Ernst & Young has announced the winners of its Jordan Entrepreneur of the Year 2011 Award: Randa Ayoubi of Jordan-based digital content production platform Rubicon. Salah Oqbi of chalk manufacturing company Jordan Chalk has been named Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year.
After being shortlisted along with 12 other entrepreneurs from 10 other companies, Ayoubi won out thanks to her entrepreneurial spirit, financial performance, strategic direction, economic impact, personal integrity, and influence.
She’ll go on to represent Jordan at the World Entrepreneur of the Year Award in Monte Carlo in June 2012. “This is an unparalled opportunity to meet with entrepreneurs from around the world, share notes and benefit from their experience, which will in turn enable me to contribute to Jordan’s economy and its local business sector,” Ayoubi said in a statement.
Ayoubi has especially inspired women in Jordan with her success as an entrepreneur, having brought Rubicon from being a startup to a global production company with offices in Amman, Los Angeles, Manila, and Dubai. The company, which specializes in TV series, 2D and 3D animation and downloadable content, and, as a full service studio, offers voiceovers, character design, storyboarding, and audio mixing services.
Salah Oqbi started Jordan Chalk in 2003, using raw materials from Wadi Mujib in Jordan. The company originally sold half a million chalk boxes in the local market and exported another half a million to Sudan and Iraq. Today, Jordan Chalk annually produces 2.4 million chalk boxes, exporting to over 50 countries around the world and meeting 95% of Jordan's market demand for child-friendly chalk.
The Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award is now celebrated in over 140 cities around the world in 50 countries, with the goal of honoring entrepreneurs who established and lead successful businesses that contribute to their country’s socioeconomic wellbeing.
Last year, the first year that the Entrepreneur of the Year Award was launched in Jordan, Amjad Aryan of Pharmacy One won, from a group of 9 companies started by 14 entrepreneurs, two of which were women. This year, having two women win the competition is a great outcome for Jordan, especially as Ayoubi and Oqbi continue to represent Jordan internationally. Hopefully women will continue to be represented in the running next year.