Ventura and Simi Valley business founders among semifinalists

EOYRami Rostami, founder and CEO of Technocel Wireless Products in Simi Valley, and Jeff Green, CEO and co-founder of The Trade Desk Inc. in Ventura, are among those hoping to clinch the title of EY Entrepreneur of the Year in the greater Los Angeles region, as reported by the Ventura County Star.

The EY Entrepreneur of the Year was founded by Ernst & Young LLP 28 years ago and awards entrepreneurs who demonstrate excellence and extraordinary success in areas such as innovation, financial performance and personal commitment to their businesses and communities.

Business founders in more than 145 cities and 60 countries are recognized in the contest.

Read the full article below:

Local business founders named semifinalists in regional business contest

Entrepreneur of the Year nomination deadline nears

 Los Angeles finalists and award recipients

This past year, the Los Angeles finalists and award recipients (many pictured above) were selected by a panel of independent judges and honored at a gala event with over 700 entrepreneurs and business leaders at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills on Tuesday, June 18, 2013.

EY’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award honors the outstanding entrepreneurial leaders who inspire others with their passion, vision and achievement. Applications are due by Friday, March 14, 2014 at https://eoy-nomination.ey.com.

Anyone can submit a nomination, and it only take a few minutes.

To be eligible to receive an award, the nominee must be an owner or manager of a private or public company who is primarily responsible for the recent performance of the company and an active member of top management for at least two years. In addition, the company must be at least three years old.

Nominees are evaluated by an independent panel of judges. The judges are past winners and business and community leaders. The judges review each nominee based on the following criteria:

  • Vision: creating or improving a business concept and implementing it effectively
  • Leadership: demonstrating the focus and strength of character that enable an entrepreneur to move forward — and inspire a team to do the same — despite skeptics and obstacles
  • Achievement: driving business success by going beyond developing an idea to continual innovation in order to generate new ideas
  • Social responsibility: knowing that commitment and responsibility aren’t confined to business and leveraging energies and resources to give back to the community

LA Mayor Garcetti and EY kick off Entrepreneur of Year

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti (center) with EY's Michael Kacsmar (left) and  Joe Muscat (right) at the kickoff event in Los Angeles

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti (center) with EY’s Michael Kacsmar (left) and Joe Muscat (right) at the kickoff event in the Bradley Tower at City Hall

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti teamed with Ernst & Young partners Patrick Niemann, April Spencer, Brian Ring and Michael Kacsmar today to kick off the LA competition for the 28th Annual EY Entrepreneur of the Year Awards.

Past award recipients, future nominees, program sponsors, judges and other business leaders joined Mayor Garcetti and EY professionals in the Bradley Tower at City Hall.

“Los Angeles is a city of innovation, and the Entrepreneur Of The Year Program recognizes businesses that develop cutting edge products and services that improve our lives and create much needed jobs both here in our city and across our state and country,” said Mayor Garcetti.

The Entrepreneur Of The Year Program celebrates game-changing leaders around the world who found, strengthen or transform successful enterprises. The regional award recognizes entrepreneurs who stimulate the economy by creating high-growth businesses and jobs in Los Angeles. The 2013 Greater Los Angeles area finalists created over 10,000 jobs, increased their workforce by 20 percent and grew their revenues by 53 percent since 2010.

Each year, EY honors successful entrepreneurs in more than 150 cities in over 60 countries. In the United States, Ernst & Young LLP received more than 1,600 nominations for the 2013 program.

Entrepreneur of Year winners announced in LA

The An Family, of fourth generation family-owned business House of An, receives Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year Family Business Award of Excellence. From left to right: Monique An, Jacqueline An, Catherine An, Helene An, Hannah An, and Elizabeth An.

The An Family, of fourth generation family-owned business House of An, received the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Family Business Award of Excellence. From left to right: Monique An, Jacqueline An, Catherine An, Helene An, Hannah An and Elizabeth An.

Ernst & Young announced the Entrepreneur of the Year® 2013 award recipients in Greater Los Angeles at a gala event Tuesday at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills.

The winners are:

  • „Janice Bryant Howroyd, CEO, The Act 1 Group – Torrance, Calif.
  • Clarence Daniels Jr., Chairman & CEO, Concession Management Services, Inc. – Los Angeles, Calif.
  • „Sam Naficy, President & CEO, DTT – Los Angeles, Calif.
  • Jeff Stibel, Chairman & CEO, Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. – Malibu, Calif.
  • The An Family, Managing Partners and Executive Chef, House of An – Beverly Hills, Calif.
  • Bob Sinnott, CEO, Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors, L.P. – Los Angeles, Calif.
  • Moctesuma Esparza, CEO, Maya Cinemas North America, Inc – Los Angeles, Calif.

Collectively, the award recipients have created over 1,100 jobs over the past two years. On average, they have increased their workforce by 40 percent and have grown their revenues by 42 percent between 2010 and 2012.

LA Entrepreneur of the Year finalists

EOYErnst & Young LLP has announced 19 finalists for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2013 Award in greater Los Angeles. The finalists were selected by a panel of independent judges. Collectively, these finalists have created over 10,000 jobs. On average, they have increased their workforce by 20% and have grown their revenues by 53% since 2010.

Award winners will be announced at a special gala, with over 7o0 entrepreneurs and business leaders, on Tuesday, June 18, 2013 at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, CA. The 2013 finalist are:

  • Janice Bryant Howroyd, CEO, The Act 1 Group – Torrance, CA
  • Dinesh Ravishanker, CEO & Co-Founder, CallFire – Santa Monica, CA
  • Mel Elias, President & CEO, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf – Los Angeles, CA
  • Clarence Daniels Jr., Chairman & CEO, Concession Management Services – Los Angeles, CA
  •   Sam Naficy, President & CEO, DTT – Los Angeles, CA
  •   Jeff Stibel, Chairman & CEO, Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp. – Malibu, CA
  •   Martha de la Torre and Joe Badame, Co-Founders, El Clasificado – Norwalk, CA
  •   Jamey Edwards, CEO, Emergent Medical Associates – Manhattan Beach, CA
  •   The An Family, Founders, House of An (Crustacean, An Qi, Tiato, Thanh Long, and An Catering) – Beverly Hills, CA
  •   Ed Bagdasarian, President, Jim Freedman, Chairman, Mike Rosenberg, CEO, Intrepid Investment Bankers LLC – Los Angeles, CA
  •   Bob Sinnott, CEO, Kayne Anderson Capital Advisors, L.P. – Los Angeles, CA
  •   Moctesuma Esparza, CEO, Maya Cinemas North America, Inc – Los Angeles, CA
  •   Demian Sellfors, CEO and Co-Founder, Media Temple – Culver City, CA
  •   Rick Stollmeyer, CEO, MINDBODY Inc. – San Luis Obispo, CA
  •   Tim Cadogan, CEO, OpenX – Pasadena, CA
  •   Loren Bendele, President & Co-Founder, Savings.com – Los Angeles, CA
  •   Walter Driver, CEO, Scopely – Los Angeles, CA
  •   Jessica Firestone, President & CEO, Tempest Telecom Solutions LLC – Santa Barbara, CA
  •   Jeff Green, CEO & Founder, The Trade Desk – Ventura, CA

San Diego finalists for Entrepreneur of the Year

EOYErnst & Young LLP has announced 16 finalists for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2013 Award in San Diego. The finalists were selected from nearly 60 nominations by a panel of independent judges.

Award winners will be announced at a special awards gala on Thursday, June 13, at The Hyatt Regency Aventine in La Jolla, Calif. The 2013 finalists are:

  • Adconion Direct, San Diego – Kim Reed Perell, CEO
  • Behind the Scenes Catering & Events, San Diego – John Crisafulli, President
  • Cadence Pharmaceuticals, San Diego – Theodore Schroeder, President & CEO
  • ecoATM, San Diego – Tom Tullie, CEO & Chairman of the Board
  • Elite, San Diego – John Kontopuls, President & CEO
  • Genomatica, San Diego – Christophe Schilling, CEO & Co-Founder
  • Halozyme Therapeutics, San Diego – Gregory Frost, President & CEO
  • Independa, Inc., La Jolla – Kian Saneii, CEO
  • LifeProof, San Diego – Gary Rayner, CEO
  • MedVantx, San Diego – Robert Feeney, CEO & Founder
  • Peregrine Semiconductor Corp., San Diego – James Cable, CEO
  • Santarus, Inc., San Diego – Gerald Proehl, President & CEO
  • Sempra U.S. Gas & Power, San Diego – Jeff Martin, President & CEO
  • SkinMedica, Carlsbad – Mary Fisher, CEO
  • Sullivan Solar Power, San Diego – Daniel Sullivan, President
  • The Wheat Group Inc., San Diego – Kelly Grismer, President and Chad Grismer, CEO

PNW finalists for Entrepreneur of the Year

EYErnst & Young LLP today announced the finalists for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2013 Award in the Pacific Northwest. The awards program recognizes high-growth entrepreneurs who demonstrate excellence and extraordinary success in such areas as innovation, financial performance and personal commitment to their businesses and communities.

The finalists are:

·         Brandon Dawson, Audigy Group, LLC, Vancouver, Washington

·         Craig Bramscher, Brammo, Inc., Ashland, Oregon

·         Jim Weber, Brooks Sports, Inc., Bothell, Washington

·         Gary Fish, Deschutes Brewery, Bend, Oregon

·         Chris Barrow, EagleView Technologies, Bothell, Washington

·         Steve Larson, Eid Passport, Hillsboro, Oregon

·         Sam Blackman, Elemental Technologies, Portland, Oregon

·         Dara Khosrowshahi, Expedia, Inc., Bellevue, Washington

·         Mark Mason, HomeStreet, Inc., Seattle, Washington

·         Greg Pierson, iovation, Portland, Oregon

·         Tom Alberg, Paul Goodrich, Gerald Grinstein, William Ruckelshaus, Madrona Venture Group, Seattle, Washington

·         Kyle Stavig, Myers Container, Portland, Oregon

·         Beau Fessenden, Natural Molecular Testing Corp., Renton, Washington

·         Greg Seibly, Sterling Bank, Spokane, Washington

·         Kurt Dammeier, Sugar Mountain, Seattle, Washington

·         Kevin Klock, TalkingRain, Preston, Washington

·         Darryl Rawlings, Trupanion, Seattle, Washington

·         Spencer Rascoff, Zillow, Inc., Seattle, Washington


The finalists were selected by a panel of independent judges. Award winners will be revealed at a gala event on June 7, 2013, at the Hyatt Regency in Bellevue, Wash.

Collectively, these finalists grew their company’s employment by 39% and their revenues by 44% between 2010 and 2012. Now in its 27th year, the Entrepreneur Of The Year Program has expanded globally to recognize company builders in over 140 cities and in more than 50 countries throughout the world.

Regional award winners go on to compete at the national level. Award winners in several national categories, as well as the National Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year Overall Award winner, will be announced at the annual awards gala in Palm Springs, California, on November 16, 2013. The awards are the culminating event of the Ernst & Young Strategic Growth Forum®, the nation’s most prestigious gathering of high-growth, market-leading companies.

Deadline nears for Entrepreneur of The Year Awards

EYThe already extended March 22 deadline is nearing for the 2013 Entrepreneur of The Year Awards. Recognized as one of the most prestigious business awards programs in the country, Ernst & Young is calling for nominations nationwide.

Awards are given to entrepreneurs who have demonstrated excellence and extraordinary success in such areas as innovation, financial performance, and personal commitment to their businesses and communities. Self-nominations are encouraged, and there is no fee.

VC Roundup: Investments down overall, up in Los Angeles, San Diego and Seattle

EYNational venture capital investments fell by 10% last year, according to figures released on January 18th by PricewaterhouseCoopers and the National Venture Capital Association. Meanwhile, with its large number of tech startups, Los Angeles has seen VC investments increase 13% from $1.1 billion in 2011 to $1.3 billion in 2012, the Los Angeles Business Journal reported.

Mark Sogomian of Ernst & Young LLP said the combination of big investments made in 2010 and 2011 and a slow market for mergers and acquisitions have lead to a decline in investments last year.

The San Diego Union Tribune reported that venture capital funding also went up in San Diego, surpassing $1 billion for the first time since 2008. A Dow Jones and Ernst & Young report showed that medical device and biotech firms alone raised $669 million last year, as opposed to $ 516 million in 2011.

With a 69% increase over the state’s total venture funding in 2011, Washington companies attracted $931.5 million in 2012.

“We had a pretty solid year, given all the uncertainties and the ups and downs in the economy,” Greg Beams of Ernst & Young told the Seattle Times. Software, IT services and biotech were cited as the strong sectors in Washington, whereas pullbacks in seed and cleantech investments were noted.

Mayor Villaraigosa helps Ernst & Young kick off Entrepreneur of the Year program

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa shakes hands with Patrick Niemann, Ernst & Young Greater Los Angeles Office Managing Partner at LA City Hall in Thomas Bradley Tower.

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Patrick Niemann, Ernst & Young Greater Los Angeles Office Managing Partner, at LA City Hall in Thomas Bradley Tower.

Today Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Deputy Mayor for Economic and Business Policy Matt Karatz joined Ernst & Young LLP Partners Patrick Niemann, April Spencer and Brian Ring to kick off the search for business innovators to compete in the 27th Annual Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® award program for Greater Los Angeles. The Mayor welcomed distinguished past award recipients, sponsors, judges and other business leaders in the Bradley Tower at City Hall.

The Entrepreneur Of The Year Program celebrates game-changing leaders around the world who founded, strengthened or transformed successful enterprises. The regional award recognizes entrepreneurs who stimulate the economy by creating high-growth businesses and jobs in Greater Los Angeles. In 2012, Greater Los Angeles area finalists had an average 1,985 employees, net sales of $196M, net equity of $98M and 19% growth.

“I’m proud to stand with Ernst & Young in its support of local entrepreneurs and its recognition of their important role in the Los Angeles economy,” said Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. “Ernst & Young’s program shines a deserving spotlight on our city’s job creators and revenue generators who drive the innovations that set Los Angeles apart.”

Each year, Ernst & Young showcases successful entrepreneurs from more than 140 cities in 50 countries. It receives more than 100 nominations from companies in Greater Los Angeles alone. Past Los Angeles winners include: Tim Leiweke (AEG), Earvin Magic Johnson, Jr. (Magic Johnson Enterprises), Don Chang (Forever 21), Robert Friedman (Summit Entertainment LLC), Mark Hughes (Herbalife International) and, most recently, David Overton (Cheesecake Factory).

The regional award winners in Los Angeles will be announced on June 18, 2013, followed by a national gala in Palm Springs in November. To qualify, entrepreneurs must be the founder or an executive who organizes, manages and assumes the risk of a business early in its life cycle or during its growth. The deadline for 2013 nominations is March 8.

“The search is on for new award winners to build on the momentum from our 27-year history celebrating entrepreneurship,” said April Spencer, Entrepreneur Of The Year Program Director for Ernst & Young LLP in the Greater Los Angeles Area. “The 2012 award will help raise the profile and reach of business leaders whose passion and drive propel our economy forward.”