Local enterprises honoured for achievements at the 2015 Enterprise 50 Awards

2015 Enterprise 50 Awards

Companies urged to 'innovate and internationalise' to revive productivity growth


Companies urged to 'innovate and internationalise' to revive productivity growth 

Rotating Offshore Solutions Pte Ltd, a home-grown marine engineering company has won first place in the 2015 Enterprise 50 (E50) Awards. In second and third place respectively were local seafood chain Jumbo Seafood Pte Ltd, and AllAlloy Pte Ltd, a total welding solution provider. 

Themed 'The Next 50 – Building a Better Tomorrow', the winners of the annual Enterprise 50 (E50) Awards stood out from the competition by pushing boundaries and embracing technology and innovation to differentiate their product offerings in tandem with changing market conditions. 

Gracing this year's E50 Awards Presentation and Gala Dinner at the Resorts World Convention Centre was Minister for Trade and Industry (Industry), Mr S Iswaran, who presented the awards to this year's winners. 

Mr Chiu Wu Hong, Head of Enterprise at KPMG in Singapore said, "The productivity journey is not an easy one for many companies, but our 50 enterprises have shown us that they are able to achieve sustained productivity and remain competitive if their company is committed to a productivity-led culture. 

The 50 enterprises that made the rankings this year have moved beyond relooking at their business models and successfully positioned their company for business expansion, whether into new lines of businesses or to expand overseas." 

Mr Alvin Tay, Editor for The Business Times said, "This year's E50 winners have shown exemplary leadership and business acumen in their respective industries. Their successes have centred on improving productivity and pioneering innovations so as to enhance their core competencies and build new capabilities. It is companies such as our 50 winners that form the strong core that drives the development of Singapore's economy. As Singapore's leading business and financial daily, we will be the voice to advocate and support the growth of our SMEs through our editorial coverage and news analysis."


Innovate and internationalise 

This year's winners represent a good cross-section of industries and the judges were impressed by their strong entrepreneurial spirit and business performances despite the difficult economic conditions.

The judges noted that many enterprises focus on leveraging technology and innovation to drive their growth amidst a tight labour market. 

According to a recent poll conducted by KPMG of this year's E50 winners, almost all of the respondents leverage technology for improved efficiency, time savings and for better client service and convenience. However, they also cited that the updates and maintenance costs of the technology are a challenge. 

Underscoring their respective industries' productivity growth rates this year, the E50 winners placed greater emphasis on helping their businesses improve their top-line growth so as to improve productivity. 

A poll was conducted among the winners this year. It found that most of the E50 winners were pressing ahead with their internationalisation efforts and expanding into foreign markets. More than half have a presence in two or more countries. Key reasons for doing so include having access to new markets, gaining a competitive advantage in the market and addressing the rising rental and labour costs in Singapore. 

Said Mr Chiu: "Given our small domestic market, internationalisation should be a key strategy for any homegrown company looking to build scale and access new markets and customers. For a small and open economy such as Singapore, regional markets such as Indonesia, Malaysia and Myanmar offer opportunity. The formation of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) could provide the platform for SMEs to expand regionally." 

The advent of digital disruption also sees a need for local companies to capitalise on mobile technology and social media developments to gain a competitive advantage. 

"With the advent of new markets, empowering technology and new attitudes, it is imperative that our local companies combine the merits of both innovation and technology to sharpen growth, stimulate profits, consistently execute smart ideas and build capable and mobilised businesses", Mr Chiu added. 


Identifying industry's best 

This year's E50 winners list comprises local enterprises from diverse industries ranging from Manufacturing (20 percent), Real Estate / Construction (4 percent), Wholesale trade and commission trade (2 percent), Business Services (6 percent), Distribution (16 percent), Engineering services (12 percent), Hospitality/ Travel (2 percent), Information Technology (8 percent), Logistics (4 percent) and other industries (26 percent). 

This year's E50 applicants were evaluated and ranked using both quantitative and qualitative criteria. Quantitative factors included financial performance indicators such as operating profit before tax, turnover and profit growth. 

The qualitative criteria included management and marketing strategies such as the applicants' business model and their innovations, management ideals and governance, market branding and overall potential. 

The E50 judging panel comprised senior management representatives from KPMG in Singapore, The Business Times, International Enterprise (IE) Singapore, the Singapore Business Federation (SBF), SPRING Singapore and OCBC Bank, who is the sponsor of the Awards. 

Mr Linus Goh, Head of Global Commercial Banking, OCBC Bank, said: "OCBC is proud to return as the main sponsor for the E50 award for the 10th year running. This year's winners continue to showcase the strength and agility of the best of Singapore enterprises, taking bold steps to innovate and transform their businesses in a rapidly evolving and somewhat volatile business environment. Their perseverance has been rewarded with success and a solid platform from which to launch their future growth." 

Mr Teo Eng Cheong, Chief Executive Officer, International Enterprise (IE) Singapore said, "The E50 companies are promising companies which have built strong foundations in Singapore. Many of them will benefit by expanding overseas. They may enjoy economies of scale, gain access to new technologies or develop new business models that they have not tried in Singapore. IE Singapore stands ready to assist them in this journey."

Mr Ho Meng Kit, Chief Executive Officer of Singapore Business Federation (SBF), said, "Our warmest congratulations to the E50 recipients and SBF applauds these Singapore enterprises for rising above global and local business challenges to be competitive, resilient and viable. Technology adoption and internationalisation feature prominently among these winning companies which serve as successful and inspiring models for the Singapore business community. As the apex business chamber, SBF remains committed to helping companies through the restructuring phase, improve productivity and expand overseas." 

Mr Ted Tan, Deputy Chief Executive, SPRING Singapore, said, "SPRING is proud to support the Enterprise 50 awards to jointly celebrate the success and pioneering spirit of our local enterprises. The winning companies contribute to our economy and provide good jobs for Singaporeans. They also inspire others to innovate and improve productivity. We hope more enterprises will follow their lead; to create value by developing compelling products and services, increasing market footprints and reinventing business models."




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