By Divya Thotawatte
‘Woman Entrepreneur of the Year’, the Women’s Chamber of Industry and Commerce (WCIC) biennial flagship event recognising outstanding women entrepreneurs who change the world, was held at Galadari Hotel yesterday. Its objective is to inspire and motivate the women in the business community, to improve their businesses and set-up best practices for other women to emulate.
The Award Ceremony is followed by a mentoring program for all applicants to assist them to scale their business venture as guides and role models in the community.
“This award increased my level of confidence and it showed me a path to evaluate my personal and business performance in a different way as a start-up in a business. And I also gained recognition for my business which helped me progress further,” stated Era De Moh Ltd. Director and Start-up Business Entrepreneur of the Year 2015 Winner Erangi Pathiraja.
The Awards Ceremony is designed to award Gold, Silver and Bronze for women entrepreneurs in five categories: Minor-scale Enterprises, Small-scale Enterprises, Medium-scale Enterprises, Large-scale Enterprises, and Extra-large Scale Enterprises. Every applicant is further awarded under the main categories, ‘The Woman Entrepreneur of the Year’, ‘The Young Entrepreneur of the Year’ and ‘The Best Start-up of the Year’. A total of 21 women entrepreneur achievers will receive awards.
“This year, to further broaden the reach and having observed the enthusiasm of differently abled women in entrepreneurship, we are introducing a very special category, ‘The Most Positively Able Woman of the Year.’ This category is extra special as it recognises and encourage great achievers who are on the path of economic empowerment despite their differences.” said WCIC Chairperson Chathuri Ranasinghe.
“Our chamber is devoted to enable and aspire women entrepreneurs and to help them overcome obstacles in the path of their progress and development. We’re assisted through the relationships the WCIC has established with the State institutions, banks and other relevant organisations, both public and private. We believe that by helping these individuals we not only enable their standards of living and realise their ambitions, but we also help in the development of the country’s economy,” added Ranasinghe. WCIC is a non-profit organisation which acts as a powerful voice for change and a platform for improving the business environment for remarkable women entrepreneurs.
To be eligible to take part, candidates need to be founders or promoters of the business, and the business also has to have been in active function for a period of three years and be registered under w the Sri Lankan Business Laws.
This year, the award ceremony will be held on 4 August at the Taj Samudra Hotel. Applications will be available from 16 May.
Pix by Shehan Gunasekaraw