The Seventh Annual BNZ-Indian Newslink Indian Business Awards Ceremony held on Monday, November 24, 2014 at Sky City Convention Centre brought together more than 900 businesspersons, professionals and others from across the manufacturing, trade, retailing, consulting and other sectors of the country to celebrate the success of Indian businesses.
Prime Minister John Key was the centre of attraction with his charismatic personality, friendly disposition, a brilliant speech in which he eulogised the business community in general, and those of Indian origin in particular.
Congratulating Indian Newslink on its 15th Anniversary (which we marked with a Special Report in our November 15, 2014 issue), he said, “The contributions of the Indian community to the growth of our economy has been well-recognised and acknowledged. I am confident that the relationship between New Zealand and India will continue to grow and we look forward to increasing visits by ministers and officials between the two countries.”
Mr Key said that he had met India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the Ninth East Asia Summit held in Naypyidaw (Myanmar- Burma) on November 12 and 13 and at the G20 Summit held in Brisbane (Queensland, Australia) on November 15 and 16, 2014 and that there were brightening prospects for higher levels of engagement between New Zealand and India.
“The Indian business community in New Zealand are effective partners in building our relationship,” he said and added that he was pleased to note that the Indian Newslink Indian Business Awards were getting bigger and better every year.
Guests of Honour
Among the Guests of Honour at the Ceremony were India’s High Commissioner to New Zealand Ravi Thapar, Auckland Mayor Len Brown, Members of Parliament Phil Goff, David Cunliffe, David Shearer, Jenny Salesa, Louisa Wall (Labour), Judith Collins, Alfred Ngaro, Scott Simpson, Melissa Lee, Dr Parmjeet Parmar (National), Winston Peters (New Zealand First) and David Seymour (ACT); BNZ Chairman John Waller and BNZ Managing Director & Chief Executive Anthony Healy.
National Party President Peter Goodfellow, Employers & Manufacturers Association Chief Executive Kim Campbell, KPMG Executive Chairman Ross Buckley, top executives of banks and government and private undertakings were also present.
Gratitude to Sponsors
Earlier, welcoming guests, Indian Newslink Managing Director Ravin Lal said that he and his team were grateful to BNZ for their patronage extended as the TitleSponsor of the Awards for the fourth year in succession and for hosting IBA Workshops in Auckland and Wellington this year.
“We are also grateful to our category sponsors, namely KPMG, 2degrees Mobile Limited, Pullman Auckland Hotel, The Ranchhod Group, Aon New Zealand, the ACG Group incorporating New Zealand Career College, Corban Revell Lawyers, Nair & Chen Associates Chartered Accountants, DFK Oswin Griffiths Carlton, Mercury Printz, New Zealand School of Education and Radio Tarana.
As well as celebrating the success of our Indian business community here tonight, we are also marking the 15th Anniversary of Indian Newslink. I take this opportunity to thank our staff, advertisers, correspondents, contributors, readers, friends and well-wishers. It has been a tough but rewarding journey,” he said.
The panel of judges, completely independent of the owners of Indiana Publications (NZ) Limited, owners of Indian Newslink and sponsors, declared Nauhria Precast Limited as the winner of the Supreme Business of the Year Award and winner of the ‘Business Excellence in Innovation’ and Best Large Business Categories.
Among the winners in various categories were Jesters Mt Wellington (Business Excellence in Retail Trade), Crest Clean South & East Auckland (Business Excellence in Marketing), Global Financial Services Limited (Business Excellence in Customer Service and Best Medium-Sized Business), Radius Networks Limited (Business Excellence in ICT), IBBZ Accounting Limited (Best Small Business) and Patton Limited (Business Excellence in Export to India).
In the individual categories, entries for which were either through nominations or participants themselves, Ravinesh Kumaran (Deputy General Manager and Financial Controller of GMP Dairy), Ritika Bhargava (Director, Physio Revolution Limited) and Ronita Sharma (Director, Forever Shine Beauty Therapy) were winners of the Best Accountant of the Year, Best Young Entrepreneur of the Year and Best Businesswoman of the Year.
Celebrity Speaker, Television Personality and Entertainer Michele A’Court was the Master of Ceremonies at the event, among the highlights of the event were dance performances by Ratna Venkat with vocal support from Jeffery Nathan and the live band, ‘Gurus of Groove.’
Additional information with photographs and Judges’ Comments appear in this Special Report.
(Pictures by Narendra Bedekar, Creative Eye Limited)