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Allan Hickford named 2016 CFO of the Year

Ngai Tahu Holdings’ Allan Hickford named 2016 CFO of the Year

Ngai Tahu Chief Financial Officer, Allan Hickford was named CFO of the Year at the 2016 CFO Awards evening in Auckland last night at the SkyCity Convention Centre. More than 320 guests gathered to celebrate excellence in financial leadership at the annual awards.

Allan was recognised for his key role in enabling Ngai Tahu to become the first iwi to surpass $1 billion in assets, by focusing on transparency and building trust, understanding and confidence in both the commercial arm of Ngai Tahu and among iwi shareholders.

Judges commented that Allan’s leadership skills, integrity and ability to balance relationships with a wide range of stakeholders were the important attributes of a truly outstanding CFO. They were also blown away by the significant contribution Allan has made across such a large and diverse organisation. Along with this, his passion for Ngai Tahu has been critical in developing the iwi’s approach to building the organisation’s diversified portfolio of investments.

Celebrating its sixth year, the awards aim to bring together global and domestic business leaders and senior New Zealand finance professionals such as Allan, to share experiences and expertise with New Zealand’s finance community.

Fairfax National Events Manager, Brett McMeekin says it’s outstanding to see all the great work that goes on in the background of New Zealand businesses.

“CFOs aren’t often the first to be recognised for their impact on a business, so it’s great to be able to highlight their work and congratulate them on their success and impact they make to New Zealand business,” says McMeekin.

The 2016 CFO Award winners:

CFO of the Year: Allan Hickford, Ngai Tahu
Outstanding Contribution to Finance and Business: Roger France, Fellow of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand
Finance Team of the Year: Fonterra Brands NZ
Young Financial Manager of the Year: Anna Davis, Spark
Financial Innovation Project of the Year: Department of Internal Affairs & Inland Revenue Department
SME Financial Leader of the Year: Michael Bevin, Computer Concepts Limited

Fellow of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, Roger France received the Outstanding Contribution to Finance and Business award. He was recognised for his impact on many facets of business, but also on a wide range of services to New Zealand in governance roles. Some of Roger’s key roles included appointment to the Board of Air New Zealand, Chancellor of Auckland University and Board of Team New Zealand.

Fonterra Brands NZ walked away with the Finance Team of the Year award. They were commended for the ability to manage the complexities of a project to shift the business focus from short term to medium term. The judges commented that the incredible execution of this project reflected the resilience, hard work and determination of the project team. Fonterra Brands NZ look after Anchor, De Winkel, fresh’n fruity, Kapiti, Mainland, Perfect Italiano, Primo, Symbio, Tip Top, Mammoth Supply Co, Piako and Ferndale.

Young Financial Manager of the Year, Spark’s Anna Davis was congratulated for her diverse skills, leadership qualities and her ability to run strategic and complex projects such as divestments and transformation. The judges noted the seniority of positions held by Anna for her age within large organisations such as Landcorp and Spark as an incredible achievement.

The Financial Innovation Project of the Year went to the Department of Internal Affairs & Inland Revenue Department for overcoming the significant challenges and cultural differences to leverage one system across two large government departments. This resulted in a shared financial platform, which has incredible financial benefit to the New Zealand tax payer.

Michael Bevin, CFO of Computer Concepts Limited takes the SME Financial Leader of the Year Award. Michael impressed the judges for his handling of the significant acquisition by Spark and the intensive due diligence that was required, while still managing to cover all of his day-to-day responsibilities.

The judges congratulated the quality and impact of entrants and finalists in the 2016 Awards.

The NZ CFO Summit and Awards is managed by Fairfax Media and Conferenz. This year’s Summit included an inspiring line-up of international keynote speakers including Richard Suhr, Partner and APAC Digital Lead at Ernst and Young and Sara Clemens, Chief Strategy Officer at Pandora, as well as New Zealand finance and business experts.


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