BII’s Licensee of the Year revealed

By Luke Nicholls

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Bii licensee, The final

BII's Licensee of the Year award recognises professionalism and excellence in the licensed retail sector
BII's Licensee of the Year award recognises professionalism and excellence in the licensed retail sector
Mahdis Neghabian, of The Camden Eye pub in London, has been named the 2012 Licensee of the Year by the British Institute of Innkeeping (BII).

The award, which recognises professionalism and excellence in the licensed retail sector, was presented to Neghabian earlier today at the BII Annual General Meeting held at the Grosvenor House, London.

In presenting the award, the BII’s chief executive Peter Thomas said: “Mahdis has shown us how she revived the fortunes of her business by combining innovation, strategic thinking, excellent customer care and a great deal of charm.

“She has inspired us with her ability to adapt to change, through her determination to always deliver what her customers want, and I am proud to call her the 2012 BII Licensee of the Year – all congratulations to Mahdis, our worthy winner.”

To reach the final stage of the award, Neghabian progressed through three rounds of judging, including a visit by BII Licensee of the Year Award judges John Vereker and John Sharratt.  During the final round, Mahdis and the other five finalists were put through their paces by three panels of industry experts answering questions on areas such as marketing and business development, industry issues and managing HR and training.

The other finalists were:

  • Tim Foster & Anthony Pender, The Wiremill, East Grinstead, Surrey
  • Chris Kemp FBII, The Cricketers, Hartley Wintney, Hampshire
  • Jason Read FBII & James Langford MBII, The Plough Inn, Wrington, Somerset
  • Victoria Steadman FBII, The Whitmore Arms, Essex
  • John Wyke MBII, The Old Horns Inn, High Bradfield, Sheffield

BII restructure

Meanwhile, today’s BII’s Annual General Meeting also saw the Institute’s members vote overwhelmingly in favour of the restructuring of their council, which will see it reduced from 36 members to 16 in a bid to save money.

The new structure will comprise of 10 regional chairman and six industry experts, along with a treasurer and a council chairman. The move has been seen as ‘vital’ by BII, if it is to succeed in the future.

“These fundamental changes have been about ensuring we are fit for the future, with a structure that enables us to be both fleet of foot and close to our members, with an ability to focus on key issues,” explained Thomas.

“I am delighted BII members have so whole-heartedly supported this reorganisation. The previous structure was large and inefficient, and as such BII has not been equipped to do the very best job possible for our members.

“We can now move on, follow our new course, and celebrate all the good work and major achievements that have been made in recent times in the certain knowledge that we shall be at the forefront of creating a brighter, better future for our members, Britain’s licensees.” 

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