Angel Clarke bows out of BBAA

IT was an emotional night for the angel who lost his wings after eight years of service at the helm of the British Business Angels Association.

Anthony Clarke, who earlier this month ended his eight-year chairmanship of the business, was one of almost 200 people gathered at The UK Business Angels Association Gala Awards Dinner that took place this week at the Swan Dining Room at Shakespeare’s Globe.

The event sought to commemorate the successes of investors and early stage entrepreneurs and was supported by the City of London Corporation. The evening allowed for extensive networking, guest speakers and compelling magic tricks.

Tim Luke, David Cameron’s No 10 senior policy adviser for business and enterprise, ignited the evening with a speech praising the significance of angel investing for the government’s strategy for technology, innovation and growth.

Serial entrepreneur, founder of Enterprise Nation and co-founder of StartUp Britain, Emma Jones, provided an after dinner speech, bolstering the importance of angels supporting the country’s entrepreneurial talent.

Six awards were presented that reflected the diversity of the organisation and the extent of their achievements.

The award for Angel Investor of the Year went to Peter Saunders, who may not look celestial but truly is an angel to the organisation. Saunders said he was privileged and overjoyed to have received the award.

Before the dazzling event came to a close, however, a special award was given to Clarke, who passes over to Sir Nigel Rudd in the coming weeks.

Rudd is perhaps not the angel he seems to be, having previously been deputy chairman of Barclays, the scandal-ridden bank.