Worldwide Finance Awards 2022

Worldwide Finance awards 2022 • Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 First Investment Bank: Digital Bank of the Year - Europe Featuring: SalesInvest: Business Investment Company of the Year - Europe

2 Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 About the Worldwide FinanceAwards 2022 Acquisition International is happy to announce the return of the Worldwide Finance Awards. With these awards our aim is to recognise companies and individuals, who have shown themselves to be dedicated and experienced in the finance industry. Since its inception in 2013, the Worldwide Finance Awards has been shining a light on the achievements of those in the industry who continue to overcome the difficulties posed by global economic issues and thrive in the current climate and rewarding them for that since 2013. We welcome nominations from all areas of the financial industry: from retail, internet and commercial banks, credit unions, savings and loans associations, investment banks and companies, brokerage firms, insurance companies, mortgage companies, financial advisors and more. To guarantee that only the most deserving walk away with one of our respected awards, Acquisition International’s International Finance programme conducts research into the most appropriate and praiseworthy winners based on successful business dealings conducted over the last 12 months. Sif Brookes - Senior Editor Contents 4 LAB Outsourced Bookkeeping Services: Bookkeepers of the Year - Gauteng 6 KBC Asset Management NV: Best Asset & Investment Management Firm - Belgium 8 The Financial and Mortgage Services Centre Inc: Best Mortgage & Refinance Brokers 2022 - Peel Region 10 Infinity Group Australia: Best Debt Reduction & Money Management Company - Australia 12 WLTH: Best Digital Lending & Payments FinTech Provider - APAC 14 Italian Network: Internationalization Consulting Firm of the Year 2022 - Albania 16 BLACKALGO: Most Innovative Financial Markets AI-Backed Forex Trading Solution 2022: BLACKALGO 18 First Investment Bank: Digital Bank of the Year - Europe 20 SalesInvest: Business Investment Company of the Year - Europe No information contained on or in this website constitutes investment advice or an offer to invest or to provide management services and is subject to correction, completion and amendment without notice. Neither AI nor any of its associated entities are authorised to give financial advice of any nature nor are they regulated by the Financial Services Authority. Prior to making any investment, AI recommends that any prospective investor should consult with its own investment, accounting, legal and tax advisers to evaluate independently the risks, consequences and suitability of that investment. AI Global Media, Ltd. (AI) takes reasonable measures to ensure the quality of the information on this web site. However, AI will not assume any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, correctness or completeness of any information that is available through this web site. If errors are brought to our attention, we will try to correct them. The information available through the website and our partner publications is for your general information and use and is not intended to address any particular finance or investment requirements. In particular, the information does not constitute any form of advice or recommendation by us or any of our partner publications and is not intended to be relied upon by users in making or refraining from making any investment or financial decisions. Appropriate independent advice should be obtained before making any such decision. Any arrangement made between you and any third party named in the site is at your sole risk and responsibility. Editorial Team Sif Brookes, Senior Editor Sofi Bajor, Editor Daniel Long, Senior Writer Gabriel Muers, Writer Rebecca Scotland, Senior Writer Dontae Jones, Writer Amelia Walker, Writer Design Team Daniela Levinte, Graphic Designer Lauren Baldwin, Junior Graphic Designer 22 Viridios Capital Pty Ltd: Best Carbon Finance Project - NSW 24 The E-Valuator: Best Investment Analytics Software Platform - Midwest USA 25 Syzygy Investment Advisory: Best Alternative Asset Management Advisory Firm - USA 26 Themis: Best Financial Crime Management and Identification 27 Xplus London Limited: Most Dedicated Accountancy Firm - South London 28 Strand Hanson Limited: Best Modern Merchant Banking Institution – UK 29 Blacktrace B.V: M&A Advisory of the Year 2022 30 exficon GmbH: Africa Export Finance Consultancy of the Year 2022 31 Heal Accounting: Best Woman-Owned Client Accounting Advisory Services Practice Northeast USA 32 JY Cap Limited: Best Quantitative Trading Firm - APAC 33 TCT Tax & Bookkeeping LLC: Best Cost Recovery & Accounting Method Company - California 34 Honest and Young Pty Ltd: Tax Agents of the Year - VIC

Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 3 35 Aura Group Pty Ltd: Best Wealth & Fund Management Company 2022 – APAC & Client Service Excellence Award 2022 - APAC 36 Austin Kemp Solicitors: Divorce & Family Lawyers of the Year - Yorkshire 37 Goal Group: Cloud-Based Asset Servicing Software Developer of the Year 2022 38 Creditguymke LLC: Best Business Credit & Financing Solutions Provider - Wisconsin 39 RFBS Accounting Ltd: Most Trusted Accountants - Lincolnshire 40 Backyard Bookkeeper: Leading Providers of Monthly Bookkeeping Services - Western USA 41 Marsham Investment Management: Best Investment Manager 2022 - UK 42 Lastaki Advisors: Investment Banking Firm of the Year - India 43 Eastern Trust and Wealth Pte Ltd: One-Stop Finance Boutique of the Year - Singapore 44 EstateExec: Leading Providers of Estate Executor CloudBased Software - North America 45 Capital For Market: Most Client-Focused Business Loans Brokerage - GTA 46 4XC: Best Online CFD Trading Platform 2022 11 37 25 16

4 Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 May22137 Bookkeepers of the Year - Gauteng elieving in every client’s ability and right to grow their business with the correct support, LAB Outsourced Bookkeeping Services operates under the ethos that its clients are part of the family. Nominally, it keeps their best interests at heart at every turn due to this attitude, and ensures that it will be present for seeing to their every need throughout the advancement towards the future that they will be embarking on, making itself a partner to their success. This is because for LAB, its clients’ success is its success, and it is unfailingly proud of each of them as they continue to reach for their next milestone. Moreover, by keeping its prices affordable and its services friendly, it shows its clients through word instead of deed just how holistic its commitment to their success is, believing that good support and access to business advice shouldn’t break the bank. B Started as the part-time job of Mrs Lana Benn in 2005, LAB Outsourced Bookkeeping Services has made a name for itself as one of the most exemplary business management services in Johannesburg, South Africa, and its wider industry. Taking an empathic, understanding and person-first approach to its work, it has made a name for itself by being a business that is uninterested in upselling and overcharging its clients, instead working with them to ensure they can afford the financial bookkeeping support they need to take their business to the next level. It works with the professionals who seek out its help to ensure that they can afford its work, keeping prices within the clients’ cashflow range and adapting itself to fit a wide range of needs, emboldened by its commitment to keeping itself adaptive, flexible, and able to tailor itself to fit their needs. This remains true whether it is working with small businesses or large companies. Critically, the former is the case due to its business-wide conviction that every professional entity is entitled to the same level of respect and dignity, whether they speak for a well-established enterprise or a small local corporation. At present, therefore, its scientific approach to bookkeeping and logistical management is making it a household name in Johannesburg and South Africa proper. With the comprehensive approach to business organisation within it, and the current finance industry in the macro scale charging far more than it does for services that are far less thorough and personable, it finds that many of its clients come to it having reached their wits’ end with its peers. A lot of the clients it has received, therefore, are either non-compliant with SARS or have had previously poor experiences with third party bookkeepers. Essentially, it has been taking on these clients in order to lead by example in the rest of its industry, showing that by adopting a client first instead of cashflow first attitude, the door to much more sustainable and exponential growth is unlocked for the business providing such services. Its attitude to the market is inexorably one of helping the public as a result. Further showing its commitment to both its clients and the betterment of its market, all its staff keep up with their CBD points every year, as well as with SAICA, SAIBA, and ICB, ensuring the best quality staff make up its team from the bottom to the top. Critically, each of them are competent, enthusiastic, intelligent, and more than willing to go above and beyond the call of duty for a client, forming the backbone of LAB’s exemplary client commitment and becoming the face of its business. Indeed, each of them are also invigorated by challenge and happy to help a client through any pitfall, hurdle, or complication. This has been especially pivotal during the past few years as many of its clients struggle to cope with the impacts of the pandemic on businesses, markets, and industries all over the world. Luckily, it found itself relatively unscathed as the brunt of the crisis went by, and it was instead able to focus on supporting its clients and taking on board yet more clients who also began to benefit from its unshakable support, helping them to keep the business turnover

Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 5 stable through exemplary business management in the face of turmoil. Throughout, its own annual turnover never dropped below R1.2 a year – a substantial amount for a business of its size – and something that shows the exemplary nature of its bookkeeping by continued excellent function alone. Blessed with great clients and outstanding staff, it puts the impetus for its success on its people, all of whom have contributed to making it the business it is today. In short, the foundation of client-first operations has been held up in a brilliant manner by the professionals within its ranks and the clients who come to laud such services as exemplary, as many of them go on to recommend its efforts to peers and partners, allowing LAB to grow in a naturalistic and sustainable manner. In addition, being a family business, the families of the people who run and own LAB – Lana and Darren of the Benn family and Ina of the Gericke family – work together in a manner that allows for a family business with a more inclusive atmosphere than most. This is because at the very top of the business, different people and family structures exist, allowing for an empathic and understanding approach to the variety of different structures that exist within its customers organisations. Fundamentally, it has kept this as one of the main pillars of its business by maintaining an open-door policy amongst the founders and owners of the company, with each of the directors fostering open communication between themselves, their teams, and everyone on the payroll. This cultivates a happy and understanding environment in which its staff can do their best work, and LAB works hard to support them as much as it supports its clients as thanks for the quality of their efforts across the board. Furthermore, its staff are all people with a love of learning. Having built a company of people who share this attitude, it has brought people on board who have a true love for the field of accounting that goes beyond the quality of their education, taking a practical yet empathic approach that has brought LAB to great heights of accomplishment. Truly, LAB as a bookkeeping firm has come an exceedingly long way, and it predicts that this current growth spurt will only be in the beginning, having been approached by several new clients in order to help them get off the ground in the mining sector, a heretofore untapped industry for LAB. Proud of all it has achieved and excited for the milestones ahead, the finance sector can count on LAB to be one of the voices guiding it into the future. Company: LAB Outsourced Bookkeeping Services Contact: Lana Benn Website:

6 Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 May22370 Best Asset & Investment Management Firm - Belgium oasting 12 million clients across Belgium, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, and Bulgaria, KBC is a popular and highly trustworthy banking and insurance group. Within this group stands the group’s investment arm, KBC Asset Management NV, which works with retail and institutional clients, developing products for intra-group distribution and providing investment fund sales and advisory support. Guided by the mantra, ‘Everyone invested all the time,’ KBC Asset Management NV is on a mission to enable people from all walks of life to benefit from capital markets. Indeed, it endeavours to be ‘more than a bank,’ by protecting its clients’ dreams and helping to make them a reality. At the end of 2021, KBC Asset Management NV reported €236bn in AUM. Such numbers have been cultivated, amongst other initiatives, through simplifying the retail investing process by B KBC Asset Management NV is an industry leader, and it incredibly clear as to how it has built its way up to this position. Through constantly remaining ahead of its competition, the company possesses the most trustworthy and advanced asset and investment management solutions, effectively guaranteeing the safety of its clients’ assets. Therefore, over the next year, KBC Asset Management NV hopes to continue down this route of innovation. removing the roadblocks, lowering threshold requirements, and focusing on digitalisation. The firm is, quite simply, an innovator. As such, across Belgium, KBC Asset Management NV boasts a strong position in the market, with 293 employees operating out of the Brussels-based office. Of course, within an industry that is currently undergoing numerous challenges, this is an enormous benefit. The industry is transforming, heading towards a new era of digitisation, and as a result many businesses are struggling to keep up. Moreover, in a shift that was largely accelerated by the pandemic, Digitization and FinTech has enhanced competitiveness in the financial sector. This, alongside the push towards responsible investing, has led to an industry-wide quest to remain on the cutting edge of asset and investment management. KBC Asset Management NV further bolsters its position in the market through constantly striving for innovation. It wants to be the focal point for the industry and stay one step ahead of its competition. It is with this in mind that the company is embracing AI, which helps it to change the way that it interacts with its clients throughout all sectors. This evolution has come in the form of KATE, the virtual assistant at KBC, which helps clients to navigate investment options on digital channels, where over half of KBC investment plans are now sold. On top of this, the firm recently launched its own smart advisory engine based on AI, which screens portfolios held by Private & Wealthy clients. It performs a detailed analysis of each portfolio based on a number of underlying risk and return factors and proactively formulates personalised advice. Such technologies have been KBC Asset Management NV’s main priority over the past year, and as a result, it has taken many steps to increase its position in the market. However, there is a greater contributor – its team. The rapidly changing industry calls for dynamic and creative employees who can respond to it smoothly. It also calls for new ways of working. In response to this, KBC Asset Management NV has implemented a selection of techniques that will enable it to respond to a fast-changing environment, anticipate the needs of its employees, and attract innovative and agile people. The company has, as a result, brought about an internal culture that thrives within a busy office space. Its team operates through the PEARL+ acronym – this is a framework that dictates how both the company and its team should conduct business to ensure efficacy. In full, the acronym stands for Performance, Empowerment, Accountability, Responsiveness, and Local Embeddedness, with

Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 7 the plus sign representing the value created by working together to innovate, initiate and inspire. In order for this acronym to be completely effective in the workplace, the company uses it to conduct its recruitment process. Certified as a Top Employer, KBC uses different recruitment strategies (push and pull) and a wide range of recruitment channels, for example university campus events, job partners, social media, and more. This in order to connect with the right talent at the right time with a targeted message. Just like KBC as a company, the branch’s Talent Acquisition department is looking for innovation, for example: KBC Belgium was the first company with a recruitment campaign on the platform TikTok. In 2022 and beyond, KBC Asset Management continues to face existing and new challenges head on. We are ready! • The shift toward digitization continues at a fast pace. Largely accelerated by the pandemic. Digitization and FinTech has enhanced competitiveness in the financial sector. • Responsible Investing is becoming far more important and new regulations are around the corner (SFDR, EU Taxonomy, ESGMiFID). The market and the clients keep looking for new and innovative investment solutions. Especially in current times of low interest rates this triggers financial institutions to explore new solutions. Contact: Jan Standaert Company: KBC Asset Management NV Web Address:

8 Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 May22498 Best Mortgage & Refinance Brokers 2022 - Peel Region he Financial and Mortgage Services Centre Inc. is one of Ontario’s leading mortgage brokering teams, and it is entirely dedicated to providing the best results for its clients through supplying the information they need to make a well-informed decision on their mortgage financing needs. It boasts a team that has over 25 years of experience in the mortgage, banking, and investment sectors, and is, therefore, equipped to handle any request – large or small. As the Managing Director, Ahmed Jadallah knows first-hand what the company is capable of. Indeed, Ahmed, who is a seasoned Mortgage Broker and Banking expert, has experience spanning over the course of 22 years. Prior to his current role, he spent time at renowned financial institutions - Citibank, London Life, Royal Bank of Canada, and CIBC, to name a few – and acquired hands-on experience with mortgages, lending, investments, and day-to-day banking. He summarises The Financial and Mortgage Services Centre as, ‘experts in taking care of the financing details and shopping for the best mortgage options from several leading Canadian financial institutions on behalf of our clients.’ Of course, the industry is incredibly competitive, and in turn, maintaining this reputation is of the utmost importance. The necessity of this has only been bolstered by recent legislation introduced by the Canadian government. Ahmed explains, ‘The Government of Canada has introduced a set of rules and regulations in the past few years to control the rapidly increasing prices of residential units, however, this has made an adverse impact on a large segment of home buyers and real estate investors. In essence, the residential mortgage financing industry is currently heavily regulated especially with the interest rate stress test which made it challenging for many Canadian families and individuals to qualify for the needful home financing.’ This challenge has come accompanied with rapidly rising interest rates, which has further pushed potential buyers out of the running, as gaining a mortgage has become more of a dream than a reality. It simply is not affordable for many, and as a result, the demand for home purchasing has dropped remarkably. However, Ahmed believes that with the current influx of immigration to Ontario, and the increasing employment rate, this may change and the market is expected to start picking up in the next fall . As such, it is vital for The Financial and Mortgage Services Centre to remain ahead of industry trends. The Covid-19 pandemic truly amplified this notion, as Ahmed confirms, ‘, since Covid-19 popped T Mortgages can be complicated, but you don’t need to go through the process alone. The Financial and Mortgage Services Centre Inc., based in Ontario, is available to provide all the mortgage advice you could possibly need. Join us as we talk to the company’s Managing Director, Ahmed Jadallah, about what The Financial and Mortgage Services Centre Inc. has to offer… up in the world, many things have changed in our local market, most importantly clients’ face-to-face meetings were limited by Ontario Authorities for several months, this created a pressure on our industry to adapt to the new situation by investing even more in technology and employing new virtual secured meeting platforms and since we already had the needful tools in place, we were able to smoothly shift into the new era with minimal hiccups. This gave us an advantage over many mortgage broker teams in the market and made our service much more efficient and quick compared with other teams and offices.’ Consequently, the company’s market position has increased greatly, as it now boasts a plethora of benefits and advantages that its competitors do not possess. This has led to exceptional performance over the past year, with its team making over 30 million Canadian Dollars in residential mortgage financing sales in 2021. ‘Our business continued to thrive during the Pandemic and that was led by our clients’ loyalty and our ability to adapt to the new situation by giving our clients the comfort of meeting with us and signing the required paperwork virtually,’ Ahmed adds. The aforementioned team is The Financial and Mortgage Services Centre’s greatest asset – they are integral to the company’s success. Built upon the company’s solid belief in its business values, the team is supported by a set of core values, including the company’s approach of ‘lead on advice’ when working with clients. Such team members have undertaken a stringent training process which enables them to provide an accurate set of information to the clients so that they can make an informed decision. ‘This approach has positioned our firm to be amongst the first-togo mortgage financing brokers in our community and gave us an advantage over many other competitors in the marketplace,’ testifies Ahmed. ‘We are proud of our team’s continuing dedication and hard work to deliver quality service and clear communication to each one of our clients.’ These elements have driven The Financial and Mortgage Services Centre to a wealth of success; however, the company doesn’t plan on stopping. Instead, it envisions a future that is filled with more – more success, innovation, clients, and team members. By the end of 2023, the firm will be expanding into new areas, with potential locations like Oakville, London, Ottawa, and Hamilton on the cards. Contact: Ahmed Jadallah Company: The Financial and Mortgage Services Centre Inc. Web Address:

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10 Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 May22039 Best Debt Reduction & Money Management Company - Australia Graeme Holm founded the incredible Infinity Group Australia with the hope that it would be the answer to breaking the chains put on customer’s finances by large banking institutes. Fundamentally, Graeme first learned about these restrictions and how little patience he had for them during a ten-year career with one of the biggest banks, stepping away from the role he had at the time in 2013 in order to shake up the status quo of the money management industry and teach families how to manage their own money to great effect. With a financial literacy-based service platform that helps clients to reduce debts and learn more about the intricacies of fiscal responsibility, Infinity Group Australia has become well known with its clients for its friendly, helpful, and realistic services. Moreover, it conducts these services in such a way that never fails to keep the client in mind, ensuring that it never weighs itself down with unnecessary jargon and keeps all of its communications quick, unladen, and to the point, with the ability for a client to ask any questions along the way. After all, understanding is the true foundation of learning, and for a student to understand the lesson, the teacher must first make a point of understanding who they are trying to teach. Operating in this empathetic and diligent way has truly set it apart in its industry, propelling it into the spotlight in its market segment and in the eyes of its peers alike; in addition, its Money Coaching increases accountability for earners, allowing them to ask the big questions of themselves regarding their financial goals, independence, and milestones. Empowered by the ever-entrepreneurial Graeme, his position as an investor , international bestselling author, and disruptive industry linchpin has allowed Infinity Group Australia to claim a space at the top spot of the financial sector. Nominally, this attracted the attention of the biggest players in that field, and in 2019 Success Resources saw the opportunity to help everyday Aussies save big using the pioneering methodologies of Infinity Group Australia, inviting him to speak alongside powerhouses such as Tony Robbins and Robert Kiyosaki. With each of them being equally passionate about helping everyday families, Infinity Group Australia has been able to benefit from the partnership of each of the individuals that Graeme has ingratiated himself with, ‘changing lives financially’ through education and accountable services. F Demonstrating an incredible level of dedication to customer service in everything it does, Infinity Group Australia works hard to remain relevant by supercharging its clients’ journeys and giving them access to ground-breaking financial education. Focused on the tailoring of these services to fit its clients’ needs, its family-friendly financial management services allow them to reorganise their fiscal lives so that they can pay off mortgages faster, handle money more efficiently, and better quantify their long term financial goals. In addition to this, the foundational principles that Infinity Group Australia was based on have remained constant throughout its growth, expansion, and adaptation. Critically, these values have remained passion, trust, care, and integrity, forging the pillars upon which the empire has been built and a solid backbone that drives the company forward, even throughout challenges such as those brought on by Covid-19. As the core money mentor of his company, as well as the director, founder, and cornerstone expert, he rejects the traditional product led approach of his industry in order to reimagine mortgaging from the ground up; it is through this that he has been able to show customers that a 30-year loan shouldn’t be the norm, achieving these in a landmark 10. From top to bottom, in every service he offers, Graeme has been cultivating this exemplary reputation of trust, respect, and diligence with a practiced hand and guiding eye. From the residential, investment, and commercial lending to Infinity Group Australia’s associated services in asset finance, SMSF, accounting, financial planning, superannuation, insurance, general insurance, real estate, and financial education, a client can always expect to receive the best customer service. Whether it’s the very first conversation a client is having with the Infinity Group Australia team or the fifty-first, they can depend on a standardised level of commitment. Crucially, with access to leading industry professionals such as accountants, financial planners, leading economists, and world leading motivational speakers, it boasts a clear vision that keeps its staff and its customers on the same page without fail, ensuring that everyone knows the benefits that the company will bring to them. With access to leading industry CRMs, open banking, and digital bank platforms, Infinity Group Australia can put itself head and shoulders above its peers with fast approvals that involve less documentation, too. In essence, this sort of open banking – it believes – is where the future is headed in the macro scale, as it allows a strong focus on staying ahead of the curve, agile processes, and client focused methodologies. Importantly, each of these efforts in tandem will be reshaping the industry in order to deliver massive mortgage savings for clients during a time when they’re more needed than ever thanks to the

Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 11 impact that the pandemic has had on the consumer in terms of reductions in savings and financial stressors. With its money caching service, ability to help clients get a bird’s eye view of their net wealth, and ability to coach them through the best next steps, it has been able to settle a truly impressive amount of loans, with its financial education programme expanding by 69% on a yearly basis thanks to clients referring it to family, friends, and peers, as well as leaving glowing reviews. Its ‘promote from within’ mindset only helps this, as it spends time and effort in ensuring that its staff are well looked after and have the tools they need to grow and develop so that they can best serve the customers. Moreover, this has allowed it to adopt a family-driven culture, and 6 of its staff are previous clients of Infinity Group Australia, so inspired by the drive and passion with the company that they felt compelled to join it. Its proactive nature and dedication to supporting the client’s journey has indeed set it up in good stead for a bright future, one that it is excited to take its clients forward into, bettering the industry and the Australian financial market as it goes. Company: Infinity Group Australia Contact: Graeme Holm Website:

12 Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 May22193 Best Digital Lending & Payments FinTech Provider - APAC digital lending and payments provider, WLTH has made itself Australia’s foremost technologically focused and sustainable financial market leader. Presently, its two primary tech-centric offerings focus on WLTH Lend and WLTH Pay; with the former currently available and making waves in its market segment, and the latter due to be released soon, its reputation has become one of innovation and ingenuity. WLTH Lend puts forth a myriad of different options for the digital mortgage sector, allowing a tailor-made, bespoke, and user-intuitive process to form from competitive pricing distributed by both direct and broker channels. Moreover, its lending services focus on investors and first-time home buyers. This is because, often, the first-time buyer is who will need the most support when it comes to digital lending, and it hopes to demystify the process somewhat for them in order to take some of the stress out of home purchase. After all, buying one’s first home should be a jubilant experience, and WLTH hates to see it marred by bloated and inconvenient due process. Having created several exemplary technological spaces to this end, it boasts customer and broker portals, state-of-the-art application processes, a seamless online experience, and the ability for customers to access their mortgage offset accounts through its Convego® Parley Ocean Card. This card, created by intercepted and upcycled marine plastic waste, shows both WLTH’s dedication to corporate environmental responsibility and its commitment to its clients’ satisfaction. WLTH Pay – the upcoming service – will be a payments platform that provides business customers with the ability to manage their money effectively and with ease, making payments via various methods to a multitude of payees. Fundamentally, this will ensure more flexible payments that can be made using card, bank transfer, or BNPL, allowing customers to make payments to everything from supplier invoices to tax bills and wages. Saving countless hours of managing multiple transactions through multiple platforms, WLTH Pay promises to become its client’s one-stop-shop for payment option needs. Additionally, with direct integrations to the client’s accounting platform of choice, from XERO to MYOB, it provides great benefits to all clients, especially SMEs; this is because by using this service, an SME can accumulate reward points for their transactions, which can be put to good fiscal use later. Furthermore, WLTH has made itself an invaluable business partner and indispensable ally in the fight for more sustainable business A An innovative digital lending and payments provider operating with a diligent team of staff and a deep, resolute, unyielding commitment to environmental sustainability, WLTH has propelled itself into the world’s spotlight. Critically, this Australian company has been reaching out to previously untapped segments of its market in order to rise to meet a demand that has largely gone unsatisfied, aiding its clients to make their transactional management and home loan borrowing that much easier. All while negating oceanic pollution in the same fell swoop. practices with Parley for the Oceans: a leading environmental organisation that is working around the world, and in communities to protect the oceans from marine plastic pollution Every loan settled with WLTH empowers Parley for the Oceans to clean 50 square metres of beach and coastline of plastic pollution, and every present and future revenue stream eventually feeds back to this goal of ocean protection. Moreover, with all the changes currently happening in the wider industry, it is excited to say that it believes leading by example in such times of change will make a difference, as its peers will see just how much the market appreciates a commitment to tangible environmental action. With a renewed push towards better internal processes, increased sustainability, and less bloatware in banking, incumbent banks are slowly losing custom to services such as WLTH. This is for good reason, too: as the market begins to move on, many banks are falling behind rapidly as their slow turn around times, legacy systems, and overly complicated processes struggle to keep up with the more agile, flexible, and adaptive processes that are overtaking them. With traditional banking and service lending agreements taking as long as 42 days to complete, there have been plenty of gaps in the market that a fresh-faced digital lender can fill. Indeed, even as more entrepreneurs take up the challenge head-on, there are still many more niches to fill and opportunities to partake in.

Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 13 Thus, WLTH is looking forward to seeing what it can do to address these, catering to some of the most profitable segments in the broker market that have previously gone unaddressed by such innovators, both showing that it can be done and that there is a huge demand out there for such things. Its growth spurt certainly supports this, as WLTH has been able to go from strength-to-strength by providing a complete, holistic, and comprehensive financial ecosystem for its customers, one that isn’t restricted to one type of customer, but supports all manner of transactional needs. Its solid upward trajectory has been something truly impressive to witness, and it is something that its peers and wider market have been watching with great interest. Indeed, in the past 12 months, its loan book has been increasing exponentially, and as it has opened its doors to more brokers, it has also been able to expand to embrace new customers in the form of Australians who need a better rate with their mortgage. Excited and enthusiastic about helping such people, its staff – all of whom know the company and market like the back of their hands – are always ready and willing to help, talking a client through their options and providing the best possible service in the process. Therefore, it looks for people who fit in with its customer-first ethos when hiring, something that has allowed it to cultivate a truly incredible team of selfless professionals. Hiring primarily through the recommendations of existing employees, it has developed an internal culture of trust, diligence, and respect, one that promises to foster its continued growth long into the future. Acquiring market share from the Big 4 banks, creating valuable partnerships, and working hard to become the innovation transactional service of the future, it invites clients and peers alike to ‘watch this space’ as its trendsetting promises to further change the industry for the better. Company: WLTH Contact: Brodie Haupt Website:

14 Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 Jun22010 Internationalization Consulting Firm of the Year 2022 - Albania talian Network provides advice required for the constitution of a company, covering Albanian and international taxation, labour law, payroll, and more, all of which is necessary for an entrepreneur to evaluate the future investment of their business as well as make it operational within 24 hours. The consultancy can also provide research, selection, and training of personnel with its company, Job in Albania, of which it has recently started an expansion project, with a new office, a new sales director, and new IT and CRM tools. Meanwhile, the other company within the Italian Network group is Albania Immobiliare, which enables users to search for the best property for their business offices and places to stay in Albania. Italian Network also specialises in obtaining residence permits for entrepreneurs, retirees, digital nomads, and all other categories who are entitled. This is in addition to providing tax exemption for pensions and obtaining tax residence certificates for all Italian citizens. In partnership with Albania Investimenti, Italian Network provides advice on the establishment of trusts and trust companies. It is with professionalism and a sense of duty that the Italian Network team works with customers and collaborators. Ethics and confidentiality are key priorities that they consciously cultivate in their daily work, acting with honesty and respect to increase and strengthen the prestige and reputation of customers and collaborators, while safeguarding their integrity. It is indeed a trustworthy team always searching for creative solutions and supporting competitiveness and productivity. Alongside all this, an important focus is on the wellbeing of those it services and collaborates with, fostering an atmosphere of enthusiasm, joy, fun, and sociability in a friendly and familiar environment, and always expressing gratitude for the opportunities that come with each new day. I Italian Network, led by CEO, Roberto Laera, is a consulting firm for internationalisation, tax and labour consultancy, and HR management. Since 2006, it has been promoting and offering a 360-degree service to foreign entrepreneurs who want to invest in Albania, being a bridge between the Balkans and Europe with offices in Tirana, Albania and Bari, Italy. Join us as we explore the consultancy’s offering and why entrepreneurs should invest in Albania. The company is always looking to add to its team, too, attracting new talents by offering them a path of professional and economic growth, in a comfortable and non-stressful workspace, supported by senior colleagues and CEO, Roberto Laera who are always ready to listen to the professional and personal needs of all employees and collaborators. In order to ensure the team is always able to provide a knowledgeable and efficient service, they are constantly studying and ensuring they are up-to-date on Albanian and international tax laws, to consistently give the customer professional and safe answers which do not expose them to risks even in their country of origin. This goes hand in hand with always trying to keep up with technology by using the latest technological tools to simplify work. The Italian Network team is a reliable and hardworking one; even during the difficult period of the COVID-19 pandemic, the financial performance of the company managed to remain more than satisfactory. In 2020, the company had a more than 50% turnover, and more than 70% in 2021. It expects to close 2022 with a further 20%. At the beginning of the pandemic, it did fear a negative impact on its work. However, thanks to the support policies implemented by the Albanian government and the various commercial strategies to promote investments from other countries, the company has increased both its turnover and number of customers. So, why invest in the country of Albania? There are a number of reasons as to why this is a good idea for international entrepreneurs. 1. It is a great opening towards the European and global market. Albania is strategically positioned for access to markets in Europe and the Balkan region, and is located in the centre of the natural crossroads of major corridors in Europe. It also opens doors to Durres, Valona, Shengjin, and Saranda.

Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 15 2. It’s a free market. The Albanian economy is now characterised by full liberalised trade, and it is the most elastic of the economies of South-Eastern Europe – the only economy that has not gone through a period of recession. 3. It is a favourable environment with favourable conditions and costs, including tax benefits and incentives in strategic investment sectors, as well as an online system for tax filing and payments. 4. It has a one-stop shop model, meaning speed and transparency with registration of a new business in 24 hours, and granting of commercial licenses from the National Licensing Centre. 5. There is a variety of investment choices covering public and private partnerships and in areas with stability and sustainable growth, with sectors including renewable energy, mining, tourism, agri-food, transport and logistics, production, and ICT services. 6. Legal support is available with no further government authorisation required and all sectors open to foreign investors. There are no limitations or restrictions for foreign participation in companies (even 100% foreign is possible). 7. The country has a skilled and highly creative workforce, with knowledge of foreign languages. English, Italian, and Greek are widely spoken, and French and German are included in the education system. About 116,292 students register annually at university, and more than 1,071,948 individuals overall are young, educated, and motivated professionals. 8. The labour costs are low; Albania’s minimum wage is the lowest in Europe at 250 euros. 9. Albania has a favourable tax system. Its corporate tax rate goes from 0 to 15% and personal rate from 0 to 23%. Its tax regime is advantageous for strategic sectors, alongside there being treaties to avoid double taxation in over 30 countries. The Albanian tax system is non-discriminatory towards foreign investors and no distinction is made between foreign and national investors. 10. There is rapid development of infrastructure, with new and fast improvement of infrastructures in the transport, telecommunications and energy sectors, along with well-developed and low-cost shipping services, and quick, easy transport routes and direct delivery mechanism to most EU countries. 11. Last but not least, Albania is a highly recommended tourist destination. In 2014, The New York Times listed Albania at number four out of 52 countries to visit; in 2012 Frommer tour guide named Albania as one of the most important destinations; and in 2011, Lonely Planet rated Albania as the first of the ten best places to visit. Indeed, it’s easy to see the benefits of investing in Albania and why Italian Network is the consultancy to trust when it comes to internationalisation, tax and labour advice, and HR management. Now, the company is focused on continued development, with constant professional and technological updates and improved customer service as it heads towards a very bright future. Company: Italian Network Contact: Roberto Laera Email: Website:

16 Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 May22197 Most Innovative Financial Markets AI-Backed Forex Trading Solution 2022: BLACKALGO LACKALGO’s purpose is to build AI systems that deliver profitable trading automated strategies for its clients with a focal point on first-rate consumer pleasure whilst maximising stakeholder value. It is not hesitant to constantly challenge conventional knowledge and effectively urge change with the end goal to seek after development. This comes with a commitment to putting its clients at the core of what it does by developing and maintaining long-standing relationships. It is one firm, dedicated to delivering the full scope of its capabilities, information, and assets to meet the full needs of its clients whilst respecting diversity and valuing differences of opinion. For almost two decades, the company has been meeting its clients’ high expectations. It has discovered answers. It has attempted to be responsive. It has discovered better approaches to expand upon the quality it conveys. Also, it continues searching for better approaches to serve the client – and the networks in which they live and work. With BLACKALGO, clients are ultimately able to make intelligent, well-timed investment decisions. The smartest forex trading provider executes trades at the optimal price and with greater accuracy along with mitigating risk to provide higher profits. BLACKALGO’s innovative, efficient, and reliable strategies give traders ample options to begin building and managing a portfolio of quantitative approaches. BLACKALGO has composed and stable frameworks that offer straight and profitable execution on varieties of tools, thereby beating off other competitors with more accurate service delivery. As it has great rivals in the market, the company enlists and utilises the most brilliant strategies to beat its competition in the regular finance markets. With a vertically coordinated structure, BLACKALGO is empowered to attend to its clients’ needs to guarantee the most durable and noteworthy quality of developing algorithms for financial markets. With over a decade of experience, the company ensures that there will be no hurdle or difficulty in the way of making the client’s trading experience the best one. Even if there is an issue, the team at BLACKALGO is always on hand to attempt to make such problems vanish without delay. B Established in 2005, BLACKALGO is a leading AI company that is always on hand to further drive clients’ businesses so they can provide AI trading solutions using the latest technologies, tools, products, and software. It is a company committed to seeing how AI changes the way we work and live for the better, aspiring to continuously set the benchmark for innovation, distinction, and dependability in algorithmic trading and AI systems. Plugging the simplest yet smartest online AI on the client’s trading platform, BLACKALGO makes it easy for them to invest in financial markets to earn revenue. BLACKALGO’s intuitive, reliable, and compelling artificial intelligence tools revolutionise the trading experience for every user. Whether a beginner or experienced trader, BLACKALGO is the ideal forex trading solution. With extensive experience in building and analysing real-world trading systems and their effect on trading results, BLACKALGO is able to develop sophisticated and faster trading algorithms that augment the financial market quality and market efficiency to contribute to the profitability of market investors. The company’s team of experienced technologists and finance professionals work each day to define a new standard in service and quality for clients. With broad foundations in quantitative finance and algorithmic trading, BLACKALGO’s specialist advancement team gives extra expert administrations to enable clients to leverage their trade.

Acquisition International - Worldwide Finance Awards 2022 17 The team has a profound comprehension of the prescribed procedures for actualising a quantitative technique in algorithmic trading. Each team member is dynamic and humble and energetic about algorithmic trading, giving clients the opportunity to interact and work with global experts. Alongside this, BLACKALGO has a team of brilliant developers who have a combined 60 years’ experience. Its team truly thrives on expanding upon the quality they provide, being committed to responsiveness and innovativeness in order to ensure that clients ultimately make well-timed investment decisions. Specifically for its private clients, BLACKALGO has a special feature – copy trading – where they copy its trading signals and get themselves benefited. Optimised for efficient trading performance, this feature is the most simple, secure and convenient to use. Fully automated, users don’t need to stress out upon checking the financial markets regularly. The company also tailors solutions to corporate clients, enabling them to beat the challenges of business by utilising smart tools and software. BLACKALGO provides optimally tailored solutions, specialising in automation to asset managers, hedge funds, family offices, and much more, along with branding. These solutions are then implemented to ensure that the client business continues to run smoothly and gain efficient returns. This identifies the biggest cost-causing and inefficient aspects of the client’s trading business, then eliminating those aspects by inserting the right solutions to ensure greater returns. It provides the corporate business with tailored trade finance solutions that suit their requirements. With BLACKALGO’s standalone AI tools, clients can get an excellent customised solution that is right for their business, to keep their revenue high and costs low. Ultimately, BLACKALGO is dedicated to providing solutions that suit its clients’ needs and it is dedicated to helping in increasing productivity and efficiency. It strives to provide excellent customer service, and for that, it works closely with the client. It understands and appreciates each business and efficiently learns how it operates in order to design solutions. Company: BLACKALGO Email: Website: