83 Aussie entrepreneurs in the running for Entrepreneur Of The Year title

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Monday 19 May 2014 - EY today announced the elite group of entrepreneurs from around the country who are in the running to be named as this year’s Australian EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™.

The 2014 nominee field includes 83 entrepreneurs running innovative businesses across a wide range of sectors including fashion, technology, childcare, food and beverage, solar energy, engineering, waste management and cosmetics.

Bryan Zekulich, EY Oceania Entrepreneur Of The Year Leader, said it was inspiring to see such an impressive and diverse group of candidates taking part in this year’s nominations process.

“EY has been running the Entrepreneur Of The Year awards in Australia since 2001 and the fact that, 14 years on, we are still seeing such amazing nominees coming through the program reinforces the high calibre of entrepreneurialism Australia has on offer,” Zekulich said.

“The kind of innovative thinking we are witnessing amongst this group of entrepreneurs is so important. Entrepreneurs make a significant contribution to Australia’s business community – creating jobs, driving innovation and productivity, boosting the economy and inspiring others to act on opportunities.”

“We congratulate all of our 2014 nominees for being selected to take part in this year’s EY Entrepreneur Of The Year program and wish them all the best in their journey towards the national competition.”

Grahame Petersen, Group Executive Business and Private Banking, Commonwealth Bank, said the Bank is proud to support a program that celebrates entrepreneurial thinking.

“This is the third year Commonwealth Bank has been the principal sponsor of the awards and we consistently see an impressive standard of business pioneers nominated for the coveted title of Australian EY Entrepreneur Of The Year.

“The awards set the benchmark for innovation and leadership in business and it is a huge honour for nominees to be associated with the program. This year’s finalist line-up reflects the breadth of talent across a range of industries and showcases the individuals who are at the forefront of Australian enterprise,” Mr Petersen said.

The only truly global program of its kind, EY Entrepreneur Of The Year is considered the world’s most prestigious business award, with entrepreneurs participating from more than 145 cities in over 60 countries. Each country’s program sends its overall winner to the EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year™ awards in Monte Carlo.

The Australian nominees will first vie for regional honours at award ceremonies being held across the country during July and August. Regional winners then go on to compete at the national awards, which will be held in Melbourne at the end of November. The overall 2014 Australian winner will travel to Monte Carlo next year to represent Australia at the 2015 World Entrepreneur Of The Year awards, following in the footsteps of previous Australian winners including Andrew Bassat of SEEK (2013) and Anthony Podesta of McMillan Shakespeare (2012).

The full list of nominees in the 2014 Australian EY Entrepreneur Of The Year awards is below. Additional information, including biographies for each of the nominees, is also available online at http://www.ey.com/au/eoy.

Central Region (SA & NT) nominees

  • Allan Aitchison – MIMP Connecting Solutions
  • Paul Crawford – Commercial Motor Vehicles Pty Ltd (CMV Group)
  • Mark Dayman – Fyfe
  • John George – MGA and Whittles
  • Shane Kelly - Kelly Engineering
  • Sean LePoidevin – Off-Grid Energy Australia
  • Daniel Mendelson – Burger Theory
  • Jenny Paradiso – Suntrix
  • Greg Patten – Mogas Group
  • Ali Serhan – Emali ELC
  • Henry Yap – Yap Group of Companies
  • Listed award – Jeff Ellison – SeaLink Travel Group Limited
  • Social entrepreneur – Madge McGuire – Catherine House Inc.

The Central Region awards ceremony will be held in Adelaide on Thursday, 24 July 2014.

Eastern Region (NSW & ACT) nominees

  • Scott Carr – Datapod
  • Nahji Chu – misschu
  • Adam Cryer and Ross Robinson – Real Institute Pty Ltd
  • Peter Freedman – RØDE Microphones
  • Christine Garforth – Animal Supplies (Wholesale)
  • Nick Georgalis – GEOCON Group Pty Ltd
  • Bob Hall – Sandstone Technology
  • Ian Hedley – Hedweld
  • Philip Jackson – Sportstec Limited
  • Jane Lu – SHOWPO
  • Alec Lynch – DesignCrowd.com
  • Brooke Taylor – Injury Treatment – Occupational Injury Management
  • Dr Catriona Wallace – Fifth Quadrant Group and Flamingo
  • Anthony Woodward – Bulletproof
  • Social entrepreneur – Margo Ward – KidsXpress

The Eastern Region awards ceremony will be held in Sydney on Thursday, 7 August 2014.

Northern Region (QLD) nominees

  • Joe Andon – Vuly Trampolines
  • Brad Couper – simPRO Software
  • Gary Crosby – Intelligent Pathways
  • Carl Hartmann – Temando Pty Ltd
  • Maxine Horne – Vita Group
  • Llew Jury – Reload Media
  • Shane Leaney – Videopro
  • Tudor Marsden-Huggins – Employment Office
  • Geoff Pike – General Trade Industries
  • Harley Sparke – Corporate Protection Australia Group
  • Leigh Storr – BioSolar
  • Grant Wechsel – One Key Resources
  • John West – DGL (Aust) Pty Ltd
  • Listed award – Philip St Baker – ERM Power Limited
  • Social entrepreneur – Jean Madden – Street Swags
  • Champion of Entrepreneurship – Tim Crommelin – Morgans

The Northern Region awards ceremony will be held in Brisbane on Thursday, 31 July 2014.

Southern Region (VIC & TAS) nominees

  • Andy Butler – Textor Technologies
  • Dr Brandon Carp – UHG
  • Sam Chandler – Nitro
  • Chris Dance and Matt Doran – PaperCut Software International
  • Joe Davenport and Owen Kerr – Pepperstone
  • Andre Eikmeier and Justin Dry – Vinomofo
  • Rob McGavin – Boundary Bend Olives
  • Ray Montague – Montague
  • Michael O’Keeffe – Aesop
  • Craig Phillips – Superior Food Services
  • David Prior – five:am organics
  • Robert Rio – Rio Industrial Group
  • Adam Schwab – AussieCommerce Group
  • Andy Sheats – health.com.au
  • Tristan Sternson – InfoReady
  • Social entrepreneur – Tim Conolan – TLC for kids
  • Champion of Entrepreneurship – Roger Gillespie OAM and Lesley Gillespie OAM – Bakers Delight

The Southern Region awards ceremony will be held in Melbourne on Thursday, 17 July 2014.

Western Region (WA) nominees

  • Bill Beament – Northern Star Resources Limited
  • Richard Johnson – DTI Group
  • Sharon Kais – Kais Contractors
  • Adam Lamond – OTOC Limited
  • Sam Mangione – Instant Waste Management
  • Michael Ottaviano – Carnegie Wave Energy Limited
  • Bernie Pummell – Vesco Foods
  • Michelle Rhodes – 360 Environmental Pty Ltd
  • Kashif Saleem – Saleem Technologies
  • Sarah Thomas – Lawley’s Bakery Café
  • Paul Thompson – Killarnée
  • Graeme Wallis – Wallis Drilling Pty Ltd
  • Declan White – Monford Group
  • Listed award – Jon Stewart – Aurora Oil & Gas Limited
  • Social entrepreneur – John Bishop and Vickie Davy – PetRescue
  • Champion of Entrepreneurship – Jack Cowin – Competitive Foods

The Western Region awards ceremony will be held in Perth on Thursday, 21 August 2014.


About EY Entrepreneur Of The Year

EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ is the world’s most prestigious business award for entrepreneurs. The unique award makes a difference through the way it encourages entrepreneurial activity among those with potential, and recognises the contribution of people who inspire others with their vision, leadership and achievement. As the first and only truly global award of its kind, EY Entrepreneur Of The Year celebrates those who are building and leading successful, growing and dynamic businesses, recognising them through regional, national and global awards programs in more than 145 cities in more than 60 countries.

The Australian Entrepreneur Of The Year awards program, launched in 2001, is conducted in five regions culminating in the national awards. The program honours entrepreneurs whose ingenuity and perseverance have created and sustained successful, growing business ventures. Entrepreneur Of The Year’s primary objective is to identify, acknowledge and celebrate the outstanding contribution entrepreneurs make to the Australian business community and economy.

The Australian Entrepreneur Of The Year program now has alumni of over 1,200 entrepreneurs who have participated in the program. Since the program’s inception more than 15,000 people have attended Entrepreneur Of The Year events and award ceremonies in Australia.

About EY
EY is a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. The insights and quality services we deliver help build trust and confidence in the capital markets and in economies the world over. We develop outstanding leaders who team to deliver on our promises to all of our stakeholders. In so doing, we play a critical role in building a better working world for our people, for our clients and for our communities.

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This news release has been issued by Ernst & Young Australia, a member firm of Ernst & Young Global Limited.

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Contact details:

Rebecca Aley
Ernst & Young Australia
Tel: +61 2 9276 9305 or 0418 835 849