Zachary Ochuodho @zachuodho
Kenyan tycoon, Narendra Raval, founder of Devki Group, a building materials company, has been awarded prestigious prize for a strong reputation for highly innovative work.
Raval won Master category award during Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2018 Award. He beat 10,000 nominees who had submitted their applications for this year’s award.
He was awarded for being innovative, had a 180-degree turnaround of the company, provided hope and success in a midst of adversity and did not just focus his attention on money.
During the event, First Lady Margaret Kenyatta was awarded the prestigious Eastern Africa Lifetime Achievement Award for her relentless efforts to stop preventable maternal and newborn deaths in the country through her “Beyond Zero” initiative.
She received the award from the EY Group during the organisation’s gala dinner held at a Nairobi hotel on Wednesday. She was the chief guest at the event.
The recognition also considered the First Lady’s sustained efforts towards the elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV, an intervention that has led to a significant reduction of new transmissions among newborn babies.
The First Lady said she was excited to receive the honour adding that Beyond Zero lies at the heart of the award.
Naval said he was humbled by the award and pledged to show his appreciation of the recognition by giving Sh350 million to help Kenyatta National Hospital put up a building to house cancer patients undergoing treatment at the facility. He said Kenyans can get rid of poverty if enterprises work as a team to create employment.
Lizzie Wanyoike, founder of the Nairobi Institute of Business Studies (NIBS) took the winning woman category award, while Ken Njoroge, who is the founder and CEO of the Cellulant Group, received the emerging (entrepreneur) category award.
Naval will represent Kenya in Monte Carlo in June next year, where the winning entrepreneurs in the master category from the 66 chapters across the world will vie for the ultimate title, the EY World Entrepreneur of the Year, 2019.