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FDs’ Excellence Awards: FTSE 100 shortlist

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In 2012, the FTSE 100 rose by 5.8 per cent. The average share price rise for our shortlisted FDs’ companies, on the other hand, was 37.7 per cent. Here are the finalists for the FDs’ Excellence Awards “FTSE 100 FD of the Year”:

Tony Chanmugam, BT

Tony established a strong reputation for cost transformation in two senior positions at BT Retail, as CFO and as MD of BT Enterprises. Prior to that, he was CFO and then jointly CFO and COO for BT Global Solutions – where, in six years, the business grew from £500m to £3bn revenue. “BT was at one time a complete mess and Tony has been a key part of the management team which has wrestled control back,” one Academy member said. BT chief executive Ian Livingston told us: “Tony is the complete modern FD. He is a leader, a COO, a risk manager and someone who enables his colleagues to succeed. He has been critical in BT’s renaissance.”

Sean Christie, Croda International

Sean previously held senior finance positions in Northern Foods and was Group FD from 1996 to 2004. This is his third appearance on the FDs’ Excellence Awards shortlist after successive nominations in the FTSE 250 category. CEO Steve Foots said: “[He has an] ability to be accepted in Croda – a no nonsense entrepreneurial culture where we promote from within most of the time – and gain the universal respect of employees around the world.”

Ian Griffiths, ITV

Ian Griffiths joined EMAP in 1994 and was Group FD until 2008, leading many structural and systems projects, before joining ITV. One Academy member said: “He’s a true commercial business partner to the chief executive. He’s helped increase cash flow and top line growth despite difficult market conditions.” Adam Crozier, CEO, added: “Ian is a high-class group FD as well as being operationally astute and focused. He’s been a key figure in helping to transform ITV operationally as well as financially.”

David Robbie, Rexam

David Robbie joined the board of Rexam, the global packaging giant, as FD in 2005. He was previously CFO at Royal P&O Nedlloyd, CMG and Invensys. David is also a trustee of Aldeburgh Music. Graham Chipchase, chief executive, explained: “When we started working together, I was struck by his honest and straightforward approach, and the combination of a sharp intellect with integrity and loyalty.”

William Seeger, GKN

William joined GKN in 2003 as senior vice-president and CFO of GKN Areospace. In 2007, he became president and CEO at Propulsion Systems and Special Projects – operational roles with real heft. His achievements as group FD led one Academy member to say: “He’s a real success story in a complex global business where his coordination and financial skills have clearly added value.” CEO Nigel Stein told us: “William is an excellent team player. At the heart of his success as FD is his absolute integrity and authenticity coupled with a wry humour and no little determination.”

Will Waggott, TUI Travel

Will joined the board of TUI Travel in 2007 as commercial director before becoming CFO. He spent the early part of his career with Coopers & Lybrand and Courtaulds Textiles, then entered the travel industry with Airtours before joining Thomson Travel in 2001. It’s a tough sector, as one Academy member pointed out: “Managing the complexity of TUI, given its evolution and the cynicism that surrounds the travel industry with its regular equity and financing travails, is no small feat.” Peter Long, his chief executive, added: “Will combines excellent financial, operational and strategic understanding with unstinting dedication and enthusiasm, making him a highly effective CFO and a well respected member of the team.”

FDs’ Excellence Awards 2013: to celebrate these and other leading finance directors, why not join us at the 2013 FDs’ Excellence Awards, in association with ICAEW, on May 9, 2013? We’ll be recognising top FTSE finance directors as well as service providers to the finance community. The evening is hosted by ICAEW CEO Michael Izza and CBI deputy director-general Neil Bentley, and compered by the incomparable accountant-turned-comedian Fred Macaulay. 

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