Forty-eight finalists across 10 categories have been named for this year’s EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Awards 2018 Prairies.
“A common theme among this year’s Prairies finalists is their tremendous passion for their teams, communities and businesses,” said Rob Jolley, program director, in a statement.
“This translates into a strong vision, relentless innovation, and motivated employees. All of which are key success factors in moving any business forward.”
EY said there is a strong showing across several industries in the Prairies region this year as traditional industries including oil and gas and real estate are making a comeback, while a surge in nominations in food and beverage and technology are shaking things up.
“Over the last several years we’ve seen entrepreneurs respond to market changes with new innovations that redefine industries,” said Jolley. “Things like data analytics and IoT (Internet of things) to track the location and performance of equipment, tools to produce more efficient oil production sites, and new products in safe power to meet changing demands.”
The Prairies finalists have annual combined revenues of in excess of $1.5 billion and a combined workforce of more than 7,000 people.
The EY awards have been around for 25 years.
A gala event on Oct. 18 in Calgary will announce the winners of different categories including the Prairies entrepreneur of the year, who will compete with regional winners from the Atlantic, Quebec, Ontario and the Pacific for the national award.
The Canadian winner will go on to compete with winners from across the globe for the title of EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year in June 2019.
The 2018 Prairies independent judging panel consists of Kristi Cawthorn, president, Startec Compression and Process; Laurie Goldberg, CEO and executive chairman, People Corp.; Lorne Jacobson, vice-chairman, TriWest Capital Partners; Marcela Mandeville, CEO, Alberta Women Entrepreneurs; Tim Melton, chairman of the board, Melcor; and Brenda Nowakowski, vice-president Finance, JNE Welding.
Respected business writer Mario Toneguzzi is a veteran Calgary-based journalist who worked for 35 years for the Calgary Herald in various capacities, including 12 years as a senior business writer.