4 minute read 3 May 2021
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How we celebrate the world’s most visionary entrepreneurs

4 minute read 3 May 2021

EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year™ is the ultimate global competition for entrepreneurs.

In brief
  • Watch EY World Entrepreneur Of  The Year 2021 live on cnbc.com/weoy on 10 June.
  • The Class of 2021 includes unstoppable entrepreneurs from more than 35 countries and territories.
  • This year’s winner will be chosen by a globally diverse panel of independent judges, based on six criteria that measure long-term value.

We admire entrepreneurs for their ambition, and we celebrate their success. Relentlessly optimistic and always curious, entrepreneurs see opportunity amid disruption and rise up when there are problems to be solved. Today, entrepreneurs are leading the post-COVID-19 economic recovery all around the world.  

Our goal is to support entrepreneurs as they transform their business and scale to new heights. One way we do that is through the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ program. Since its founding 35 years ago in the US, this global awards program is now in more than 60 countries and over 145 cities around the world. It has become the ultimate global competition for entrepreneurs. 

Every year, winners from around the world vie for the title of EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year™.  

But selecting that overall winner requires us to understand that entrepreneurship and business success can look different in different parts of the world. We strive to compare all of our winners fairly through six criteria that encompass long-term value. 

EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year 2021

Join us to watch the ultimate global competition for entrepreneurs, live on 10 June. Meet the judges on cnbc.com/weoy.

What makes an EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year™ ?

  • Entrepreneurial spirit

    • Sets high standards and demonstrates a desire to be successful
    • Takes risks and overcomes significant obstacles
    • Demonstrates perseverance and learns from experience
  • Purpose-driven leadership

    • Demonstrates personal values that earn respect from key stakeholders
    • Maintains the highest ethical and quality standards across the business
    • Commits the organization to an inspiring purpose
    • Enables a more sustainable future for all
  • Innovation

    • Pioneers new approaches or technologies
    • Develops products and services ahead of the market
    • Builds a culture of innovation and invests in research and development
  • Value creation

    • Creates value for stakeholders
    • Drives strong financial performance
    • Develops human capital
    • Drives strategies for long-term sustainable results
  • National and global impact

    • Increases market share
    • Enables international growth and reach
    • Expands into new markets
  • Strategic direction

    • Develops a vision with goals for future growth and expansion
    • Builds an effective team and strategic alliances
    • Measures and benchmarks progress against goals

Our panel of independent judges 

When judging entrepreneurs against these criteria, it’s important to understand the entrepreneurial mindset. Our panel of independent judges is composed of entrepreneurs from around the world who have demonstrated astonishing purpose and drive throughout their careers. 

We’ve convened an extraordinary group of judges this year. They bring a diversity of experience that is sure to factor into their careful deliberations as they select the EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year™ 2021.

It really is a great group: 

And our two most recent EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year™ winners: 

  • Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, developing affordable drugs to treat diabetes, cancer and COVID-19
  • Brad Keywell, who is leading the way through innovations in artificial intelligence (AI)

Meet our judges

See the videos below to know our judges. You can click on the arrows and the top right icon to explore more.

    Our Class of 2021 

    Each year when I meet the unstoppable entrepreneurs who are competing for the world title — all winners of EY Entrepreneur Of The Year™ programs from around the globe — I am astonished once again by their vision, insight and determination. 

    Driven by the desire to better the world around them, they don’t let anything stand in their way. 

    The members of our Class of 2021 truly embody unstoppable ambition and are ready to reframe the future. Learn more about the Class of 2021

    I’m excited to share these entrepreneurs with the world. Their stories have stuck with me and truly reveal what makes them great. They’ve capitalized on their ambition to launch and scale businesses that make a difference. And I can’t wait to see what they do next.  

    Entrepreneurs are reframing our future and moving us toward a brighter tomorrow.


    EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year™ celebrates the vision, insight and determination of entrepreneurs from around the globe. It is the ultimate global competition for entrepreneurs. This year’s overall winner will be chosen from the Class of 2021 by a diverse panel of independent judges who understand the entrepreneurial mindset because they are entrepreneurs themselves. Find out more about the judges, and how entrepreneurs are leading the way and solving the biggest challenges we face today at ey.com/weoy.

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