Program benefits and details
Why get involved?
Entrepreneur Of The Year winners and finalists represent the world's most influential, innovative and exclusive network of entrepreneurs. They enjoy a range of benefits, including:
- Exclusive network: Entrepreneur Of The Year alumni represent some of the most influential, innovative and exclusive entrepreneurs in the world. Winners become part of this influential and exclusive community. They also gain access to business advisors, speaking engagements, media opportunities and the EY Strategic Growth Forum®, the largest and most prestigious gathering of CEOs and high-growth entrepreneurs across the globe.
- Brand awareness: Just being nominated can elevate awareness of your company through exposure to other entrepreneurs, sponsors, judges and guests.
- Valuable publicity: Finalists and winners receive media exposure in their market and beyond.
- Stronger relationships: Investors, customers and potential recruits take notice of award finalists and winners. Employee morale can be lifted across the organization.
Celebrating and involving your team
Every successful entrepreneur knows that it takes a team of hard-working people to help the business succeed. And Entrepreneur Of The Year offers opportunities for everyone to be involved:
- Preparing the nomination form: The CFO and marketing/PR teams are great resources to prepare a draft of your nomination form. Your EA can complete the form online.
- The awards gala: If you become a finalist, the gala makes the program come alive for your team as they cheer you on at the exclusive black-tie event, where they can meet high-profile and influential business leaders.
- The Company Award Program: If you are a category award winner, we come to your premises to present a granite plaque to your employees to honour them for their part in your achievements.
An Entrepreneur Of The Year nominee must meet all of the following criteria:
- Be an owner, CEO or CEO-equivalent of a private or public company.
- Be primarily responsible for the company’s recent performance.
- Be nominated in the region in which the company is headquartered.
- Have some ownership of the company.
- Must be able to provide three (3)* years of financial information.
* Exception: Young and emerging categories can provide a minimum of two (2) years.
Is the focus and raison d'etre of your business primarily as a social entrepreneur? If so, then we encourage you to indicate your category as social on the nomination form. The judges will also consider your nomination in industry categories, as appropriate. If you select this category on your nomination application, please contact your regional EOY specialist for a set of additional questions to complete for the judging panel.
For the purposes of the EOY program, the definition of a social entrepreneur is as follows:
The EOY Social Entrepreneur special citation award honours ventures (either not-for-profit or for-profit) that seek to address a complex social challenge. Their work directly benefits those in need - not an intermediary - but goes beyond simple service provisions to address the systems issues at their core. They are on a path to sustainability and don't rely exclusively on grants or donations. If they are a social purpose business they must be able to demonstrate how their social or environmental impact is at the center of their business. Their innovation and impact has spread beyond the initial founding location to additional regions. They are able to measurably demonstrate their impact and they are a role model for others.
If this describes you or someone you know, the next step is easy! Submit your online nomination today!
Self-nominations are encouraged.
Tips to get your application noticed
A strong, well-written nomination is powerful and compelling to the judges. Consider these points when completing the nomination form:
- Tell your story: This is all about one of the most prestigious business awards in the country. Humility has its time and place — this isn’t it. Write your narrative in the third person. It’s easier to be creative and expand on what you’ve done when you write from this perspective.
- Understand the evaluation process: Focus on the criteria the judges look for.
- Make it engaging: Your story should be truthful, vivid and engaging. Make it stand out. Have a PR team? Put them to work.
- Be concise: Keep to the word count. Brevity is a virtue here.
- Demonstrate results: You can’t measure dreams, but you can quantify growth. Use specific numbers, percentages and statistics.
- Compare yourself to others: How do you stack up to the competition and differentiate yourself in the market? Convey those factors, remembering that judges may be unfamiliar with your industry.
- Persuade: Convince the judges that they’re reading about a real winner. Be authentic. Be enthusiastic.
- Polish and edit: Write it. Take a break. Then go back and read it with fresh eyes, changing what you need to make it shine.
- Be on time: Nomination submissions are due with a firm deadline of 28 April 2017.