Mark Roden, the founder and CEO of Ding, was named as EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2014 at the televised awards ceremony held in Dublin last night.
Over 1,400 business leaders from across the island of Ireland and around the world were in attendance at the prestigious awards gala to celebrate the achievements of the 24 EY Entrepreneur Of The Year finalists who, together, employ 6,000 people and generate revenues of €630m.
Headquartered in Dublin, Ding enables migrant workers to support loved ones back home by facilitating the instant transfer of credit top-up to any mobile phone anywhere in the world. Ding has delivered USD$0.6bn to over 58 million phones since its inception and is currently transferring almost $1m on a daily basis directly to mobile phones across all emerging markets. With offices in Miami, Dubai, San Salvador, Bucharest and Dhaka; Ding currently employs 200 people and has users in over 130 countries.
“I am so proud of everyone in our company – this is truly a fantastic night for all of us at Ding,” said Mark Roden of his unexpected win. “I am absolutely humbled to be in the company of such incredible winners and want to thank EY for putting us on the global map along with all the other finalists. I’d also like to thank Enterprise Ireland, sponsors of the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year programme, for their support of both me and the business from the very start.”
Roden will now go forward to represent Ireland at the World Entrepreneur Of The Year Awards in Monte Carlo in June 2015 where he will compete with over 60 leading entrepreneurs from across the globe.
“Ding has been able to positively impact the daily lives of millions of people in a meaningful way by leveraging the power and reach of the mobile phone” said Frank O’Keeffe, partner-in-charge of EY Entrepreneur Of The Year. “In just eight years, Mark has succeeded in creating a global company here in Dublin that is ideally placed to become one of Ireland’s leading technology multinationals and we are honoured to award his achievements here tonight.”
In addition to being selected as the overall winner of EY Entrepreneur Of The Year for 2014, Mark Roden was also named the EY International Entrepreneur Of The Year. John Purdy of Ergo, a leading consultative IT services partner to corporate and enterprise organisations, picked up the award for EY Industry Entrepreneur Of The Year; while Terry Fox of bespoke paper cup manufacturer, Cupprint, was named as the EY Emerging Entrepreneur Of The Year.
The winners were selected by an independent panel of judges chaired by Padraig Ó Céidigh that included previous EY Entrepreneur Of The Year winners Denis O’Brien, Anne Heraty, Michael Carey, Liam Casey, Jerry Kennelly, Dr Ed Harty, Brian Long and Pat McDonagh as well as representatives from Enterprise Ireland, InterTradeIreland and Invest Northern Ireland.
Outside of the 24 finalists, EY Entrepreneur Of The Year presents the annual Special Award to an individual who has made a profound contribution to the island of Ireland through their entrepreneurial vision, innovation and commitment to excellence. This year, the prestigious accolade was awarded to chairman of Goldman Sachs International and former Attorney General of Ireland, Peter Sutherland.
Presenting Sutherland with the Special Award last night, Frank O’Keeffe, said: “When the history of Irish enterprise is written, Peter Sutherland will have etched an indelible impression. Amidst his many impressive achievements, Peter was instrumental in breaking down barriers to open competition and create an environment where the potential of European and World Trade could be unleashed.”