of the RNIB See Differently Awards 2019. A company representative will present an award; however, Bayer have not been involved in the award decision-making or the development of the event.*

Sony, sponsor of Campaigner of the Year
Category sponsor Sony

Sony aspires to create products and services that are easy to use by people of all abilities. Close collaboration with Accessibility organisations will help find technological solutions that can change lives. Strong campaigning and public awareness are an essential part of any charity’s work and Sony is proud to support the RNIB by sponsoring the Campaigner of the Year category. 

A spokesman from Sony said: “Sony is proud to be a part of the RNIB 2019 See Differently Awards. Sony believes that no one should be excluded, and we work towards that goal. We are very pleased to support the recognition of individuals who have contributed to making Accessibility issues better understood and recognised. Only through collaborating with all stakeholders with an interest in Accessibility will we find the solutions that can change lives.”  

Heathrow, sponsor of Innovator of the Year 
Heathrow airport logo

As Europe’s largest airport, Heathrow welcomes more than 80 million passengers every year. 

Elizabeth Hegarty, Director of Customer Relations and Service, said: "Heathrow is proud to be sponsoring the 'Innovator of the year' award in the RNIB See Differently Awards 2019. Our goal is to provide a welcoming and accessible airport for all passengers. By introducing innovations such as Aira, we have found new ways of empowering passengers who are blind or partially sighted to be more independent when travelling through Heathrow."

We look forward to building on our partnership with RNIB, and working with the great innovators who continue to inspire us to truly transform the airport experience for all our passengers.”

Amazon Alexa, sponsor of Social Media Influencer of the Year 
Amazon Alexa sponsor logo

Amazon Echo is a hands-free voice controlled smart speaker, powered by Alexa. Amazon & RNIB have been working together on a training programme for RNIB to show some of the ways that Amazon Echo devices can be used by the RNIB community. August 2019 saw the introduction of a co-branded Amazon Echo and RNIB advert, shared via social media and TV, with a story about a visually impaired customer using an Echo Dot as part of her regular morning routine. Amazon also worked with RNIB for the launch of a new feature which meant that customers could ask Alexa to speak more quickly – this was a specific function that the RNIB community had previously asked for Amazon to consider adding.  Amazon hopes to continue its work with RNIB and is excited to see how Its voice assistant, Alexa, can assist visually impaired people in the future.

Dennis Stansbury, Country Manager for Alexa, UK & Ireland, said: “The RNIB is an incredible organisation that has recognised the benefit that technology can bring for its community. At Amazon we are proud to sponsor this award which recognises people who go above and beyond to use social media to break down barriers, or to promote and galvanise support for a social issue affecting the sight loss community. Amazon and RNIB have been working together to share knowledge on the benefits of smart technology for those living with sight loss and Amazon has teams across the world that are focused on developing great experiences for customers who are visually impaired or who have other accessibility needs. We’re excited to continue working in partnership with this prestigious organisation to look at ways technology could help visually impaired people in the future.” 

Novartis, sponsor of Community Contributer of the Year 
Category sponsor Novartis

For more than 70 years, Novartis has been reimagining the treatment and prevention of visual impairment and blindness. We continue to invest in science as well as in strategic alliances to help ensure patients have access to screening, diagnosis, and our eye medicines. As such, we are delighted to sponsor RNIB’s Community Contributor of the Year Award 2019 in recognition of the sight loss community’s contribution and their positive impact on people with sight loss across the UK.

A spokesman Novartis said: “At Novartis UK, we are guided by our purpose that ‘nobody should have to wait for an (extra) ordinary life’. We are extremely proud to sponsor RNIB’s Community Contributor Award 2019 to acknowledge the extraordinary work of the sight loss community and their efforts to combat the challenges people with sight loss face across the UK.” Dr Mayur R Joshi, Medical Therapeutic Area Head, Ophthalmology, Novartis Pharmaceuticals UK.

Alcon, sponsor of Team of the Year
Category sponsor Alcon

Alcon is the global leader in eye care, dedicated to helping people see brilliantly. With a 70-plus-year heritage, Alcon is the largest eye care device company in the world with complementary businesses in Surgical and Vision Care.

A spokesman from Alcon said: "Alcon are committed to helping people to see brilliantly and believe in supporting organisations who also share this purpose. We understand how important it is for people experiencing sight loss to be supported, well informed, connected to others in a similar situation and enabled to access the support they require to live full and independent lives. There are so many patients, carer’s, charities and other organisations working together to achieve this that we felt inspired to sponsor the ‘See Differently’ team award, in recognition of the teams of people dedicated to working towards these goals on a daily basis."