From fighting crime, to digital classrooms, and creating the next financially empowered generation, this year’s EY Entrepreneur of The Year finalists represent the growing shift in entrepreneurism in New Zealand.
After skipping a year due to the global pandemic, the finalists, who generate more than $175m in revenue, will go on to compete to be category winners and for the ultimate title of EY Entrepreneur of the Year for 2021. From there, for New Zealand’s EY Entrepreneur of the Year for 2021, they will go on to compete for the title of World Entrepreneur of the Year.
Twenty-seven entrepreneurs from eighteen Kiwi businesses represent the diversity and resilience of the industry, with finalists hailing from up and down the country, and industries including investment, marketing, space and aeronautical, education and food supplies.
Director of EY Entrepreneur of the Year, New Zealand, Darren White, says this year will be filled with stories that embody the essence of New Zealand, and will highlight some of the challenges many organisations have faced.
“After a turbulent year filled with global uncertainty and challenges around every corner, it is a privilege to recognise the ambition, tenacity and sheer grit of these outstanding leaders – a true testament to home grown talent taking on the world stage and bolstering the New Zealand economy.
“By wielding innovative technology and tackling some of the world’s biggest challenges, these entrepreneurs demonstrate that while New Zealand is at the bottom of the earth, we’re certainly not at the bottom of the list when it comes to addressing much needed change.”
ASB has returned as principal sponsor for the EY Entrepreneur of the Year programme in New Zealand for the ninth year running. ASB Executive General Manager for Business Banking, Tim Deane, says each year nominees are becoming more inspiring.
“At ASB we have a long history of involvement in initiatives that support and celebrate excellence, so it is fantastic to continue to be involved in this prestigious programme, contributing to the development of innovative New Zealand businesses and business leaders.”
The finalists are:
|Grace Glass||The Natural Paint Company||NZ’s largest provider of healthier and sustainable coatings|
|Dr Max Ferguson||Nitrolabs Ltd|| User-friendly means to |
manage, annotate and share
documents from the web
browser or connected device
|Bradley Fraser||Senior Move Managers||Helping senior citizens move home |
|Ajay Agarwal||Global Financial Services Ltd||Facilitating loans to purchase |
homes, investment property,
business or commercial property.
|Stuart Wilson||Modica Group||Enterprise Messaging platform |
|Dave Darling||Pacific Edge Ltd||Cancer Diagnostics Company |
|Bob Drummond, Jordan Thoms, Alliv Samson Hengjie Wang||Kami||Digital classroom application |
which enables students and
teachers to collaborate on
|Asantha Wijeyeratne ||PaySauce||Software for people at work, |
solutions to small businesses
|Brooke Roberts, Sonya Williams, Leighton Roberts ||Sharesies Group Ltd||Creating the most financially |
Giving people with $5 the
same money opportunities
as someone with $5 million
|James Fuller||Hnry Ltd||Combines automated |
payment services, online
accounting services and
revolutionary software to
release independent earners
from the pain, hassle and
anxiety of financial admin
|Gary Rohloff ||Laybuy Group Holdings Ltd ||Laybuy is a Buy Now Pay |
Later (BNPL) platform.
|Wayne Zeng ||Chancellor Construction Ltd ||Construction company |
focusing on affordable
housing project construction
|Wendy Thompson ||Socialites Group ||Aotearoa’s largest |
independent social media
|James Parfitt ||New Zealand Wild Catch Ltd ||Premium added-value |
predominantly focused on
the sustainable harvesting
|Matthew Bennett ||Nibblish ||Taking the world’s best fruit, |
gently bakes it and packages
it at source, with no sugar or
|Amber Cordero, Jacqueline Taylor ||NZ Natural Pet Food Company ||Natural Pet Food & Treat |
|James Powell, Stefan Powell ||Dawn Aerospace ||Space transportation |
company providing in-space
satellite propulsion to its
customers globally and
developing a same-day
The finalists will be assessed by a panel of independent judges, including previous EY Entrepreneur Of The Year award winners across six core criteria: entrepreneurial spirit, innovation, personal integrity and influence, financial performance, strategic direction, and national and global impact.