Meet The 2017 Entrepreneur Of The Year® Winners

Meet The 2017 Entrepreneur Of The Year® Winners

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1Entrepreneur of the Year®

Willem van der Merwe

Following a gruelling judging process and assessment of 15 successful finalists, South Africa’s premier annual entrepreneurial competition, Entrepreneur of the Year® competition sponsored by Sanlam and Business/Partners, announced six 2017 winners at an awards ceremony held on 6 September 2017 in Johannesburg. The event saw Willem van der Merwe, owner of Africa Biomass Company, receiving the coveted title of Entrepreneur of the Year®. 

Speaking at the event, spokesperson for the competition, Christo Botes, says that while selecting one entrepreneur to be the overall winner was no easy task – especially given the exceptionally high standard of this year’s finalists – van der Merwe was a notch above the rest in terms of the raw entrepreneurial nature of his business.

“Through the establishment of Africa Biomass Company (ABC) – which specialises in land clearing, wood chipping, and wood recycling – Willem [van der Merwe] has not only created a successful business by clearing landowners unwanted trees, he has also shaped a new industry in South Africa by introducing the novel concept of wood recycling,” he says.

Read more: http://www.eoy.co.za/posts/south-africas-leading-entrepreneur-2017-revealed-2314/

22017 Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year®: Sizwe Nzima and Siraaj Adams, owners of Iyeza Health

Siraaj Adams and Sizwe Nzima

Having started as a bicycle delivery company that delivered chronic medication from health clinics in Khayelitisha to patients’ homes in the township, Iyeza Group has evolved into a health logistics company with a wide array of capabilities.

Read more: http://www.eoy.co.za/posts/trailblazing-health-logistics-duo-awarded-emerging-entrepreneur-year-title-2300/

32017 Small Business Entrepreneur of the Year®: Itumeleng Phake, founder and owner of Zenzele Fitness Group

Itumeleng Phake

Zenzele Fitness Group is a dynamic fitness and wellness company that is making health and fitness more accessible to South Africans in middle and lower LSM groups.

Read more: http://www.eoy.co.za/posts/young-fitness-maverick-makes-big-strides-entrepreneurial-competition-2301/

42017 Medium Business Entrepreneur of the Year®: Nomfundo Mcoyi, founder and owner of Icebolethu Group

Nomfundo Mcoyi

Established as Icebolethu Funerals in 2009 as a funeral parlour, with a complement of just five staff members, the business has evolved into a prominent funeral services conglomerate with international presence and around 300 employees.

Read more: http://www.eoy.co.za/posts/holistic-funeral-service-provider-named-medium-business-entrepreneur-year-2302/

52017 Job Creator of the Year®: Siphiwe Ngcobo, owner and founder of iLawu Hospitality Group

Siphiwe Ngcobo

Founded in 2009 as a humble five-bedroomed B&B in Pietermaritzburg, iLawu Hospitality Group has since expanded to become one of the well-recognised hospitality and catering brands in KwaZulu-Natal, providing countless jobs to the community.

Read more: http://www.eoy.co.za/posts/determined-hospitality-entrepreneur-named-job-creator-year-2305/

62017 Innovator of the Year®: Mpodumo Doubada, founder and owner of Pimp My Book

Mpodumo Doubada

Pimp my Book, an ever-growing chain of campus stores across the country, was founded in 2006 on the simple premise of buying and selling used textbooks and making them significantly more affordable to students.

Read more: http://www.eoy.co.za/posts/student-centric-business-named-innovator-year-national-entrepreneurial-competition-2303/

Entrepreneur of the Year
The Entrepreneur of the Year® competition sponsored by Sanlam / BUSINESS/PARTNERS aims to honour, benefit and uplift South African SMEs. Now in its 28th year, the competition celebrates excellence in entrepreneurship, serving as an inspiration to others to succeed in the world of business. Visit www.eoy.co.za for more information.