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Honoring world-class entrepreneurs since 1986

EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ is the world’s most prestigious business award for entrepreneurs. Recognized globally, the award honors the most outstanding entrepreneurs who inspire others with their vision, leadership and achievement.

As the first truly global award program of its kind, Entrepreneur Of The Year celebrates entrepreneurs who are building and leading successful, growing and dynamic businesses, recognizing them through regional, national and global awards in over 145 cities and 60 countries.

Participation in the Entrepreneur Of The Year program puts you in touch with other high-growth business builders. Because the program attracts thousands of founders and CEOs of high-growth companies, you will have a powerful opportunity to build relationships with an elite group. This program offers invaluable one-on-one interaction opportunities with an audience of top executives.

Nomination eligibility

The nominee:

  • Owner/manager of a private or public company who is primarily responsible for the recent performance of the company
  • Must be in his/her role for at least two years

The company:

  • At least two years old for Emerging category candidates (companies two to five years old) and three years or more for all other categories
  • Definition of an Entrepreneur
  • Entrepreneurs include both founders of companies and those who organize, manage, and assume the “educated” risks of a business or enterprise in the companies’ life or development and are active in the leadership of the company. Traditionally, the entrepreneur is the CEO/original founder of an organization.

Definition of an entrepreneur

Entrepreneurs can also be those CEOs that come on board to join an existing business and create institutional change. In doing so, these CEO/entrepreneurs assume a different kind of risk, but a risk nonetheless. In select cases, the CEO/President of a subsidiary may also qualify as an Entrepreneur. There are many situations, such as an acquired business, where the subsidiary or divisional CEO/President has a separate P&L and substantial vision and authority over strategy and execution of the grand plan for that business and, as a result, can be considered an Entrepreneur. Entrepreneurs can also be multi generational (i.e. business passed from generation to generation). The new leadership should exhibit their own form of risk and also “make their mark” on the family business.

Whether the original founder or a non-founding CEO/entrepreneur, these individuals find creative, venturesome ways to acquire the capital resources, build their team and innovate to achieve their goals and to build and grow their business. They create value for themselves, their employees, their customers and their communities.