A young entrepreneur who took over a "sinking ship" company has turned it around and is a finalist in a county-wide business award.

Now 25, Julianne Ponan, CEO of Creative Nature, took it over after completing a degree in business management and finance, bringing the West Molesey company back into profit within 18 months.

She said: "I took over the company when it was in losses, to the tune of £56,000+, so our first year was trying to right a sinking ship."

Her drive and ideas come from growing up with a variety of food allergies, she said: "I have suffered from allergies and illness throughout my life and have had to battle constantly to stay ahead of the game."

The superfood company is shortlisted in two categories, international trade and companies with a turnover of up to £1m, in this year's toast of Surrey business awards.

In 2014 Ms Ponan, from Walton, was a keynote speaker at the Business Show, alongside James Caan, Richard Reed and Brad Burton.

The awards ceremony takes place on Thursday, April 23, at the HG Wells Conference Centre, Woking.