Press release

7 Sep 2023

EY Entrepreneur Of The YearTM 2023: The finalists have been selected – Western Switzerland dominates

ZURICH, 7 SEPTEMBER 2023 – The finalists of the 26th EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 competition have been announced. The names of the 15 entrepreneurial personalities for this year's version of the prestigious award have been released today. A total of 44 companies entered the competition in 2023 and the independent jury has now decided who will be in the final in the various entrepreneurial categories of the “EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023” on October 27.

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  • 15 entrepreneurial personalities have been nominated for this year's EY Entrepreneur Of The Year.
  • Western Switzerland has a strong presence with six companies. At least one company from French-speaking Switzerland is present in each category. The Canton of Ticino is also in the final with one company.
  • The awards will be presented in four categories on 27 October at a gala event in Lausanne.

ZURICH, 7 SEPTEMBER 2023 – The finalists of the 26th EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 competition have been announced.  The names of the 15 entrepreneurial personalities for this year's version of the prestigious award have been released today. A total of 44 companies entered the competition in 2023 and the independent jury has now decided who will be in the final in the various entrepreneurial categories of the “EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023” on October 27.

Sascha Stahl, Program Partner of the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Switzerland commented: "We are proud to have been promoting outstanding entrepreneurship in Switzerland for over a quarter of a century. We and the independent jury have been working to select the finalists for months. We are impressed by the commitment and innovative spirit of the entrepreneurial personalities. The leading canton this year is the Canton of Vaud: three companies from this canton have been selected to go forward to the finals. In addition, the Canton of Ticino is also represented by a well-known name."

Frédéric Tissot, Director of Entrepreneurship & Family Enterprise Suisse Romande at EY, added: "French-speaking Switzerland is very prominently represented this year – six companies from the cantons of Geneva, Vaud and Fribourg are promising finalists and French-speaking Switzerland dominates two of our categories."

The awards are presented in the four categories "Industry, High-Tech & Life Sciences", "Services & Commerce", "Family Business" and "Emerging Entrepreneur". Find out more about the people who are in the race for the most coveted award for entrepreneurial creativity. The winners will be chosen at a celebratory gala in Lausanne on October 27, 2023

"Industry, High-Tech & Life Sciences" Category

Olivier Gaudin, SonarSource SA (GE)

Olivier Gaudin is co-founder and CEO of SonarSource, a technology provider that enables developers to write intuitive “clean codes” that are highly stable and easily maintainable. With its unique "Clean as You Code" methodology, the company has enabled seven million developers and 400,000 organizations around the world to systematically develop better software.

Emile de Rijk, SWISSto12 SA (VD)

Emile de Rijk is co-founder and CEO of SWISSto12, a spin-off from EPFL and today a leading manufacturer of components for the telecommunications industry. The company manufactures a whole new generation of telecommunication satellites with state-of-the-art 3D printers. In addition to its aerospace portfolio, the company offers telecommunications, surveillance and radar applications for the aerospace industry.

Luca Santarelli, VectivBio AG (BS)

Luca Santarelli is CEO and founder of VectivBio in Basel. This biotech company focuses on the discovery and development of therapies for serious rare diseases. After a period as head of the neuroscience and rare diseases department of Roche Holding AG, Luca founded Therachon and successfully sold it to Pfizer. He has since founded yet another highly successful biotech company, VectivBio, that is now listed on NASDAQ.

"Services & Commerce" Category

Paul Fritz, Home Instead Holding AG (BL)

Paul Fritz is the owner and managing director of Home Instead Holding in Rheinfelden. This company is the largest retirement care organization in the world and, as a result, a real alternative to retirement homes. Home Instead was founded in 1994 in the USA. Paul Fritz initially bought Switzerland out of the franchise. Today, the Home Instead Group of Switzerland also includes France, Ireland, the Netherlands, Australia and New Zealand.

Almaz Alsenov & Anel Alsenova, Harvest Group SA (VD)

Siblings Almaz Alsenov and Anel Alsenova are founders of Harvest Group, an international trader and distributor of agricultural products. One of the outstanding strengths of the company is the management of supply chains through personalized logistics, financial and risk mitigation services, as well as the creation of strategic partnerships with a limited number of well-known growers and logistics providers.

Marcin Pietrzyk, Unit8 SA (VD)

Marcin Pietrzyk is the founder and CEO of Unit8. The company is a leading digital transformation service provider with a mission to help non-digital companies, institutions and industries accelerate their digital transformation and meet their commitments to business and society with data, advanced analytics and AI.

"Family Business" Category

Daniel Bossard, Bossard Group (ZG)

Daniel Bossard is CEO and representative of the seventh generation of the Bossard Group in Zug. The company is a leading global provider of solutions in industrial connection and assembly technology. Daniel combines exemplary leadership of family and company in a highly competitive market and across generations.

Matteo Alberto Centonze, Emanuele Centonze Holding AG (TI)

Matteo Centonze is Group CEO of Emanuele Centonze Holding AG in Balerna. The Ticino company is an international distributor of chemical raw materials, petroleum and energy products. Matteo represents the fourth generation of a widely networked entrepreneurial family that can look back on a long tradition in the trade of raw materials from southern Switzerland.

Camille Vial, Mirabaud Group (GE)

Camille Vial is managing partner of the Mirabaud Group, an international banking and financial group with two hundred years of history. Mirabaud has been pursuing a long-term vision since 1819, while at the same time cultivating its entrepreneurial spirit and staying true to its roots. Camille represents the seventh generation of the founding families.

"Emerging Entrepreneur" Category

Majbritt Byskov-Bridges & Mine Uran, Alver World SA (FR)

Majbritt Byskov-Bridges and Mine Uran are founders of Alver World, a Swiss food tech company that makes SuperFood from its unique Golden Chlorella microalgae. Majbritt and Mine are committed to the resource-efficient development of food for the population of the entire world and the future of our planet.

David Gugelmann, Exeon Analytics AG (ZH)

David Gugelmann is the founder and CEO of Exeon Analytics in Zurich. This ETH spin-off is an award-winning developer of products to combat cyber attacks. David and his team are fully dedicated to protecting companies' IT through AI-driven security analytics. Its solutions detect and prevent cyber attacks and insider threats.

Judith Häberli & Robert Ruttmann, Urban Connect AG (ZH)

Judith Häberli and Robert Ruttmann are the founders of the first truly CO2-neutral mobility platform, Urban Connect in Zurich. They offer an ecosystem of low-emission, shared vehicles such as e-scooters, e-bikes and e-cars, with access to public transport.


About the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ 2023 Award:
  • An eleven-member jury is responsible for evaluating the finalists and awarding the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 award. It examines the candidates as a free-standing entity and quite independently of EY.
  • The awards ceremony of the 26th Swiss version of the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year will take place on Friday, October 27 in Lausanne.
  • EY Switzerland will be supported in the 2023 EY Entrepreneur Of The Year program by Julius Baer as a new program partner as well as by AMAG, Bucherer, HDI and SWISS as sponsors.
  • More details at
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