Winners and photos

The Yorkshire Financial Awards 2022 ceremony saw 13 outstanding organisations and five professionals at the top of their games prevail across 19 categories.  


Collectively, they are the very best financial services firms, talent, teams and providers that Yorkshire has to offer. 


The awards ceremony at New Dock Hall in Leeds was also a fantastic night full of networking, socialising and celebrating, with attendees of the black-tie event treated to a fantastic host, a delicious three-course meal and live music.


Independent judging panel chair Jennifer Green, who is managing director of corporate communications at TheCityUK, said in the digital programme for the awards: “The Yorkshire Financial Awards has very quickly become the benchmark for outstanding financial services across the county. It doesn’t just celebrate the firms that excel, but also the teams and individuals in them who work tirelessly to serve their customers and clients.” 

“Against the backdrop of COVID and the significant challenges and uncertainty that has bought to businesses, communities and people across Yorkshire, the stories shared by the entrants to this year’s awards have been both inspirational and heart-warming. They not only demonstrated a real grit and determination to succeed through adversity, but also a commitment and passion to doing everything possible to serve and support customers through difficult times.” 


The Yorkshire Financial Awards will be back in 2023. Below, you can find out who won each and every category, and why.

Accelerator of the Year

TwinklHive enjoyed a successful 2021 that points to a promising future. This accelerator is operating an entrepreneur-first model that is proving popular to startups seeking not only investment but connections and expertise. Its financial backing of local Yorkshire-based businesses while bringing them new opportunities is also highly commendable.

Best Employer

The Best Employer award goes to Progeny, a business that is consistently growing and hiring locally while achieving impressive low staff turnover. A focus on development and wellbeing, including providing staff with access to nutritionists and menopause specialists, is just one of many reasons why Progeny stands out in a region rich with attractive employment options.

Best Insurer

The Insurance Emporium, this year’s best insurer, is the stand out performer in Yorkshire, securing high scores and positive reviews from customers in the markets it serves, thanks in no small part to its quick claim turnaround and high processing rate. All of this success is apparent in The Insurance Emporium’s strong growth and clear aims, not to mention its achievements since launch.

Broker of the Year

Risk Factor stands out for the initiative it shows as an insurance broker in several sensitive and complicated policy areas, where it designs specific products for the utmost benefit of its clients. Risk Factor also uses technology in excellent ways, particularly when matching clients with insurers.

Customer Service Award

This year’s Customer Service Award could only be given to Leeds-based NDML—for standing up for its clients in their legal challenge of insurers’ refusal to meet their business interruption claims resulting from the pandemic. The work of NDML helped to secure much-needed payouts as well as spread the word about the nightlife industry's plight. New and current clients are now well aware that, when it comes to customer service, NDML means business.

Customer Service Team of the Year

The customer service team at The Insurance Emporium is a bold department that is unafraid to measure, dissect and learn from feedback. The customer service team’s desire to consider customers’ points of view during the pandemic, and the quick way it went about meeting their needs, shows great promise for this highly rated service.

Director of the Year

Sarah Elson from Berry & Oak is an education champion and a clear choice for this award. Sarah is fully committed to upskilling the future financial services workforce, whether by visiting schools to shine a light on potential career opportunities or creating opportunities within Berry & Oak and closely mentoring staff.

Financial Adviser Team of the Year

This Berry & Oak team of financial advisers are impressive in so many ways, from their community engagement to their strong focus on diversity and inclusion. They are also big believers in client education through regular communication, in-person and virtual events, and even handy video guides explaining the basics of financial advice. For such a small team, they have a massive impact.

Financial Adviser of the Year

Andrew Elson from Berry & Oak is a sought-after financial adviser, highly regarded by clients and respected by peers. Andrew has enjoyed a commendable 18 months, achieving fantastic results for clients while supporting the wider community. A top financial adviser.
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FinTech Initiative of the Year

incuto went to the heart of poor credit to understand how and why large swathes of society are unable to access affordable loans. The winning initiative brought alternative providers of affordable credit to the same digital platform as high-street lenders, all with a view to delivering the best possible deals. Through this initiative, largely overlooked customers now have the opportunity to access products they could not before, while alternative lenders can serve more customers than ever before. A win-win.

Innovative Product of the Year

CPP Group’s innovative product, parametric lost luggage insurance, meets the definition perfectly—it’s a very good idea turned into a smart concept that meets a unique need. CPP Group also deployed interesting technology to roll out the solution, impressing further.

Investment Team of the Year

abrdn topped a closely fought category. The winning team in Leeds are leaders within the organisation and the wider Yorkshire region, demonstrating a highly ethical approach while maintaining customer satisfaction at all times. abrdn is an excellent example of the region’s ability to attract top talent and brands in financial services.

Lender of the Year

Ultimate Finance is breaking its own lending records at a time of economic uncertainty, including from a base in Leeds that has a good understanding of the region’s needs. The lender is capable of tailoring financing solutions to suit the individuals requirements of clients and is considered by many to be a long-term partner rather than just a lender.

Mortgage Broker of the Year

DNA Financial Solutions is a multi-disciplinary firm with a strong track record in utilising technology to secure good outcomes for its customers. DNA Financial Solutions’s remote offering and team of experts are highly rated by both its customers and the lenders with which it partners. Mortgage brokerage at its best.

Mortgage Provider of the Year

Beverley Building Society typifies the local focus championed by the Yorkshire Financial Awards. It is a personal-touch lender, focusing on the needs of its community’s most underserved members. Beverley Building Society has been vital over the past 18 months, resulting in significant customer retention. An example that must be followed.

Outstanding Achievement Award

This year’s Outstanding Achievement Award goes to Kathryn Knowles from Cura Financial Services, who is becoming a go-to spokesperson and leading expert on championing diversity and for vulnerable customers. Kathryn’s genuine care for vulnerable customers is a particular highlight and worthy cause, made all the more impressive by operationalising this experience and expertise within Cura Financial Services.

Rising Star Award

Elizabeth Pindar from abrdn is nothing short of exemplary. Elizabeth started at abrdn during the global pandemic and had to train remotely. Elizabeth now manages clients as a wealth manager, a significant proportion of which is new business. Elizabeth even speaks to students to educate them about investing. A truly fantastic professional.
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Trainee of the Year

Jasmine Saunders from Freeze Debt is an inspiring apprentice who is setting the highest of examples. Whether doing an apprenticeship from home during the pandemic or managing all of the social media platforms as part of the office-based marketing team, Jasmine takes the lead in everything. Jasmine even supports charities with marketing expertise and skills. An absolute credit to Freeze Debt.
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Wealth Manager of the Year

JM Finn stood out in a highly competitive category in which there was very little between the finalists. JM Finn edged the category for delivering a fantastic service that accounts for individual circumstances while making significant differences to clients’ quality of life and helping them meet their wealth challenges.
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