EARLIER this week the final episode of the EY Entrepreneur of the Year competition aired on UTV as fans of the show gear up for an exclusive broadcast of the gala awards next week.
Over the past five weeks, the series has taken an in-depth look at the 2015 finalists who have displayed exceptional entrepreneurial skills and business acumen in recent years, and the successful company behind each entrepreneur.
In Monday’s episode, fans of the show met Terry Knox the CEO of CD Group, which is a third generation family business employing over 170 people from locations in Belfast, Cork and Dublin. Servicing the automotive aftermarket with industry leading brands, its unrivalled delivery service has become the mainstay of the group’s largest trading name, Component Distributors, which represent the manufacturers of vehicle components who supply the production lines of vehicle manufacturers. With these manufacturers brands Component Distributers then service the demand from garages for replacement parts through a network of motor factors.
By dealing with manufacturers who supply the vehicle manufacturers, Component Distributors concentrate on making the right solutions available for the automotive aftermarket in Ireland.
Also appearing were brother’s Patrick and John Collison, co-founders of Stripe – an online payments company which they set up while John was a student at Harvard, and which is currently valued at €5 billion. We also meet Michael Hoyne of Merlyn Showering in Kilkenny.
Ross Kelly and Conor Crowley of Dublin-based Vizor discuss the tough times their company has experienced in recent years and the fact that they can now hardly keep up with their need to hire new staff, and finally Frank Madden of Crest Solutions brings the cameras to his carpentry workshop in Cork.
With a combined workforce of over 5,000 people and a turnover of €1.5 billion, this year’s 24 finalists represent a broad range of sectors including technology, manufacturing, life sciences, engineering, agriculture and health and beauty.
Each category winner will be announced at the televised Awards Gala on Thursday October 22 at 10.30pm, with one of the three category winners being named the 2015 EY Entrepreneur of the Year.
Viewers can join the online conversation using the hashtag #EOY2015.