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INFINZ awards recognize excellence in NZ finance and capital

The 2019 INFINZ Awards were celebrated on Wednesday 22 May at a gala black-tie dinner at The Cordis Hotel in Auckland. More than 740 guests enjoyed an evening to celebrate excellence in the financial and capital markets eco-system in New Zealand.

The Awards are facilitated by the Institute of Finance Professionals in New Zealand Inc (INFINZ), a professional body with 1,700 individual members including treasury professionals, investment analysts, fund managers, bankers, lawyers and students in New Zealand.

“The INFINZ Awards are directed at raising standards in the industry and thereby enhancing the capacity for NZ businesses to raise debt and equity and grow the economy,” says Jim McElwain, Executive Director of INFINZ.

There were 14 awards delivered on the night, with many of the categories determined by nominations from the industry, with 36 experienced professionals acting as judges, contributing their time and energy to determine the awards in the areas in which they have special expertise.

In addition, some awards are determined through voting. Eighteen leading fund managers are polled to determine the broking-related awards, including Research Analyst of the Year. These institutions and the research analysts from five sharebroking firms are polled for the Market Leaders Best Investor Relations Award.

A Diversity & Inclusion award was conferred for the second time this year. This award seeks to recognise and acknowledge an inspirational role model from within the INFINZ membership who has pro-actively cultivated a focus on encouraging and nurturing diversity, aiming to achieve equal gender and diverse representation at all levels. The winner in 2019 is PwC Chair, Michele Embling.

In addition, two INFINZ Fellowships and one Distinguished Fellowship were awarded on the night. An INFINZ Fellowship not only recognises an individual’s career success but also the wider contribution they have made to the finance and capital markets industry. Sarah Vrede, the former head of the NZ Debt Management Office, and Philip King, until recently INFINZ Chair, were awarded INFINZ Fellowships. A Distinguished Fellowship was presented to Westpac NZ CEO David McLean. His leadership across the broader capital markets is seen in his championing of diversity, addressing climate change and in the overall development of the sector.

The passing of INFINZ’s inaugural Distinguished Fellow, Sir John Anderson, was noted by INFINZ Chair Louise Tong. Sir John was a towering figure in the establishment of NZ’s financial and capital markets and had a true passion for developing the future leadership of the industry.

“The focus of the INFINZ Awards is on those actions and individuals who have added most value to corporate New Zealand and hence the economy,” commented Jim McElwain.

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