Our illustrious festive awards are back for a second year. So who’s the Christmas turkey in 2012?
Father Christmas award
This year’s Father Christmas award just keeps on giving. It comes but once in a century but boy does it bring gifts galore and cheer to the nation. Yep, it’s The Olympic Games.
It may have cost us somewhere in the region of £8.92bn but it kickstarted the regeneration of swathes of east London and gave businesses and the most cynical of Londoners a reason to smile (most of the time anyway).
They are omnipresent and multifarious. They are often fleeting in their usage but can bring much joy to all that come across them. What am I talking about? Apps.
There are thousands of app developers in London creating everything from the incredibly useful to the sublimely entertaining. An entire industry has developed around their creation which has aided the burgeoning technology scene no end. The pick must be Summly, created by the 17-year-old Nick D’Aloisio. Investors include Yoko Ono, Ashton Kutcher and Stephen Fry and Li Ka-shing. Yahoo is rumoured to interested in buying the app.
The ghost of Christmas past award
He’s been away from a while but snuck back into our consciousness recently. Well when I say snuck what I really mean is threatened and insulted his way back in – on national television. Put your hands together for the much-missed jail-bird Conrad Black.
Having done his time, the fraudster burst back onto our screens to promote his new book A Matter of Principle. He called Sky News’ Adam Boulton a “jackass” and Jeremy Paxman a “priggish, gullible, British fool”. Welcome back Lord Black.
Tiny Tim award
This business is sick – who will save it?! Choking and spluttering, the legendary London black cabs are under threat as their maker Manganese Bronze is in administration. PwC is looking after the bids and it is expected that offers will be discussed over the Christmas period.
The Coventry-based taxi maker is reported to owe creditors more than £50m. It’ll take a generous Scrooge to take care of this little guy but what would London do without its traditional black cabs?!
Naughty little elves
We’ve had an outburst of mischievous cheekery from two top entrepreneurs this year in the form of Donald Trump and Sir Alan Sugar. The two had a massive twitter bicker not so long ago throwing insults back and forth like flaming Christmas puddings.
Some people never grow up….
Christmas cracker award
Which business burst onto the scene and exploded over the last twelve months? We think taxi hailing app Hailo deserves this award. The start-up app creator has managed to sign up 9,000 taxis in London – that’s almost 40% of the total taxi population of London.
The Christmas tree award
This year the Christmas tree award goes to Stratford. The area has gone through massive changes and has been in the spotlight all year thanks to the opening of Westfield Stratford, Aspers’ super casino and of course the Olympic park.
Stratford was twinkling pretty brightly during the Olympics and no doubt as Europe’s largest urban mall, the lights are shinning brightly attracting shoppers from far and wide like a giant consumerist beacon.
Christmas miracle award
A newspaper has delared itself profitable. The Evening Standard actually MAKES money! Hallelujah – and we thought print journalism was dead. The paper’s managing director announced its return to profit citing £1m as the key figure.
The paper went free three years ago and at the time was racking up an estimated annual loss of £30m.
Disappointing Christmas present
The Shard’s inaugural laser show was as hotly anticipated as The Stone Roses’ come-back tour. Thousands of Londoners made the pilgrimage to London Bridge or hot-footed it up to the nearest roof to see the 12 lasers and 30 searchlights illuminate the city like some sort of mythical, super-crystal.
“Lame”, “damp squib”, “bitterly disappointing” and “epic fail” were just some of the reaction from the public. Ouch.
The Christmas Turkey award
Why oh why, you numpties. This year’s Christmas Turkey award goes to Barclays for its involvement in the Libor scandal. The investigation and subsequent £290m fine for the high street bank brought yet more disrepute to an industry that limped through 2012 with increasingly bad public opinion.
Bob Diamond sacrificed himself for the good of the bank and walked.