19 Apr 2018

The achievements of leading businesses in Yorkshire and the North East are being celebrated this evening at the British Private Equity & Venture Capital Association (BVCA)’s Management Team Awards 2018.

Now in their 10th year and produced in association with Grant Thornton UK LLP, the Management Team Awards recognise and reward exceptional businesses across the country that are backed by private equity and venture capital funds and demonstrate ground-breaking innovation, social responsibility and growth.

The award winners will be announced tonight in Leeds as part of the BVCA’s National Dinner Series, premier annual gatherings that bring together regional private equity and venture capital professionals. They then go on to compete against other regions before the national winners are announced at this year’s Annual Gala Dinner in London on 29 November.

The full list of winners for the BVCA Yorkshire and North East Management Team Awards 2018:

Backed by
AVID Technology NVM Venture-backed Management Team
Giacom Livingbridge Growth Management Team
Great Rail Journeys ECI Large Company Management Team
ZyroFisher Palatine Private Equity and LDC Business Transformation Management Team
and Mid-Market Management Team

Peter Armitage, Chair of the Yorkshire & North East judging panel and Founding Partner of Key Capital Partners LLP, said: “2017 was an exceptional year for UK investment. The BVCA Management Team Awards showcase the teams leading some the country’s most successful companies and recognise the excellence that private equity and venture capital encourages. Congratulations to our winners this evening, and good luck in the national final.”

Yorkshire & North East winners

AVID Technology – Venture-backed Management Team

Backed by NVM

A designer and manufacturer of clean and efficient hybrid and electric technologies, AVID’s vision is of a greener future with cleaner air and sustainable transport. Established in 2004 as Comesys Europe, Avid evolved to become AVID Group in 2009. In 2016 the Northumberland firm closed a £3.4 million funding round, receiving £2 million from NVM.

Judges' comments: “A visionary CEO, a team with a great engineering know-how and a great customer base, especially given that AVID is an early-stage business, made the team well-deserved winners.”

Giacom – Large Company Management Team

Backed by Livingbridge

Based in Hessle, Giacom launched in 1999 and is Europe’s largest reseller-only channel for cloud services. Originally an internet service provider, the company introduced an email security platform in 2006 before building a hosted exchange service in 2010. It now boasts customers such as Microsoft, Acronis and Bitdefender.

Judges' comments: “The rapid growth of Giacom’s turnover and EBITDA stood out, along with Giacom’s cultural transformation and the development of the management team in the past few years.”

Great Rail Journeys – Large Company Management Team

Backed by ECI

In 1973 a journey across Europe, through northern Africa and into Egypt by train to see the treasures of Tutankhamun kicked off Great Rail Journeys’ business adventure. Quickly establishing itself as an innovative leader at a time when world travel was still in its infancy, the firm expanded its programme until establishing itself as Great Rail Journeys in 1996. Today it is the UK's leading provider of escorted holidays by rail with more than 50,000 customers a year and employs 156 staff at its York office as well as 300 global tour managers.

Judges' comments: “To succeed despite the geopolitical and economic challenges Great Rail Journeys has seen in the past few years by being so adaptive is truly admirable.”

ZyroFisher – Business Transformation Management Team and Mid-Market Management Team

Backed by Palatine Private Equity and LDC

Darlington-based ZyroFisher is the leading distributor of cycling parts, accessories and clothing to the UK and Ireland. Representing over 50 world-class brands in 1997 they launched premier cycling apparel brand, Altura. In 2016 Zyro received a significant investment from LDC and bought Fisher Outdoor Leisure with a strategy to merge while keeping both brands separate.

Judges' comments: “Pace and rigour, lots of change in a short time frame, managing different cultures and competing brands in two integrated businesses, impressive cost saving synergies and organic growth while making an acquisition...all these points added up to the impressive story that made the judges decide to award Zyro Fisher both the Business Transformation Management Team Award and the Mid-Market Management Team Award.”

For further information and photographs, please contact

Tom Allchorne, Director, Communications, BVCA
+44 (0)20 7492 0407

Notes to editor

  1. The BVCA Management Team Awards, produced in association with Grant Thornton UK LLP, are the only awards to celebrate the achievements of private equity and venture capital-backed management teams. There are eight regions in total, each with their own judging panel, and all winners are automatically forwarded to the national final, the results of which will be presented at the BVCA Annual Gala Dinner on 29 November in London. Please click here for more information.

  2. The Yorkshire & North East judging panel consists of: Peter Armitage (Chair), Key Capital Partners; Ben Snow, LDC; Nicola McQuaid, NorthEdge; James Titmuss, Livingbridge; Richard Goldsack, Grant Thornton; Andrew Ross, Endless; Craig Hopwood, Maven; Paul Betts, Solingen; Andrew Cope, Zenith, then FMG; Barry Jackson, BGF; Aaron Lawson-Clark, NVM; Andy Lees, Palatine.

  3. The British Private Equity & Venture Capital Association (BVCA) is the industry body for the UK private equity and venture capital industry. The BVCA has over 700 member firms, representing the vast majority of UK-based private equity and venture capital firms and their advisers.

  4. Grant Thornton is one of the world’s leading organisations of independent assurance, tax and advisory firms. These firms help dynamic organisations unlock their potential for growth by providing meaningful, forward-thinking advice. Proactive teams, led by approachable partners in these firms, use insights, experience and instinct to understand complex issues for privately owned, publicly listed and public sector clients and help them to find solutions. More than 35,000 Grant Thornton people, across over 100 countries, are focused on making a difference to clients, colleagues and the communities in which we live and work. The UK Grant Thornton member firm provides services to over 40,000 privately held businesses, public interest entities and individuals. It is led by more than 185 partners and employs more than 4,200 of the profession's brightest minds. Find out more at

Further information


 +44 (0)20 7492 0400