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Business top guns named at 2010 Top 200 Awards

Engineering consultancy Beca Group – one of New Zealand business’ global success stories – is Company of the Year in the 2010 Deloitte/Management magazine Top 200 Awards announced tonight.

A business who’s who of more than 700 people attended the Awards at SkyCity Convention Centre in Auckland.

In other major awards, Mark Waller, managing director of Ebos Group, won the Executive of the Year title, Alison Paterson became the first woman to win Chairperson of the Year, and New Zealand business legend Douglas Goodfellow, now in his 90s, was recognised as Visionary Leader.

Beca is the first private company in the Awards’ 21-year history to win the Deloitte/Management Company of the Year Award, with publicly listed companies Ebos Group and Ryman Healthcare being the other finalists.

The judges described Beca as a world leader in its field and an outstanding example of the kind of enterprise that New Zealand needs to deliver the country’s economic future.

Publisher of NZ Management magazine and Mediaweb director Toni Myers says Beca Group stood out in what was a year of consolidation for New Zealand’s biggest companies.

“Despite the challenges of a domestic economy struggling to recover, our bigger companies generally performed better in 2010 than the small business sector. Our best performing companies had restructured and slimmed down operations before the worst of the crisis hit, enabling them to respond to opportunities.
“Beca Group is a great example of how the most successful companies focused on being more innovative and effective.”

Deloitte CEO Murray Jack congratulated all the winners and finalists, and saluted their contribution to the country’s economy.

“The companies represented in these awards have weathered unprecedented uncertainty in the world economy and are now poised to lead New Zealand’s return to growth.”

Ms Myers says Beca is one of New Zealand’s most impressive commercial success stories. In the period 2006 to 2010, it doubled annual revenue from $180 million to $366 million and its after tax profit to $33 million.

Beca has reported record profits seven years in a row, despite the back drop of global economic uncertainty since 2007. Close to 40 per cent of revenue is generated offshore and it has offices in nine countries.

“Beca represents the new generation of intellectual and personal competency exporter that New Zealand needs to diversify the country’s export base from its current over-reliance on commodities-based income,” she says.

The coveted Executive of the Year title was won by Mark Waller, who has been at the helm of medical consumables specialist Ebos Group for 23 years. The Top 200 judges said that under Mr Waller’s leadership Ebos has consistently turned in outstanding performances while growing to become a truly Australasian enterprise.

“His understanding of organisational culture and how to successfully integrate new acquisitions into the group is exceptional,” they said.

Ms Myers says Mr Waller heads one of a growing number of “smart” companies which have developed a highly successful business model in New Zealand and then expanded internationally.

“Like Beca, Ebos’ success has been based not on what it produces, but on the exceptional services it provides to customers.”

Douglas Goodfellow’s many years of service to New Zealand business and the wider community was recognised with the Visionary Leader award.

He led the expansion of his family’s dairy business into exporting a range of primary produce – from fish and meat, to live breeding stock and fruit and vegetables. The 93-year-old’s philanthropy was also recognised, particularly his commitment to supporting education and medical science research and aged-care programmes in New Zealand.

Other major category winners were: Claire Szabo, chief executive English Language Partners (Young Executive of the Year), Restaurant Brands Group (Most Improved Performance), Sky Network Television (Best Growth Strategy), and Vodafone New Zealand (Responsible Governance).

The Top 200 award winners
  • Deloitte/Management magazine Company of the Year: Beca Group
  • Deloitte/Management magazine Executive of the Year: Mark Waller
  • NZIM/Eagle Technology Young Executive of the Year: Claire Szabo
  • QBE Chairperson of the Year: Alison Paterson
  • Workbase Best Growth Strategy: Sky Network Television
  • Marsh Most Improved Performance: Restaurant Brands Group
  • Kensington Swan Responsible Governance Award: Vodafone New Zealand
  • Designworks Visionary Leader award: Douglas Goodfellow.

For the full 2010 Deloitte/Management Top 200 Awards and category finalists, please see

About the Deloitte/Management Top 200 Awards

The Deloitte/Management magazine Top 200 Awards were established in 1990 and are run annually to recognise and applaud outstanding individual and management team performances among New Zealand’s largest companies and trading organisations.

The Top 200 award winners emerge from NZ Management Magazine’s annual listing of the 200 largest corporations based on revenue, and a separate listing of New Zealand’s Top 30 financial enterprises based on asset value.

The lists comprise publicly listed and unlisted companies, New Zealand subsidiaries of multinational companies, co-operatives, societies and state-owned enterprises (SOEs), plus private companies prepared to supply audited accounts.

From the Top 200 index, a list of significant contenders is identified for a series of awards for companies, executives and chairpersons, which then undergo a thorough and comprehensive judging process. The contenders are analysed at the initial stage and further information sought when needed. These are then whittled down following further research and scrutiny before the judges meet to decide the three finalists and eventually the winner in each category.

The judges are well recognised and respected figures in the business community and are selected for their expertise in particular award categories.

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Pete van Schaardenburg
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