PracticeAccounting FirmsAccountancy Age Awards 2006 – the winners!

Accountancy Age Awards 2006 – the winners!

A round-up of the highlights from the night, and the success stories of the year

aa awards 2006

BDO Stoy Hayward took the profession by surprise last night by snapping up
the Global Firm of the Year Award ahead of all the Big Four Firms.

Link: to see video interviews with the winners, click
here
! (26.64Mb Windows Media Player file)

Link: to see a video interview with the winner of the
Outstanding Contribution award, Tesco group FD Andrew Higginson, click
here!

This was the first year that
BDO , along with Grant
Thornton, were included in the same category as the Big Four, but once the
entries for the 2006 Accountancy Age Awards were viewed by the judges their
decision was emphatic.

‘This entry stood out a mile in the accounting arena and they demonstrated
that this was the firm that had progressed the most over the year.’

BDO’s managing partner Jeremy
Newman
also picked up the Personality of the Year Award beating
competition from Eric Anstee, chief executive of the ICAEW, Rona Fairhead, CEO
of the Financial Times, Dave Hartnett, director general of HMRC and Alison Reed,
former group FD of Standard Life in vote of Accountancy Age readers.

One of the highest profile winners of the evening was
Andrew Higginson , group
finance director of Tesco who was awarded the Accountancy Age prize for
Outstanding Industry Contribution. Higginson is credited with leading the
supermarket giant international expansion.

Another FD to be honoured was
Margaret Ewing , for
former group FD picked by our judges as the Blue Chip FD of the year. They said:
‘She is phenomenal. She was finance director through a really difficult time but
did an outstanding job despite the stresses.’

Cobra beer’s finance director
Dynshaw Italia proved a
hit with the judges and awarded the Growing Business FD of the Year award. They
said he was ‘clearly a man on the way up’.

The public sector had its own success in the FD category with
Sharon Burd , finance
director at the Metropolitan Police. She won the Public Sector FD of the Year
award with the remark from a judge that she ‘pushed for progress and clearly put
in a huge effort to attain her achievements’.

Among the other individuals to go on the winners list are
Simon George , an
assistant director of finance at Ealing Council who won the Accountant of the
Year Award. He was joined by Damon
Brain
who was made the AAT Accounting Technician of the Year.
Japheth Katto picked up
the ACCA Member Achievement award for his work in nurturing Uganda’s emerging
capital markets.

Some of the most prestigious organisations in business and the public sector
were nominated for the prizes for annual reports, but there could be only two
winners. Associated British Ports
came out top in the Business Annual report of the Year award and the
British Library won out
for the public sector report. The ABP report was said by judges to contain real
‘insight’ while the British Library’s was described as offering ‘comfort and
reassurance’.

Our IT awards were hotly contested as usual but on the night it was
Cedar Open Accounts that
walked away with honours for Enterprise Software of the Year while in the
mid-range category HansaWorld Enterpri
se
proved irresistible to the judges.

In perhaps one of the biggest markets
Mamut were the winners in
the Small Business Software competition, a prize the company took the second
year running.

Internet awards proved popular this year with stiff competition among the
entrants. On the podium for Best Use of Internet by a Practice was
Goodman who won for its
website which proved ‘friendly and approachable’.

The best business website award went to
Business Made Simple , a
website dedicated providing a host of services to small businesses and described
as ‘making inroads into an old-fashioned sector’.

Lastly in the internet category the Best Use of Internet by the Public Sector
prize went to Companies House
, which was simply described by the judges as ‘hugely impressive’.

An acquisitive year, with the opening of several new offices, and a strong
corporate finance offering saw
Bentley Jennison pick up
the Large Firm of the Year prize.

Leeds-based Sagars
scooped the medium firm award with the judges impressed by their focus
on people and client relationships.

The goalsetting approach adopted by
Landers saw co-directors
Finola McManus and Robert Brown handed the small firm award.

Acting as sole-advisor to Japanese multinational Toshiba,
KPMG elevated the company
to preferred bidder status for US-based nuclear power company Westinghouse,
winning Corporate Finance Deal of the Year in the process.

The Big Four firm also celebrated walking off with the much coveted
Employer of the Year award. KPMG was
described by one reader as offering a ‘progressive and dynamic environment’ to
employees.

The AA was awarded
Business Finance Team of the Year, standing out for its contribution to the
organisation, while Ealing Council
picked up the public sector award for restoring credibility, improving
transparency and financial rigour to the council’s spending and budgeting
habits.

Finally, Morgan Law
triumphed in the reader-voted category of Recruitment Consultancy of
the Year. The consultancy drew considerable praise for its professionalism,
tailored approach to clients’ requirements and thoroughness.

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