Meet the winners
Congratulations to Canada’s EY Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2023 award winners, regional Overall Award winners and National Special Citation recipients. EY is proud to recognize the artistic entrepreneurs who continuously repaint and reframe our economy from innovative angles through passionate work and commitment.
Aisha Yang and Musharaf Syed of Herbaland Naturals Inc. are Canada’s EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 award winners
Purposeful innovators. Courageous risk-takers. Musharaf Syed and Aisha Yang believe everyone should have access to healthy living conditions. They founded health and wellness brand Herbaland to deliver on that promise for their family, and countless others they now serve.
In 2009, Aisha and Musharaf had two young children, a newborn and an entrepreneurial drive to build a business that could sustain their family. They’d immigrated to Canada in the hopes of providing their kids with a better education. They wanted to establish a business that would make a purposeful impact. Bridging from Musharaf’s job in supplements, they saw an untapped, niche opportunity in gummy health supplements — and developed a retail business to meet that need.
Aisha and Musharaf have had to pivot in the years since. When their sole supplier was acquired and instantly shut off supply in 2013, they faced a tough call: shut down, or dig in? Aisha and Musharaf chose the latter, taking out a line of credit, purchasing a gummy-manufacturing machine and transforming Herbaland from retailer to manufacturer.
The result? Herbaland is the largest nutritional gummy manufacturer in the world, producing and distributing 70 million bottles and pouches across 40 different countries every year. Five facilities and 200 people — many of whom are, or were, immigrants — fuel progress across business-to-business and direct-to-consumer lines. True to their purposeful roots, Herbaland is the world’s first B Corp certified nutritional gummy manufacturer.
Herbaland is deeply committed to giving back to the community that has supported them since the very beginning. With a strong emphasis on both community outreach and business growth, Herbaland unwaveringly upholds its dedication to future expansion.
Meet Canada’s EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 regional Overall Award winners
Canada’s regional Overall Award winners were selected from more than 175 companies nominated for Canada's EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 program. These entrepreneurs not only create and build market-leading businesses, they also help take the standard of excellence to new heights, transform the faces of industries, create jobs and contribute to the vibrancy of communities. They create the art of possible — far beyond any ideals or concepts.
EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 Prairies Overall Award winner
Mark McNeill | The Stream‑Flo Group of Companies
Entrepreneurial thinker. Purposeful builder. Mark McNeill’s ability to see potential everywhere has transformed The Stream‑Flo Group of Companies into a leader in energy solutions.
Mark kick-started his journey as a teenaged machinist at his family’s energy business. Now, as the President & CEO of Stream‑Flo, he has advanced and expanded manufacturing wellhead technology (used to manage oil or gas flow at well surfaces) into alternative energy spaces in North America. He’s also pioneered the idea of providing wellhead and choke valve technology to support energy production in developing nations.
Combining his lifelong knowledge and passion for entrepreneurial thinking, Mark has sparked massive international expansion by daring to ask: what if we worked differently, and partnered with customers in developing countries to define a more reliable, efficient and safer approach to energy together?
The result? Mark’s pioneering efforts have made Stream‑Flo a global force in 34 countries. With 40 patents and counting, they’re reimagining solutions for the energy industry. All while investing in scholarships, academic institutions and communities where Stream‑Flo’s 1,000+ employees live and work.
EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 Ontario Overall Award winner
Graham Rosenberg | dentalcorp
Visionary leader. Accessibility cultivator. Graham Rosenberg’s entrepreneurial drive is levelling up dental care standards and accessibility across North America — and making history, too.
Spotting an opportunity to leverage leading technology, expertise and scale, Graham successfully upended traditional industry models when he founded dentalcorp in 2011. With the unique business model of acquiring dental practices and enabling professionals with the opportunity to retain their autonomy while delivering best-in-class dental care and experiences, Graham’s concept unleashed remarkable growth.
The result? Now, dentalcorp is Canada’s largest and fastest-growing network of dental practices. From start-up to stand-out, Graham took dentalcorp public in 2021. It was the largest healthcare IPO in Canadian history, raising over $950 million to support future growth
What’s more: dentalcorp is purposefully fostering accessibility and inclusive oral care along the way with multi-year philanthropic commitments in support of pediatric dentistry at children's hospitals. Through the Give Back, Smile Back program, dental professionals across Canada donate their time and expertise to provide essential dental care for underserved individuals.
EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 Québec Overall Award winner
Fred Jalbout | SACO Technologies Inc.
Innovative pioneer. Future-focused thinker. Fred Jalbout was just out of university when he transformed an existing product concept into technological advancements now dazzling audiences everywhere.
While learning the ropes at a company that manufactured and sold control room equipment, Fred was quick to ask: how can we improve these designs? Boldly diving in to develop a new structure for the screens he’d been working with, Fred evolved control panels with modular mosaic tiles and LED lights. This had never been done before. Adaptable and easy to maintain, Fred’s design opened up seemingly limitless possibilities for LED video solutions and his company, SACO Technologies, was born.
In 1997, international rockstars U2 came calling with a request for Fred’s team to design and manufacture a 50-by-50 foot LED performance screen. At the time, this marked the largest LED screen ever built and the beginning of a growth trajectory that would see Fred’s company shatter world records. All the while, he’s led the company while making meaningful charitable contributions to Canadian academic and healthcare institutions.
The result? Fred has grown SACO into a global leader for the production of iconic LED video screens, from New York City’s Times Square NASDAQ display to a single-building light and sound show set against Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, and the newly opened Las Vegas Sphere. Under his leadership, SACO has earned multiple awards, including three Guinness World Records… and counting.
EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 Atlantic Overall Award winner
Keith McIntosh | PLATO
Inclusive entrepreneur. Trail-blazing leader. Keith McIntosh believes inclusive growth is better growth. He created PLATO accordingly, prioritizing transformational career opportunities for Indigenous people at the heart of a socially responsible business.
During a break-out session at the Governor General’s Canadian Leadership Conference, Keith sat down to discuss what it meant to be Canadian — and walked away with powerful ideas. Compelled to respond to the call for action laid out in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s final report. Moved by cross-country visits to Indigenous communities. Keith channeled his industry and entrepreneurial experience to found PLATO: Canada’s only Indigenous software testing and technology company located in Atlantic Canada.
Through its unique, innovative and accredited train-and-employ model, PLATO opens new pathways to career success for First Nations, Inuit and Métis people from coast to coast. The model connects in-class learning, internships with corporate partners, real-world apprenticeships on active projects and blended teaming as program participants transition into software testing roles.
The result? Plato has been instrumental in offering numerous individuals their initial entry into the technology industry, granting them their first job opportunities. Additionally, they have provided training to over 300 Indigenous students nationwide, empowering them with valuable skills and knowledge. Today, Plato’s workforce of people spans across 12 delivery centres, more than 30% of the employees are Indigenous and 58% of Board members have Indigenous affiliations. The business has invested more than $14 million in salaries, and counting.
Keith defines success not only by bottom-line growth, but by the number of people impacted and the ability to reinvest back into communities. With that in mind, he’s now focused on expanding globally, creating meaningful and sustainable career possibilities for marginalized groups (including Indigenous people and inner-city youth) in the United States and Australia.
Meet Canada’s EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 National Special Citation recipients
Special Citations are non-competitive awards that recognize entrepreneurs for the unique mark they’ve made on the entrepreneurial landscape in a specific area and celebrate their outstanding achievements.
* Entrepreneur Of The Year Alumni