Local Entrepreneurs Acknowledged
23 July 2012 at 10:36 am
Earnst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year Award Winners
Victoria and Tasmania’s top entrepreneurs have been acknowledged at the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur Of The Year Southern region awards ceremony in Melbourne.
Ernst & Young Melbourne Office Managing Partner, Annette Kimmitt said the calibre of this year’s Southern region winners demonstrated the vision and passion of entrepreneurs right across the region.
“Entrepreneurs create enormous economic benefit and social change, by inspiring others with their innovative approach and by challenging the status quo,” Kimmitt said.
“The Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year awards are a celebration of the successes of these individuals, each of whom play a vital role in creating jobs, boosting economies and improving communities, both locally and on a national and global stage.
The overall Australian winner will then go on to compete in the Ernst & Young World Entrepreneur Of The Year awards in Monte Carlo next year.
Winners of the 2012 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year Southern region awards by category:
Emerging – Will Deague, Asian Pacific Group
Industry – Peter Law, Australian Independent Rural Retailers
Services – Simon Crowe, Grill’d
Technology – Dean Ramler, Milan Direct
Will Deague – Asian Pacific Group
Will Deague constructed three Art Series Hotels during the global financial crisis and, as CEO of the Asian Pacific Group, he has seen this “daunting” risk pay off. Aside from developing unique, award-winning boutique hotels, Will’s vision is to devise creative new property development opportunities, establish new industry benchmarks for his customers and expand interstate.
Peter Law – Australian Independent Rural Retailers
In 2006, Peter Law used his investment savings and superannuation as seed funding to create an Australia-wide distribution network for rural customers, with an unwavering focus to support Australian farming communities. Australian Independent Rural Retailers (AIRR) has maintained the philosophy of being honest and loyal to customers which creates relationships that he says are “gold” in country Australia.
Simon Crowe – Grill’d
In 2004, tired of the lack of good burgers, Simon Crowe opened his first Grill’d restaurant. Grill’d sells premium-quality, fresh, healthy burgers and aims to make the burger a guilt free, healthy meal solution. Simon wants to debunk the myth that a food chain business is, in his words, “a dumbed-down, soulless commercial entity”. Grill’d is headquartered in Hawthorn, Victoria, and has 54 restaurants across Australia. Simon aims to open another 20 restaurants in the next year.
Dean Ramler – Milan Direct
Founded in 2007 when Dean Ramler was 24, Milan Direct pioneered the concept of selling designer furniture purely through an online channel. By December 2011, 500,000 pieces of furniture had been sold. Milan Direct currently ships orders to 40 countries worldwide including Australia, New Zealand and all over Europe. Dean’s vision for Milan Direct is to be a global leader in the online furniture market and he has been recognised as a leading entrepreneur by Start Up Smart, sharing advice on building a high-growth business in a regular column.