2018 BBA Judges Revealed!

Oct. 5, 2018


With the deadline for 2018 British Business Awards (BBA) nominations fast-approaching (Oct 18 2018, at 1200 JST), we are delighted to reveal the names of our six 2018 British Business Awards judges - a truly diverse and accomplished line up of exceptional individuals.


Meet the Judges


Sir Tim Hitchens KCVO CMG

Sir Tim recently became President of Wolfson College at Oxford, after serving as Chief Executive of the Commonwealth Summit Unit. Before that he was Director-General, Economic and Consular at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. Sir Tim is a graduate of the University of Cambridge and has over thirty years of experience as a diplomat, which have taken him to parts of the world as diverse as Pakistan, Afghanistan, and France. He has spent three years as Foreign and Commonwealth Office director for Africa, and most recently four years as Her Majesty's Ambassador to Japan.


Caz Walton OBE

Walton is a multi-disciplinary gold medalist who began her Paralympic career at the 1964 Summer Paralympics in Tokyo. At that time she took part in two athletics events, the slalom and the wheelchair dash, winning gold in both. Walton's most successful Paralympics was the 1972 Games in Heidelberg. She won two gold and one bronze medal in the athletics events and gold in the table tennis singles. Walton retired from international competitions in 1994. She became the manager of Great Britain's Paralympic fencing team in 1996, reprising the role for the Games of 2000 and 2008. For the 2004 Games she was the team administrator for Great Britain. She is currently a British Paralympics Association project manager for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.


Andy Palmer CMG

Andy Palmer is the CEO of Aston Martin. He began his career as an apprentice at a UK automotive supplier then joined Austin Rover in 1986. In 1991 he moved to Nissan - starting at the European Technical Centre in Cranfield, Bedfordshire UK as general manager of vehicle design, and then moving to Japan in 2002. Until 2014 he was chief planning officer, responsible for global product, corporate planning and sales and marketing. In 2014 he moved back to the UK to take up his current role as the CEO of Aston Martin - named Company of the Year at the 2017 British Business Awards.


Kazuko Kon MBE

Kazuko Kon was awarded BCCJ Lifetime Honorary Membership at her retirement reception in 2009, after having worked an impressive 40 years as a commercial officer at the British Embassy. One of her primary responsibilities was nurturing the relationship with the BCCJ, and forging strategic contacts within the UK-Japan business community.




Marin Minamiya 

Marin Minamiya, is the youngest person to have ever completed the Explorers Grand Slam. It involves ascending the “Seven Summits” — the highest peaks on each continent — and conquering the two poles. Minamiya who was just 20 when she made this achievement plans to go on more adventures as completes her University degree at Waseda University in Tokyo.




Toshihiko Niizaki 

Toshihiko Niizaki was recently appointed as Representative Director of BT Japan. The British multi-national telecommunications company is the largest provider of fixed-line, broadband and mobile services in the UK, and currently holds operations in around 180 countries. The Japan office covers security and risk management for a variety of industries such as manufacturing, trading and finance, and prides itself on nurturing a diverse work culture. 



Our esteemed judging panel will put into practice their specialist experience to decide which companies and individuals should receive a prestigious BBA trophy at this year's gala event. And, with nominations of a very high standard currently flowing into the BCCJ office, the decision-making will be a challenge.

The 2018 BBA nomination period will close on 18 October at 1200JST, so there is still an opportunity for you to nominate those who have made a positive impact on UK–Japan relations over the past year.

The five 2018 BBA categories are: Company of the Year; Entrepreneur of the Year; UK–Japan Partnership; Diversity and Inclusion; Social and Environmental Contribution.

Details about how to nominate your favourite companies, including your own, can be found here


Good luck to all 2018 British Business Awards nominees!




2018年度のBBA のノミネーションの締め切りは10月18日昼12時となっておりますので、過去に英国と日本に良い影響をもたらした方はぜひご応募ください。たくさんのご応募お待ちしております。