An evening celebrating the best of London business

Allister Heath
LAST night was an occasion to remember: City A.M.’s third annual awards celebrating the best and brightest of London’s business, financial and investment communities. Over 500 guests from 116 different firms attended the celebration, held at the Grange Hotel in St Paul’s.

There was great food, music and company, as well as a rousing speech from Boris Johnson. I wish to extend my thanks to Lexus, our headline sponsor, and also to Brewin Dolphin, who sponsored the reception. Our winners, profiled in these pages, were chosen in unique fashion. Each was initially selected after feedback and responses from professionals working across the City. We then held a meeting of our expert panel of judges, which as you can see from their profiles include many of the most influential people in Britain’s business community. The winners were announced last night to a packed room, chaired superbly as ever by the BBC’s Katie Derham.

Like last year, we examined a broad range of sectors spanning the financial world in all of its forms, including banking, law, accounting, fund management and trading, as well as innovators and entrepreneurs, with the aim of singling out the highest achieving teams and individuals as well as the most promising new kids on the block. Selecting the best was far from easy but our winners are all remarkable in their own ways.

They are at the forefront of developing new and better business models that will help Britain return to prosperity – and in Lord Coe’s case, showing the world London is still the greatest city in the world. Britain needs to learn to love real, hard-earned, unsubsidised success again. We need a thriving capitalist sector to help create jobs and finance Britain’s massive deficit. We need successful firms and people who build and innovate and grow. Last night was a wonderful evening – and proof that despite the crisis, there is more to economic life than doom and gloom.