27 Apr 2016
April 27, 2016, 11:29 am

The best of the best are to be crowned across a number of different award categories at a nationally recognised event.

The Adviser’s Australian Broking Awards will return for the sixth consecutive year, awarding accolades to the nation’s leading brokers, brokerages and aggregation groups.

Individual titles up for grabs are Asset Finance Broker of the Year, Commercial Finance Broker of the Year, Customer Service of the Year (Individual), Finance Broker of the Year, Newcomer of the Year, Regional Broker of the Year and Residential Broker of the Year.

Natloans finance and leasing director Mary Nebotakis took out last year’s Asset Finance Broker of the Year award after emphasising the value of this lending niche.

“[Asset finance] is everything to us. We’ve been in asset finance for 15 years and it’s our core,” Ms Nebotakis said upon winning the award.

In this category, Ms Nebotakis was assessed on her ability to best service the asset finance needs of her clients. The award took into account but was not limited to business and consumer car finance, finance for business as well as equipment and leasing finance.

HoldenCAPITAL director Daniel Holden was also among the individual winners at 2015’s event, scooping up the Commercial Finance Broker of the Year title.

“I think commercial has maybe a few more complexities and an extra dimension but the rewards can be more,” he said.

“We had probably five years of quite slow times and now it’s become really exciting and [there has been] a lot of activity.”

In this award category, Mr Holden was assessed on his loan volumes and number of deals, as well as year-on-year growth in funding for commercial property, business loans, commercial bills, cash flow, inventory and debtor funding as well as construction and development finance.

A total of 17 group awards will be given away at this year’s event including Aggregator of the Year, Broker Marketing Platform of the Year, Consumer Marketing of the Year, Boutique Aggregator of the Year, Customer Service of the Year (Office), Diversification Program of the Year, Innovator of the Year, Major Brokerage of the Year – Franchise and Major Brokerage of the Year – Non-Franchise.

Other titles bestowed will be New Office of the Year, Office of the Year – Franchise, Office of the Year – Non-Franchise (five or less brokers), Office of the Year – Non-Franchise (more than five brokers), Regional Office of the Year, Social and Community Service Program of the Year, Technology Platform of the Year and Training and Education Program of the Year.

Last year saw 1st Street Home Loans take out the Social Community Service Program of the Year for its Charity of the Month initiative.

“We get together as a group and decide which charities have meaning to us or our customers and make a conscious effort to support that charity, whether it be financially, a five-kilometre run or a luncheon where we donate money to breast cancer and dress up in pink,” 1st Street Home Loans director Jeremy Fisher said.

“There’s obviously indirect exposure that we get but ultimately it’s really about wanting to give back.

“We’ve been supported over the years in many different ways and I think it’s just nice to give back to those that are also in need.”

1st Street Home Loans was awarded this title based on assessment criteria that recognised the brokerage’s traction via an ethical/social responsibility program and after highlighting how that program has improved the position of the people or cause it focuses on.

One of Australia’s leading aggregators, AFG, was awarded Technology Platform of the Year based on criteria that assessed the group’s ability to provide brokers access to up-to-date lender interest rates, current product and policy information, plus the backing of a solid CRM system.

“Technology is going to be the way we interact,” AFG general manager of sales and operations Mark Hewitt said.

“You look at people in [the younger] generation – their whole method of communicating is via technology, so we want to make sure that our brokers are involved in that path and that journey and we’re spending all our efforts to bring them along.”

To find out more about The Adviser’s Australian Broking Awards or to lodge a submission, click here.

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