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FINANCE Hitting All the Right Notes Winning ‘Best for Music & Entertainment Focused Lending – UK’ is Investec’s Andrew Michael. We spoke to him about the changing face of the music industry, and how he is developing newer and more innovative ways of attracting and servicing clients in this market.


foreword Welcome to AI Magazine’s 2015 International Finance Awards. Across the corporate landscape and beyond, the past few years have been marked by a shared sense of recovery, a move toward greater sustainability and the anticipation of prolonged success. With the tides continuing to turn, behind this success are hundreds of thousands of dedicated and committed professionals, all striving to achieve exceptional results and provide outstanding service for their clients. The 2015 Finance Awards takes an inside look at the top contenders in the financial sphere, acknowledging the innovation and expertise that led to them becoming the cream of the crop in their industry. Spanning the entire globe and encompassing companies both big and small, these prestigious awards highlight the examples of true excellence that have been achieved over the past 12 months. With such a diverse range of firms and individuals being honoured, these awards are the result of months of in-house research conducted by our dedicated awards team. We take great pride that each and every winner is selected purely on merit, and hope that these awards help further spread the word about their phenomenal success. So, to take a closer look at the leading lights of the finance industry and learn the secrets behind their success, please read on..


international

FINANCE

contents Investec Bank plc

Sorin Group USA, Inc

Ash Business Consultants

Best for Music & Entertainment Focused Lending - UK / Page 4

Best for Life Science Regulation - USA / Page 6

Best Independent Business Consultant - UK / Page 8

Asiaciti Trust Singapore

Barclays Asset Finance

Bay Trust

Blacktrace B.V.

Best for Fund Administration & Best for Private Client Wealth Planning - Singapore / Page 9

Best for Bespoke Asset Finance Packages & Best-in-Class for Customer Service / Page 10

Best Belize Trust Provider 2015 & Recognised Leader in Insurance Formation - Belize / Page 11

Best Corporate Finance Adviser 2015 - the Netherlands / Page 12

Camden Associates

Champ Consultants

CloudOrigin Limited

Commercial Finance Brokers

Best Niche Corporate Finance House - UK & Recognised Leader in Biotech - UK / Page 13

Best for Tax Planning - UK / Page 14

Best IT Strategy & Advisory Firm 2015 & Award for Innovation in SAAS / Page 15

Best Commercial Finance Broker 2015 & Best for Whole of Market Services - UK / Page 16

D&D Leasing UK

Dartmouth Partners Limited

ERIKS Industrial Services

Exigy Ltd

Best for SME Equipment Finance - UK / Page 17

Best for Business & Securities Valuation - Canada & Award for Innovation in Financial Litigation - Canada / Page 19

Best In-House HR & Payroll Department / Page 20

Best Software Solutions Firm 2015 - Malta & Innovators in Enterprise Resource Planning / Page 21

Fiscal Reps Limited

Itaú Bank

Medical Capital Advisors

My Controller

Best for Value Added Tax Compliance Solutions & Recognised Leader in IPT Training / Page 22

Best for HNI Stock Selection - USA / Page 23

Best for Med Tech M&A - USA & Award for Innovation in PE/VC Medical Financing / Page 24

Best Regional Accountants - Thames Valley & Client Choice Award: Best for Management Advice / Page 25

Nationwide Building Society

Protiviti

Tonucci & Partners

Universal Air Travel Plan

Most Respected in Corporate Coherence - UK / Page 26

Best Global Business Risk Consultants 2015 / Page 27

Best for Albanian Law & Litigation / Page 28

Award for Innovation in Airline Payment Solutions - Washington DC & Best Travel Payment Platform ‘’UATP’’ / Page 29

Unlu & Co

Waterman Group

WBD Accountants Limited

Zuto

Independent Financial Advisory Firm of the Year - Turkey & Best MENA Finance Specialist 2015 - Turkey / Page 30

Best for ESG Strategic Advisory Services & Best Property Due Diligence Firm / Page 31

Best for Preparing Business Plans - UK / Page 32

Best For Car loans - UK / Page 33

Finance Awards 2015 / 3


international

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www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

Best for Music & Entertainment Focused Lending - UK Few industries are evolving at the rapid rate seen in the music and entertainment sector. Investec Bank’s Andrew Michael is fully immersed in this ever-changing and fast-moving world. We spoke to him about winning the award for ‘Best for Music & Entertainment Focused Lending - UK’ and he gave us the inside track on the major developments from the finance side of this unique industry.

4 / Finance Awards 2015


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Seven years ago, Andrew began Investec’s music and entertainment desk on his own initiative. Since then, he has built up an impressive network of clients and industry professionals that continues to grow. Such is his success that, in the 2015 Finance Awards, he has been recognised among a select group of industry professionals for providing an outstanding service in his field. Chosen by a readership of top-tier professionals worldwide, Investec’s innovative and forward-thinking approach is what separated them from other nominees. “I think it’s great to be recognised as the lender of choice in this industry”, says Andrew. “It’s often quite easy to get on with your daily job, and not really know whether you’re adding value, so to be recognised for individuality is really significant, particularly as we find that a lot of our competitors can be quite generic in their approach. I think awards such as these are also a good gauge that you’ve actually done well and you’ve made a bit of a difference, which means a lot to me. “Being able to set up my own music and entertainment desk is one of the unique things about Investec. I was given the opportunity to create the venture myself and was able to set it up from scratch. I’m not sure I would have been given this freedom – and, consequently enjoyed such success – in many other institutions. Working here is the closest you will get to running your own business.” Company: Investec Bank plc Name: Andrew Michael Web: www.investec.co.uk

Starting life as a lending service, Andrew’s team has expanded into different areas, catering to the growing number of musicians receiving alternative sources of income either from royalties or through international touring receipts. One of these areas is foreign exchange, where Investec provides a bespoke service for artists earning income in different currencies. “We provide a dedicated personal dealing service for artists and their representatives, real people operating in the market on-hand to have a dialogue about specific client needs and market conditions. We help our clients to make informed decisions about the timing of their FX conversions and, with direct access to market, provide tight and transparent pricing often not seen in more automated background processes. We pride ourselves on being refreshingly human and user-friendly, setting us apart from many of the alternatives.” Traditionally, the measure of success for many artists or bands has been to sign a major record deal. However, this no longer holds the same weight, particularly with many A-list artists increasingly striving for greater control and independence when recording, performing and distributing their music. Andrew explains: “More and more musicians are moving away from the idea of getting a long-term record deal. Instead, they are looking at different ways of independently funding their new music or project, whilst maintaining ownership of their rights.” Investec can provide this type of funding for established artists by advancing against future royalty streams, using music assets, for example publishing copyrights, as security, and then re-routing the royalties into the bank to amortise the loan. What distinguishes Investec from its peers is the niche service it delivers to its clients. Andrew is fully immersed in the industry and has therefore gained a far deeper insight into his clients’ needs, where many others provide a more generic offer. “The industry is constantly changing, and it’s really important to keep on top of things,” says Andrew. “I generally get to know what’s going on by subscribing to the industry press, attending music events and conferences across the world, including MIDEM, SXSW, ILMC etc. and just generally keeping my ear to the ground. “I find that by doing this I can understand where the current opportunities lie, which helps us to create the right banking solutions in this space.” Another distinguishing factor is the focus on quality over quantity and how this allows the bank to deliver the best possible service for clients. “We’re not a firm that focuses on volume,” says Andrew. “We have a relatively small client portfolio, which allows us to dedicate the time to achieving the best possible results for them. Basically, because we don’t look to undertake a large volume of deals, and we don’t have any off-the-shelf lending products, we can take the time to structure a solution to work as a win-win for both the client, and ourselves. “We try to put the client at the heart of everything we do. At every team meeting, service is always top of the agenda and is something we are particularly focused on. I guess many people are passionate about service, but I think we are obsessed with it.” Looking to the future, Andrew views it as common sense to expand the firm’s services further into the US, but has no major plans as of yet. “We do already have a lot of clients over there, and because the US is number one in the music industry, both in terms of revenue and concentration of artists and bands, it’d make sense for us to open up an office. Whether that will happen, we are not certain, but if you were to ask where we’d like to expand to, then this would certainly be the place. Time will tell.” For more information, visit: www.investec.co.uk/musicbanking or Contact: andrew.michael@investec.co.uk or +44 (0)20 7597 3977

Finance Awards 2015 / 5


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www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

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Best for Life Science Regulation - USA

Sorin Group is a global multinational company in the medical device sector. The firm recently announced a cross border merger with Cyberonics Inc., creating LIVANOVA - a combined company that will be dual listed in both the UK and on NASDAQ. The merger with Cyberonics adds unique neuromodulation expertise to Sorin’s core cardiovascular business. We spoke to them about their award and the philosophy behind their business.

Company: Sorin Group Name: Brian Sheridan, General Counsel Email: brian.sheridan@sorin.com Web Address: www.sorin.com Address: Via Benigno Crespi 17, 20159 Milano, Italy Telephone: +39 0269 969 590

Sorin and Cyberonics have a shared culture and a shared set of values – where passion meets accountability. We believe our people are our greatest asset and our greatest competitive advantage. ‘LivaNova’ is the name of our combined company with Cyberonics, and will be a place where talented individuals’ contributions are visible and really matter to our overall performance. We attract people who want to make a difference. In addition to product-specific customer initiatives, we aim to live a culture of constant improvement when it comes to customer service. We use our extensive field presence to gather and filter feedback to all operations and shared services to make sure that what we do meets the fast-changing needs of our customers. Furthermore, we engage in benchmarking in all things regulatory, also leveraging our outside advisors and trade association memberships to gain access to key decision makers. We watch our sector closely to understand how regulatory standards are evolving, in most cases, becoming more stringent, and more costly. Sorin operates in a highly regulated industry, which has a unique and strong focus on ensuring ethical business principles in everything that we do. There is a unique system for developing individuals’ commitment and accountability for compliant activities – particularly, but not only, those in customer-facing roles. We have won several awards for our compliance program – a central pillar of our culture – as well as our business strategy As for the trends currently facing us in our industry, healthcare is not alone in facing increased regulatory costs and we expect that trend to continue. From our experience, the financial world has recovered from the 2008 crash, but the structural risks of a re-occurrence have not all been removed. Nevertheless, we will shortly launch LivaNova – a new company with a global reach and a stronger US presence. We are very optimistic about the future. As firms that work in a highly regulated industry, this award is important to both of the merging companies. It is always important to be recognised by our peers, all of whom place a strategic priority on the regulatory side of our business. From a business perspective, it is confirmation that our teams are on the right track. For the individuals counselling our executive and business teams, it is recognition of a considerable amount of often ‘hidden’ work.

Finance Awards 2015 / 7


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www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

Best for Fund Administration & Best for Private Client Wealth Planning - Singapore

Asiaciti Trust Singapore Pte Ltd Asiaciti Trust Singapore Pte Ltd are part of a family owned group under the Asiaciti Trust umbrella. The Asiaciti Trust Group is headquartered in Singapore and has fiduciary businesses in the Cook Islands, Hong Kong, Samoa, Nevis, New Zealand and Panama. We are a Trust Company regulated by the Monetary Authority of Singapore and we offer a wide array of services to ultra-high net worth clients from across the globe.

Company: Asiaciti Trust Singapore Pte Ltd Name: Aaron Mullins Email: singapore@asiacititrust.com Web Address: www.asiacititrust.com Address: 163 Penang Road, #02-03 Winsland House II, Singapore 238463 Telephone: +65 6533 2611

We specialise in services such as trust and company management, fund management and escrow services, amongst others. We started business in Singapore in 1981, making us one of the most established trust companies in the region. Asiaciti Trust is one of very few companies in our industry that carries almost 40 years of heritage and remains entirely family owned. We have grown organically and believe this demonstrates our willingness to always work with our clients for the long term. Asiaciti Trust allocates significant resources towards ensuring we remain on top of key developments that are around the corner for us and our clients. It is important to look at the present, but in an ever-changing environment it is equally important to look towards the horizon. As an independent business, we are committed to investing in our people and our systems, ensuring we have the flexibility to adapt to these changes. Being a family owned business we understand the importance of longevity and trust. We look to establish rewarding long term relationships with all our clients and we believe this attitude brings an outstanding level of service, which clients appreciate. We have a “can do� culture from top to bottom within our organisation. Our main goal is to provide top tier solutions to our clients and this means using the expertise of everyone from our Group CEO to our junior officers. New ideas and approaches are encouraged and cultivated to completion. In our industry, increased regulatory requirements and a move towards bespoke, tailor-made solutions for clients has definitely been a trend. With the complexity of international financial services ever increasing, we have found that looking at each client’s needs individually, rather than trying to develop generic solutions, has worked extremely well. To be recognised a second time for our fund administration services and to win our first private client wealth planning award is a great honour. We undoubtedly owe this success to our dedicated team of professionals and our trusted and loyal partners. We truly believe these awards are a reflection of our high quality service and client focus. The entire industry works hard to maintain high standards; being chosen from the crowd and recognised for these efforts, is a great reward for our team. Looking ahead, we believe Asiaciti Trust will continue to grow strongly and further establish our position as the independent fiduciary services firm of choice in the Asia Pacific region. We see healthy demand for our services and the company continues to invest in supporting our offering.

8 / Finance Awards 2015


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Best Independent Business Consultant - UK

Ash Business Consultants Ash Business Consultants are a small family run consultancy that has been supporting small businesses for over 20 years. The services provided cover many of the usual accounting activities; accounts, bookkeeping, business startups, company formations, payroll, tax, VAT. However, as most of our clients are sole traders or small limited companies with few administration resources, we offer these services hand in hand with a holistic view of their business and where we find areas that we can support or provide general advice we are happy and pro-active in doing so.

Being a small company we are able to offer a more in-depth one to one relationship with our clients. We aim to create an environment of trust and our approach to clients is to act as custodians/mentors; our philosophy is that we only succeed if our clients succeed. There are, of course, accountancy firms, business consultancies, book-keeping providers, etc. but because of our small size, broader services and our personal approach, we offer something unique. We do not maintain office hours and clients have access to our personal mobile numbers that we are quite happy to pick up any time of the day, seven days a week. Getting a phone call for an impromptu chat over a coffee, bbq, beer, meal is a regular event that is usually more social than business in nature. This personal relationship is probably our biggest advantage.

Company: Ash Business Consultants Name: Andy Green Email: andy@ashbusinessconsultants.com Web Address: www.ashbusinessconsultants.com Address: 2 Richmond House, Mount Place, Boughton, Chester, Cheshire, CH3 5BF Telephone: 0845 177 1360

As with any company in the finance industry, we spend a lot of time keeping up with the latest legislation, professional standards, best practice and anything else that impacts on the regulatory environment in which we and our clients must operate. We achieve this through a continual process of research, subject matter reading, periodical subscriptions, industry manuals, links and discussions with other relevant industry specialists, peers and trainers. Like many small enterprises that have been operating during the recent/current economic climate, there is a continual challenge to survive and grow. We have managed to do both and we are focused on maintaining this, which also means we are focused on achieving the same objectives for our clients. So the near future is to concentrate on steady organic growth. Longer term the implementation of auto enrolment provides opportunities to expand and grow our team. The challenge will then be to maintain as much as possible the unique personal service we offer. Winning this award has set the bar and challenges us to maintain/improve our services and to be nominated and hopefully win again next year. Such constructive competition can only benefit our clients and the industry as a whole.

Finance Awards 2015 / 9


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www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

Best Overall Asset Finance Company

Barclays Asset & Specialist Finance Barclays Asset Finance is pleased to receive the award for ‘Best Overall Asset Finance Company’. The award demonstrates Barclays’ commitment to supporting UK businesses by making sure the right funding is available to help them achieve their ambitions. This commitment is underwritten by the ongoing investment we are making into our asset finance business, both in terms of people and technology. Our investment in technology across 2015 and 2016 will be our largest since before 2000 and also, we believe, one of the largest single investments by any UK-based general asset finance provider this year.

Company: Barclays Name: Steve Bolton, Head of Asset Finance Email: steve.bolton@barclays.com Web Address: Barclays.com/corporatebanking Address: 1 Churchill Place, London E14 5HP Telephone: 0800 616 169* *Lines are open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm. To maintain a quality service we may monitor or record phone calls.

Clients can access funding from Barclays’ Asset Finance team in two ways – through a network of product specialists or via Asset Finance Direct (AFD), a telephone-based service. Both services are focused on helping clients achieve their ambitions in the right way by providing specialist expertise and financial support. Asset Finance Direct: AFD enables clients to access funds quickly and efficiently on smaller transactions – typically facilities of £2m or below – with average turnaround times from initial quote to payout of just three working days. We approve around 90% of loan requests and the Asset Finance Direct Team is also able to provide credit lines to further speed up pay-out. The Network: Our network of Asset Finance specialists supports clients looking to secure facilities of £2m or more, or with more complex requirements. In this space there is no typical transaction. Barclays’ capabilities range from funding fleets of vehicles to providing funding for highly complex IT or manufacturing production facilities. Specialist Finance: Focusing on bespoke transactions, the team works closely with its clients to understand the most appropriate funding structures to suit their business needs. Funding can be through debt structures supported by leasing and long term contracts, based on the assessment of underlying cash flows. The team also provides contract receivables funding, and stocking finance to the UK retail car dealership network. All teams are aligned to ensure Barclays’ focus is on the needs of the customer. Barclays is a major global financial services provider engaged in retail banking, credit cards, corporate and investment banking and wealth management with an extensive international presence in Europe, the Americas, Africa and Asia. With over 325 years of history and expertise in banking, Barclays operates in over 50 countries and employs over 130,000 people. In the UK no other bank has achieved a higher rating from their clients for their overall quality of service and Relationship Director Satisfaction* *Source: Charterhouse Research based on 2,232 interviews with companies turning over between £5m and £1bn carried out in YE Q1 2015. Survey data is weighted by turnover and region to be representative of the total market in Great Britain. % Rating Excellent or Very Good.

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Best Belize Trust Provider 2015 & Recognised Leader in Insurance Formation - Belize

Bay Trust Corporate Services Limited Bay Trust Corporate Services Limited (BTCSL) provides a full range of trust, company and insurance establishment and management. These services are offered to practitioners, banks and intermediaries.

Company: Bay Trust Corporate Services Limited Address: P.O. Box 2130, The Matalon Business Center - 5th Floor, Suite 500, Coney Drive Belize City, Belize Phone: +501 223 1756 Fax: +501 223 1775

Bay Trust International Limited is fully licensed under the appropriate legislation in Belize to carry out business as registered agents and trustees. The company is independent from any bank or other financial institution. They maintain and offer a full confidential service for their clients so individuals can feel safe and secure when dealing with them, which is a very important aspect within this industry. Bay Trust Corporate Services Ltd provides services professionals, banks, intermediates and individual clients a standard of excellence that provides confidence for the development of secure relationship. We provide services such as IBC incorporation and management, full corporate management services, LLC establishment and management, full trust and foundation services, international insurance company establishment and management and mutual fund establishment and management.

Finance Awards 2015 / 11


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www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

Best Corporate Finance Adviser 2015 - the Netherlands

Blacktrace is an independent corporate finance/M&A boutique. They provide guidance for medium and large business when implementing corporate finance projects such as loan syndications, mezzanine, debt and equity finance and merger and acquisitions transactions. We spoke to them about their company as well as the challenges and opportunities facing their industry.

Blacktrace focuses on medium and large sized business and our typical transaction value lies between €10 and 200m with respect to M&A and between €50 and 200m for corporate finance. These values relate mainly to international corporates where consolidation and growth funding are relevant strategic topics. Over the years, we have built expertise in arranging club deal loans, which are also called LSAs (Loan Syndication Agreements). Recent transactions included a club deal loan from multiple banks in order to support growth aspirations of Scafom-rux, an internationally operating scaffolding and shoring firm. We also provided equity financing for Irmato Group, a multidisciplinary engineering and consultancy company, supplied by Strong Root Capital and backed by ABN AMRO Specialised Finance. We are currently also setting up a multi-bank acquisition financing for an international seed company. Furthermore, we have closed many high-profile deals, such as the merger of Talent&Pro, a secondment company, and Triple A Risk Finance, an actuary and risk management consultancy firm. Additionally, we also worked on the sale of Search, which offers integrated services in relation to buildings, sustainability, safety, energy, asbestos, soil and the environment, to the Swiss based stock listed SGS. Company: Blacktrace Mergers & Acquisitions Name: Jaap Smits Email: jaap.smits@blacktrace.nl Web Address: www.blacktrace.nl Address: Hugo de Grootlaan 11, 5223 LB ‘s-Hertogenbosch, the Netherlands Telephone: +31 (0)73 640 95 71

From our experience, the most valuable firm characteristic in an industry that is constantly changing is adaptability. Blacktrace does not aspire to be the largest corporate full service firm of the Benelux, but instead wants to stay a specialized boutique advisory firm, upon which clients can build. We are flexible, act fast and respond to our client’s wishes faster than larger full service providers could. In-depth knowledge, cross-border experience, a broad international network and a thorough approach are other important ingredients for success. Blacktrace has a strong track record and it is only growing with the significant transactions already done in 2015. In terms of the major trends in our industry, transparency is becoming more and more important for clients. Financial service providers are no longer omniscient and opaque firms. In order to be successful, firms have to be transparent to their clients and the outside world. Blacktrace has tried to be as open as possible since its inception and our clients explicitly communicate their satisfaction with us on this matter. As for the culture in our company, Blacktrace is a dedicated team that works in a horizontal structure and has a pragmatic and professional approach. For every new project, we assemble a team of the most suitable professionals by looking at both sector and case-specific characteristics. During the whole process, there are always two team members who are available full-time, with backing from the whole team. We see this structure as being pleasant and clients give positive feedback. Our belief is that complex and vertical structures obstruct the way to creativity and efficient teamwork. Blacktrace is delighted to be awarded ‘Best Corporate Finance Adviser 2015 – The Netherlands’. Winning this award is not only a recognition of the successes that Blacktrace has achieved for its customers, it also shows that Blacktrace is starting to become a stable factor in the corporate finance industry - impressive, considering we are a relatively young firm. This award demonstrates our professionalism to future customers and partners.

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Best Niche Corporate Finance House - UK & Recognised Leader in Biotech - UK

Camden Associates Receiving two awards at the 2015 Finance Awards, Camden Associates are a firm specialising in Healthcare and Biotech services. We spoke to Founder, Jean-Claude Gonneau to learn more about his company and the activity that has led to his firm receiving these prestigious awards.

Company: Camden Associates Web Address: camdenassociates.co.uk Address: 27 Hill street London W1J 5LP Telephone: +44 207 290 9812

Firstly, how do you feel about receiving these awards? JCG, let me first say that we are delighted with Acquisition International’s recognition of Camden Associates as ‘Best Niche corporate finance House –UK’ and ‘Recognised leader in Biotech-UK 2015’. These awards further validate our mission to become a leading provider of impartial advice to businesses in the healthcare and biotech space. This is particularly important and relevant to us as the last few years have been very challenging for the biotech industry worldwide. Tell us about Camden Associates, your clients and the services you offer? When we created Camden in 2006 we recognised that the market is heavily (very heavily) biased towards bigger companies. A lot of transactions contemplated or launched by smaller companies simply do not happen, either because of lack of timely advice, unrealistic expectations on both sides or - most of the time - a cocktail of the two. Providing advice is not just about producing a business plan as anybody can produce a reasonable business plan coming out of management school. It is about providing an assessment on the viability of the transaction, guiding management through what are complex processes and the sometimes hidden issues that need addressing. It is also about permitting management to keep on managing their business while carrying out the transaction that will transform their firm. While working in an industry that is constantly changing and evolving, what measures to you take to ensure that you are up to date with your clients’ demands? From my experience, investment banking is not like other industries - technology, for example - in the sense that not every new idea is a winner. So it is rather the ability to pick and choose the ideas and trends we believe make sense at a given point in the investment cycle that distinguishes us from other firms. Tell us about the culture within the company and the things you do to maintain and develop it. How does it influence your interactions with and results achieved for your clients? The culture of the company remains what it was when Camden Associates was created. When a client contacts us, he has an idea about what he wants to achieve or what he dreams of achieving. Our culture is to gauge if we can match the level of enthusiasm of our client and then assess the possibility for the client to achieve what he wants. Often at times, the problem needs to be reformulated, refocused and sometimes even substantially modified. It is at this stage that we will decide if we go for it or not. None of the things we do are rocket science but they are about knowledge and commitment. By “knowledge” I mean knowledge of the market cycles, knowledge of the finance industry and knowledge of investor psyche. What does the future hold for your firm? What challenges and opportunities face you in the second half of 2015 and beyond? First we’ll finish what we are working on and then we will see. Clearly, the trend looks like a stabilisation of capital raised at a fairly high level but with a substantially reduced number of deals. This means that the cycle will get more difficult for smaller companies. It will get very selective as well because the costs involved in doing the wrong deal are often about the same as doing the right deal.

Finance Awards 2015 / 13


international

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www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

Best for Tax Planning - UK

Champ Consultants Champ Consultants is an independent firm of highly experienced qualified accountants and tax advisers, based in Caterham and providing a fully comprehensive range of accountancy and tax services. We spoke to Founder, Chantal Baker who talked about the services they provide as well as how the firm keeps up to date with their ever evolving industry.

At Champ Consultants, we listen to our clients. We are able to think outside of the box and adapt as we assist them at every stage of finding the most tax efficient solution to their individual problems. Most of our clients are owner-managed established businesses or high net-worth individuals. We work with our clients to ensure we take into account their overall tax position rather than just corporation tax or income tax. We also advise clients fully on a potential inheritance tax liability as well as the possibility of capital gains on additional properties and buy to lets. We are a team of friendly and approachable people who always make the time to accommodate our client’s requests. To ensure that we are able to provide our clients with the best solutions, we are also all up to date with changes in the tax legislation and we share this information and handy tax tips with our clients and potential new clients via social media. We have a Facebook page and you can follow me on Twitter @chantalchamp. I am also currently writing a book to help start-up businesses better understand the options available to them and the various taxes they may encounter. Company: Champ Consultants Ltd Name: Chantal Baker Email: info@champconsultants.co.uk Web address: www.champconsultants.co.uk Address: 34 Westway, Caterham, Surrey CR3 5TP Telephone: 01883 349300

We have been in practice since 1999 and most of our clients come from referrals. We clearly provide our clients with a service that they are happy with and are always - obviously - happy to take on new clients. We have recently grown our team so that we are better equipped to provide all of our clients, old and new, with an industry-leading service, delivered in a timely and efficient manner by professional qualified accountants. Additionally, we are heavily involved with the local community throughout the year and regularly take part in various charitable events for great causes, including Red Nose Day and Cancer Research. We are also involved in the Caterham community, helping to organise numerous events, including the International Food Festival in June and the Beer Festival. We feel that the community is truly a part of our business and we always try to do our bit as best we can – and not just in accountancy and tax matters. As for winning this award, it feels great to be named ‘Best for Tax Planning – UK’. I feel that this achievement is due mostly to our approach of listening carefully to the needs of our clients rather than simply assuming what they want to be told. In today’s competitive market, it is important to have awards like these as they go a long way to recognising the hard work of our team.

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Best IT Strategy & Advisory Firm 2015 & Award for Innovation in SAAS

C CloudOrigin

CloudOrigin provides award winning strategy, advisory and implementation services to end users and providers to take advantage of this fundamental change in the business model of information technology brought about by cloud computing. This spans technology providers – from data center managers to software as a service firms – as well as intensive technology users across public and private sectors. We spoke to them about their success and the core principles they adhere to.

Based in London but operating globally, we have decades of experience in designing, delivering and managing the most advanced business services, software solutions and infrastructure platforms worldwide. Our reputation has grown in the private equity and venture capital community and we are widely regarded as a company that is keen to understand technology trends in terms of market demand. We are equally pleased to have enabled first round funding for new startups as we are to have advised on multi-billion dollar acquisitions. In 2014 alone we advised on potential deals with total enterprise value exceeding $7.5bn. In turn, we provide technology, operational, commercial, digital marketing, alliance, M&A strategy and governance to many of Europe’s fastest growing technology providers, spanning e-commerce, gaming, business process outsourcing, software as a service (‘SaaS’) and cloud hosting.

Company: CloudOrigin London Office: Exchange Building, London, UK Telephone: +44 203 642 5715 Email: Info@CloudOrigin.com Web: www.CloudOrigin.com Twitter: @CloudOrigin

When dealing with due diligence, there are three core principles that we focus on. Firstly, put the business impact of technology foremost, and speak in a language that investors will understand; secondly, build trust with the target to prove that we really understand the innovation and service delivery processes at the heart of their firm and the challenges they will encounter at each stage of evolution; thirdly, give pragmatic actionable advice rather than simply flagging issues. Cloud computing is an industry that has continued to expand and evolve over the past decade. Post-2008, cloud projects and the adoption of software as a service as a whole were definitely driven by a desire for a consumption based, flexible cost model which could go not only up but down in response to usage in an unpredictable future – a first in our industry. This was most quickly appreciated in sectors such as retail, travel and logistics that were used to managing lean supply chains, but we have seen this come to be appreciated across finance, telco, manufacturing, information providers, life sciences and government. Now we find cloud growth responding to and reflecting the opening of new markets and segments as firms explore new technology that they can turn on or off quickly. They can also experiment with new business strategies without CapEx hurdles and yet at the same time control security and performance on a global basis. We strive to provide the most up to date commercial and technical insight into the software as a service sector as it evolves and transforms the rest of the IT industry, so this recognition is a huge endorsement. As one of the pioneers of the sector since 2009, we have had the privilege of reviewing and working with some of the fastest growing SaaS providers as they expanded, not just thoughout Europe, but globally. We believe that experience is unrivalled and each new project adds to our knowledge and network, attracting more fantastic clients. We built our business based on individual contacts in the first few years, before it started to grow via referrals and now also thanks to the recognition and awareness that these awards bring. They are a huge factor in our growth and in helping clients to source the right advisors in a fast moving field.

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FINANCE

www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

Best Commercial Finance Broker 2015 & Best for Whole of Market Services - UK

Commercial Finance Brokers UK Limited

Commercial Finance Brokers UK Limited is a development finance brokers who act as an intermediary on behalf of individuals and businesses. Based in the UK, the company works to remove the hassle from obtaining commercial and business finance.

Company: Commercial Finance Brokers UK Limited Email: info@cfbuk.com Web: www.cfbuk.com Address: Wolsey House, 16-18 Princes Street, Ipswich IP1 1QT Telephone: 0800 999 2015

This award highlights the considerable success we have earned through hard work and determination. We always strive to fulfil our clients’ needs in the quickest, most efficient, and above all, most beneficial way possible and this award emphasises our unwavering dedication to this. Our services our highly process driven, a tried and tested approach that aids us in delivering the exceptionally high standards that have become synonymous with our company. These processes begin when our experienced brokers contact the client to discuss the objectives, financial requirements and expectations. We also take this opportunity to get to grips with the key financial information about a client’s business or investment property so that we can give an almost instant indication of what may or may not - be achievable. This helps to build a relationship with the client and helkps us to get to know their specific requirements in order for us to supply the correct services to meet their individual needs. Fees and such will then be discussed and, once instructed, we gather the required supporting information. We then prepare the summary proposal and present it to those lenders we know have an appetite for that type of lending and will provide the most competitive terms. It is then time to negotiate directly with those lenders to achieve the best rates, fees, loan to value and terms. Once we provide our clients with a table of terms comparing each lender’s indicative terms, they are then in a position to make an educated decision as to which lender they would like to proceed with. Once the preferred lender has been selected, we will guide the client through the lender’s specific internal processes. This may include a fact to face meeting, completion of that lender’s application forms or the provision of additional information. At some point a property and/or business valuation will also be required and solicitors will need to be instructed: CFB UK will guide the client through this process, managing the appropriate parts. Our role, once the client has met the lender and accepted their offer of finance, is to marshal all parties and influence a quick and efficient completion. Communication between the valuer, lender and the legal teams is essential to a fast conclusion. After previous developments and successes, including this award, we are looking forward to the next 12 months and to seeing what the upcoming year has in store.

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Best for SME Equipment Finance - UK

D&D Leasing is a small ticket leasing company offering both equipment finance and working capital finance to the small and medium sized enterprise market. We got in touch with Rev. Dr. K. Bill Dost, Founder of D&D Leasing, to find out more about his business and their approach towards client service.

Typically, we provide finance to firms who have under £1 million in annual revenues and have less than 10 members of staff in their offices. Often “owner-operator” led, these businesses need assistance with their financing and we help them acquire their mission critical assets, or help them with their working capital needs. When dealing with clients, our approach is pretty simple. We believe that all customer contact needs to be wonderful and that all of our clients need to come away feeling very happy. To this end, we empower our people to have the ability to make decisions on pricing and forebearance (as needed). From our experience, the right people are in fact empowered to make decisions as needed without managerial oversight, and this allows the business to move more efficiently and ultimately keep our customer base really happy. In order to achieve the high standards we set ourselves, our company has core values that every member of our team must reflect in their work. Secondly, we practice complete transparency, and all of our staff knows where we are in the month and who is or is not performing. This allows us to push and drive towards our goals. Speaking of goals, we are strong goal setters and yearly we set a road MAP that details our strategy for the next year. Company: D&D Leasing Name: Rev. Dr. K. Bill Dost Email: KBD@danddleasing.co.uk Web Address: www.danddleasing.com Address: 1 Hardwicks SQ. Hardwicks Way, London SW18 4AW Telephone: 0203 7696518

Perhaps our most distinguishing feature is that we are known as the C funding specialists, which means that we’re here to fund the tougher deals. This allows us to help those clients that really need assistance. After all, anyone can assist a blue chip customer, but structuring a transaction for a customer that really needs the help, that’s where our skill set really is. In order to stay ahead in our highly competitive industry, I am a constant student and you’ll find me either reading a book, attending a conference or going to a class to keep sharp. I fervently believe that we need to always reinvest in our own education if we desire to keep ahead of our competition. One particular challenge facing us is that there has been a lot of consolidation of leasing companies, followed by a drop in rates in the industry by many players. For the end user, this has been great as they are getting a really good interest rate. For funders like us, this is not so great because we don’t get to hold our margins. However, like all things, the market is cyclical and higher rate days will return. Looking towards 2016 and beyond, we are looking at both expanding and growing our firm even further. We are set to open our third market in the USA as well as continuing to expand our product lines when it makes sense. Out next big product lines that we are excited about is vehicles and commercial loans, so we really will have a busy year ahead. With this award, we are motivated to continue to be at the forefront of our industry. It really is great to be recognized as best for SME, and it’s nice to know that the work you do is noticed by those outside of your business. Awards such as these show businesses like ourselves that we’re being recognized for our hard work and they keep us motivated. To the wider industry I think it gives firms something to shoot for and to work hard for. Above all, this award is wholly attributable to the work of our amazing team. I can honestly say that their tireless work and work ethic for our clientele is why we’ve won this award and more importantly they are the reason our clients keep returning.

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FINANCE

Best for Business & Securities Valuation - Canada & Award for Innovation in Financial Litigation - Canada

DARTMOUTH PARTNERS LIMITED Dartmouth Partners Limited is a boutique business valuation, litigation support, transaction advisory and corporate finance firm headquartered in Montréal, Canada with additional offices in Chicago, Illinois and Hong Kong. We got in touch with Drew Dorweiler, Managing Partner at Dartmouth Partners, about the company and the wealth of experience they bring to bear for their clients.

Dartmouth Partners Limited possesses over 30 years of experience in the valuation of hundreds of privately and publicly-held companies in business valuation, corporate finance and litigation-support mandates on a global basis. The firm has frequently participated as a financial advisor to corporate mergers and acquisitions (buy and sell-side), divestitures and start-up businesses and in sourcing financing throughout North America and internationally. We are generalists in terms of industries served, but have achieved particular global distinction in sports business advisory. Among the competitive advantages of boutique firms, such as Dartmouth Partners Limited, over their larger competitors are increased direct and personalized responsiveness to clients, as well as a more nimble, flexible approach to creativity and decision making in the process of serving customers.

Company: Dartmouth Partners Limited Name: Drew Dorweiler, FRICS, CPA, ABV, CBV, ASA, CBA, CVA, CFE, MBA Email: drewdorweiler@gmail.com Web Address: www.drewdorweiler.com Address: 308 Square Saint-Louis, Montreal, Quebec CANADA H2X 1A5 Telephone: 1 (514) 962 6896

Another factor that separates us from our competitors is that we focus on offering creative solutions to clients while maintaining integrity of reputation. Our firm’s competitive advantage arises from its global breadth of professional expertise in business valuation, litigation support, mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance, sports business, accounting, economics and fraud prevention/detection. Moreover, I have served on the pre-eminent leadership organizations in the North American valuation profession: Board of Trustees of the Appraisal Foundation (USA) and Board of Directors of the Canadian Institute of Chartered Business Valuators (Canada). Consequently, our firm is able to leverage my acumen and experience at the forefront of the business valuation field. In order to stay au courant in the worlds of business valuation, corporate finance, financial litigation and sports business advisory, the onus is ever-present to keep abreast of developments through attending conferences, networking with colleagues, competitors and clients, and reading. Of course, if like us you are passionate about your profession, these activities are exhilarating in their own right. As for the award, we are deeply honoured to be awarded this prestigious dual distinction. Aside from the various mentors in my professional career and academic influences, I could not have achieved this success without the inspiration, love and support of my parents and wife, Maranda. Aside from the satisfaction of receiving this recognition of distinction amongst one’s peers, such awards inspire other professionals to innovate and achieve excellence in their own work. Looking towards the future, Dartmouth Partners Limited is in the process of opening an office in Hong Kong where it envisions serving as an advisor linking the North American and Asian markets and enhancing the business valuation profession in Asia by introducing Western standards and methods to regional clientele.

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FINANCE

www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

Best In-House HR & Payroll Department

ERIKS is the UK’s leading industrial services partner, offering a wide range of parts and maintenance services for all industrial sectors. In short, they are a company with the know-how that makes the difference. We spoke to them about the growth of their company over the past few years, and their desire to continue to expand and innovate with regards to their services.

Company: ERIKS UK Name: Diane Hopkins – Payroll Manager Email: diane.hopkins@eriks.co.uk Web Address: www.eriks.co.uk Address: ERIKS Head Office, Amber Way, Halesowen, West Midlands B62 8WG Telephone: ERIKS Head Office 0121 508 6000

In the UK, ERIKS has developed nine core competence centres, which deliver unrivalled technical expertise and applications support for customers, ranging from sealing technology and fluid power through to drives and power transmission, gaskets and valves. This technical expertise can be accessed via our network of 65 nationwide industrial service centres supplying more than 500,000 different products, along with 23 fully equipped repair workshops and around 100 integrated on-site locations delivering technical and operational savings for our customers. From our experience, practises within HR & Payroll are constantly changing and evolving. We ensure that both our team’s managers (HR, L&D Payroll, and Corporate) and the teams themselves keep their skills set up to date by attending courses, workshops and conferences. Staff are encouraged to share and implement the new ideas and skills they have uncovered at such events. ERIKS UK has grown by acquisition over the years, which has led to much work for the HR, Payroll and L&D Team to ensure that new colleagues are fully integrated into the business. It is not uncommon for the L&D Team to be the conduit of best practises between the different businesses and divisions with the company – sharing the news of successful practises. We are proud that ERIKS HR is responsible for the regular communications throughout the business. Communications, which include a fortnightly email to all employees, quarterly flyers to those without email, and an Annual Social Report, have become the cornerstone for communicating to the business – regardless of role or Division. Regarding the award, we were thrilled to hear we had been named “Best In-House HR & Payroll Department”. The hard work and dedication of the team over the past few years has enabled us to streamline our internal processes, improve the efficiency of our services to the business and offer true, personalised benefits to the ERIKS Workforce. It has been a real collaboration of all team members, and the strengths they bring to the group, that has ensured we have been acknowledged with this success! To the team, receiving the award is an acknowledgement of their efforts in ensuring that new systems and processes have been put in place over the past few years. Often working beyond their usual hours, team members have brain-stormed, challenged and implemented new ideas that have benefited and will continue to benefit the efficiency of the team and the colleagues they support. Having implemented many changes to our internal processes within the HR & Payroll Team (new software), we feel more prepared for the opportunity to approach the trend for adopting an Employee Self Service HR/ Payroll Platform. The next 12 months will see us roll out an Employee Portal that will allow employees and managers to better manage their HR/Payroll requirements (Holiday/Absence recording, Appraisals, Training Records etc.). The ability to offer this could not have been achieved without the hard work of the team over the past years. They truly are deserving of the ‘Best In-House HR & Payroll Department’ award!

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FINANCE

Best Software Solutions Firm 2015 - Malta & Innovators in Enterprise Resource Planning

Exigy is a Microsoft Gold Partner entirely focused on the provision of strategic software solutions, having a certified team of project managers, solution architects, and consultants who work together to successfully deliver projects in line with customer expectations within both the public and the private sectors, from blue-chip companies to SMEs. We spoke to them about their company and their approach to providing clients with the best possible service.

We aim to bring technology closer to our client’s corporate needs with customised processes tailored to fit business requirements and to address specific business pains. Our approach towards our clients is integrated into our entire business culture, as well as our processes and our plans, with the aim of achieving a consultative and customer-centric approach. We ensure this primarily through the quality of the people who provide the service, who are academically and technically qualified to bridge the gap between technology and business operations. We also adopt a specifically personalised approach to our customers, and do our best to accommodate them by providing more than simply out of the box solutions, but tailored solutions that are determined through a thorough analysis of our clients’ requirements prior to implementing any solution.

Company: Exigy Limited Name: Dominic Scicluna Title: Head of Business Development Email: dscicluna@exigy.com Web Address: www.exigy.com Address: Exigy, 66, Dun Karm Street, B’Kara, BKR9038, Malta Telephone: 00356 2011 2021

We believe that our company culture is defined by our core company values and our people—there is effective team work, evident even through the way our teams our structured. Similarly, our experience and expertise encourage a company culture that is outcome oriented, attentive, and hard working. Exigy is a fast growing company, and is therefore dynamic and energetic, but also benefits from the professionalism of the M. Demajo Group ethic. At Exigy, one of the things we do to keep abreast of changes and developments is attend conferences locally and overseas, as we recognise them as a place where industry leaders come together to network, exchange information and to develop new ideas within a professional space. We believe that technology training and certifications are crucial to obtain the right sort of expertise, and that publications and journals in the field are useful to update oneself with emerging technologies and trends. Furthermore, we do our own internal research and development of applications. Particularly relevant to our industry is the increasingly prevalent cloud-led model, which has certainly been changing the nature of applications and opening up various business opportunities. Furthermore, mobile cloud computing shifts the emphasis onto the client and is dramatically improving business productivity by allowing often unrestricted, mobile access to applications anywhere and anytime, through the Internet, and using a multitude of mobile devices. To us, these awards mark a milestone in Exigy’s growth and development and we are, of course, delighted. An award always acknowledges success, but from our perspective, being named Best solutions Firm 2015 Malta and Innovators in Enterprise Resource Planning also recognises a number of other qualities that we strive to achieve—ability, effort, persistence, quality, and more importantly, one of our core values—excellence. On a basic level, we owe our success to our employees, as it is through their hard work that we obtain results, and to our customers, who are committed to the value of the services that we offer. Apart from this, however, we believe that our success is also attributable to training and development; a clear focus on the desired results; and strategic and operational vision, which we continually refine as we grow and develop as a company. More information about our services can be accessed on our website www.exigy.com.

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FINANCE

www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

Best for Value Added Tax Compliance Solutions & Recognised Leader in IPT Training

Fiscal Reps Limited FiscalReps is celebrating being named ‘Best for Value Added Tax Compliance Solutions’. In only three years, the indirect tax practice has grown from concentrating solely on premium taxes to providing fiscal representative and tax settlement services in the fields of both VAT and more recently gambling taxes. To be voted best in class for VAT is an accolade which FiscalReps is proud to achieve.

Founded in 2003 by Mike Stalley FCA, FiscalReps has developed to become the leading global indirect tax specialist. The firm offers a wide range of services, including outsourcing, technology, consulting and training solutions to insurers, banks and online gambling operators. Their enviable client list numbers over 300 and includes many of the world’s largest organisations. Mike was joined in 2012 by Peter Hewitt FTII, a renowned VAT specialist with over 30 years’ experience within HMRC and a Big 4 accountancy practice. The VAT compliance service offering was launched immediately and many existing and new clients signed up. Over the course of his long career, Peter has advised clients in almost every industry. He now specialises in insurance, banking, gambling, and real estate, but is able to assist clients in any industry particularly in relation to VAT compliance. It is not simply VAT in the UK, but all over the world. Although FiscalReps is based in Farnborough, the strong team of 40 is able to submit returns for clients in over 50 different countries, and more are being added all the time as demand grows. Unlike most of the competition, almost all of the submissions are made from Farnborough. Where it is necessary to have a local presence FiscalReps will set up a company and engage a reliable associate to act on its clients’ behalf. This model has worked well in the field of premium taxes and continues in relation to other indirect taxes. There is a marked team culture in the Farnborough office, which is often remarked upon by clients who visit us. Although heads are often down there is constant cross-referencing between “country specialists” and client handlers, to ensure that the best possible knowledge is accessed. The staff members include nationals of many different countries, including France, Germany, Spain and Italy as well as some farther flung places. This is part of the secret of our success: we can talk to the local tax authorities, not just in their own language but as part of their culture, and we find this helps. There is also a culture of cooperation with the tax authorities. Tax avoidance is not something which is offered by FiscalReps because it is essential that we maintain good relationships to give our clients peace of mind that their tax affairs are settled to the satisfaction of the overseas tax men and women.

Company: Fiscal Reps Limited Names: Mike Stalley & Peter Hewitt Web: www.fiscalreps.com Address: 200 Fowler Avenue, Farnborough Business Park, Farnborough, Hampshire, GU14 7JP Telephone: +44 0(20) 7036 8070

If clients should have more detailed questions about the way they need to account for VAT, consultancy advice can be offered. This can be on an hourly basis at competitive charge rates, or by means of a helpline service. Either way the advice given is of the highest quality. FiscalReps also delivers regular IPT and VAT standard or bespoke training for clients at all levels. Past attendees have reported that, by using the knowledge and expertise imparted by FiscalReps’ trainers, they have been able to have an immediate impact on their organisation’s premium tax and VAT efficiencies. In each of its 11 years, FiscalReps has grown to become the leading authority in premium tax compliance. In less than 3 years a thriving VAT consulting practice has been built. The company competes with the Big 4 accountancy firms and is well equipped to stand shoulder to shoulder with these tax giants and drive the market forward. Using established processes and a knowledgeable team, FiscalReps’ tax offerings to the market will continue to grow in the future. FiscalReps: The One-Stop Indirect Tax Solution for Global Business.

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FINANCE

Best for HNI Stock Selection - USA

Itaú is the world’s global Latin Bank. Born in Latin America, we are committed to the region. As a fourth-generation family owned bank, we understand our clients’ needs and offer a full suite of banking capabilities, from credit to wealth management to investments, both onshore and offshore for our Latin American client base. We provide our clients access to the best investment products on global markets.

We are honoured to be recipients of the ‘Best High Net Worth Individual USA Stock Selection’ award and we are thrilled to be recognized for our work by a prestigious financial media outlet. As the only Latin American bank that competes in the global marketplace, this award validates our model and confirms our outstanding capabilities in the offshore markets. Over the past seven years, our concentrated US-equity model portfolio, the Top 10, has outperformed the S&P 500, its primary benchmark, by 29%. Similarly, our 15-stock dividend portfolio, which we view as a fixed income alternative, has outperformed the S&P 500 by 3.1% since its January 2013 launch and outperformed its fixed income benchmarks by over 54%. Both portfolios are based on our fundamental research process by which we try to identify companies that are misunderstood in terms of their market opportunity or their management’s ability to exceed earnings expectations.

Company: Itaú Private Bank Name: Ralph Davidson Email: ralph.davidson@Itauinternational.com Web Address: www.Itauprivatebank.com Address: 767 Fifth Avenue, 50th Floor New York, New York, 10153-0023 Telephone: 212 710-6740

Our success stems from the fact that Itaú always puts the client first. Client experience is our primary benchmark and that is how our employees are measured. We are constantly asking our clients to evaluate us and provide feedback to insure that we are consistently exceeding expectations. Our philosophy is: What gets measured gets done. Within the offshore investment world, Itaú is often more agile than its competitors. We have instilled a decision making culture in which people are held accountable and we are completely independent of US sell-side research and investment banking operations. This means that there are no conflicts within the organization. We are experienced, thoughtful and diligent. We recognize that our client base has varying levels of equity investment experience, particularly in non-Latin American stocks. As a result, we aim to make our process and thinking as transparent and as accessible as possible. We want to be the best. To that end, we are 100% client focused and continually enhance our processes, capabilities and services to anticipate our clients’ needs and exceed their expectations. This is a competitive business that has a scorecard at the end of every day, week, month, quarter and year, and we want to win. One of the most important and recent trends in our industry is that clients are more able to recognize good advice and differentiate providers based on the consistency of that advice over time. International competitors come and go in the Latin American market. We are here to stay. Clients recognize and appreciate our consistency and our strength and they see us as a trusted partner. While awards are gratifying, there is always more work to be done. We are constantly trying to improve our client offering, our communications and our service.

Finance Awards 2015 / 23


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FINANCE

www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

Best for Med Tech M&A - USA & Award for Innovation in PE/VC Medical Financing

Medical Capital Advisors MedCap Advisors are an investment bank that specializes in the medical technology sector. Together they have represented clients through more than 150 medical device mergers and venture investments.

Company: MedCap Email: info@medcapadvisors.com Web: medcapadvisors.com

MedCap focuses on developing growth strategies and implementing them through mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, and licensing agreements. Our clients are mid to large sized private and public companies exclusively in the healthcare and medical technology industry. We have represented over 150 institutional investors on five continents and in 15 countries. This award is a significant milestone in a process of continual learning and improvement. While we are very pleased to receive it, it is only the beginning in achieving excellence. We believe our success is due to our long-standing industry expertise, wide spread contacts and dedication to our clients. We believe that awards such as this one allow a bit of competition and recognition of excellence which always motivates competitors to perform better. An award like this encourages all of us in the industry to improve the service and performance that we deliver to our clients. While working in an industry that is constantly changing and evolving, we like to ensure that we are at the forefront of any changes or developments. To enable this we listen to the voices of the people around us. We listen to the doctors, the patients, the nurses and the company and industry leaders, and incorporate their feedback into our thinking. We have strategically placed ourselves in the center of Harvard Square, within arm’s reach of the best and brightest people with the most innovative thoughts. MedCap’s location in the hub of the medtech industry means we are a short distance away from Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard University, MIT, Boston University and a variety of other leading hospitals, universities and medtech companies. To ensure that our clients get the best possible service we make sure that our first priority is to provide leading edge insight into the macro and micro economic factors that impact both our investments and our clients. This is then followed by thoughtful, collaborative solutions and execution of those solutions on behalf of our clients. MedCap is an open and collaborative organization, deliberately positioned in close proximity to some of the finest universities and hospitals in the world. We recruit, collaborate and work with these organizations in an open, thoughtful and productive dialogue to continually advance our culture. In our company, every voice is heard and every comment is absorbed and evaluated, whether it is from a partner or other colleague. We are specialists in healthcare. Our firm’s highly specialized nature and years of experience have given us a depth of knowledge in the healthcare industry that is unparalleled, of which we feels sets us apart from our competitors. Our contacts give us a global reach into more than 15 countries and five continents, while our prime location in the Massachusetts supercluster of medical technology and established reputation connects us with some of the brightest minds in the industry. In the past year, there have been increasing valuations from medtech and biotech transactions in both the public markets and M&A. There has been an increasing volume of transactions and a decreasing availability of venture capital funding. Our future focus is currently on the growth of the asset management business. We plan on increasing the number of assets under management across various stages and throughout a range of healthcare industry segments.

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FINANCE

Best Regional Accountants - Thames Valley & Client Choice Award: Best for Management Advice

My Controller My Controller is an innovative and expanding Accountancy and Tax practice based in Windsor, Wokingham, and High Wycombe and helping businesses throughout London and the Thames Valley. We spoke to them about the company and their philosophy behind providing the best services for their clients.

Name: My Controller Web Address: www.mycontroller.co.uk Windsor Office Tel:01753 840 948 Email: info@mycontroller.co.uk 67 St. Leonards Road, Windsor, Berkshire, SL4 3BX Wokingham Office Tel: 0118 327 2390 Email: wokingham@mycontroller.co.uk Wokingham Business Centre, The Courthouse, Erftstadt Court, Denmark Street, Wokingham, Berkshire, RG40 2YF High Wycombe Office Tel: 01494 557 336 Email: highwycombe@mycontroller.co.uk Oakridge House, Wellington Road, High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, HP12 3P

Our service can be tailored to meet the needs of any business and budget from start-ups through to large enterprises. We’ll work out the most effective way to work together with our clients and establish a successful working relationship. Our services cover compliance areas in accounting and tax as well as business advisory services. Again, our ultimate focus is to help our clients improve their profitability and retained cash. We have one overriding philosophy that covers our three core areas: ü To help clients improve profitability and retained cash. ü In our approach, we aim to educate and inform clients as a foundation and starting point. ü From a practice perspective, we hold ourselves to the highest possible standard. Every key process is documented and everyone in the team follows these processes. We are in the business of helping clients improve profitability and retained cash. Good business comes from holding onto this objective. One key area is to ensure that we are aware of their key compliance responsibilities and make sure that we plan for this so they don’t have to worry about missing any key deadlines. Additionally, we have mapped out all of our key processes. This helps to ensure that we have a consistent high standard in our approach. In My Controller, we have a saying: “Always do your best to do your best”. As mentioned earlier, we have a high level of client focus. When we bring this back into the organisation and team, we do this by making sure that everyone has a personal development plan. We review these plans with every individual every three months. Also, we have monthly internal training with the team. This helps us build and drive a client focused culture. In turn, this benefits our clients because they feel the attention from the whole team. As I said, we are in the business of helping clients improve profitability and retained cash the more focus the team has on our clients, the better equipped we are to achieve this goal. Providing the best for our clients is something that we have to always improve upon in our industry. The accounting industry continuously has a constantly changing environment, not only due to the constantly changing tax regime, but also the pressures on our clients from changes in the economic climate. In this industry you simply need to acknowledge that fact and be prepared to make investments to help ensure that you are able to advise your clients accordingly. We specifically dedicate time to plan for this. One example is our library of over 70 different guidance notes. These are designed to help our clients as they navigate through key decision areas of their business. We were thrilled to these awards! We work hard as a team to put strong controls in place and do our best to operate at a high level. Winning an award like this, helps motivate everyone to keep going and try to do even better; so it helps everyone in the organisation. In terms of clients, it helps reinforce our messages and the fact that we strive for high standards. Finally, as an industry it is important that practitioners, clients and other stakeholders have a mechanism to share high levels of work and commitment. Our success is largely due to the hard work and effort of our team. We focus on the client with everything we do. Our ultimate aim is to help our clients improve their profitability and retained cash. It is this focus that drives us and ultimately ensures any success that we have.

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FINANCE

www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

Most Respected in Corporate Coherence - UK

Nationwide Building Society Transparency is very important to us at Nationwide. As a mutual which is firmly focused on putting the needs of its members first, we work hard to ensure our products are as simple and easy to understand as possible. It is no different when it comes to how we report on our business. We aim to ensure our financial reporting is as clear and transparent as it can be, and that it tells the corporate story in a way that can be readily understood; at a time when we are seeing increasing regulation around the scale and standard of disclosure, we have an even greater responsibility to ensure that what we are saying continues to resonate with our members.

Company: Nationwide Building Society Web: www.nationwide.co.uk

We are therefore very pleased to have been recognised for our work in this area. Whilst there has always been a great focus on technical accuracy within financial reporting, it is pleasing to note the value being placed on coherence and its role in ensuring that financial reports meet the needs of all of our stakeholders. About Nationwide Nationwide is the second largest financial services provider of mortgages and savings in the UK with 15 million members and customers and almost £200 billion of assets. As a mutual, Nationwide exists for and because of its members and because we do not have shareholders to satisfy we are able to put our members, who are also our customers, at the heart of everything we do. Therefore, we are able to focus on profit optimisation in order to support the business and invest for the future benefit of our members. So, for example, whilst many of the banks have been closing their branches, we have just been able to announce a £500m investment over the next five years to redesign our branches and combine the benefits of a physical presence with the latest technology, which allows our members to manage their financial affairs in a way that suits them, not their provider. Leading the way With a range of award-winning products, we have been number one on the high street for customer service for the past three years; account for a small fraction of industry complaints, and have an arrears rate significantly below the industry average. We believe in playing our part in the communities we serve and have a 99% score in the 2015 Business in the Community Corporate Responsibility Index. Nationwide is proof that you can be successful by doing the right thing. The digital agenda continues apace and Nationwide has been at the forefront of many of the major milestones of recent years: we were the first to have an internet bank; the first financial services to offer a 24/7 Twitter service to our members; the first to bring real-time balances to smart watches, and one of the first to provide Apple Pay, providing a full service offering that allows our customers to manage their affairs in a way that suits them. Team effort Nationwide has a reputation for having the best customer service among the leading high street financial services providers, and many of the same qualities that are so important for maintaining good customer relationships apply internally too. Good customer or client care is all about listening to, understanding and anticipating their needs; ensuring a relationship that is based on trust and reliability and making sure that the quality of our work is consistently high. This award reflects a team effort and it is vital that we work well as a team and are able to develop, nurture and maintain successful relationships with other business areas, our ‘clients’ or ‘business partners’. Culture Nationwide is committed to doing the right thing for its members and our people are guided by a set of values, which are focussed around this. People who work for Nationwide live and breathe these values and as an organisation we not only celebrate great achievements but also exemplary behaviours. At a time when elements of the financial services sector seem to have faced one conduct issue after another, Nationwide has received no supervisory fines over the past eight years and its complaints record is considerably below the industry average. Employees who have joined us from the plc sector regularly comment that there is a different culture and philosophy at Nationwide because, as a member-owned organisation, we really are focussed on putting our customers first. The Future It’s an exciting time to be a mutual. Following a difficult period for the plc banks, there is now a much greater emphasis on the customer, and many are simplifying their businesses and focussing on service, which can only be a good thing. Nationwide is in great shape and is demonstrating how a mutual building society can make a real difference in the financial services sector, but we are not complacent: there is always more work to be done.

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Best Global Business Risk Consultants 2015

Protiviti Protiviti is incredibly honoured to be named Best Global Business Consultants 2015 for two years running as well as winning the Award for Innovation in Data Security in 2015. Our primary focus is on helping global clients manage their business risks more effectively. Since Cyber/Data Security is one of those key business risks that has moved up the agenda to the board level, we are glad to be recognised as innovators in this important space. Data security is after all a business problem and not a technical one and affects our clients and society as a whole as we become more dependent on technology and embed it into everyday life. Our business still grows very much through referrals from existing clients and we believe that this is due to the feedback on our work within the marketplace. We are a premier global internal audit and business risk consulting firm helping clients solve complex business problems and managing their critical risks. At its core, Protiviti is a client-centric, relationship-based organisation. This approach has helped us to achieve success with a variety of clients across a broad range of industries. Protiviti works with the more than 25% of the Fortune 500, 35% of the Fortune 100 and 20% of the Fortune 1000 companies across FSI, Energy, Retail, Manufacturing, Telecoms, Media and other industry sectors. We thrive on partnering with clients who have global problems to solve and who are exposed to risks spanning multiple countries, cultures and organisational challenges. We serve as trusted advisors to our clients, helping them manage their critical risks (such as Data / Cyber Security) through a combination of people, process and technology transformation. We travel with our clients along their journey towards better control that enable them to be more effective and efficient by navigating through risks and taking advantage of opportunities to do better. We do this by helping our clients prioritise their activities where it matters the most - focusing on critical areas within their business first.

Company: Protiviti Ltd Name: Ryan Rubin Email: ryan.rubin@protiviti.co.uk Web Address: www.protiviti.com Address: One Strand | Trafalgar Square | London WC2N 5AB Telephone: 07867 506 690

Our business focussed Cyber Security services cover a broad spectrum of security risk management domains including: Strategy, Programme Management, Data and Privacy Compliance, Vulnerability Management and Penetration Testing, Identity and Access Management, Security Intelligence and Operations, Incident Response and Forensics, Third Party Risk Management. We help our clients through the planning, design, implementation, operation, governance, assurance and response cycles. These cycles are critical to becoming a more resilient organisation that can demonstrate compliance to regulatory requirements and industry standards and pro-actively manage their cyber risks, despite being in a rapidly changing and complex environment, facing every increasing emerging and sophisticated threats. Our teams are very active in the industry servicing our clients - listening to their needs and responding accordingly. We keep up to date through a combination of the following: participation in industry standard bodies; active participation with industry bodies, formal and informal training (such as the Protiviti university); making use of a dedicated research centre (PKIC); encouraging staff to write articles and blogs; non-exclusive teaming arrangements with vendors; leading industry studies and surveys; partnering with academia on research projects; chairing peer to peer round tables and subscribing to industry research publications. As part of our values, Protiviti has committed to maintain several high value promises to our clients. We promise every client that we will listen, provide the right talent, collaborate and build relationships, deliver value with excellence and openly share leading practices We regularly receive feedback from our clients which enables us to continue delivering exceptional value to our clients. Protiviti is consistently told by our clients that the way in which we interact with them is unique among our competitors. We partner closely with our clients and provide the continued attention of our most senior resources as we work together to achieve our client’s objectives. Looking ahead, Protiviti will continue to demonstrate steady organic growth, quarter by quarter. We anticipate this growth to accelerate in a controlled manner as global demands for risk and compliance continue to increase. Opportunities are endless as we still have a large market share to go after in a very buoyant and shifting marketplace. Our challenge and focus remains on maintaining the same level of service as the team grows and keeping focused on client / market demands which change as the threat and regulatory climate changes over time.

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FINANCE

www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

Best for Albanian Law & Litigation

Tonucci & Partners Tonucci & Partners Albania began its professional activity in 1995 and now also operates out of six offices in Italy and Romania. Throughout its lifetime, the business has consolidated working relationships with leading foreign global law firms with offices in the most important markets in Europe, Asia and the Americas. We spoke to their Albanian office to find out more about the company and the challenges and opportunities facing their region.

Company: Tonucci & Partners Albania Name: Mr. Neritan Kallfa, senior partner Email: tirana@tonucci.com nkallfa@tonucci.com Web Address: www.tonucci.com http://www.tonucci.com/eng/ offices/offices_tirana.php Address: Rruga Abdi Toptani - Torre Drin building (2nd floor) – Tirana (Albania) Telephone: +355 (0) 4 2250711 / 2

Our Albanian office is composed of both domestic and expatriate lawyers who combine the firm’s leading international experience with local expertise, language skills and knowledge of Albanian market practices for the benefit of our domestic and international clients. Our clients range from small and medium size companies in the early stages of international expansion, to large multinationals, financial institutions, banks and governmental institutions. Our office boasts a highly educated staff, proficient in a wide variety of specialties and possessing great knowledge and experience. Our work mainly focuses on complex cross-border and multi-jurisdictional transactions and litigation. In terms of client service, we dedicate individual, personalised time to clients, rapidly answering questions with deep analysis of their problems and always using a positive approach to achieve the best results. Our staff push each other to maintain high standards with excellent results. Thanks to this, our clients benefit from a unique team effort, not easily found elsewhere. We stay constantly up-to-date with the changes and developments in international and Albanian legislation while also maintaining close relationships with different industries, businesses and individuals that keep us on the cutting edge of our market. Thanks to our 20 years of professional experience in Albania, we have gained significant experience in corporate and financial transactions; privatisations, public tenders and concessions, EU funds and finance (I.P.A.), energy, real estate and infrastructures, telecommunications and information technology, antitrust, employment, tax, litigation and arbitration. Because of the changes in Albanian government and legislation over the past 12 months, our field has experienced an influx of respected international businesses and companies seeking legal advice in investing in Albania and in the Balkans. We feel honoured by the award and appreciate that our hard work has been recognised. This wouldn’t have been possible without our hard-working experienced lawyers having an incredible dedication to teamwork and commitment to high standards. Awards such as these provide a benchmark of high standards that encourages ourselves to constantly strive for better results, ultimately improving the quality of service for all our clients. Looking ahead as Albania adapts in preparation for its admittance to the European Union, we see a future with new and bright opportunities. As a top tier Albanian law firm, we are prepared to fulfill the market’s and our clients’ needs in the future.

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FINANCE

Award for Innovation in Airline Payment Solutions - Washington D.C & Best Travel Payment Platform ‘’UATP’’

UATP is the airline owned global payment solution accepted by thousands of merchants for air, rail, and travel agency payments. UATP provides a true low-cost alternative to the expensive cost of accepting credit card payments while building and maintaining customers’ loyalty to the airlines. UATP has sales in excess of $14bn worldwide, which produces hundreds of millions of dollars in both savings and revenue for its owners. UATP lowers the cost of payment acceptance, typically 100 basis points less than other card brands. We spoke to them to find out more.

Company: UATP Name: Wendy Ward Email: Marketing@uatp.com Web Address: UATP.COM Address: 1301 Pennsylvania Ave, NW Washington DC 20004 Telephone: 202-626-4224

UATP offers easy-to-use data tools, DataStreamSM and DataMineSM, which provide comprehensive account details to Issuers and Corporate Subscribers for accurate travel management. DataStream is UATP’s innovative, Web-based billing system. It effortlessly organizes information on a single, centralized system. With the ability to support multiple currencies and languages, DataStream allows airline Issuers to provide incomparable customer service to clients worldwide. DataMine is UATP’s cutting edge transaction portal that provides comprehensive insight into Issuer and Corporate Subscriber accounts. Subscribers can access up to thirteen months of Level III data, and then effortlessly generate reports customized to their specific need. DataMine gives users real-time access to credit limits, balances, and available funds for all UATP account types. UATP’s data tools and solutions help make UATP the preferred form of payment for corporate travel throughout the world. To add value to the Network, UATP partners with new processing platforms that diversify UATP’s payment acceptance and channels for airfare payment. UATP’s alternative forms of payments include Alipay, Bitnet, GiroSolution, PayPal, SafetyPay, SVS and Wirecard. UATP will continue to enhance the Network to benefit further our airline Members.

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FINANCE

www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

Independent Financial Advisory Firm of the Year - Turkey & Best MENA Finance Specialist 2015 – Turkey

What differentiates ÜNLÜ & Co as an investment banking services and asset management group is their global quality service approach combined with their deep local roots. We spoke to them about the work they do in their region, and how they consistently deliver for their clients.

Our professional team of more than 300 individuals based in Istanbul, Turkey’s financial centre with wider regional aspirations, offers a wide range of investment banking and asset management services to investors, major corporates, financial institutions, blue-chip companies and high net worth individuals. At ÜNLÜ & Co, we strive for “Raising Values” of our clients, employees, investors and overall the financial sector as well as the society we operate in. Since we established our business in a small office in 1996, our main objective has been to offer our knowhow on local markets to the global investors, while helping local businesses to understand the global investors’ requirements. We have always worked to raise the quality of our services and extend our reach to a larger client base. We are determined to continue operating on a greater level every step on the way. The entrepreneurial spirit found at the very heart of ÜNLÜ & Co has elevated us from a local advisory house, providing mergers and acquisitions advisory, to the “Leading Investment Banking and Asset Management Group of Turkey”. Company: ÜNLÜ & Co Web Adress: www.unluco.com Telephone: +90 212 367 3636 Email: news@unluco.com

At ÜNLÜ & Co, we aim to deliver results, identify the best opportunities for our clients and guide them to achieve sustainable and profitable results. We strive to provide the best possible alternatives for our clients with our understanding of the Turkish economy and international investment banking, thus strengthening the “commitment” between our company and our clients. Our integrated investment banking and asset management services are focused on a sustainable growth strategy both for our own organization and our clients. We put entrepreneurship, client dedication, determination, competence, teamwork and commitment at the heart of our business. We believe that we have played and will continue to play an important role to take Turkey towards its goal of becoming one of the top ten economies of the world in 2023. Since the foundation of our business, we have been dedicated to promote Turkey and Turkish corporates to the foreign investors. During the late 90s not many investors were aware of the opportunities the Turkish market offered. We organized the first road-shows to clients in Europe, the USA and the Middle East to present the development process of the Turkish economy. Now, as Turkey becomes a more stable and prosperous market, most of the investors from around the globe are interested in investing in our country and we are here to support them with our services. We provide diverse solutions from corporate finance advisory to equity capital markets, from debt finance advisory to global markets, from private equity advisory to institutional sales and brokerage services, from portfolio management to nonperforming loans businesses, under one brand. We have proven our track record in Turkey, now our aim is to become the best investment banking services and asset management group in the region. The company’s office in Singapore also established and solid steps have been taken for an expansion in the Middle East and the rest of the region.

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Best for ESG Strategic Advisory Services & Best Property Due Diligence Firm

Waterman Waterman is one of the leading consultancies providing transactional support to banks, private equity, real estate and infrastructure funds and blue chip clients. They offer a variety of services, including ESG strategic and implementation support as well as environmental, ESG and technical due diligence as part of transactional activity. We spoke to them about their company and exactly what it is that makes their services unique.

Company: Waterman Name: Penelope Latorre/Harriet Assem Email: Penelope.latorre@watermangroup.com Harriet.assem@watermangroup.com Web Address: www.watermangroup.com Address: Pickfords Wharf, Clink Street, London, SE1 9DG Telephone: 020 7928 7888

To ensure that we stay ahead of the curve, we are constantly monitoring market activity and trends which could have implications for our clients. We are also active contributors to a number of associations in the sector, including having a seat on the BVCA’s Responsible Investment Advisory Board since 2010. We are asked to participate in conferences, panels and other events throughout the year, which over time we have identified as key to shaping the market. This is particularly important in the emerging area of ESG, which has, in recent years, become a major new consideration for investors across all asset classes. We place our client’s interest at the centre of all we do. Understanding our clients’ needs, their desired business outcomes and the nature of each transaction is paramount to our work and to our success. All our key achievements in this sector are reflective of our great team and the range of experience we have. For this reason, we place real importance on our people and talent retention. We promote a diverse, flexible and dynamic workplace that people enjoy being a part of. In terms of what separates us from our competitors, it is evident that Waterman’s strong reputation for reliable performance and commercial advice remains an underlying reason for our consistent presence within the DD market, and particularly our retention as “Advisor of Choice” by a large number of clients. However, our reputation is not solely based on reliability, but also on innovation of both due diligence and ESG services. Key to our service delivery has been our meaningful and commercial assessment of a target’s sustainability (ESG) credentials and the benchmarking of a target’s performance against other similar companies within a sector. This year, we have also expanded its range of implementation tools, tackling the trickier areas of social and governance alongside the more established elements like environmental, health and safety considerations. This one stop shop ESG and transactional service has positioned Waterman as a leading advisor in the UK. Most of our new business has been as a result of our growing reputation as a holistic ESG advisor, as well as referrals from existing clients to new potential clients. We are absolutely delighted to have been recognised for our due diligence and ESG advice over the past year. We pride ourselves on being a first point of contact for environmental due diligence support and we will work hard to ensure we keep that position in the market.

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FINANCE

www.acquisition-intl.com/2015-2014-finance-awards

Best for Preparing Business Plans - UK

WBD Chartered Accountants have helped businesses grow and succeed since 2001. They provide a bespoke service to their clients, which includes a wide range of planning services from starting a business, assisting with obtaining finance, growing their business through to eventual sale and retirement. They help their clients through all stages of their business and even help improve personal well-being and family life by making their business less reliant on them. We spoke to them to find out more.

Company: WBD Accountants Limited Email: info@wbdaccountants.com Web Address: www.wbdaccountants.com Address: Marlbridge House, Enterprise Way, Edenbridge. Kent. TN8 6HF Telephone: 01732 865 965

WBD strive to always provide the most up to date and appropriate solutions to our clients and in addition to using a comprehensive range of technology in-house also supply and support cloud based solutions to clients, including forecasting, accounting solutions and electronic authorisation to make clients’ lives easier and streamline the accounting process. With a team including experienced chartered accountants, chartered certified accountants and a chartered tax advisor we are fully equipped to deal with all the routine challenges that businesses encounter and much more. Our clients describe us as “a valued business partner” and say that they are “absolutely delighted with the service”. They also say that they “would not hesitate to recommend WBD Accountants Ltd” and that “our relationship with them is one of the most important and vital of any that we have”. As well as helping small and medium sized businesses grow and succeed with business and tax advice and all aspects of accountancy, WBD also provide assistance with mergers and acquisitions, personal tax compliance and planning, capital gains tax compliance and planning, inheritance tax planning, budgeting and forecasting. We aim to take all the tax and accounting compliance worries away from our clients so that they can concentrate on building and running their businesses and enjoy more time to spend on whatever they want. At WBD Chartered Accountants we are constantly adapting and improving to meet our client’s needs with help and support. A recent example is the change of legislation regarding auto-enrolment for workplace pensions. As soon as this was announced we realised that this would affect many of our clients and we developed a range of solutions to comply with the legislation to take away the worry and effort of compliance for our clients. All our clients have access to our directors, Kevin Wood, Andy Branson and Paul Dickinson to ensure that they have a complete, friendly, professional service which our clients appreciate. As one client described it as “thoroughly good service with good personal touch – no problems.” We are proud to be successful in winning the 2015 Finance Awards, award for Best for Preparing Business Plans - UK as we work closely with our clients to meet their needs and expectations, and also with the banks and other lenders to ensure that our clients get the funding they require. Our core business is providing a professional, personal, high value solution to our clients’ day-to-day accounting and tax needs. We use our substantial experience not only to complete this work quickly and accurately, but we also use initiative to identify problems and opportunities, and to achieve an outcome that satisfies our clients’ requirements.

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Best For Car loans - UK

Zuto Zuto help to secure finance for many different types of vehicles including cars, motorbikes, vans, caravans and more. Zuto acts as a licenced credit broker and not a lender itself.

Company: Zuto Web: www.zuto.com Address: Winterton House, Winterton Way, Macclesfield, SK11 OLP Telephone: 01625 619 944

For many of us, owning a vehicle is a necessity, however many people struggle to find the money to pay the full amount for a car or bike etc. This is where vehicle finance can be used. This way of purchasing provides a way of buying a vehicle when you do not have the cash to pay upfront, making it a convenient way to pay. Zuto understands that finance plans should be based on your budget and credit commitments. We make sure that our clients access monthly repayments which are affordable and will be manageable over the agreed period of time. This is a way in which we stand out from our competitors as we make sure that we understand what our clients can afford and provide a payment plan based on this, unlike others who force unrealistic plans on people in order to gain more profit. Zuto is made up of a team of friendly experts, dedicated to putting you back in control of one of life’s biggest buying decisions. We help people in a variety of financial circumstances, working with a panel of 18 trusted lenders to offer access to more than 60 finance products. From finding a loan right through to free vehicle and valuation checks, our one on one support means you never have to repeat yourself when you call, stay fully informed at every stage and remain totally in charge of the decision making process. Instead of talking to your bank or spending hours on the dealer’s forecourt it seems more sensible and much more of a stress free way to let our car buying experts do all this leg work for you. Zuto will give you one to one support right from the very beginning, from finding finance, choosing the vehicle that’s right for you, to paying the dealer. Applying online is easy and we’ll get back to you with a decision as quickly as possible. Once you’ve completed the application form, a member of the Zuto team will call you back with the aim to get you on the road in no time. We feel very proud to have won this award and we believe that our success here can be put down to the fact that we are here to offer advice and head off any confusion with a clear, simple guide instead of confusing things as many of our competitors do. We also create a clear plan of how we are going to achieve our customer’s goals, which we feel has allowed us to gain our reputation in this field. Vehicle finance can be simplified into three different sections, once you have secured the vehicle finance you can go straight to the dealer with your finance agreed in principle. Similarly to any other loan, you will then make your agreed payments to the lender on a monthly basis. The final stage of this process is the most exciting, you may have to pay a balloon payment or pay an option to purchase, however the car will then be legally yours. The next 12 months represent more expansion and growth for Zuto. More and more people are turning to secure finance as it hosts a safe alternative to lending while enabling clients to purchase their dream vehicle of which they may be unable to afford if Zuto and other such companies were not available.

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AI Finance Awards 2015