Congratulations to the #YFAwards 2024 winners!

Last night saw some of the finest financial talent that Yorkshire has to offer gracing the stage of New Dock Hall in Leeds for the #YFAwards 2024. The evening was a resounding success, featuring comedy from the incredible Hal Cruttenden, and plenty of celebratory bubbles.

We had the honour of crowning eighteen worthy winners across categories like Trainee of the Year, all the way to Employer of the Year. Our independent panel of judges were endlessly impressed with the quality of entries that came through for 2024 and would like to extend their gratitude to everyone who contributes to the thriving financial sector in Yorkshire.

Hannah Daniel, chair of the judging panel, stated; “It has been an honour to chair the judging panel for this year’s Yorkshire Financial Awards. I want to offer my congratulations to all the finalists and, of course, to the winners on your accomplishments. The level of ambition and dedication to providing good outcomes for clients was evident in your entries.

“You really are a credit to the Yorkshire Financial Services industry, which now represents 9% of the Yorkshire economy and growing. It is fantastic to see the high quality of practitioners in the region and I am very proud to be part of it.”

 

Your 2024 winners

Broker of the Year

Winner: Coversure Insurance

The winner of Broker of the Year has an extensive network of insurer partners to cater to businesses of all sizes and types, ensuring comprehensive coverage.   

Their innovative products and commitment to customer service, make them stand out. Their use of technology, such as a client portal and streamlined quoting systems, also sets them apart in the industry.  

 

Customer Service Team of the Year

Winner: Penlife Associates

The winner of the Customer Service Team of the Year has an unwavering commitment to personalised customer care. This is demonstrated through personalised touchpoints, milestone celebrations, and even support during tough times like bereavement and the pandemic.  

The team’s dedication to improvement, extensive experience, and innovative use of technology ensure that clients receive unparalleled service, setting them apart from the competition.  

 

Director of the Year

Winner: Joanne Vaughan – Robertson Baxter

The winner of Director of the Year has taken home the win because of their exceptional leadership qualities, demonstrated by their commitment to fostering diversity, nurturing talent, and promoting a supportive company culture.   

They exemplify dedication to both client satisfaction and staff development, evidenced by initiatives such as equal bonus distribution, comprehensive training opportunities, and engaging community outreach efforts. 

Their innovative approach to client engagement, emphasis on clear communication, and commitment to philanthropy reflect a multifaceted leadership style that positively impacts both the organisation and the broader community. 

  

 

Employer of the Year

Winner: Progeny

The winner of Employer of the Year has secured their win by showing exemplary commitment to employee development, well-being, community outreach, and regional job creation.  

Their initiatives, such as funding exams, providing study leave, and offering flexible benefits, demonstrate a strong dedication to nurturing talent and supporting staff growth.  

The winner’s active involvement in local communities, recruitment strategies, and recognition from third-party organisations highlight their outstanding contributions to both their employees and the broader financial services sector. 

 

Financial Adviser Team of the Year

Winner: Robertson Baxter

Sponsored by: Inzuzo

The winner of Financial Adviser Team of the Year showcased a comprehensive approach to financial product provision, highlighted by its diverse range of offerings and strong relationships with top-tier providers.  

The team’s commitment to excellence in customer service is evident through personalised interactions, proactive communication, and a culture of continuous improvement, resulting in high client satisfaction. 

Their dedication to leveraging technology and fostering talent, combined with a sustainable approach to operations, sets them apart in the financial services sector.  

 

Fintech Initiative of the Year

Winner: Lenvi

The winner of Fintech Initiative of the Year presented an innovative and comprehensive entry which addresses the evolving needs of lenders and borrowers alike.  

The platform offers a seamless digital journey for borrowers, while its robust compliance features and AI-driven solutions ensure responsible lending practices.  

The initiative’s recognition from prominent clients underscores its position as a market leader in lending technology solutions. 

 

Independent Financial Adviser of the Year

Winner: Andrew Elson – Berry & Oak

Sponsored by: Rathbones

The winner of Independent Financial Adviser of the Year stands out due to their comprehensive approach, combining educational resources with personalised financial planning strategies.  

This individual’s integrity shines through their extensive product knowledge and dedication to recommending appropriate solutions. They earn trust through transparent, jargon-free communication and consistently surpassing client expectations with exemplary customer service. 

 

Insurer of the Year

Winner: The Insurance Emporium

The winner of Insurer of the Year demonstrates thorough and inventive approach to insurance provision. With an excellent understanding of customer behaviours and preferences, alongside a diverse and personalised product lineup, the winner ensures exceptional customer service by consistently investing in technology, employee training, and product enhancement. 

Through strategic investments and streamlined claims processes, the winner showcases a forward-looking strategy that surpasses its competitors.  

 

Investment Team of the Year

Winner: LGT Wealth Management

The winner of Investment Team of the Year stands out due to its unparalleled global research capabilities, diverse product range, and commitment to excellence in customer service, all underpinned by a digital transformation strategy and a strong focus on sustainability.  

Combining institutional-level research with a private client lens, alongside a gender-diverse team, the winner offers innovative investment solutions that outperform peers. 

 

Lender of the Year

Winner: Leeds Credit Union – Incredible Content Ltd.

The winner of the Lender of the Year showed impressive volume and diversity, exemplified by their significant increase in lending and large number of new members.  

Their innovative initiatives, such as their mobile app, partnerships with community organisations, and adoption of technology demonstrate their market-leading approach, ensuring accessibility, convenience, and financial empowerment for their members. 

 

Mortgage Broker of the Year

Winner: DNA Financial Solutions

The winner of Mortgage Broker of the Year has a comprehensive and innovative approach to mortgage provision. With a diverse strategy spanning various routes to market, coupled with a personalised client journey and a commitment to continuous improvement, the winner sets itself apart as a market leader.  

Through strategic partnerships, advanced CRM systems, and pioneering lead generation platforms, the winner elevates its offering above and beyond the competition, demonstrating a clear dedication to excellence and innovation. 

 

Mortgage Provider of the Year

Winner: Beverley Building Society

The winner of Mortgage Provider of the Year secured the top spot due to the winner’s comprehensive and innovative approach to market expansion and product development.  

By strategically appointing new business development managers, broadening intermediary networks, and leveraging social media sponsorships, the provider has significantly enhanced its market presence and brand recognition.  

Their commitment to innovation is evident through the introduction of products catering to underserved segments and their proactive investment in technology, positioning them as a leader in the mortgage industry. 

 

Outstanding Achievement Award

Winner: Leeds Credit Union – Incredible Content Ltd.

Sponsored by: Rathbones

The winner of the Outstanding Achievement Award stands out due to their exceptional commitment to providing impartial and non-judgmental support to financially vulnerable people.  

Through their innovative services, including bill paying accounts, affordable loans, and outreach programs, they have significantly improved the financial situation of their clients.  

 

Outstanding Customer Service Award

Winner: Beverley Building Society

The winner of the Outstanding Customer Service Award took the win due to its exemplary demonstration of exceptional customer service, showcased through the personalised and proactive approach taken to meet their clients’ unique needs. 

By seamlessly coordinating efforts across teams and maintaining clear communication, the winner ensures a smooth and supportive experience for their clients, earning them heartfelt praise and 5-star ratings.  

This outstanding level of service not only reflects a commitment to understanding individual customer circumstances but also underscores the organisation’s dedication to continuous learning and improvement. 

 

Restricted Financial Adviser of the Year

Winner: David Hogan – Evelyn Partners

Sponsored by: Timeline

The winner of Restricted Financial Adviser of the Year clinched the win by demonstrating a holistic approach to client empowerment and education and prioritising collaborative planning tailored to individual needs.  

Through meticulous cash flow modelling and goal setting, they empower clients to visualise their financial futures and make informed decisions, fostering trust and long-term relationships.  

Their extensive expertise, qualifications, and commitment to ongoing professional development ensure top-notch service. 

 

Rising Star of the Year

Winner:  Tom Prestwood – Evelyn Partners

The winner of Rising Star of the Year has managed substantial assets and achieved impressive business results, positioning them as a top performer in the north.  

Their commitment to professional development, mentorship of junior colleagues, and proactive involvement in client education and charity initiatives exemplify their status as a rising star within both the organisation and the wider sector. 

The winner’s dedication to excellence is evident through their continuous pursuit of knowledge, including plans to expand into ethical and sustainable investments, further enhancing their value to clients and their company. 

 

Trainee of the Year

Winner: Kenneth Hopewell – Kingswood Group

The winner of Trainee of the Year has shown consistent demonstration of exceptional work standards. This has been exemplified by their strategic proposals and advisory cases, as well as their collaboration with specialists within the firm, which has alleviated workload pressures on senior advisers.  

The winner’s contributions to client relationships and business development, including their involvement in client transitions, pursuit of new business sectors, and strategic partnerships, highlight their role in driving their company’s growth in the wider sector.  

 

Wealth Manager of the Year

Winner: JM Finn

The winner of Wealth Manager of the Year has a comprehensive and inclusive approach, catering to clients of all backgrounds and financial standings with a range of innovative services.  

With a long-standing history, a focus on client satisfaction, and a commitment to leveraging technology for improved customer experience, the winner consistently exceeds expectations and sets industry standards.  

 

Congratulations to all of the finalists and winners of the Yorkshire Financial Awards 2024! We can’t wait to welcome you all back next year.

Emma Cockings
Emma is the content editor for Yorkshire Legal News. Emma is an experienced writer with a background in client-centric personal injury law for a major firm. She has attended and reported on numerous high-profile legal events in Yorkshire.