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50 Local Businesses Lauded for Outstanding Achievements and Enterprising Spirit at 25th Enterprise 50 Awards

- Agorae, SoilBuild and Valency International Trading secured the top three places

- Homegrown fintech company M-DAQ identified as future billion-dollar company and presented with the inaugural Digital Economy Award

26 NOVEMBER 2019, Singapore At the 25th Enterprise 50 (E50) Gala Dinner Night this evening, a fresh cohort of 50 outstanding local businesses was recognised and honoured for their accomplishments, spirit of innovation excellence and sustainable business models. The awards were presented by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Mr Heng Swee Keat at the Resorts World Convention Centre.

Agorae Pte Ltd, the holding entity for the Teledirect group of companies, a leading provider of business process services, clinched the top honours while SoilBuild, an integrated real estate developer and Valency International Trading, an international commodity trading house based in Singapore took second and third places respectively.

In celebration of the quarter-century milestone of the E50 Awards, a special Digital Economy Award was given for the first time to the business identified as a future billion-dollar company. M-DAQ Pte Ltd, a decade-old local fintech start-up, received the accolade for its highly scalable and profitable business, and earned access to the KPMG-A*STAR Joint Lab, a data-science powered laboratory in the professional services sector. The KPMG-A*STAR Joint Lab uses Artificial Intelligence methods such as machine learning to help businesses in areas such as cyber threat hunting, text mining to automate enquiry-response process for key business resources and to expedite the tax filing categorization process, to name a few.

Mr Jonathan Ho, Head of Enterprise Market at KPMG in Singapore, said: “We are very proud of the entries this year, and deeply encouraged to see local businesses evolving to compete against stiff global competition. Looking into 2020 and beyond, there will be continued disruptions in the already challenging business environment. But smooth waters don’t make skilled sailors. We are committed to putting resources behind these local enterprises to fuel their efforts to globalise and succeed.”

Additionally, Akribis Systems Pte Ltd and Ademco (Far East) Pte Ltd emerged from the list of 50 winners as the recipients of the Special Recognition – Internationalisation Award and Special Recognition – Enterprise Transformation Award respectively.

Founded in Singapore, Akribis Systems Pte Ltd is a leading mechatronics enterprise that delivers direct drive motion and control solutions that support a wide range of industries with key multinational customers from USA, China, Thailand and South Korea. It won the Internationalisation Award for its clear overseas expansion strategies targeting overseas markets for expansion and growth.

Ademco (Far East) Pte Ltd started in 1977 as a division of a USA security company selling security parts in the region, but the brand has since transformed itself to be synonymous with integrated security, providing innovation security solutions to institutional, commercial and government clients across Asia. It now operates one of the largest 24-hour central monitoring centres in Singapore, and prides itself to be the industry leader and largest security provider to high-security military sites. Ademco was conferred the Enterprise Transformation Award for leveraging technology to transform itself despite being in a traditional sector. It has invested heavily in product innovation, featuring services such as automation of security services.

Mr Wong Wei Kong, Editor at The Business Times, said: "The E50 Awards recognises 50 most enterprising local, privately-held companies who have contributed to the economic development of Singapore, both locally and abroad. The winners of this year's E50 Awards exhibited outstanding innovation, market presence and excellent productivity amongst other ideal qualities. We hope that these winners will go on to achieve greater successes and inspire other businesses as well."  

Into its 25th year, the E50 Awards is jointly organised by KPMG in Singapore and The Business Times, and sponsored by OCBC Bank. Supporters of the awards include Enterprise Singapore, the Singapore Business Federation and the Singapore Exchange.

The winning criteria include factors such as the nominees’ business model, productivity and innovation, management ideals and governance, risk management and market presence in the region and beyond.

The E50 Awards is widely recognised as a stamp of approval for businesses, helping to open doors to new businesses, access to strong financial backing, and provides a launchpad to an IPO listing. Over the years, more than 100 past winners have gone on to be listed on the Singapore Exchange and other bourses in the region.

In keeping with its ethos of championing local businesses and inspiring future generations of entrepreneurs and leaders, E50 collaborates with the National University of Singapore (NUS) Business School annually to preserve the success stories of our award winners in a commemorative coffee-table book. Every year, a limited number of copies signed by the Guest-of-Honour will be sold for S$5,000 each, and funds raised go towards the NUS Business School Bursary Fund. A total of over S$551,000 has been raised to date.

The full winners list for E50 Awards 2019 can be found in Annex A. Quotes from key award winners are enclosed in Annex B.



For media enquiries, please contact:

Ms Stephanie AwYong

Senior Manager

Ogilvy Singapore

Tel: 9112 8701


Mr Leonard Tan

Director, Marketing & Communications

KPMG in Singapore

Tel: 8611 8779


Ms Rebecca Chee

Senior Executive

Corporate Communications & CSR

Singapore Press Holdings Ltd

Tel: 63191124



About the Enterprise 50 Awards

The Enterprise 50 Awards was launched in 1995 to identify, support, recognise and reward enterprising privately-owned, local companies across all sectors. Since then, it has become a definitive list of the 50 most enterprising, privately-held local companies in Singapore.

The E50 Awards is jointly organised by KPMG in Singapore and The Business Times, and sponsored by OCBC Bank. Supporters of the awards include Enterprise Singapore, the Singapore Business Federation and Singapore Exchange. 

Every year, applicants of the E50 Awards are evaluated and ranked using both quantitative and qualitative criteria. Quantitative factors include financial performance indicators such as operating profit before tax, turnover and profit growth. The qualitative criteria include management and marketing strategies such as the applicants’ business models, innovations, management ideals, governance, market branding and overall potential.

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About KPMG in Singapore

KPMG in Singapore is part of a global network of professional services firms providing Audit, Tax and Advisory services. With 207,000 people in the network working together to deliver value in 153 countries and territories, we offer a globally-consistent standard of service based on professional capabilities, industry insight and local knowledge.

In the ASEAN region, KPMG member firms operate across all 10 countries. Our industry focus helps KPMG firms’ professionals develop a rich understanding of clients' businesses and the insight, skills and resources required to address industry-specific issues and opportunities.

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About The Business Times

The Business Times, a member of the Singapore Press Holdings group, is South-east Asia's leading financial daily. BT brings to its readers daily corporate, financial, economic and political news, analysis and commentary on print and digital platforms. It provides readers with in-depth coverage of Singapore and Asian business and economic developments, as well as global trends that impact Singapore business. BT's lifestyle journalists bring busy executives the latest in recreation, entertainment, the arts, design, food and shopping.

For more information, please visit


Twitter: @BTbreakingnews




About OCBC Bank

OCBC Bank is the longest established Singapore bank, formed in 1932 from the merger of three local banks, the oldest of which was founded in 1912. It is now the second largest financial services group in Southeast Asia by assets and one of the world’s most highly-rated banks, with an Aa1 rating from Moody’s. Recognised for its financial strength and stability, OCBC Bank has been ranked Asean’s strongest bank and among the world’s five strongest banks by Bloomberg Markets for five consecutive years since the ranking’s inception in 2011.

OCBC Bank and its subsidiaries offer a broad array of commercial banking, specialist financial and wealth management services, ranging from consumer, corporate, investment, private and transaction banking to treasury, insurance, asset management and stockbroking services.

OCBC Bank’s key markets are Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Greater China. It has over 620 branches and representative offices in 18 countries and regions. These include the more than 330 branches and offices in Indonesia under subsidiary Bank OCBC NISP, and more than 90 branches and offices in Hong Kong, China and Macau under OCBC Wing Hang.

OCBC Bank’s private banking services are provided by its wholly-owned subsidiary Bank of Singapore, which has received increasing industry recognition as Asia’s Global Private Bank, and was voted “Outstanding Private Bank in Southeast Asia in 2014” by Private Banker International.

OCBC Bank's insurance subsidiary, Great Eastern Holdings, is the oldest and most established life insurance group in Singapore and Malaysia. Its asset management subsidiary, Lion Global Investors, is one of the largest private sector asset management companies in Southeast Asia.

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About Enterprise Singapore

Enterprise Singapore is the government agency championing enterprise development. We work with committed companies to build capabilities, innovate and internationalise.

We also support the growth of Singapore as a hub for global trading and startups, and build trust in Singapore’s products and services through quality and standards.

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About Singapore Business Federation

As the apex business chamber, the Singapore Business Federation (SBF) champions the interests of the business community in Singapore in trade, investment and industrial relations. Nationally, SBF acts as the bridge between businesses and government in Singapore to create a conducive business environment. Internationally, SBF represents the business community in bilateral, regional and multilateral fora for the purpose of trade expansion and business networking.

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About Singapore Exchange

Singapore Exchange is Asia’s leading and trusted market infrastructure, operating equity, fixed income and derivatives markets to the highest regulatory standards. As Asia’s most international, multi-asset exchange, SGX provides listing, trading, clearing, settlement, depository and data services, with about 40% of listed companies and 75% of listed bonds originating outside of Singapore. SGX is the world’s most liquid offshore market for the benchmark equity indices of China, India, Japan and ASEAN and offers commodities and currency derivatives products. Headquartered in AAA-rated Singapore, SGX is globally recognised for its risk management and clearing capabilities.

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