Ontario's most disruptive and innovative entrepreneurs named finalists of the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ program

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(Toronto, 6 July 2016) – EY is recognizing an impressive group of Ontario entrepreneurs for their financial performance, vision, leadership, personal integrity and entrepreneurial spirit. Today, the firm named 50 finalists across 10 categories in its EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ Ontario 2016 awards program.

“Entrepreneurs have big ideas and take risks as they innovate, create jobs, generate wealth and invest in communities across the country,” says François Tellier, Entrepreneur Of The Year national program director. “Ontario has so many impressive and successful entrepreneurs, and I know it wasn’t an easy task for the independent panel of judges to narrow down from 165 nominees to 50 finalists. We’re very proud to celebrate this group.”

An independent panel of judges will name winners in a number of diverse categories, and one of the category winners as the overall Ontario winner. That winner will then compete with winners from Québec, Atlantic, Prairies and Pacific for the Canadian Entrepreneur Of The Year title. The Canadian winner will go on to compete with winners from more than 50 countries for the title of EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year, in June 2017.

The Canadian Entrepreneur Of The Year program is in its 23rd year of recognizing, celebrating and telling the inspiring stories of the country’s most impressive entrepreneurs from all areas of business and different stages of their entrepreneurial journey.

The Ontario winners will be announced at a gala in Toronto on 27 October 2016.

More information
Follow @EYCanada, #EOY and #EOYOntario on Twitter for the latest event updates.

Visit ey.com/ca/eoy for more program details and a complete list of category finalists and gala dates in the regions.

2016 Ontario EY Entrepreneur Of The Year finalists

Business & Consumer Services

Des D'Silva
Assured Automotive | Mississauga
Operates over 60 auto body/collision shops located throughout the GTA, Southern Ontario and the Ottawa region.

Dale Morgan
ASTOUND Group | Oakville
A global design and fabrication house building end-to-end solutions for trade show exhibits, events and architectural projects around the world.

Sam Blyth
Blyth Academy | Toronto
Canada’s leading private school by enrollment, with 11 schools in Ontario and new campuses opening soon in Italy and Singapore.

Bruce Poon Tip
G Adventures Inc | Toronto
A sustainable travel pioneer, offering small group tours to 90 countries on all continents, leaving a positive impact by helping local communities.

Consumer Products

Brandon Truaxe
Deciem Beauty Group Inc. | Toronto
An umbrella of a growing range of beauty brands with one mission common amongst them: to marry function, design and authenticity.

Les Mandelbaum
Umbra Ltd | Toronto
One of Canada’s most iconic global homewares product design companies, recognized for its original and intelligent design of everyday items.

Stephen Flatt
Upper Canada Soap | Mississauga
Creates and designs personal care, beauty and wellness products that combine time tested traditions and ingredients with the latest in innovation and technology. 

Financial Services

Rob Goodall
Atrium Mortgage Investment Corporation  (TSX: AI, AI.DB, AI.DB.A, AI.DB.B [shares + debentures]) | Toronto
A non-bank lender that provides financing solutions to the real estate communities in Ontario, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia.

Paul McLean
CWB Maxium Financial (formerly Maxium Financial) | Richmond Hill
Offers creative structured financing and innovative lending solutions that respond directly to the specific needs of each customer.

Steven Hudson
Element Financial Corporation (TSX: EFN)  | Toronto
A North American leader with global strength in fleet management and equipment finance across the four industry pillars: fleet management, rail finance, commercial and vendor finance, and aviation finance.

Steve Ranson
HomEquity Bank | Toronto
Provides reverse mortgage solutions for Canadian homeowners aged 55 and over.

Food & Beverage

Tracey Clark
Bridgehead | Ottawa
Sources, roasts and serves fairly traded and organic coffees from small scale farmers in community coffeehouses.

Andy Wilkin
Pilot Coffee Roasters | Toronto
A specialty coffee roaster, retailer and wholesaler that serves cafes, restaurants and hotels.

Khang Luong, Mike Luong, and Kevin Sun
Sweet Maple Candies | Toronto
Provides unique, customizable confectionery products to international customers, including gumballs, premium mints and jawbreakers.

Ali Kizilbash
TWI Foods Inc. | Toronto
Offers delectable baked products with the highest quality standards, including cookies, cakes, flatbreads and puff pastries.


Richard Wilson
AGNORA Inc. | Collingwood
Deploys leading edge technology and top-performing equipment to fabricate the largest architectural glass in North America.

Bob Peacock
Almag Aluminum | Brampton
Manufactures aluminum extruded products to help a wide variety of companies throughout North America to be leaders in their own industries.

Ben Hogervorst and Rob Stute
Britespan Building Systems Inc. | Lucknow
Designs and engineers custom fabric structures for every industry, offering the widest product line, with engineered structures from 24' to 200' wide to any length.

Frank Molinaro and Vince Molinaro
Molinaro's Fine Italian Foods Ltd | Mississauga
Produces quality pizza and related products, specializing in customized deli and frozen pizza products for retail chains for more than 50 years.

Media & Entertainment

Maria Armstrong and Catherine Fogarty
Big Coat Productions Inc. | Toronto
A production company specializing in unscripted, entertainment-based content and documentaries.

James Schmalz and Michael Schmalz
Digital Extremes | London
An independent developer and publisher of videogames for Xbox® and PlayStation® platforms.

David Ross
Ross Video | Ottawa
Designs, manufactures and delivers dependable technology and services that power live video productions.

Jason Flick
You.i TV | Kanata
An innovative app engine that enables producers to build cross-platform TV apps with beyond-native performance and custom design.

Real Estate/Construction Services

Mandy Rennehan
Freshco | Oakville
A retail reconstruction, maintenance and service firm that offers customized, coast-to-coast, first point of contact service across Canada and the Eastern United States.

Michael Cohen
Industrial SkyWorks | Toronto
A data gathering, analysis and reporting company that uses technology to help stakeholders make infrastructure management decisions. 

Jason Smith
Real Matters | Markham
A proprietary, cloud-based real estate technology platform and network of more than 100,000 qualified independent field agents.

Warren Spitz
UCS Forest Group | Mississauga
Distributes special hardwood lumber and decorative panels, serving the architectural woodworking industry.

Sustainable Products & Services

Carinne Chambers
Diva International Inc. | Kitchener
Designs and manufactures The DivaCup, a renowned healthy, sustainable feminine hygiene product.

Paul Downey
Pliteq Inc. | Toronto
Provides engineered solutions to structural, vibration and sound control problems using recycled rubber materials.

Jodi Glover
Real Tech Inc. | Whitby
Develops innovative real-time water quality monitoring sensors and software for municipal and industrial clients.

Lawrence Krimker
Simply Green Home Services Inc. | Toronto
Originates and finances residential and commercial energy efficiency projects with reliable top-quality, high-efficiency heating and cooling systems.


Dave Kroetsch
Aeryon Labs Inc. | Waterloo
A technology and industry leader in the design and production of small Unmanned Aerial Systems (sUAS).

Alex Miller
Esri Canada | Toronto
Provides geographic information system (GIS) software and services, helping make timely, informed and mission-critical business decisions by leveraging the power of geography.

Kurtis McBride
Miovision Technologies Inc. | Kitchener
A technology company that empowers transportation professionals in 50 countries, through data and infrastructure, to improve the transportation experience for drivers, cyclists and pedestrians.

Craig Betts
Solace Systems | Kanata
A leader in data movement technology, making message routers that efficiently move real-time information over local and global networks.

Young & Emerging

Ray Cao, Eva Chan, Daniel Rodic, and Elena Sahakyan
Exact Media Network Inc. | Toronto
Leverages the excess space in eCommerce parcels to distribute contextually relevant, targeted product samples and brand offers in a measurable way.

Taylor Ablitt
GoViral Inc | London
A social news and entertainment website dedicated to connecting audiences with unique user-generated content.

Daniel Bartek, Robert Besant, and Cam McDonald
Iconic Brewing Company | Oakville
A spirits company with popular national-selling brands including Crazy Beard Ale, Dusty Boots Hard Root Beer and Sage Mixology.

Michael Katchen
Wealthsimple Inc. | Toronto
Canada's leading online investment management firm within the fintech industry.

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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 2016 Ontario independent judging panel consists of Jill Denham, Corporate Director; Steve Faraone, Vice-President, Ontario Teacher's Pension Plan; Jon Hantho, Principal, Janus Advisory Services, Entrepreneur Of The Year Services category winner 2012, Ontario, and National Entrepreneur Of The Year Entrepreneurial Leadership Special Citation recipient; Lisa Melchoir, Managing Director, OMERS Private Equity; Lori O'Neil, Corporate Director; Jim Orlando, Managing Director, OMERS Ventures; Jeff Parr, Co-Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Clairvest Group Inc.; Gerald Slemko, CEO, Trudell Medical; and Rick Watkin, President and CEO, KUBRA, Entrepreneur Of The Year Technology and Communications category winner 2010, Ontario.

This year's program national sponsors are TEC Canada, La Presse, RDI, The TMX Group, The Globe and Mail Inc., Merrill Corporation, Kira Talent, Air Canada and The Printing House Limited. Ontario regional sponsors are Captivate Network and RBC Royal Bank.

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.

EY is proudly celebrating 150 years in Canada. For more information, please visit ey.com/ca. Follow us on Twitter @EYCanada.

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 about our organization, please visit ey.com.