Neil Cawse of Geotab Inc. named EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ Ontario 2015
EY celebrates legacy-building entrepreneurs at annual awards gala
(Toronto, 30 October 2015) Neil Cawse, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Geotab Inc.—an industry leader in fleet management, driver safety and vehicle-tracking technology—is this year’s EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Ontario winner.
In 2000, before anyone knew what telematics or GPS was, Neil had an entrepreneurial vision—to improve the way enterprises operate and make the world a safer, more efficient place. Through focus on innovative technology, Geotab has grown to be an industry leader. Its products help improve driver safety and productivity, as well as manage the maintenance and fuel management of fleet vehicles.
“Neil’s business was based on GPS technology—a novelty at the time,” says Colleen McMorrow, Partner and Entrepreneur Of The Year national program director. “He faced initial customer reluctance to use GPS tracking due to driver privacy concerns. Despite this, Neil created demand for his product through customer education, and he created market share and a legacy by proving to businesses that his product is valuable.”
Neil Cawse of Geotab Inc. (centre) was named EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Ontario 2015 at an awards gala in Toronto last night. Eric Rawlinson and Colleen McMorrow of EY presented the award.
Soon, Geotab saw accelerated growth, taking orders from all over North America. But Neil knew that in this highly-competitive technology space, his company’s initial success wouldn’t last long. His team continues to innovate and track new metrics to help customers surpass their business goals while prioritizing safety. Geotab is now the second-largest company of its kind in North America.
“Neil makes choices that may not always lead to short-term financial results,” says McMorrow. “But that’s exactly why he’s so successful. Neil zeroes in on what’s best in the long term—for his company, employees and partners. His ability to stick to his principles and hard research when making decisions is a valuable and rare trait. We’re honoured to present him with this well-deserved award.”
Community builder and social entrepreneur honoured
This year’s gala also honoured Cyril Leeder, President of the Ottawa Senators Hockey Club, with the EY Community Builder award; and Michel Labbé, President and CEO of Options for Homes, with the EY Social Entrepreneurship award. Cyril Leeder, now President of the Ottawa Senators Hockey Club, built up the Ottawa community by bringing in an NHL franchise and making it successful on multiple fronts. Michel Labbé started Options for Homes to bring home ownership within reach for households with a wide range of income levels. Both entrepreneurs have decisively cemented their legacies as change-agents who combine business with community impact.
As the Ontario region’s EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2015, Neil Cawse will compete with top entrepreneurs—François-Xavier Souvay of Lumenpulse (Québec TSX: LMP), Patrick Priestner of AutoCanada Inc. (Prairies TSX: ACQ), Michael Donovan of DHX Media (Atlantic TSX:DHX.B) and John Anderson of Oppenheimer Group (Pacific)—for the national honour of Canada’s EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2015. The award will be presented at a gala celebration on 24 November 2015 in Toronto. In June 2016, Canada’s EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2015 will move to the world stage to compete with more than 50 country recipients for the title of EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year.
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Visit ey.com/ca/eoy for more program details and a complete list of category finalists and gala dates in the regions.
The EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Ontario 2015 category award recipients:
dentalcorp | Toronto
Focused on acquiring and partnering with leading, growth-oriented dental practices throughout Canada. Today, it is the country’s largest provider of dental services with 140 locations.
Consumer Products and Services
Marc Anthony Cosmetics Inc. | Concord
A marketing and distribution company specializing in personal hair care and beauty products, offering customers professional quality products at affordable prices.
Canada Pooch Ltd. | Toronto
A household name for pet parents looking to keep pets warm and dry, the brand is sold in Canada, the US and internationally.
Dr. Steven Stein
MHS Assessments | North York
A leading publisher of scientifically validated assessments for more than 30 years, MHS Assessments serves clients in educational, clinical, corporate, public safety, government, military, pharmaceutical, and research settings.
Valiant Corporation | Windsor
Designs, manufactures and integrates lean and flexible automated production systems, tooling, and components.
Media and entertainment
9 Story Media Group | Toronto
An industry-leading creator, producer and distributor of award-winning animated and live action content for young audiences around the world. 9 Story has produced over 900 animated and live action episodes, seen worldwide.
Geotab Inc. | Oakville
Develops, manufactures, and supplies GPS fleet management and tracking for local and Fortune 500 companies. These end-to-end solutions monitor driver safety, productivity and vehicle fuel and maintenance.
Technology Enabled Services
Chango Inc., acquired by Rubicon Project | Toronto
Uses exclusive intent data and technology to create relevant and timely advertising campaigns that produce rich customer insights.
Matthew Bailey, Aaron Grant and Stephen Lake
Thalmic Labs | Kitchener
Pioneering new ways of interacting with technology, the company’s first product, the Myo™ armband, measures electrical activity in muscles to wirelessly control the digital world.
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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 recognizes 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, recognizing them through regional, national and global awards programs in more than 140 cities in 50 countries.
The 2015 Ontario independent judging panel consists of Andy Burgess, Managing Director, Russell Square Partners and Entrepreneur Of The Year Media and Entertainment category winner 2006, Ontario; Jill Denham, Corporate Director; Jon Hantho, Chief Executive Officer, Maxxam Analytics, Entrepreneur Of The Year Services category winner 2012, Ontario, and National Entrepreneur Of The Year Entrepreneurial Leadership Special Citation recipient; Jim Orlando, Managing Director, OMERS Ventures; Jeff Parr, Co-Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Clairvest Group Inc. and Tracie Tighe, Executive Producer, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC).
This year's national program sponsors are TEC Canada, La Presse, RDI, TMX, Merrill DataSite, Kira Talent, Air Canada, The Printing House Limited. The Québec regional sponsor is Fonds de solidarité FTQ.
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