Catering Insight Awards 2016 winners: Service & Maintenance Provider of the Year

L-r: Promedia Publishing editorial director, Andrew Seymour; Advance’s MD, Peter Dinan, Acme Facilities Group MD Chris Allen; and John Whitehouse, MD of First Choice Group.

Catering Insight’s Service & Maintenance Provider of the Year Award category, sponsored by the First Choice Group, was open to both specialist service companies and distributors that operate dedicated service businesses.

This category was the tightest of all in the voting, as it resulted in a dead heat, so two trophies were presented to the joint winners: Acme Facilities Group and Advance Group.

Acme was rewarded as it has expanded its engineer network this year to be one of the largest in the country, thanks to the purchase of Severn Catering Services. It has bought upgraded vehicles for its new joiners, as well as investing in van stock, IT infrastructure and office administration.

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The catering equipment industry is one of its target areas for growth, so it is aiming to further improve its IT systems soon. Acme prides itself on fast reaction times and investing money to train its engineers to high standards.

Over at Advance, its proprietary asset management system, IntEquip, is unparalleled in the industry, tracking over 30,000 pieces of equipment tracing as far back as 20 years.

In the last 12 months the firm has invested in reconfiguring its vans with uniform racking and in a total of £120,000 in parts, as well as investing in tablet computers for engineers. Advance has completed more than 2,000 one-off equipment replacements and 25,000 service calls over the last year, averaging 90%+ first time fix.

Acme Facilities Group MD Chris Allen commented on the win: “It’s fantastic. It’s recognition for all the hard work that the guys put in, right from the engineers on the ground floor to all the staff in the office.”

While Advance Group’s  MD Peter Dinan said: “This win is about the team. That’s the reason I’m collecting the award tonight, because of all the work that they’ve done.

“We invested heavily in our asset management system and it’s there to make our customers happy while we work on projects and replacements. We’re absolutely over the moon.”

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