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KAI Square, MAJ Aviation, Udders and Moveon Technologies Win Top SME Entrepreneur Awards and Prizes of $1.35 Million

Singapore, 14 May 2010 – KAI Square Pte Ltd (KAI Square), MAJ Aviation Pte Ltd (MAJ Aviation), Udders Ice Cream (Udders) and Moveon Technologies Pte Ltd (Moveon Technologies) received top accolades at the Emerging Enterprises 2010 (EE2010) Gala Dinner and Awards Ceremony this evening. Held at Mandarin Orchard Hotel, the awards were presented by Mr Lee Yi Shyan, Minister of State for Trade & Industry and Manpower and Minister in charge of Entrepreneurship.
Into its third year, EE2010 saw overwhelming response from the small and emerging business community, with double the number of applications received as compared to last year. Notably, the Awards also attracted submissions from across a wider spectrum of industries, including established industries like construction, logistics, F&B, IT, electronics and engineering, as well as emerging industries such as life sciences, environment/energy services and info-comm and media.
EE2010 is one of the key annual entrepreneurial awards that reach out to emerging enterprises with sales turnover of less than S$10 million per annum. It is jointly organised by The Business Times, and OCBC Bank, and supported by SPRING Singapore, NUS Extension, Acorn Marketing and Research, SingTel and RSM Chio Lim, which is also the official auditor for EE2010.
Raising the bar and setting new standards
EE2010 continues to attract applicants of high calibre, with many of this year’s submissions demonstrating sound business models, high growth potential and success in overcoming last year’s challenging business environment to achieve sustainable growth.
Out of the 15 finalists, KAI Square, MAJ Aviation and Udders, stood out for having delivered stellar financial results despite last year’s challenging economic conditions. More importantly, the three winners epitomise the characteristics of a globally competitive Singapore enterprise. While small in scale, the winners have the foresight to grow their business by internationalising their operations and expanding their innovation and productivity capabilities. This has placed them in the forefront of the competition and allowed them to compete head-on with bigger and more established players for market share.
Each winner will receive S$390,000 worth of prizes comprising an interest-free loan, educational and development grants, business consulting services, as well as brand and product development research services. This is the event’s largest prize to date and will provide the winners with the needed resources and business know-how to further build on their capabilities to scale new heights.
Recognition for most innovative enterprise and outstanding applicants
This year, a new “Best Innovation” Award was introduced to celebrate and recognise the spirit of innovation amongst local enterprises. This Award goes to Moveon Technologies for creatively harnessing innovation as a springboard to propel its growth. On top of the SingTel business info-comm technology solutions package worth $30,000, Moveon Technologies will also receive an additional S$150,000 interest-free loan from co-organiser OCBC Bank. The additional funding aims to help to fuel its business growth.
For the first time, Certificates of Merit will also be awarded to 17 outstanding applicants. Selected from the top 40 submissions, these recipients are commended for their efforts in laying a strong foundation for their businesses based on sound business models and sustainable financial growth. They will be honoured in a separate event.
Quotes from co-organisers and partners:
Mr Alvin Tay, Editor of The Business Times, said: “This year’s Emerging Enterprise Award has seen an encouraging response from our smaller local enterprises, judging from the number and quality of applications we have received. Our three winners this year have demonstrated that they possess the necessary attributes and competencies to build a sustainable business. They own distinctive products or services that meet the discerning needs of their targeted market segments. With a rigourous business model, they are well-positioned to adapt and excel in this constantly evolving business environment. We congratulate all the three winners for their outstanding achievements.”
Said Mr Tan Chor Sen, Head of Emerging Business, Enterprise Banking, OCBC Bank: "This year’s finalists have raised the bar and set new standards. While each finalist has a unique success story to share, what set KAI Square, MAJ Aviation and Udders apart is their ability to leverage on their size and innovation to conquer markets that are traditionally dominated by the larger players. Being smaller, they are more nimble and quicker to respond to market changes. By embracing innovation, they are able to break new frontiers and capture market share. Their internationalisation efforts have also enabled them to build scale and compete effectively. We see great potential in these winners and look forward to growing with them as they continue to challenge the bigger players and go in search of new markets."
Mr George Lee, Head, Group Investment Banking, OCBC Bank, said: “It is heartening to see that the Emerging Enterprise Awards program has grown in scale over the past 3 years. Since its launch in 2008, the number of participants in the program has been growing steadily. Having reviewed the entries received, I am impressed by the level of commitment, passion and vision that our entrepreneurs demonstrate. I’m also very much inspired by these business owners’ aspiration and determination to position their companies for success in the post-crisis environment. Not only have this year’s winners proven that they have a creditable business model, they have also demonstrated a strong spirit of excellence in managing the different aspects of their businesses. We look forward to partnering them in their growth efforts going forward.”
Ms Chew Mok Lee, Group Director, Enterprise & Innovation, SPRING Singapore, said: “Congratulations to all the winners and finalists. They have demonstrated that entrepreneurship is a journey of continuous improvements to enhance competitiveness through productivity and innovation. To this end, upgrading business capabilities is core. Past winners of the Emerging Enterprise Award have effectively leveraged on assistance by SPRING Singapore to do so. For example, McCoy Components which won in 2008, has implemented an ERP/CRM system to improve service standards. Similarly, Scrawl Studios, upgraded its financial management system. We look forward to working alongside our growth oriented enterprises to strengthen their growth and development.”
Mr. James Tay, Director, NUS Extension, said: "This year’s competition received many promising and high calibre entries. All winners have come a long way in securing this year’s highly contested award. We hope that the winners will fully utilise the NUS Extension's courses as well as the other grants, in order to take their company to the next level of business – building high profit companies. KAI Square, MAJ Aviation and Udders should be proud of themselves as they stood out, to be this year’s Emerging Enterprise 2010 podium winners. Congratulations to all winners."
Mr Kaka Singh, Chairman, RSM Chio Lim LLP, said: "We see the emerging enterprises gaining strong traction with the recovering economy. I am sure the holistic support from the sponsors will give the 3 winners a boost to becoming the next pride of Singapore's home-grown brands. As a 25-year-old home-grown brand ourselves, RSM Chio Lim is glad to be part of this process to nurture successful enterprises."
Mr Danny Lai, Country Business Manager for Acorn Marketing and Research in Singapore, said: “What struck us most during the judging session for the 15 finalists was the energy and passion which these entrepreneurs bring to their respective fields. Many of these are not your typical “sunrise industries” – we had finalists from agriculture to metal stamping to food manufacturing. Their commitment to value adding and finding even small innovations to improve the way they run their businesses and serve their clients is an inspiration to us all. Our heartiest congratulations to all finalists and the winners.”
Mr Dumas Chin, Vice President Business Sales SingTel, said: “This year's finalists were diverse in their business models, products and goals, but one thing was true for all: they were all passionate about what they were trying to achieve in business. Congratulations to the winners. During the judging process, they exuded confidence and were very clear about their strategies and objectives. They were persuasive and succinct in outlining their business plans and their potential, and had a solid understanding of their competition.SingTel is proud to play an important role is enabling businesses to reach new heights through the use of innovative infocomm technologies."
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About Business Times
The Business Times (BT), a member of the Singapore Press Holdings group, is South-east Asia's leading business daily. It is Singapore’s only financial daily and provides a complete guide on the local, regional and international business scene.
BT brings to its readers each day a comprehensive and concise package of corporate, financial, economic and political news, analysis and commentary. BT also carries features and the latest lifestyle trends in food, entertainment, shopping, arts, health, travel and design.
In June 1995, BT became the first English-language newspaper in Asia to go on the World Wide Web. Since January 2000, BT Online started to be available from 4am Singapore time (GMT +0800) and to offer news updates throughout the day.
Redesigned in September 2004 to engage a new generation of readers, a refreshing blue masthead, bigger fonts and friendlier layout were introduced. The content has been expanded to reflect a complete read, packing in loads of new features, such as speciality pages, a daily take on the health of the Singapore economy and dedicated regional pages.
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About OCBC Bank
OCBC Bank, established in 1912, is the second largest financial services group in Southeast Asia by assets. It is among the world's highest rated banks, with a long term credit rating of Aa1 from Moody's. OCBC Bank and its subsidiaries offer a broad array of specialist financial 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 a network of more than 500 branches and representative offices in 15 countries and territories, including 382 branches and offices in Indonesia operated by its subsidiary, Bank OCBC NISP.
OCBC Bank's insurance subsidiary, Great Eastern Holdings, is the largest insurance group in Singapore and Malaysia by assets, and its asset management subsidiary, Lion Global Investors, is one of the largest private sector asset management companies in Southeast Asia.
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