WHAT do some of Singapore's most notable brands such as Benjamin Barker, Secretlab and The Golden Duck have in common?
Aside from displaying bold vision and innovation, these companies are all previous winners of the Emerging Enterprise Award (EE Award), currently in its 11th edition. [Emerging Enterprise 2018: How to apply]
Applications are now open for EE 2018, Singapore's only business award that reaches out to firms with annual sales revenue of up to S$20 million per annum.
Jointly organised by The Business Times and OCBC Bank, the annual award was launched to recognise small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) which have been outstanding in their respective fields. It aims to provide these deserving businesses with a boost for further growth.
Up to three winners stand a chance to win the coveted Emerging Enterprise Winner title, with prizes comprising of consultancy services, executive education programmes, business debit card credits, travel packages, and an S$200,000 interest-free business overdraft facility from OCBC Bank.
The awards are supported by Mastercard, Acorn Marketing and Research Consultants, Singtel, INSEAD, Wavemaker, Enterprise Singapore and official auditor, RSM.
EE 2018 will also continue its tradition of honouring excellence in innovation and recognising promising startups through its Best Innovation and Most Promising Startup awards.
Singtel and OCBC will present up to two winners with the Best Innovation Award, which recognises emerging enterprises which have a strong innovative culture.
Each winner will receive up to S$30,000 worth of Information and Communication Technology business solutions from Singtel and an interest-free business overdraft facility worth S$50,000 from OCBC.
One company below three years old stands to win the Most Promising Startup Award, which honours aspiring enterprises with a strong entrepreneurial spirit and a commercially viable and sustainable product idea.
The prize package for this award has been enhanced, with the winner receiving a digital consulting package and media inventory worth a total of S$50,000 from media agency Wavemaker, compared to a digital consulting package worth S$30,000 in last year's edition.
To qualify for EE 2018, companies must have been in operation for at most 10 years and a minimum of 30 per cent of shareholdings must be owned by citizens or permanent residents.
Wong Wei Kong, editor of The Business Times, noted that the EE Award has served "to empower startups and young enterprises for the past 10 years", recognising their achievements and offering them the resources to scale up.
Christie Chu, head of emerging business, global commercial banking, OCBC Bank, said: "Innovation and digitisation continue to be key themes so we hope that participating businesses will be able to share their ideas and learn from each other in order to better take advantage of resulting growth opportunities in Singapore and beyond."
Emerging enterprises that meet the qualifying criteria will have until Friday, June 1, 2018 to apply.