The Fishies 2015: The Winners!

The results are in for this year’s Fishies!

It’s time to swap your desk for a sofa, conduct a week-long Man Vs. Food challenge, drink yourself into a stupor and pretend you know the words to Auld Lang Syne… but first, it’s time to crown the stars of 2015 by naming the winners of this year’s Littlefish FX Fishies – our annual end-of-year awards.

Inspired by our weekly Five Lessons Learnt This Weekour digest of world news, sport, politics, the best of the web and whatever else we fancy, we picked the people, brands and stories that stood out in 2014.

So after a long (and not particularly scientific) voting process following our nominations, without further ado, here are the winners of The Fishies 2015…

Person of the Year

Fishies2015PersonThe unsung hero of the year…

Maria Koltakova

There was no competition for this one… Our hands-down winner for person of the year was Maria Koltakova, the 93-year old who loves parachute jumps and adventures and now has her sights set on space travel for her next adventure.

MariaMaria said her first sky dive (which was in memory of her brother Evgeny, who died in WWII) felt like “dancing in the sky”. She loved it so much she’s now planning a second jump to celebrate her 94th birthday – unless she gets the opportunity to travel to space in the meantime (that’s next on her bucket list).

Maybe we should all make our resolution for 2016 to be a bit more like Maria? Okay, you don’t have to do a sky dive, but we could all do with a touch of her courage and daring.

What we said:
“The 93-year-old WWII veteran who did her first parachute jump this year and is now planning a trip to space is proof that you’re only as old as you feel”. See Lesson no. 5, September 18th

Central Banker of the Year

Fishies2015BankerSometimes loved, sometimes hated, always discussed. Our Central Banker of the Year 2015 is…

Mark Carney

Your winner for Central Banker of the Year is the Canadian Central Banker currently serving as the Governor of the Bank of England and Chairman of the G20’s Financial Stability Board.


Which is good news, since the BOE leader (who previously said he didn’t plan to hold the position for more than five years because he wanted to fit the job around his daughters’ education), has recently been hinting that he may stick around longer, stating that he still has “so much more to do”. Watch this space.

We’d still like to give Mario Draghi an honorary mention for consistency in excellent tie choice, though. 

What we said:
“For his answers in treasury select committees.”

Product of the Year

Fishies2015ProductTop of our Christmas lists is…

Bamboo Spark

It was a close call between the Bamboo Spark and the Altwork Station, but your votes just edged the Bamboo Spark into the lead. The digital notebook allows you to preserve all your life-changing ideas in digital format so you’ll never lose that midnight brainstorm that could have made you millions again.

wacom-bamboo-spark-3We love the fact you don’t need special (read: overpriced) paper, like you do with most other digital notebooks, and the fact that we can now save all of our genius ideas to the cloud, meaning we can find our brainwaves at the click of a button.

And we’ll never again have to spend half an hour rummaging through the paperwork mountain in search of our trading plan (inevitably missing the trades we were hoping to catch in the meantime). Genius, and well deserving of the Fishie Award for Product of the Year, we think.

What we said:
“Digitised notes mean you’ll never lose your trading plan in the paperwork mountain again. Why didn’t anyone think of this sooner?!” See Littlefish Loves: The Bamboo Spark

F**k Up of the Year

Fishies2015FUpBecause we all love to giggle at other people getting it wrong… 


Well, this one had to go to VWgate, didn’t it? The German car manufacturer found themselves in a spot of bother back in September after it emerged they’d been faking emissions tests – cue a host of recalled products, a couple of dramatic firings and a whole lot of expense in rebuilding their brand reputation.

vwAfter it was revealed that VW had been using “defeat devices” to trick emissions tests into believing the vehicles met environmental standards, the company set aside an initial £4.7 billion to cover the fallout and win back customers’ trust – and that didn’t even scratch the surface of recouping the damage.

So it’s not been a good year for VW on the whole – but now that they have a Fishie award, we’re sure they’ll feel much better.

What we said:
“The very car manufacturer who built an entire marketing campaign around their ‘reliability’ USP proved themselves both unreliable and untrustworthy overnight – and it cost them billions.” See Lesson no. 5, September 25th

Marketing Campaign of the Year

Fishies2015MarketingNow we’ve had a laugh at who got it wrong, let’s celebrate who got it bang on…

Free Pints

Everyone loves a freebie, so this one was always between #ReleaseThePounds and Carlsberg’s best billboard ever. But it turns out you’d rather have a free pint than a free tenner, as you voted Carlsberg’s free pints Marketing Campaign of the Year.

pintsThe billboard ad was posted in Shoreditch, London back in April and installed with a pump that dished out free pints to passers-by. Obviously, it was an instant success with a pretty much permanent queue, and naturally it created an internet storm, particularly on Twitter where users flocked to request a similar billboard in their local cities.

It’s probably the only billboard people actually paid much attention to, and definitely the only one people stopped and queued for – so Carlsberg must be doing something right.

What we said:
“If Carlsberg did marketing campaigns…” See Lesson no. 2, April 10th 

Driving Fail of the Year

Fishies2015DrivingFailFrom parking tickets to traffic jams, 2015 has seen its fair share of driving disasters… 

Wheelie Unfair

The unlikely winner of this year’s Fishie for Driving Fail of the Year is the runaway wheelie bin who found itself in the path of an overzealous traffic warden, who promptly gave the bin a ticket for reckless parking.

binsThe wheelie bin was parked on double yellow lines, and after a member of the public pointed it to a traffic warden, he issued the bin with a parking fine. Presumably as a joke, but unfortunately his fun was spoilt when he was reported to the council, who launched a formal investigation into the humorous investigation and made a bit of a skip out of a mini pedal bin, if you ask us (sorry – we had to get one more horrendous pun in by the end of 2015).

Hopefully, winning this Fishie will help the bin move on from his unfair treatment and kick off a wheelie great year in 2016.

What we said:
“Traffic wardens really do have no mercy. Not even for wayward wheelie bins.” See Lesson no. 1, January 23rd 

Twitter Exchange of the Year

Fishies2015TwitterThere was stiff competition for social media exchange of the year, but the winner is…

#WeWant Plates

We’re not sure when it became apparent to restaurant owners worldwide that plates were no longer the appropriate means of serving food. But it did, and the resulting plethora of random objects holding food triggered your favourite Twitter account of 2015… @WeWantPlates.

WeWantPlatesLaunched by sports journalist Ross McGinnes, the @WeWantPlates now has over 80k followers and has shamed restaurants around the world for serving food in everything from dog bowls and teacups to pint glasses and coasters. And it’s still funny.

Our favourite tweet to the account to date is still this little treasure from Braden James: “I refuse to bring children into the world whilst it is still commonplace to serve chips in a tin cup. Cups are NOT for chips.” We couldn’t agree more.

What we said:
“The Twitter campaign demanding that restaurants stop serving food in plant pots, baskets and other random objects gave us hours of entertainment.” See Lesson no. 4, March 13th

Biggest Splurge of the Year

Fishies2015SplurgeAnd the award for biggest spend of 2015 goes to… 

Mr Gan the Penny Man

The winner of the biggest splurge of 2015 is super-saver Mr Gan, who shocked a car dealership in China back in June by paying for a £72,000 vehicle with four tonnes of cash: over £70,000 in coins (a total of 660,000 coins, to be precise) and the rest in notes.

By [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Mr. Gan works in a petrol station and saved the cash from buses who used the shop. As banks are not common in his area, he filled up a piggy bank or two and eventually hauled the lot down to the garage to purchase his new wheels. We bet that took them a while to count up…

What we said:

“Super-saver Mr Gan is not the first to spend over £70,000 on a car. But he is probably the first (and last) to deliver the full amount to the car dealership – in cash.” See Lesson no. 4, June 5th

Image credit:By [CC BY 2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

You can see all the nominations here – and let us know what you think of our winners by tweeting @LFXKatie and @LittlefishFX. Have a great Christmas and New Year all!

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