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Small Business Gives The Oscars Its Golden Touch

Written by Ken Gaebler
Published: 2/25/2011

Chicago-based small business provides the Oscars with its eponymous statuettes.

The glamour and production that Sunday's Oscars will undoubtedly prove to be does not seem to provide much in the way of news for entrepreneurs. However, one of the most iconic symbols of the awards ceremony has an integral tie to the sector.

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R.S. Owens, a Chicago-based manufacturer with only 175 employees, may not be a household name, but the little statuettes the small business makes are recognizable worldwide. That's right: For more than 25 years, the gold Oscars that actresses, actors and other industry professionals would give their right leg to be honored with have been made by R.S. Owens.

After production is wrapped, the statuettes are sent to California under tight security along with plaques bearing each nominee's name, which are then affixed after the ceremony.

"They're proof that even the biggest events provide opportunities for creative, talented entrepreneurs," wrote Elizabeth Blackwell for TheStreet.

A few lucky employees even get to attend the ceremony each year. R.S. Owens awards workers who have gone above and beyond the opportunity to win a free trip to the Oscars.

And while not all companies can offer similar incentives, many employees will be happy with an extra day off, flexible hours and the ability to work from home. 

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