The Korea Herald


Ernst & Young Han Young names Sae-A chairman top entrepreneur of year

By Ahn Ju-hee

Published : April 7, 2022 - 15:34

    • Link copied

Recipients of awards at the EY Entrepreneur of The Year Award ceremony in Seoul pose for a photo. (Ernst & Young Han Young) Recipients of awards at the EY Entrepreneur of The Year Award ceremony in Seoul pose for a photo. (Ernst & Young Han Young)
Global accounting firm Ernst & Young’s Korean member firm Ernst & Young Han Young (EY Korea) on Wednesday handed its top master entrepreneur award to local apparel manufacturer Global Sae-A Chairman Kim Woong-ki, the firm said Thursday.

Kim was recognized at the 15th EY Entrepreneur of The Year Award ceremony held at Seoul Shilla Hotel.

Ernst & Young’s annual award – currently stretching across 60 countries and 145 cities worldwide -- recognizes business leaders who have demonstrated leadership, boldness and innovative spirit. The recipients are selected by an independent panel of judges guided by six different criteria: entrepreneurship, value creation, strategies, domestic and global influence, innovation, and personal traits and leadership.

The award was founded in 1986 in the United States and landed in Korea in 2007. 

EY Korea applauded Kim on leading Global Sae-A’s strong performance in exports via its vertically integrated firm structure, through which the company directly owns various stages of the production process. Notably, the company was quick to adopt the original development manufacturing model in an industry where original equipment manufacturing prevailed.

Global Sae-A is home to the world’s largest apparel exporter, Sae-A Trading, and multiple affiliates. It boasts a strong global presence, operating over 40 production facilities across more than 10 countries.

Meanwhile, Kurly Inc. Chief Executive Officer Sophie Kim won the award in the woman entrepreneur category for her innovative leadership behind the growth of pioneering fresh food delivery platform Market Kurly.

Other winners include: Daishin Securities Chairman Lee Auh-Ryung for the alumni awards category; INZI Group Chairman Jung Koo-ryong and Vice Chairman Jung Hye-sung for the family business category; and Dream Securities CEO and President Beom Jin-kyu for the rising star category.

“We hope that today’s award will become a guiding light for innovative entrepreneurs amid growing uncertainties stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic and geopolitical crises,” EY Korea CEO and Regional Managing Partner Park Yong-keun said at the ceremony.