20 November 2002 The outstanding achievements of technology executives and companies from across the UK IT sector were recognised last night at the industry’s leading awards ceremony, the Nabarro Nathanson Technology Industry Awards 2002, attended by more than 400 senior level technology executives.
The gala awards ceremony, staged by law firm Nabarro Nathanson in partnership with Infoconomist magazine, was held at the Royal Berkshire Conference Centre in Reading, where finalists picked up accolades for product innovation, IT project execution and excellence in corporate management.
All 320 entries for the awards were subjected to a rigorous selection process, led by Infoconomy’s highly respected team of journalists. The final judging was carried out by an independent panel made up of some of the UK’s most respected and successful figures: Duncan Mitchell, vice president and managing director, UK and Ireland, Cisco Systems; Sir Robin Saxby, executive chairman, ARM Holdings; Jo Taylor, head of technology, 3i; Charles Andrews, UK technology director, Sun Microsystems; John Higgins, chief executive, Intellect; Mike Lynch, founder and group CEO, Autonomy; Tony Bailes, senior partner, Nabarro Nathanson; and Andrew Lawrence, joint managing director of Infoconomy, publisher of Infoconomist magazine.
“The awards, unlike so many in the IT industry, are genuinely independent and the winners here tonight represent the absolute elite in their field,” said Andrew Lawrence of Infoconomy.
In the category of Best M&A Growth Strategy, the award went to IT outsourcing and consultancy services company PinkRoccade for its March 2001 purchase of ECSoft’s client services division and the acquisition of ComputerAid Services in December 2001. The deals cost PinkRoccade under £17 million, but have tripled the size of its UK business and have enabled it to offer its customers a wider portfolio of managed services. Runners up in the category were document printing and archiving company edotech and network management software company Micromuse.
The award for Most Effective Alliance went to integration tools company Iona for its partnership with systems giant Hewlett-Packard. The runners up in this category were IT distributor Ideal Hardware, for its partnership with Microsoft, and network management system developer Micromuse, for its alliance with networking equipment vendor Cisco.
O2, the consumer arm of MmO2 (formerly BT Cellnet), won the award for Best Sales and Marketing Campaign for its May 2002 launch campaign, which included interactive sponsorship deals with Arsenal Football Club and Channel Four ‘reality TV’ show Big Brother. Runners up in this category were Canon Europe for its ‘You Can’ campaign – the cornerstone of which was a collage the size of two Olympic swimming pools, wrapped around the IMAX cinema at Waterloo in central London in April 2002 – and Essential Elements Communications, for its ‘Break the Broadband Bottleneck’ PR and government lobbying campaign on behalf of Internet and broadband service provider Ebone.
IT services company Damovo picked up the award for Most Effective Use of Technology for its work with its client, the Metropolitan Police. Damovo re-configured the call centre system at New Scotland Yard, which handles around 25% of all UK 999 emergency calls, so that so-called ‘silent calls’ (calls made accidentally from mobile phones) are dealt with by an auto attendant, freeing up call centre operatives’ time to deal with genuine emergency calls. Runners up prizes went to EDW Technology for its work with electricity retailer Electricity Direct and iOra for a project with haulage company Alaska Tanker.
In the category of Most Innovative Use of Technology, the award went to the Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB), which has customised content management software from Stellent to underpin its employee intranet so that it is extremely accessible to people with sight problems. RNIB plans to extend this technology to its public web site. Runners up awards went to insurance market Lloyds of London, which has implemented Europe’s largest IP telephony environment, and network management software company Micromuse, which provided supermarket chain Tesco with a system that monitors its in-store refrigeration units.
The award for Most Innovative Product went to data analysis tools vendor Aruna for Aruna Companion, which enables users to execute complex queries on very large data sets. Real-time business intelligence specialist Apama and plastic microprocessor pioneer Plastic Logic were the runners-up in this category.
The Hot Prospect award went to digital rights management software company SealedMedia. The company offers an enterprise content ‘sealing’ product that protects confidential or valuable content against piracy and intellectual property theft. Runners up in this category were mobile software specialist elata and image analysis tools company Image Metrics.
The award for Best Managed Company was won by business communication software company StreamServe. In the last 18 months, the company’s management team – led by HP and Ariba veteran Nick Earle – have re-positioned the company and its product, increased average deal sizes more than five-fold and restored the company to profitability. It is now the largest privately held software company in Europe. Runners-up prizes were awarded to the Europe, Middle East and Africa operations of US business intelligence supplier Crystal Decisions and systems integration company Customer Systems.
Tony Bailes, senior partner at Nabarro Nathanson, said: “With more than 320 companies entering these prestigious awards, the competition was very fierce. The judging was extremely difficult, but in the end there could only be one winner in each of the categories. These winners represent the very best in the UK technology sector.”