2017 Shortlist & Winners


Click on the category to review the 2017 shortlist and winners.

Criteria covered the period September 2015 – August 2016.

* Shortlists for these categories will be determined by a survey undertaken among the chief executives of sub-FTSE 350 companies.

Chairman of the Year

Chairmen whose strategic input, advice, contacts and market knowledge have clearly improved the performance of the company that employs them. The judges will also look for exemplary corporate governance as well as strong and effective communication with shareholders.

2017 shortlist

Peter Allen – Clinigen Group
Frank Beechinor – Redstone Connect
Andrew Brode – RWS Group
Richard Eyre – Next 15 Communications Group
Brendan Hynes – Swallowfield
Roger Parry –  YouGov

Winner:  Andrew Brode – RWS Group

Chief Executive Officer of the Year

CEOs whose leadership has generated a significant impact on the financial performance of their companies and on their share price. The judges focus will be on ‘professional’ chief executives rather than those who have founded the company and/or are significant shareholders. The latter being considered in the  ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ category.

2017 shortlist

Christopher Bogart – Burford Capital
Jack Cooney – Somero
Andrew Day – Keywords Studios
Paul Fineman – IG Design
Mahmud Kamani & Carol Kane (joint CEOs) – Boohoo
Tony Lenehan – Styles&Wood
David Shemmans – Ricardo
Tim Warrillow – Fevertree

Winner: Paul Fineman – IG Design

Finance Director of the Year

Finance Directors who have exercised strong control over their companies’ finances. The judges look for evidence of cost control, proactive management of debt and equity funding, and the production of transparent accounts.

2017 shortlist

Stephen Boyd – Finsbury Foods
Spencer Daley – Sanne
Steve Dolton – NAHL
Terry Hart – City Fibre
Anthony Lawrinson – IG Design
Alistair Murray – Premier foods
Glen Murray – Smart Metering

Winner: Stephen Boyd – Finsbury Foods Group

Non-Executive Director of the Year

Non-executive directors whose expertise and contacts have opened doors to major contracts or acquisitions. They must promote the practice of good corporate governance, monitor the performance of the executive team and initiate change when necessary.

2017 shortlist

Stephen Davidson –  Restore
Ian Dyson –  ASOS
Chris Moore – DP Poland
John Warren –  4imprint Group
Andrew Wood –  Stobart Group

Non-Executive Director: Andrew Wood –  Stobart Group

Entrepreneur of the Year

Executive directors who have led their companies to financial and stock market success. As entrepreneurs, the judges are looking for business leaders who are ‘owners’ of their companies, either as founding shareholders or holders of significant stakes.

2017 shortlist

Anthony Best – AB Dynamics
Gordon Craig & Keith Neilson – Craneware
Darren Disley – Horizon Discovery
Richard Kellet-Clarke – iDox
Richard Law – GB Group
John McArthur – Tracsis
Ory Weihs – XL Media

Winner: Anthony Best – AB Dynamics

IPO of the Year

We will consider the amount of money raised, costs of float, timing, the type of company being floated, the size of company and its sector. We will also look at the valuation of the company at float and the performance of the shares since flotation – those that go to healthy but not extravagant premiums will be considered. The award will seek to acknowledge the entire professional team involved in the IPO – company, broker and adviser.

2017 shortlist

Accrol Papers
Autins Group plc
Blue Prism
Hotel Chocolat
Morses Club
Watkin Jones

Winner: Blue Prism

Deal of the Year

Acquisitions or major disposals that have had a significant positive impact on the acquiring company and created value for shareholders.

2017 shortlist

Alliance Pharma acquisition of SPH
Avingtrans’s disposal of Aerospace
Blanco disposal of Repair Services
Conviviality acquisition of Matthew Clark
Marshall Motor acquisition Ridgeway
Quixant acquisition of Densitron
Restore’s acquisition from Wincanton’s Record Business

Winner: Conviviality’s acquisition of Matthew Clark

Broker of the Year*

The individual stockbroker who has delivered outstanding results for his or her clients. This could be in relation to M&A advice, listing and fund raising.

2017 shortlist

Cantor Fitzgerald
Cenkos securities
N+1 Singer
Northland Capital Partners
Numis Securities
Zeus Capital

Winner: Liberum

PR Firm of the Year*

The shortlist for this category will comprise the public relations specialists most highly rated by quoted company CEOs in a Growth Company Investor survey. In considering the shortlist, the judges will look for evidence that firms have improved their clients’ reputations, delivered creative and effective campaigns, had a positive impact on share price, and promoted meaningful and fruitful communications both with shareholders and the wider public.

2017 shortlist

FTI Consulting
MHP Communications
Newgate Communications
Redleaf PR
Walbrook PR
Yellow Jersey

Winner: Walbrook PR

Fund Manager of the Year

Fund returns over the latest year is the key criterion, while the judges will also look for strong longer term performance.

2017 Shortlist

Conor McCarthy – MFM Techinvest Special Sits
Mike Prentis – BlackRock Smaller Companies Investment Trust
Dan Nickols – Old Mutual UK Smaller Companies Focus fund
Giles Hargreave – Marlborough UK Micro Cap Growth
Paul Jourdan, Douglas Lawson & David Stevenson – Amati Global
Anthony Cross, Julian Fosh, Victoria Stevens and Matt Tonge – Liontrust UK Smaller Companies
David Horner, David Taylor – Chelverton UK Smaller Companies Trust Standard Life UK Smaller Companies fund

Winner: Dan Nickols – Old Mutual UK Smaller Companies Focus fund

***Dan Nickols handed over management of the smaller companies focus fund to Nick Williamson in January 2016***
Technology Company of the Year

Companies which have developed ground-breaking technology in IT or healthcare and are demonstrating commercial success in its exploitation.

2017 shortlist

First Derivatives
RedT Energy

Winner: RedT Energy

Innovator of the Year

This award recognises the new breed of British companies which have achieved success through bringing an innovative and ‘disruptive’ approach to their marketplace. The judges have also considered the sustainability of the business model and its effectiveness in delivering sales, profit and a growing share price.

2017 shortlist

Gym Group
On the Beach
Satellite Solutions Worldwide
Yü Group

Winner: Yü Group