Winner

Tom Betts

Financial Times

Tom and his team have led a transformation at the FT and have been one of the earliest in their industry to develop and invest in data. All decisions are now underpinned by data, from Finance and HR to the newsroom. His team’s work has shown a link between reader engagement and higher revenue. Other innovative data driven technology include “Janet Bot”, a scanning technology, that lets editors know if the homepage is too male-orientated.

Results of all this work speak for themselves. The FT had its best ever year last year, with 15% year-on-year growth despite falls in print subscriptions.

Runners up

Vince Darley

Vince Darley

Deliveroo

Vince has played a significant role in Deliveroo’s incredibly fast growth. The business grew 600% in 2016-17, and the product & data improvements made by Vince’s team have led to substantial commercial impact, on top of hiring a senior team of data scientists to help grow a team of 60 to have impact with analytics and algorithms across all product areas.

He has led the push to improve understanding of marketing costs across all channels, getting both the board and management team to buy-in to a new approach to marketing decisions that led to radical changes to what was spent where, and a complete restructure of the digital marketing teams. Vince is now focusing on crucial growth initiatives, including scoping out expansion of the Deliveroo Plus subscription programme to reward loyal customers, the referral programme to accelerate new customer growth, and new product

Katia Walsh

Katia Walsh

Vodafone

Katia has built some of the world’s largest secure data-holding platforms. Her team’s work is enabling Vodafone to enhance its services by using large, anonymised data sets to better anticipate the likely needs of customers in different situations.

Katia has also built a highly qualified team of 300 data professionals – some of them world leaders in their fields. She is rolling-out an educational programme within Vodafone on machine learning and has created an internal research community where Big Data and Advanced Analytics team members are able to spend 15% of their time on cutting-edge research.

Shortlisted

  • Janne Koivunen

    Rovio

  • Rafael Herrera

    AUTO1 Group