8th Seychelles Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SCCI) Business Award ceremony | 20 January 2020
Mustafa Bristol is entrepreneur of the year 2019
- Roxanne Bennett, James Dupres best female/young entrepreneur
By Marie-Anne Lepathy
Mustafa Bristol has clinched the award for best entrepreneur for the year 2019 while Roxanne Bennet and James Dupres received the awards for best female and young entrepreneurs respectively.
This was during the 8th Seychelles Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SCCI) Business Award ceremony held on Friday evening at the Avani Hotel at Barbarons. Entrepreneurs, companies and individuals were recognised and rewarded during the glamorous ceremony which covered over 20 different categories.
The award ceremony is organised annually by the SCCI to recognise and reward outstanding companies, entrepreneurs, individuals for their hard work, dedication, motivation, desire to make things happen and their significant contributions to the country’s economy.
Mustafa Bristol, whose factory, Bristol Enterprise LTD, is based at Grand Anse Mahé, has over 20 years experience transforming cinnamon and exporting its bark, producing different products and essential oils for sale, as well as transforming coconut into different products for export and local consumption by hotels and other individuals.
His factory transforms cinnamon into essential oils and other spa products under the brand Globarom while all coconut products and charcoal are produced under the brand name Tropeko.
A proud Mr Bristol said; “Everyone enters a competition with the hope of winning and I am really happy and proud I won the prestigious business award. It goes to show that my effort and dedication as a local entrepreneur and contributions to the economy of my country is appreciated. The award will further encourage me to continue to produce quality products for the local and international markets.”
For Roxanne Bennett receiving the award was a complete shock and a wonderful surprise.
“There were so many incredible women nominated in this category who I admire and draw inspiration from so when my name was called out as the winner, I couldn’t quite believe it,” she said.
“It’s an incredible feeling to be recognised by the SCCI and the business community, I feel deeply humbled and honoured,” Ms Bennett added.
She said the award represents the continued progress of women empowerment in this country.
“It is incredibly inspiring to see more and more women stepping into leadership roles in Seychelles. This is the second year running that the SCCI has recognised female entrepreneurship and included a ‘Female Entrepreneur Of The Year’ category. To have the support of the Chamber illustrates their progressive ideals on women empowerment and will hopefully encourage other ladies out there to stand up and be counted. Without any doubt, this award will push me to work much harder and to achieve even greater goals in the future,” explained Ms Bennett.
Ms Bennett and her business partner, De Waal Rautenbach, launched ROCKIT in 2014 with the mindset to offer their expertise to create marketing collateral of the highest standard for local business to promote themselves with, both locally and internationally. The business is based at Baie Lazare.
For his part James Dupres, whose business – James Dupres Consultancy – is based at Brilliant, expressed great pride on his achievements.
“It is a pleasant surprise but I am really happy and full of pride and I wish to thank my dedicated team which comprise Marsha Dine, Neerah Ciseaux, Angela Fanchette as it is with their hard work and dedication that I have reached this far,” said Mr Dupres.
The business, which has been in operation for the past three years, offers multimedia consultancy, video and photography, graphic design services, events organising among different others.
“I am really proud and honoured that our hard work has paid off and our services appreciated,” said Mr Dupres.
He has called on young Seychellois entrepreneurs and other young people who have an innovative business idea not to be afraid to come forward and seek help to develop it.
“Do not be afraid to be an entrepreneurs because of fear of failure because this is what will make you stronger,” Mr Dupres said.
He also expressed heartfelt gratitude to his family for all the support given to him and his clients for believing in the services they get.
Other winners from the various other categories comprise the following:
Constance Ephelia – Best large tourism establishment
Calou Guest House – Best small tourism establishment
Hilton Labriz – Best eco-friendly enterprise
Abhaye Valabhji – Best motor vehicle dealer
Celular Services – Best retailer
Global Supplies – Best wholesaler
Sea Harvest – Best fishing establishment
Space 95 – Best ICT establishment
George Camille Studio – Best creative establishment
Today in Seychelles newspaper – Best media house
Root Seychelles – Artisan of the year
Amalgamated Tobacco – Best manufacturing company
MCB – Best banking & financial service company
Exotic Scents – Most innovative products
TRASS – Best environment project
Georges Camille – Life time achievement award
Laxmambai – Best construction company
Uni Money – Best service oriented organisation
Dr Murthy’s Clinic – Best health service organisation
The SCCI also presented awards to three individuals for their remarkable abilities to inspire others and these went to the chairman of the Omnibus Association Mervin Elizabeth, deaf artisan Channel Alphonse and young Kelly Esparon who in spite of different challenges run her small cupcake-making business at home at Anse Royale.
Addressing guests at the event which this year numbered a record 370, Oliver Bastienne, the chairperson of SCCI, remarked that this shows that the chamber is continuously growing.
“This year we also received a record number of nominations and every business and individual who entered and proactively took part and for the judges I thank you all,” Mr Bastienne said.
He said that given the high quality of the entrants, the judges have worked hard and “I am proud to say that the decisions have been reached in the spirit of transparency, fairness, accountability and good governance”.
“To all the entrants and members of the private sector Mr Bastienne said: “You are the people who demonstrate vision, courage and ambition to drive both your business and consequently the country forward. You are demonstrating to all of us what we can be,” the SCCI chairman said.
Mr Bastienne also availed of the occasion to remind politicians of the difficult struggle businesses face to operate and keep afloat in the volatile environment and in one where he said policies are introduced in a violent way.
He has again reminded and called on political leaders and the executive to consult and consult as it is not easy for many businesses out there who are struggling to pay the salaries of their employees.
He called on the government to foster an environment where we all thrive and do not embark on initiatives that kill the goose which lays the golden eggs.
With regard to the awards, he said this time the SCCI has introduced some special recognition awards for individuals who are an inspiration to so many of us and are so passionate in what they do. For those the SCCI has worked closely with Ceps (Citizens Engagement Platform Seychelles) and the Cooperative des Artisans.
Meanwhile the SCCI also unveiled a new logo during the ceremony. Iouana Pillay, the secretary general of SCCI, together with members of the SCCI secretariat team unveiled the new logo replacing the one which has representing the chamber for some 20 years.
“Since the SCCI is moving towards new heights, there was a need for something new, fresh and exciting to accompany it on its journey.
“We believe that this new logo will help us to move faster and to move together with the new team that we have and the new members who are joining us every day from various sectors.”
The award ceremony, which was punctuated at intervals by musical performances by winners of the recent Cable Tune Awards, included a sumptuous gala dinner and dancing to the tunes of the Waves band until the early hours of Saturday morning.
The accompanying photographs by our photographer Jude Morel show some of the winners receiving their awards.