Four leading entrepreneurs named winners of the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2014 awards

  • One of them will represent Singapore at the EY World Entrepreneur Of the Year 2015
  • Special honor for B.P. De Silva Holdings Pte Ltd

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SINGAPORE, 27 OCTOBER 2014 – Professional services organization EY announced the four recipients of its 13th EY Entrepreneur Of The Year (EOY) 2014 awards:

  • EY Entrepreneur Of The Year – Engineering Services and Process Equipment
    Dr. Kar Wong, Managing Director, Advanced Group of Companies
  • EY Entrepreneur Of The Year – Sustainable Packaging Solutions
    Ms. Susan Chong, Chief Executive Officer, Greenpac (S) Pte Ltd
  • EY Entrepreneur Of The Year – Professional Services
    Mr. Ong Tze Boon, Group Executive Chairman, ONG&ONG
  • EY Entrepreneur Of The Year – Food and Beverage
    Mr. Alfred Chua, Managing Director, The Wok People Pte Ltd

Please refer to Fact sheet A for profiles of the winners and their companies, and winners’ comments on winning the award.

One of the four winners will be named the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2014 Singapore, and represent Singapore at the annual EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year (WEOY) award in Monte Carlo in 2015 to compete with contenders from over 50 countries. Singapore’s representative to the WEOY award will be announced at the EY EOY Awards Gala, to be held on 2 December 2014 at The Ritz-Carlton, Millenia Singapore. The gala will be officiated by Guest-of-Honor, Ms. Grace Fu, Minister in the Prime Minister's Office, Second Minister for the Environment and Water Resources, and Second Minister for Foreign Affairs.

The four winners emerged triumphant from over 40 nominations. An independent judging panel had selected the winners based on their merits in fulfilling the six global judging criteria, namely entrepreneurial spirit, financial performance, strategic direction, global/community impact, innovation and personal integrity/influence.

Please refer to Fact sheet B for members of the judging panel and details of the judging criteria.

Chairman of the judging panel, Mr. Wong Ngit Liong, also Chairman and CEO of Venture Corporation Limited, explains the judges’ choice: “The entrepreneurs have been exemplary in transforming their businesses. Kar from Advanced has been steadfast with his growth plans. His client-centricity approach to business has enabled him to fill the gaps in the engineering services and process equipment sector, and bring his company to the fore. Under Tze Boon’s strategic leadership, ONG&ONG has grown from a local firm that was focused on architecture to one with a global footprint, offering diversified services including interior design and corporate branding.” 

“Greenpac’s Susan has been entrepreneurial in spotting a gap in the market for sustainable packaging, seizing the opportunity to pioneer green solutions in the industry and embedding sustainability in her business philosophy. And Alfred has demonstrated strong business acumen in embracing change and diversifying The Wok People’s services to become a one-stop solutions provider in the crowded food and beverage sector," he adds.

Mr. Max Loh, Singapore and Asean Managing Partner, EY adds that the winners have distinguished themselves with a constant focus on innovation: “All the four winners have thrived on innovating their business models, products and processes, customer experiences and supply chains to deliver greater, sustainable value to their businesses. They understand that innovation needs to be in the DNA of the organization so as to capture the upside of the opportunities and risks that technological advancements and changing customer expectations bring.”

Special honor for B.P. De Silva Holdings Pte Ltd

EY and Barclays are pleased to present the EY-Barclays Family Business Award of Excellence to B.P. De Silva Holdings Pte Ltd. The EY-Barclays Family Business Award of Excellence is an honorary award that is presented on board the EOY platform (the award recipient does not compete for the EOY Singapore 2014 title).

On being conferred the award, Mr. Navin Amarasuriya, Director of B.P. De Silva Holdings Pte Ltd says: “We humbly accept this honor in appreciation of the mentorship and guidance that many other family businesses have given us.”

Please refer to Fact sheet C for winner profile, eligibility and selection criteria.

Sponsors and supporters

Barclays has been a major sponsor of the EOY awards for the past six years, and a co-presenter of the EY-Barclays Family Business Award of Excellence for the second year running.

Didier von Daeniken, Head of Wealth Management, Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa, Barclays says: “Successful, thriving family businesses are the result of a delicate balance between the needs of the business and those of the family. B.P. De Silva is a prime example of the longevity and success of a family business that has kept true to its entrepreneurial spirit and evolved with the times. From its early beginnings in jewelry manufacturing and retailing, the group has transformed into a diversified business with interests in tea, jewelry and food and beverage."

Other sponsors and supporters include The Edge Singapore (official business publication); Martell (official cognac); The Peak (official luxury lifestyle magazine); Action Community for Entrepreneurship (ACE); International Enterprise Singapore (IE Singapore); Singapore Business Federation and SPRING Singapore. For more information, please visit www.ey.com/sg/eoy. 

The EY EOY awards program was launched in Singapore in 2002 to honor entrepreneurs who have created and sustained successful business ventures, as well as to coincide with the government’s focus on fostering entrepreneurship and grooming local entrepreneurs. Now in its 13th year, the program has evolved into a leading business award in Singapore with an international presence and footprint. For more information about the EY EOY program, please visit ey.com/sg/eoy.

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Notes to editors

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 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.

This news release has been issued by Ernst & Young Solutions LLP, a member firm of the global EY organization.

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, 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 145 cities in more than 60 countries. www.ey.com/eoy

About Barclays

Barclays is an international financial services provider engaged in personal banking, credit cards, corporate and investment banking and wealth management with an extensive presence in Europe, the Americas, Africa and Asia. Barclays’ purpose is to help people achieve their ambitions – in the right way.

With over 300 years of history and expertise in banking, Barclays operates in over 50 countries and employs approximately 135,000 people. Barclays moves, lends, invests and protects money for customers and clients worldwide.

For further information about Barclays, please visit our website www.barclays.com

About Martell Cognac

Martell’s heritage dates back to the 18th century, when Jean Martell, a native of Jersey founded the company in 1715, making Martell the oldest of the great cognac houses. Since 1715, Martell has produced, exported and marketed cognacs whose quality is recognized worldwide.

Martell Cognac was founded at the height of the French Art de Vivre movement; a period of time in which gastronomy, tasting and craftsmanship were all celebrated and enjoyed with style. As such, these became the three pillars of the Martell House and are the three core areas which still remain intrinsic to Martell’s vision today.

In 2015, the House of Martell celebrates its 300th anniversary. To start commemorating its Tricentenary, Martell has presented the limited edition Martell Premier Voyage, an exceptional and distinctive blend that contains 18 eaux-de-vie from the Martell cellars. To pay homage to Jean Martell, this celebratory cognac is housed in a decanter specially designed by world-renowned French conceptual artist Bernar Venet.

The Martell range includes Martell VSOP, Martell Cordon Bleu, Martell XO, Martell Chanteloup Perspective, Martell Création Grand Extra, and L’OR de Jean Martell.

 

 

Fact sheet A: EY Entrepreneur Of The Year winner and company profiles

EY Entrepreneur Of The Year – Engineering Services and Process Equipment
Dr. Kar Wong, Managing Director, Advanced Group of Companies

Comments on winning the award

Dr. Kar Wong, EY Entrepreneur Of The Year – Engineering Services and Process Equipment, Managing Director of Advanced Group of Companies says: “It is a great honor to receive this award. This award recognizes the toil and efforts of everyone associated with Advanced Holdings, and serves to encourage us on our journey of growth.”

About Dr. Kar Wong

Dr. Kar Wong, 53, is the Managing Director of Advanced Group of Companies. He founded Advanced in 1993, took it public in 2004 and built it into a global enterprise from scratch through his keen industry knowledge and raw determination.

Dr. Wong graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree (first class honors) and a subsequent doctorate degree in engineering from UK. 

In the past 20 years, Dr. Wong has led Advanced through several crises, coming close to personal bankruptcy twice in the start-up years. He aspires to build Advanced into a billion-dollar holding company within the next decade. Dr. Wong believes in integrity and honesty in doing business, and this has shone through with Advanced lauded for best practices in financial reporting and corporate transparency in its recent past. In 2013, Dr. Wong was recognized as Outstanding Entrepreneur at the Asia Pacific Entrepreneur Award as an acknowledgement of his entrepreneurial spirit and innovation.

About Advanced Group of Companies

Capitalizing on a niche market in the oil and gas, petrochemicals and chemicals and power generation industries, Advanced expanded into a global organization with manufacturing bases and sales networks the world over, employing over 500 workers in more than 15 subsidiaries and offices in over 10 countries through an astute combination of strategic acquisitions and organic growth.

With decades of experience and a stellar track record, Advanced has built a strong reputation as a vertically integrated one-stop provider of engineered solutions, products and services as well as clean technologies, comprising water treatment and renewable energy solutions, to a global network of multinational clients.

Embarking on the next phase of sustainable growth, Advanced is leveraging its technology edge, with its collection of valuable patents, trademarks and intellectual property rights, supplemented by its inhouse R&D drive, to bring its expertise to new markets and market segments.

EY Entrepreneur Of The Year – Sustainable Packaging Solutions
Ms. Susan Chong, Chief Executive Officer, Greenpac (S) Pte Ltd

Comments on winning the award

EY Entrepreneur Of The Year – Sustainable Packaging Solutions, Ms. Susan Chong, Chief Executive Officer, Greenpac (S) Pte Ltd says: “Being honored for this award would not have been possible without the effort and support from my business partners, staff and family who share the same vision of a sustainable future. The award truly belongs to them as it is their hard work and dedication that turned that vision into reality and I am sure that together, we will be able to take Greenpac to greater heights.” 

About Ms. Susan Chong

Ms. Susan Chong, 45, is the CEO of Greenpac (S) Pte Ltd, a knowledge-based company that specializes in re-engineering, designing and distributing innovative, environmentally friendly packaging products and solutions. Since starting the company in September 2002, Susan grew Greenpac from a one-woman start-up into a thriving multimillion dollar company. In the current environment where companies are more aware of the need to reduce their carbon footprint to achieve a sustainable future, Greenpac’s customized solutions help companies green their supply chain through environmentally friendly packaging while reducing wastage and increasing their cost savings. Today, Greenpac serves Fortune 500 companies and is the market leader for environmentally friendly packaging solutions in Asia.
Greenpac’s contributions to innovation and environmental sustainability have been recognized by the business community with various prestigious certifications and awards. The company recently, it clinched the ASEAN Business Award for Most ASEAN Admired Enterprise for Corporate Social Responsibility (SME Category) in 2010 and Singapore Sustainability Awards 2011 by SBF. For her efforts, Susan also achieved the Entrepreneur of the Year Award by ASME in 2008.

About Greenpac (S) Pte Ltd

Established in 2002, Greenpac is a knowledge-based company that helps customers to design, develop and re-engineer with strategic partners to provide innovative, environmentally friendly and holistic packaging solutions that achieve bottom-line cost saving.

Within 12 years of establishment, Greenpac has grown from strength to strength. Its founder, Susan Chong has transformed the company in a once-perceived sunset industry into a vibrant, viable and sustainable enterprise with exponential growth, established brand name and market leadership.

Greenpac customers comprise the world’s largest Fortune 500 companies and have appointed Greenpac as their preferred partner. These companies hail from a range of industries, namely aviation, defense, oil and gas, semi-conductor and medical.

Over the years, Greenpac has also forged strategic partnerships with market leaders who manufacture unique environmentally friendly packaging materials by being the sole distributor for their products in the Asia-Pacific region.

In tandem with the growing needs of its customers, Greenpac has also expanded its core business activities to include new services that include heat treatment, kit packing, program management, logistics services, professional packing services and cold chain medical packaging and storage solutions.

EY Entrepreneur Of The Year – Professional Services
Mr. Ong Tze Boon, Group Executive Chairman, ONG&ONG

Comments on winning the award
EY Entrepreneur Of The Year – Professional Services award, Mr. Ong Tze Boon, Group Executive Chairman of ONG&ONG says: “There’s more ahead to do… and the best way to predict the future is to create it.”

About Mr. Ong Tze Boon

Since Mr. Ong Tze Boon, 46, took over the reins of ONG&ONG in 2001, he has steered the firm’s expansion from a modest 62-strong team to its current staff strength of 900, with offices spread across eight countries and 11 cities.

Mr. Ong’s advocacy of the holistic integration of cross-disciplinary services led to his fathering of ONG&ONG’s one-stop integrated 360º approach, where dynamic collaboration across design, engineering and project management disciplines has produced award-winning projects such as Audi Centre Singapore, Singapore Airlines’ SilverKris Lounge, Sydney, and Far East Organization’s ultra-luxurious residence Boulevard Vue.

Besides serving as first Vice President in the Singapore Institute of Architects’ Council, Mr. Ong is also involved in the Entrepreneurs’ Organization and the Young President’s Organization. He is an active Board Member of the Singapore Board of Architects as well as the Nanyang Primary School Board of Directors. Mr. Ong holds a Bachelor of Arts’ degree in Architecture from the University of California in Berkeley and a Master’s degree of Architecture from Rice University, and worked at world-renowned Frank O. Gehry & Associates prior to joining ONG&ONG.

About ONG&ONG

With a track record of more than four decades in the industry, ONG&ONG has earned an unparalleled reputation for servicing its clients with creativity, excellence and commitment.
ONG&ONG offers a complete 360º solution i.e., a parceled cross-discipline integrated solution, encompassing all aspects of the construction business. This three-pronged solution encompasses design (architecture, urban planning, interior design, landscape design, lighting design, experience design and brand engagement), engineering (mechanical, electrical, civil, structural, fire safety and environmental) and management (project, development, construction, cost and place).
ONG&ONG is an ISO14001 certified practice with offices in Singapore, China, Vietnam, India, Malaysia, the US, Indonesia and Mongolia. In-depth knowledge of the local context, culture and regulations allow ONG&ONG to better understand its clients' needs to enable the firm to meet and exceed their expectations. With more than a hundred awards to its name, ONG&ONG constantly works towards staying ahead of the competition.

EY Entrepreneur Of The Year – Food and Beverage
Mr. Alfred Chua, Managing Director, The Wok People Pte Ltd

Comment on winning the award

EY Entrepreneur Of The Year – Food and Beverage, Mr. Alfred Chua, Managing Director of The Wok People Pte Ltd says: “The Wok People is built on a ‘people first’ mindset. We embrace ‘love’ and ‘abundance to share’ as our fundamental practices. This award is dedicated to my loyal clients, dedicated staff and supportive business partners. I am thankful to have their embracement, belief and trust for the company. With this award, it is my responsibility to bring The Wok People to greater heights and excellence.’’  

About Mr. Alfred Chua

The Wok People Pte Ltd was founded by Mr. Alfred Chua, 38, and his business partner in 2009. Under his leadership, The Wok People has grown from strength to strength every year.
Alfred has injected innovative ideas into traditional business models, helping the firm adapt to changing trends in the food and beverage industry. Within a span of five years, Alfred and his dedicated team have catapulted The Wok People to become the leading locally owned institutional catering company in Singapore. Alfred is a believer in giving back to society, and is an active grassroots volunteer. Besides taking part in volunteer sessions, Alfred has also helped in fund-raising projects for non-profit organizations.

About The Wok People Pte Ltd

The Wok People Pte Ltd is a leading one-stop solutions provider of staff cafeteria management services. The company provides services to a broad range of customers, including small-and-medium enterprises and multinational companies from the hospitality, retail, leisure, petrochemical, shipbuilding, pharmaceutical, manufacturing and semiconductor industries.

The Wok People currently employs 450 staff, serving over 33,000 meals a day in staff cafeterias in Singapore. The Wok People’s fundamental guiding principle is putting ‘people first’, where the ‘tummy welfare’ of clients and their employees are of paramount importance. To this effect, great emphasis is placed on the delivery of nutritious and affordable meals to the employees. Beyond being a place to have their meals, The Wok People believes that the staff cafeteria is also a focal point where bonding with fellow colleagues takes place, and takes efforts in planning events and activities to facilitate these interactions. These beliefs are interwoven into the company culture, and are upheld as the guiding principles for its service delivery to clients and their employees.

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Fact sheet B: EY Entrepreneur Of The Year judging panel and criteria

Judging panel

  • Wong Ngit Liong
    Chairman and CEO
    Venture Corporation Limited
    EY EOY 2002 Singapore
  • Paul Loo Lip Giam
    Group CEO
    Focus Network Agencies (S) Pte Ltd
    EY EOY 2013 Singapore
  • Henn Tan
    Chairman and CEO
    Trek 2000 International Ltd
    EY EOY 2002 - Emerging
  • Dr. Steven Fang
    Chairman
    Action Community for Entrepreneurship
    Partner
    Clearbridge Accelerator Pte Ltd
  • Andy Tse
    Managing Director
    AIF Capital
  • Teo Eng Cheong
    CEO
    International Enterprise Singapore
  • Professor Bernard Yeung
    Dean, Stephen Riady Distinguished Professor
    National University of Singapore, NUS Business School

Judging criteria

The following six judging criteria sets the global standard adhered to by each and every country participating in the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year awards.

  • Entrepreneurial spirit

The individual is a risk-taker who sets very high standards and demonstrates an unflinching desire and determination to succeed despite significant obstacles.

  • Financial performance

The business has demonstrated strong financial performance and maintains a good track record in raising finance. Coupled with quality investments, the business has the potential for long-term sustainability.

  • Strategic direction

The individual not only creates and turns business visions into realities, but also builds strategic alliances and empowers talents to achieve common goals.

  • Global/community impact

The business has expanded or plans to expand into international markets and has made global impact in terms of job creation and improved living economics.

  • Innovation

The individual has pioneered a new approach or technology, embraces changes and continuously innovates.

  • Personal integrity/influence

The individual earns great respect and is able to communicate ideas and influence the wider community. The individual’s enforcement of socially responsible practices seeks to improve the quality of life.


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Fact sheet C: EY-Barclays Family Business Award of Excellence

Winner profile, eligibility and selection criteria

 

EY-Barclays Family Business Award of Excellence
B.P. De Silva Holdings Pte Ltd

About B.P. De Silva Holdings Pte Ltd

Founded in 1872 by Balage Porolis de Silva, B.P. de Silva had its early beginnings as a jewelry manufacturer and retailer on the banks of the Singapore River. Today, it has grown into a diversified conglomerate across a multitude of industries, which stays true to the founder’s principles and reputation.

A selection of companies includes B.P. de Silva Jewellers for bespoke pieces; RISIS, known for gold plated orchids and sculptures; and The 1872 Clipper Tea Company which features the finest in Sri Lankan tea. Family-owned and run after 143 years in the luxury goods business, they plan to continue the lasting legacy through building home grown brands.

Eligibility

  • Leadership of the company includes family member(s) from second or subsequent generations, or has multiple branches of a family involved in leadership. (i.e., one individual and first generation would not qualify for the award).
  • The family still has a significant ownership and voting stake and is primarily responsible for setting the strategic direction and values for the firm.
  • The legal form of the company or group of companies is not relevant.
  • Companies may be private or publicly traded.
  • If the shares and voting rights have been transferred to a trust, it will remain to be considered as a family business if the family has dominant influence on the trust in a way described above.
  • The business or headquarter of the business is located in Singapore.

Selection criteria

  • Company shows evidence of a successful, sustainable and long term-oriented strategy.
  • Company has adopted an effective and transparent corporate governance approach, enabling the execution of the desired strategy and living out of family values.
  • Company governance enables unity among the ownership family (i.e., little evidence of significant family disputes impacting the business).
  • Demonstrated the ability of the family to preserve company culture, tradition and values and maintain the entrepreneurial spirit and continued innovation over generations.
  • Evidence shown of exceptional personnel management.
  • Commitment to philanthropic causes or corporate social responsibility.
Other exceptional achievements such as business awards, public service or philanthropic awards etc.
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