Ivan Epstein, President of Sage International, has been appointed to the judging panel for the 16th EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year Awards 2016. Epstein, the winner of the 1999/2000 Ernst & Young (EY) South African Entrepreneur Of The Year award will be part of a panel that will decide on the winner, to be announced in Monte Carlo at a gala award ceremony on the evening of Saturday, 11 June.
Says Epstein: “Like many of the businesses we serve, we started from humble beginnings, developing into a successful international business. I know about the human sacrifice and hard work it takes to create one of the millions of Small & Medium Businesses that power the global economy.
(TOP: Ivan Epstein, Sage International president).
“For that reason, this award and its focus on entrepreneurial excellence is close to my heart. I look forward to learning more about how entrepreneurs from around the world are serving their communities, creating growth and prosperity with their inspiring ideas.”
The awards see the winners in EY Entrepreneur Of The Year awards from 49 countries compete for the global title. The independent judging panel comprises distinguished EY Entrepreneur of the Year past winners and other well-known entrepreneurs. In addition to Epstein, others in the panel are: Rebecca MacDonald of Just Energy Group (chair, Canada); Rosario Bazán of DanPer (Peru); Jim Nixon of Sandvik Venture (US); Lance Uggla of Markit (UK); Dr Kar Wong of The Advanced Group of Companies (UK) and Michael Wu of Hong Kong Maxim’s Caterers Limited (China).
The award is given on the basis of six criteria, giving all country winners an equal opportunity to compete: entrepreneurial spirit, financial performance, strategic direction, global (or community) impact, innovation, and personal integrity/influence.
Epstein co-founded the company, Softline, in 1988 and grew it into a multinational, JSE-listed software group by the late 1990s. The company was subsequently acquired by FTSE 100 company, Sage plc, today a global market leader for integrated accounting, payroll and payment systems to the world’s Small & Medium Businesses.
Epstein was awarded the EY “South Africa’s Best Entrepreneur” in 1999/2000, and appointed to the panel of judges where he now serves as chair. He has selected many of South Africa’s entrepreneurs including a global winner.
EY Entrepreneur Of The Year is the world’s most prestigious business awards program for entrepreneurs. The program 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 awards program 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.