SINGAPORE (Feb 7): The 16th annual EY Entrepreneur Of The Year (EOY) awards was officially launched at a ceremony held at St Regis Singapore today.

Themed ‘Leading Through Disruption’, the awards programme is open for nominations from members of the public from now till April 30 via its online portal.

EY is the multinational professional services firm formerly known as Ernst & Young, and its Entrepreneur Of The Year recognises entrepreneurs across more than 145 cities in a total of over 60 countries.

In a press release on Tuesday, Ernst & Young Solutions LLP, a member of the global EY organisation, shares that nominees will be assessed by an independent judging panel across the six globally benchmarked criteria.

They must “demonstrate strong entrepreneurial spirit, innovation, sound strategic direction and financial track record, and have built successful businesses that have global and/or community impact” in order to qualify, adds the firm.

The highest ranking individual in terms of all six criteria will be selected as the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2017 Singapore to represent the country at the World Entrepreneur Of The Year (WEOY) award in Monte Carlo, Monaco, next year in 2018.

This marks the first year where Standard Chartered Bank joins as a major sponsor of the EY EOY awards programme for 2017-2018. During the same period, the bank will be co-presenting the EY-Standard Chartered Family Business Award of Excellence, an honorary award presented for the fifth year on board the EOY platform.

For the third year, EY will also confer the EY Asean Entrepreneurial Excellence Award, which recognises Southeast Asian businesses that contribute to the economy and community in the region.

Both recipients of the EY-Standard Chartered Family Business Award of Excellence and EY Asean Entrepreneurial Excellence Award do not compete for the EY EOY Singapore 2017 title.

Other sponsors and supporters of the EOY awards include The Edge Singapore as the programme’s official business publication, as well as organisations such as Action Community for Entrepreneurship; International Enterprise Singapore (IE Singapore); Singapore Business Federation; and SPRING Singapore.

“Disruption, whether catalysed by dramatic shifts in technology or workforce and consumer demographics, is one of the most defining challenges for both established players and new entrants to the market,” comments Max Loh, EY Asean and Singapore managing partner, Ernst & Young LLP, on the theme of this year’s EOY awards.

“How our local entrepreneurs successfully seize the upsides of disruption will have a clear impact on Singapore’s future economy.”

Standard Chartered CEO, Judy Hsu, adds: “We are committed to supporting entrepreneurs in Singapore, whether it is by helping them protect and grow their wealth through our private banking and wealth management expertise, or supporting their business plans as they take on world markets via our commercial banking network. Our sponsorship is also in line with Singapore’s efforts to foster entrepreneurship and innovation in our business community.”