There are more awards being handed out in October than in Hollywood during springtime.
October is fast becoming accountancy’s own awards season. Running alongside the Xerocon Awards a fortnight ago and the Practice/Software Excellence Awards last week, the ICB presented its Luca awards on Tuesday 17 October.
Cloud systems have been very much the flavour of the month in the small business market, with FreeAgent scooping the Software Excellence Award for SME accounting/bookkeeping and several associated cloud apps such as Receipt Bank, Chaser, Unleashed, GoCardless and iwoca picking up prizes at the Xerocon and AccountingWEB ceremonies.
The bookkeepers who vote for the ICB Luca Awards had different ideas, selecting Sage as their bookkeeping software of the year and opting for AutoEntry as their add-on of the year.
Sage’s executive sales director Sean Evers blogged that the Luca had added significance for the company as it came from the bookkeeping community “at the heart of true accounting”. He also pointed out that the award encompassed both the desktop Sage 50 product and Sage One, the new generation cloud application that he boasted now has 180,000+ customers.
The race between AutoEntry and Receipt Bank has intensified over the past year as HMRC’s plans for seamless data capture spurred advisers to adopt software that could automate quarterly reporting. This surge helped AutoEntry win the app of the year Luca and Receipt Bank earned a statuette from the bookkeepers for social media campaign of the year.
While Receipt Bank has matured into a premium provider with ambitious plans around its Practice Platform, AutoEntry has made inroads with pricing plans ranging from 15p per scanned invoice. Receipt Bank responded to this challenge with an unlimited pricing plan for its biggest accounting partners this year.
AutoEntry founder and CEO Brendan Woods commented, “We’re delighted to take home this coveted trophy. And our win is reflective of an incredible year so far, as we celebrate a 10-fold increase in year-to-date revenues, with over 30,000 new businesses established on AutoEntry in the last 18 months.”
The Xerocon award winners included several practices that will be familiar to AccountingWEB members, including 2017 Practice Excellence Award nominees Soaring Falcon (Xero MVP winner) and Farnell Clarke (100% Xero award winner). The ultimate Xero partner of the year was Armstrong Watson, the northern firm that migrated its 4,500 clients across to Xero during the year.
The Xerocon prizes are a good place to catch up with trends in add-on applications, for example with the fintech developer iwoca, winner the emerging Xero apps category. This online loan app offers unsecured credit lines to businesses within a matter of hours and then automatically posts repayments back into Xero.
The stock management app Unleashed was named industry-specific app of the year, while GoCardless won the app of the year award. By automating the direct debit process, GoCardless app expedites invoice payments and reconciles them with Xero.
About John Stokdyk
John Stokdyk is the global editor of AccountingWEB UK and AccountingWEB.com.