The EISA Awards which recognise excellence in various categories among EIS and SEIS practitioners over the 2019/2020 tax year will take place on Thursday 15th October 2020.  This year we have freshened up both our awards categories and our judging criteria to encourage a greater diversity of entrants and winners. We are particularly proud to be introducing a Diversity Champion award to celebrate a firm or individual who is leading positive action in this area.

Further to the ongoing situation regarding corona virus (COVID 19), we have been informed by Parliament that it is continuing to suspend visitor access to the House of Lords. As part of that, banqueting bookings including our Chairman’s Reception and EISA Awards, are unfortunately currently being cancelled up to 31st October 2020. Given the new restrictions also being put in place from 14th September limiting numbers from different households who can meet up, we are also unable to source an alternative venue.

As a result we are immensely sad to inform you that we are not be able to hold the 2020 Chairman’s Reception and Awards as a physical event.

We do however, very much still wish the event to go ahead as the EISA Board believes it incredibly important to recognise the important work the industry undertakes, this year more than ever. Therefore, this year’s event will move to an online format.

Full details and agenda will follow shortly but no changes are being made to the date which will remain as Thursday 15th October 2020. The event will start at 6pm with an introduction from our erstwhile Chairman, Lord Howard Flight and a update from John Glen MP, Economic Secretary to the Treasury before moving into the EISA Awards 2020. We anticipate the event lasting for approx 1 hr. Please add the date to your diary!

We always take pride that our events are viewed as opportunities to meet other members, network and generally enjoy like-minded people’s company in a light hearted atmosphere. We are all too aware an online event cannot come close to replicating this and will in no way match the vibrancy and downright fun that our normal Chairman’s Reception has become renowned for.  But please do use the online event as an increasingly rare opportunity to come together as an industry and celebrate all that is good about it.

EISA Members will be sent details by email on how to register nearer the time.

Many thanks to our sponsors for bearing with us and being so supportive when no one could have blamed them for jumping ship.

List of FINALISTS available here

Sponsors of EISA AWARDS 2020

Spirit of EIS – sponsored by 
Best EIS Investment Manager – sponsored by 
Best EIS/SEIS Legal/Regulatory – sponsored by 

Best EIS/SEIS Tax Adviser – to be sponsored

Best Financial Planner – sponsored by 
Best Newcomer – sponsored by 
Best EIS/SEIS Investment Exit –  sponsored

Best SEIS Investment Manager – sponsored by 

Diversity Champion – sponsored by 

Best EIS Journalist – sponsored by

Entry for the Awards closed on Friday 10th July 5pm. 

We still also have a couple of sponsorship opportunities available. If you’re interested, please get in contact – Mark Brownridge

Please see last year’s awards event below

The 14th EIS Association Annual Awards took place on 7th February 2019 at the House of Lords. The Awards denote excellence in a number of EIS and SEIS fields. The Awards were presented to firms, advisers, companies, individuals and journalists that achieved outstanding performance in the context of the EIS & SEIS schemes during 2018. This year we have taken feedback and freshened up both our awards categories and our awards scoring systems in order to ensure the broadest possible cross spectrum of entrants. By doing so, we hope to celebrate the best of the best from all areas of our industry.

View from the judges

The revamping of this year’s awards gave us an additional and even greater insight into the significant amount of work being undertaken in the EIS/SEIS industry. It is only when you take on a role such as an EISA judge that you appreciate the breadth and diversity of work that this industry generates.

With more entries than ever before and more new entrants than ever before, the awards give us an opportunity to get a snapshot of the EIS/SEIS landscape and from the entries we have seen the industry appears to be in excellent health.

The standard of this year’s EISA Awards submissions has been astonishingly high and in every category there was more than one worthy winner. It’s a shame we can only pick one! We would like to take this opportunity to thank all entrants for their submissions and if you haven’t entered this year then please do so next year.

The members of the independent judging panel for the Awards were:

The winners of this year’s awards and those highly commended by the judges are listed below.    Additional feedback for those entries not shortlisted will be sent to individual entrants.

Best EIS Fund Manager/Sponsor, sponsored by Mainspring

Winner – Parkwalk Advisors 

Natasha Head of Mainspring with Enrico D’Angelo of Parkwalk

An impressive manager with a strong track record and regular exits. Exactly what the regulator is looking for helping create new innovative businesses and funding new start ups


Best SEIS Fund Manager, sponsored by Exact Libris

Winner – Deepbridge Capital

Sarah Johnson of Exact Libris with Kieran O’Gorman, Simon Tutton and Steven Powell of Deepbridge

A strong entry, fulfilling the criteria fully in a number of areas. A clear focus and willingness to reach out to the wider finance sector including the financial planners. Valuations of investments are healthy with no failures as yet and pleasing to see a strong commitment to diversity issues.

Best EIS/SEIS Tax Adviser, sponsored by Newable

Winner – Shoosmiths

Sanjeev Gordhan of Newable on right with Tom Wilde of Shoosmiths

Excellent examples were provided which highlighted how this firm are thought leaders in this space. It is clear that they engage and provide significant assistance across the board from investee companies to fund providers and advisers


Best EIS/SEIS Legal or Regulatory Adviser, sponsored by Aston Lark

Winner – BWB Compliance, Bates Wells Braithwaite

Eloise Ellis of Aston Aston Lark on the left, Gillian Roche-Saunders in the middle with Abigail Osundun both of BWB Compliance

A strong entry, and another very good year for this firm.  Promotion of EIS is evidenced by the pro bono recorded time and representation at wider VC forums. The various forms of community media for spreading the word and thought leadership are a testament to a distinctive style.

Best EIS/SEIS Investment Exit, sponsored by Edwin Coe

Winner – Par Equity

John Young of Edwin Coe on left with Paul Munn of Par Equity

Great investor return, great return for the local economy and great impact on the education sector. An active manager delivering on its promises


Best Financial Planner, sponsored by Guinness Asset Management

Winner – Carla Brown

Shane Gallwey of Guinness with Carla Brown

The submission offered a clear holistic financial planning approach to the client scenario, taking into account the clients’ needs, both financial and crucially emotional. A solid and highly commendable example of using EIS as part of an overall financial planning solution

Best Newcomer, sponsored by Downing

Winner – EMV Capital

On the far left Harry Miller and Ilian Iliev of EMV Capital with Chris Allner of Downing with Agnese Palermo of EMV Capital on right

An innovative approach working together with industrial corporate venturing teams hopefully resulting in more speedy adoption of technological innovations and reduced time to market and return of capital to investors – makes good use of syndicating with non-tax advantaged funding.

”Spirit of EIS”, sponsored by Deal Partners

Winner – GrowthInvest – Adviser Hour

Clive Morris of Deal Partners on left with David Lovell of GrowthInvest

A significant educational initiative. This has the potential to be a new avenue to grow a whole new audience for EIS across financial planners.



Best EIS/SEIS Journalist, sponsored by Kuber Ventures

Winner – James Hurley – The Times

Dermot Campbell of Kuber on left with James Lester of 42Bruton who accepted the award on behalf of James Hurley

James has helped bring EIS to the attention of the wider general public through his thoughtful and insightful commentary on the sector and its impact on SMEs


Highly Commended Entrants

Best EIS Fund Manager/Sponsor, sponsored by Mainspring

Highly Commended: Mercia Fund Manager

Natasha Head of Mainspring with Paul Mattick of Mercia




Best SEIS Fund Manager, sponsored by Exact Libris

Highly Commended – Sapphire Capital Partners

Sarah Johnson of Exact on left with Vasiliki Carson of Sapphire






Best EIS/SEIS Tax Adviser, sponsored by Newable

Highly Commended – Chiene & Tait

Sanjeev Gordhan of Newable on left with Neil Norman of Chiene & Tait




Best EIS/SEIS Legal or Regulatory Adviser, sponsored by Aston Lark

Highly Commended – Charles Russell Speechlys

Eloise Ellis of Aston Lark with Edidem Basiekanem of Charles Russell Speechlys on right.  Chris Manning on left with Elliot Michaelson on far left, both of Charles Russell Speechlys


Best EIS/SEIS Investment Exit, sponsored by Edwin Coe

Highly Commended – Seneca Partners

John Young of Edwin Coe on left with Connor Grimes of Seneca




Best Financial Planner, sponsored by Guinness Asset Management

Highly Commended – Gerald Burns

Shane Gallwey of Guinness on left with Gerald Burns




Best Newcomer, sponsored by Downing

Highly Commended – Hambro Perks

Chris Allner of Downing in the middle with Nicholas Sharp on the right and Will Keith on far right.  Dominic Perks on left with Peter Soliman on far left – all of Hambro Perks


“Spirit of EIS”, sponsored by Deal Partners

Highly Commended – John Glencross

Clive Morris of Deal Partners on left with John Glencross



All photos ©Stevie Thomas/TheAmalgamate(s)

Thank You!

The membership would like to thank Lord Howard Flight for his outstanding work as Chairman on behalf of the EIS Association.

Thank you to our speaker Loyd Grossman CBE

To everyone who contributed to this superb evening and for the support of the board, committees and membership throughout the year. We would like to thank members who host evens for the EISA – Charles Russell Speechlys, who host the London Autumn Technical Seminar and PwC who host the London Spring Technical Seminar. Moore Stephens who hosted EISA Fund Managers Forum. BDO, Brown Butler, Veale Wasbrough Vizards, Gillespie McAndrew, Sapphire Capital and RSM who hosted the Ready, Steady, Grow regional events and other.

We would also like to thank Blackfinch, CoInvestor, Great Point Media, GrowthInvest, Foresight, Ingenious, Jenson Funding Partners and TIME Investments for sponsoring our Effective Financial Planning Using EIS and BR Investments event in December 2018. Martin Fox for organising the award judging process.

We would also like to thank Bovill, who provide office space for EISA

And finally but not least thank you to our sponsors:

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