Thursday 21 July 2016

EY Entrepreneur Of The Year finalists named

  • Share

Eighteen top entrepreneurs have reached the finals of New Zealand’s most prestigious business awards, the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year competition.

Awards director Jon Hooper notes rapid technology advances are creating massive opportunities for people to disrupt legacy industries and start new, competitive businesses with significantly less cost and infrastructure than even five years ago.

“This year’s finalists are a shining example of what can be achieved through innovation and perseverance across a diverse range of industries,” Hooper says.

The finalists are:

  • Colin & Dale Armer (Armer Farms NI)
  • Andrew Barnes (Perpetual Guardian)
  • Peter Beck (Rocket Lab)
  • Carmel Fisher (Fisher Funds Management)
  • Duane Dalton & Christopher Henderson (Pita Pit)
  • Linda Jenkinson (John Paul)
  • David McSorley (Max Contracts)
  • Fady Mishriki (PowerbyProxi)
  • Tim Norton (90 Seconds)
  • Paul Nielsen (HomeTech)
  • Ranjna Patel (Nirvana Health Group)
  • Jos Ruffell (Garage Projects)
  • Jackie Smith (FAB Group)
  • Rebecca Tohill (Fusion5)
  • John Tooby (Golden Healthcare Group)
  • Vladan Vukovich (Wimpex)

The 18 finalists will face the judging panel next month when five category winners will be chosen. These five will then compete for the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year title and will represent New Zealand at EY’s World Entrepreneur Of The Year event in Monaco in June 2017.

Diane Foreman, who won the NZ Entrepreneur Of The Year title in 2009 and sat on the World Entrepreneur Of The Year judging panel in 2010, is the chair of this year’s judges.

Foreman says she agreed to the position “because I am determined to find good female talent and promote our fantastic women entrepreneurs on the world stage”.  

“This year we are so fortunate in the calibre of all our applicants. I think this is the most diverse group we have been lucky enough to attract.”

The judging panel is:

  • Diane Foreman CNZM. Entrepreneur Of The Year 2009, founder of Emerald Group
  • Anne Norman CNZM. James Pascoe Group
  • Bridget Coates. White Cloud Dairy Innovation,  ArcAngels
  • Dan Radcliffe. Entrepreneur Of The Year 2014, founder of International Volunteer HQ
  • Dr John Penno, Entrepreneur Of The Year Products category winner 2013, Synlait Group


For further information, please contact:
Jon Hooper
+64 9 348 8246

Diane Foreman
021 615 161

About EY

EY is a global leader is assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. The insight and quality services we deliver help build trust and confidence in capital markets and in economies the world over. We develop outstanding leaders who team to deliver on our promises to all 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.

EY refers to the global organization, and may refer to one or more of the member firms, of Ernst & Young Global Limited, each of which is a separate legal entity. Ernst & Young Global Limited, a UK company limited by guarantee, does not provide services to clients. For more information on our organization, please visit

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