The quality of participating SMEs in this year’s awards has improved, say judges.
THE upcoming seventh Star Outstanding Business Awards (SOBA) will be honouring small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that have performed exceptionally in various segments of their businesses.
The awards ceremony will be held on January 17 at Connexion@Nexus, Kuala Lumpur.
More than 500 people are expected to come together to celebrate the achievements of these small businesses as they pave the way for the SME sector to be strengthened and contribute more positively to the country’s GDP.
Judges who presided over the selection of winners for SOBA 2016 were happy to note an improvement in the quality of submissions for the year.
“We are pleased. It is very encouraging for the development of Malaysian businesses,” says Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers council member Datuk Mizanur Rahman Ghani, who was one of the chief judges.
“It meets with the main objective of SOBA, (which is) to see continuous improvement in these businesses for the development of Malaysia,” he adds.
Mizanur notes that the SMEs have displayed strong innovative ideas, not just in products, but in technology, human resource management and business skills. And this has come about from the sharing culture built over the years through SOBA, where past winners share their experiences in workshops and seminars.
As part of its efforts to boost SMEs, The Star has also organised various Learning Series and engagements under SOBA.
“It’s important to be able to measure your success, and recognition is a venue or a process that enables businesses to improve themselves,” explains Valerie Choo, deputy president of the Malaysian Retail Chain Association.
SOBA 2016 has seen a significant number of returning participants and judges have noticed marked improvements in their businesses and practices.
SOBA, which honours up-and-coming local, non-listed companies and SMEs, is open to all local enterprises that are not part of a multinational or listed group, and incorporated in Malaysia with foreign equity not exceeding 50%.
This round, the awards will have two broad categories – one for enterprises with a turnover of more than RM25mil and the other for those that have generated less than RM25mil per annum – to recognise the achievements of upcoming small businesses as well as more established SMEs.
SOBA has seven “Top-Of-The-Class” awards, namely, best in marketing, best brand, best in CSR, best green initiative, best employer, best innovation and best global market, as well as three “Outstanding Achievement” awards, which are rising star, entrepreneur of the year (male/female/young) and Malaysian business of the year.
SOBA 2016 is organised by Star Media Group with AmBank as its main sponsor. The awards is co-sponsored by BMW Malaysia, Credit Guarantee Corp and Matrade with Connexion Conference and Event Centre as the official venue sponsor.
It is endorsed by the Secretariat for the Advancement of Malaysian Entrepreneurs, supported by Bursa Malaysia and audited by BDO with 988 and Suria FM as the official radio stations.
For more information on SOBA 2016, call The Star Events Business Unit at 03-7967 1388 ext 1240 (Melissa)/1657 (Victor) or visit www.soba.com.my.