This article first appeared in The Edge Malaysia Weekly on December 2, 2019 - December 8, 2019
MYNEWS Holdings Bhd executive director and CEO Dang Tai Luk was named the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year (EOY) 2019 Malaysia at a glittering gala event last Monday, selected from an elite coterie of 17 top nominees for the title.
Dang, 59, will represent the nation, alongside 60 other country winners, to compete for the coveted EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year (WEOY) award at the annual WEOY event in Monte Carlo next year.
Officiated by Minister of Entrepreneur Development Datuk Seri Mohd Redzuan Md Yusof, the awards ceremony was held at The Majestic Hotel Kuala Lumpur and saw the attendance of corporate captains, budding and established entrepreneurs, as well as former winners of EY’s highly acclaimed business awards programme for businesspersons in Malaysia.
In his welcome address, EY Malaysia managing partner Datuk Abdul Rauf Rashid acknowledged the importance of entrepreneurship and entrepreneurs. “The EOY programme is about recognising and celebrating entrepreneurs and their determined purpose and pursuit of new ideas, new innovations, new solutions and new frontiers — the key elements for development and growth.
“We cannot emphasise enough the role and contribution of purposeful entrepreneurship, more so in this transformative age where the world faces relentless disruptions. We believe that when entrepreneurs and business work better, the world works better. This is very much at the heart of our EY purpose, which is to build a better working world.”
This year’s panel of independent judges — Bursa Malaysia’s Selvarany Rasiah, Ministry of Entrepreneur Development’s Datuk Wan Suraya Wan Mohd Radzi, Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation’s Tan Sri Dr Rebecca Sta Maria, Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation’s Datuk Ng Wan Peng, The National Tech Association of Malaysia’s Ganesh Kumar Bangah and former EY winners Mega Fortris’ Adrian Ng and Plaza Premium Lounge Management’s Song Hoi-see — selected the finalists based on strict criteria that include purpose-driven leadership, innovation, national and global impact, strategic direction and value creation.
The announcement of the 17 nominees was made last month, at which point Dang appeared to be a clear front-runner with his rags-to-riches story that began with a traditional newsstand in 1996 that became the nation’s largest homegrown convenience chain store, myNEWS.
Ernst & Young Advisory Services Sdn Bhd partner and EOY Malaysia programme director Philip Rao said, “There are a lot of successful people in the world. But to build something truly remarkable, you can’t let anything stand in your way. Only a few leaders are part of this special group — the ones who never give up. Dang Tai Luk is one such leader. Through his vision, courage and determination, he has disrupted the status quo, broken away from the pack and ended up leading it. He has fuelled growth and prosperity by being unstoppable.
“Dang is also a role model for purposeful entrepreneurship — serving communities, changing lives. For example, through the myNEWS corporate social responsibility initiative, Allowances That Allow, donation boxes are placed in myNEWS outlets to collect loose change that is then channelled to underprivileged students.”
Acknowledging the burgeoning presence and power of female entrepreneurs, the judges awarded the EY Woman Entrepreneur Of The Year 2019 Malaysia to not one but two pioneering businesswomen from vastly different industries — Juris Technologies’ See Wai Hun and Sydney Cake House’s Jenny Chuang.
“The panel of judges was unanimous in its decision that [they] are true game changers and deserve to be recognised. Although having founded two different types of businesses — one a fintech that is pushing the boundaries of digitalisation and the other, a traditional bakery that has embraced technology in response to changing customer demands — both have, in their own ways, broken boundaries, challenged traditional mindsets and defined new norms. They are the personification of the unstoppables. In the process, they have driven growth and prosperity, inspired positive change and helped shape a better future for themselves and those around them,” said Rao.
The EY Emerging Entrepreneur Of The Year 2019 Malaysia was awarded to Ko Chuan Zhen, Poh Tyng Huei and Ryan Oh of Plus Solar Systems Sdn Bhd while the EY Technology Entrepreneur Of The Year 2019 Malaysia was won by Azhar Zainal Abidin of ProEight Sdn Bhd.
For more information on the other nominees of the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2019 Malaysia and their businesses as well as EY’s world-famous award programme, visit ey.com.
The Edge is the media partner for EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Malaysia 2019
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