2017 BBA Nominees: Entrepreneur of the Year

Oct. 20, 2017

By the conclusion of the 2017 British Business Awards (BBA) nomination period, on Wednesday 18 October at noon, we had received 25 eligible nominations across 5 categories.

The following 6 individuals are now in the running for the title of 2017 BBA Entrepreneur of the Year.

"Nominees should be individuals who exemplify entrepreneurialism and have created commercial success through an entrepreneurial spirit. Nominees will typically be leading non-listed organisations in Japan with 25 employees or fewer."

2017 BBA Entrepreneur of the Year nominees 
(In alphabetical order by surname): 

  • Fariza Abidova (SOPHYS)

To recognise Fariza Abidova's work in motivating and inspiring women from all over the world to believe that it is possible to succeed, regardless of history or background; and for her efforts in encouraging foreign entrepreneurs in Japan to persevere and realize their dreams.


  • Warren Edge (MAST Asia)

To recognise Warren Edge, owner of MAST Communications, for launching and delivering MAST Asia, Japan’s first and only global, senior-level technical conference and exhibition for future maritime security capabilities.


  • Ian Gibbins (Swan & Lion)

At Swan & Lion our focus is to make great tasting modern British food that represents the huge overhaul in British cuisine in recent years. I am passionate about being all natural and using seasonal produce. I want to show my Japanese customers that British food is not just fish and chips! 


  • Tove Kinooka (Global Perspectives K.K.)

To highlight how it is possible for a working mother to succeed and make an impact in a highly competitive market through innovation, integrity, and a growth mindset. Together with business partner Gavin Dixon, Tove Kinooka is on a mission to redefine the way people and organisations work with each other.


  • Noriko Silvester (Candlewick)

To recognise Founder and CEO of Candlewick, Noriko Silvester, as her firm celebrates its 14th year of business. This nomination focuses on Noriko's experience of starting and developing an international marketing and PR agency, and how she is transforming her firm by developing a completely new style of communications and branding model, which she terms “PR Shousha”.


  • Chris Wells (STJ Advisors)

To recognise Chris Wells for developing STJ Advisors almost single handedly, using the skills and experience he gained from working at the Tokyo Stock Exchange, combined with 25 years of international capital markets experience. STJ is now is the leader in initial public offer (IPO) advice on the Tokyo Stock Exchange, and has completed USD6bn of projects in only 3 years.



The decision on a winning 2017 BBA entry is the result of the combined score of 5 separate judges, who independently score each submission using the same scoring matrix.

To ensure transparency, each judge independently returns his or her score sheet to the BCCJ office by 1 November 2017 and the results are tabulated confidentially. The scores from each judge are then totaled for each nominee, and the nomination with the highest accumulative score is declared the category winner.

In the event of two nominees receiving the same final score, all judges will be asked to review their scores for these companies / individuals, and the submission with the highest score from this second round of judging will be declared the winner.

The final results remain confidential until the BBA ceremony - held on the evening of November 2 2017 at the Grand Hyatt Tokyo.

Good luck to all 2017 BBA nominees, and stay tuned for updates on other award categories! www.bccjapan.com

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2017 British Business Awards - gala event information (Fully BookedHERE

2017 British Business Awards Judging process HERE

2017 What do BBA judges look for? HERE

2017 British Business Nominations CLOSED HERE