Ernst & Young announced the 27 women founders selected for the EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women North America Class of 2021. The program is now in its 14th year. It identifies ambitious women entrepreneurs who are leading thriving organizations. It then provides them with the access, advisors and resources to help them scale their companies to their full potential as market-leading innovators. Program engagement offers participants executive education and introductions to the vast EY global entrepreneurial ecosystem. It also offers access to the Entrepreneurial Winning Women community worldwide.
“It is crucial that we focus on women business owners and encourage female entrepreneurship,” said EY Americas Solutions Leader Cheryl Grise, who also serves as the Entrepreneurial Winning Women North America Executive Sponsor. “The Winning Women program exemplifies how, when systemic barriers are removed, women-led businesses can reach their full potential and spur immediate and long-lasting impact across sectors and the globe. The successes women founders who are part of this community have built individually and with each other are numerous and impressive. We are proud to be part of their journey.”
A focus on sustainability
The Class of 2021 includes 27 high-growth companies owned and led by women across the US and Canada. These companies span a variety of industries. This year’s class has a strong showing of founders focused on sustainability. Companies are offering solutions to industrial food waste, innovative power generators, energy-saving electromechanics and eco-friendly baby products. The founders are also concentrating on tech-driven solutions across industries ranging from higher education to leadership coaching, health and wellness and more. The entrepreneurs selected for the program showed a level of ingenuity, strategy and grit that stood out from the crowd.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has been disproportionately difficult for women in the workforce, but these founders have pushed through, illustrating the strength and resiliency that are core qualities of a successful entrepreneur,” said Maranda Bruckner, Entrepreneurial Winning Women North America Program Lead, Ernst & Young LLP. “It is with great pleasure that we honor these talented business leaders who have stood behind their employees, communities and mission, against all obstacles. We look forward to supporting them in scaling their businesses.” The Class of 2021 will be officially recognized this week during the EY Strategic Growth Forum®, one of the nation’s most prestigious gatherings of high-growth, market-leading companies.
Celebrating winning women
The Entrepreneurial Winning Women North America program targets women business owners who are founding CEOs of any US or Canadian privately held company. The company must be 10 years old or younger. Company revenues typically range from at least $2m to as much as $30m annually. The Entrepreneurial Winning Women become part of a global peer community. This community includes more than 800 Winning Women entrepreneurs in 49 countries and on every continent. A recent survey asked Winning Women about the program’s impact on their success. Eighty percent said it had a positive impact on their confidence and leadership to grow their business. Meanwhile, 66 percent said the program helped them grow and lead their team. Over half indicated the program impacted their willingness to take risks to scale their business.
“Navigating an unprecedented year, these entrepreneurs have truly been winning women. They are important engines for economic growth by fostering job creation, driving innovation and supporting prosperity generation,” said Lee Henderson, Americas EY Private Leader. “Through a combination of education, training and access to EY’s extensive entrepreneurial ecosystem, we are committed to fostering women founders and to helping close the gender gap in entrepreneurship.”
Winning Women North America Class of 2021
The 2021 members of the EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women North America Class are:
Belgian Boys is on a mission to turn up the happy, one treat at a time. From breakfast to after-dinner dessert, the business makes goodies that bring smiles to eaters of all ages. Belgian Boys delivers whimsical packaging, indulgent flavors and a healthy dose of fun to stores across the United States.
Brim Financial is one of the fastest-growing fintechs in Canada. It has its own business-to-consumer issuance license and provides its financial technology platform as a business-to-business service for financial institutions and large commercial partners. Brim delivers an innovative product suite and cards, integrated “buy now, pay later” solutions, mobile and digital banking and behavior-driven customer engagement. All are embedded within a global rewards ecosystem.
CytoAgents is a clinical-stage biotechnology company. It is focused on the development of innovative pharmaceutical products to treat life-threatening symptoms associated with cytokine release syndrome, an excessive immune response that causes overwhelming inflammation. The team includes world-renowned drug development, scientific, clinical and regulatory experts. It also includes professionals skilled in the areas of business development, legal and finance.
Fatso was founded with the goal of bringing better nutrition to more people. The company uses cost-effective peanuts and a blend of almonds and seeds to bring together good fats and fiber-focused ingredients without palm oil or sugar. Fatso aims to provide more nutrition and flavor at a cost that is lower than or competitive with high-priced specialty nut butters.
Full Harvest is solving the US$2.5t global food waste problem. It is the first and only business-to-business online marketplace for imperfect and surplus produce. The company creates value along the entire supply chain by lowering food production costs, significantly reducing wasted food and resources, enabling an additional revenue stream for farmers and bringing the produce supply chain online and into the 21st century.
Goodr believes that hunger isn’t a scarcity issue; it’s a logistics issue. Every year in the US, over 80 billion pounds of edible food is wasted, yet nearly 50 million people are suﬀering from food insecurity. Goodr provides a secure ledger that tracks organizations’ surplus food from pickup to donation, delivering real-time social and environmental impact reporting analytics.
Honor Yoga is a mission-driven brand of franchise yoga studios. The franchise supports the practice of yoga for social, emotional, physical, intellectual and community health and well-being. The brand also provides workshops, teacher training, retreats and virtual classes. In addition, the Honor Yoga Foundation was created to make yoga more accessible to those with limitations and diverse needs.
IBEX is an award-winning IT consulting and training firm. It works with both government agencies and corporations to implement and train workers on innovative and advanced technologies. By launching its cloud-based supplier diversity platform, Certifiably Diverse, IBEX brings efficiency and transparency in supplier diversity initiatives by connecting organizations with underrepresented groups.
Fast-growing technology company Kaizen Health strives to continually improve access across the social determinants. This includes improving medical care, education, employment, access to food and housing as well as social justice support. It fosters healthy communities by increasing access to medical care and foundational resources that promote equitable health outcomes. Kaizen Health is dedicated to enhancing access to patients and giving back valuable staff hours to providers.
Kira Talent is one of Canada’s fastest-growing companies in the higher education technology space. It helps admissions teams effectively identify applicants who will succeed in their program. Kira works with over 750 university programs around the world, including several Ivy League institutions. Together, they reshape the admissions process into a holistic experience while reducing admissions fraud and reviewer bias.
KROME is a general contractor specializing in energy efficiency projects based on a fully integrated, innovative and cost-effective approach through energy savings and subsidies. It offers its expertise to property owners looking to improve their infrastructure, decarbonize their operations, reduce their energy expenses and increase their buildings’ value.
Lark is a health care company that makes it easier for people to prevent and manage chronic conditions through an AI-powered platform. By integrating connected devices and using a cognitive behavioral therapy framework, Lark gives every user a personalized digital health coach and 24/7 care through an easy-to-use interface that is similar to text messaging.
Loulou Lollipop is a premium lifestyle baby brand. The brand swaddles lovable aesthetics together with high-quality materials that parents can feel good about. Loulou Lollipop works to make sure that everything it creates — from its signature ultra-soft muslin and high-quality silicone to its organic and sustainable knit fabrics — passes the parent test.
MAS Global is a software development and cloud services firm leveraging the power of technology and top diverse talent across the US and Latin America. Its 300 team members help clients use the latest web, mobile, cloud, AI and data technologies to build innovative products and deliver enterprise digital capabilities that enable business modernization, resiliency and growth.
Mesodyne has developed a new kind of power generator that converts fuel to electricity via light. The LightCell generator is compact, quiet and reliable. It operates on any fuel and has up to 10 times the energy density of lithium ion batteries. Mesodyne’s patented technology enables long-endurance power generation for remote unmanned sites and systems, drones, robots, military personnel and emergency responders.
Metro Waste Systems | Deborah Reyna and Rachel Reyna
Metro Waste Systems is one of the fastest-growing family-owned and locally operated waste disposal companies in the San Antonio area. The company provides waste collection and recycling services to residential customers. The company believes that by paying attention to the smallest details, it can provide the best customer service experience.
Mettle Ops is a veteran-owned business with a mission to help soldiers survive on the battlefield. Through transparency and grit, Mettle Ops delivers multidisciplinary, comprehensive Department of Defense engineering solutions to government and industry partners on a national scale while specializing in reverse engineering, ground vehicle design, system integration and other capabilities.
Rethink Compliance helps companies create compelling and effective compliance programs by bringing together corporate compliance experts, industry thought leaders and creative services professionals to offer clients unbeatable service and support. The company offers rightsized consulting engagements in governance, risk and compliance, as well as visually attractive, user-friendly codes and policies.
Sounding Board helps companies accelerate leader development with a globally managed, fully vetted network of world-class coaches and an integrated technology platform designed to make professional coaching easier to manage, measure and scale. It is one of the first to market with virtual one-on-one coaching and group coaching. Sounding Board helps professionals develop critical leadership skills to drive real business impact.
From operating out of a dorm room to being named the third fastest-growing online brand in the beauty industry, Static Nails is a globally recognized, award-winning authority that specializes in developing nontoxic cosmetic innovations. The business has spearheaded industry-changing advancements such as the first reusable pop-on manicure. It also spearheaded nontoxic, odorless polish remover.
Total Trenchless Ltd. is a majority Indigenous-owned contractor supplying underground trenchless pipe installation services. It is currently the only business of its kind registered in North America. Together, the Total Trenchless team of skilled professionals has over 200 years of experience. The company’s impact on people, safety and the environment is their top priority.
We Are Rosie is a flexible talent marketplace for the modern advertising and marketing world. It is a thriving community of over 9,000 diverse and highly skilled independent marketers. Each member helps a variety of companies maximize their agility, resilience, inclusion and creativity, by providing curated, on-demand marketing talent, teams and executives.
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About EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women
The EY organization is committed to seeing women lead. EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women is a global program for successful women entrepreneurs whose businesses show more potential to scale. Through access to EY professionals and global EY networks throughout the entrepreneurial ecosystem, pioneering women founders on every continent secure the resources, advice, operational know-how, contacts and community they need to unleash their ambitions, expand their companies to full potential and become the role models they never had. ey.com/winningwomen
About EY Private
As Advisors to the ambitious, EY Private professionals possess the experience and passion to support private businesses and their owners in unlocking the full potential of their ambitions. EY Private teams offer distinct insights born from the long EY history of working with business owners and entrepreneurs. These teams support the full spectrum of private enterprises including private capital managers and investors and the portfolio businesses they fund, business owners, family businesses, family offices and entrepreneurs. Visit ey.com/private.
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