Over 1200 people converged in full force on June 9 to celebrate the ‘Best of the Best’ as The Indo Canada Chamber of Commerce held its annual Awards and Gala Night at The Metro Toronto Convention Centre in Downtown Toronto.
Male Entrepreneur Award winner: Harpreet Sethi, CEO, The Grand Victorian Convention Centre and Radisson Plaza in Mississauga
Mr. Harpreet Sethi, CEO, The Grand Victorian Convention Centre and Radisson Plaza Mississauga, was honored with the prestigious ‘Entrepreneur of the Year Award’ at Indo Canada Chamber of Commerce Awards Gala.
"I truly believe that with the right people around you – you can go far. If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together! I have certainly found that going together is the better route. Today I am what many people would consider a “success”. But what I am truly proud of is that I have been able to give back to my community and to the country that is now my home" said Mr. Sethi.
He further added, "If you are entrepreneurial, put aside your fear of failure and understand that while you cannot control success or failure, you can definitely control your own actions and efforts. You will find that if you are hardworking, smart and sincere, there is nothing that you cannot accomplish in this great country! Canada is truly a land of opportunities!
Mr. Harpreet Sethi initiated his career as a businessman at the ripe young age of 16 and became a top selling textile distributor by the time he turned 19. He is a natural leader with a knack for start-ups, pursued many other business opportunities, namely in the real estate; software development; construction; hospitality as well as events, and achieved success in all realms.
Innovative, tenacious and entrepreneurial in nature, Harpreet next found success in the home furnishing industry, building a multi-million dollar company in two short years in Canada. He took his start-ups in furniture and textile industries to over 1 billion dollars in turnover and across 20 countries. He was featured in CFMT as the ‘Fastest growing South Asian Business’.
Harpreet’s name is synonymous with colourful events within the South Asian community in the GTA; he is truly passionate about arts and culture. As the President of Black Diamond Entertainments, Harpreet promotes, organizes, hosts and sponsors numerous cultural shows, supporting local and global talent. Just to name a few events to Harpreet’s credits are: the Sunidhi Chauhan concert, a lively and engaging musical show, highlighting popular hits from Bollywood; Mahautsav, a 30-hour non-stop celebration of Diwali, a festival of lights; the Shibani Kashyap concert; the International Film Festival of India; the Ila Arun concert; the International Fashion Festival and Strings Concert.
A successful and well established immigrant, Harpreet is well known for his generosity and volunteer work for numerous charities in the community and on an international scale. Notably, his sizeable donation of $500,000 to the William Osler Health Centre in 2007, one of Canada’s largest hospitals, drew praise and distinction from the Federal and the Provincial Government of Ontario.
Most recently, Harpreet supported the Salvation Army ‘Toy Mountain’ campaign in December 2011 with a $10,000 donation. For his outstanding contribution to the community, Harpreet was honored with the prestigious ‘South Asian Person of the Year Award’ at the Midweek South Asian Awards in November 2011.
This ICCC premiere social and business event’s theme this year was ‘Engaging Partners, Implementing Strategies’. The Awards Gala hosted a number of Canada’s influencers who enjoyed a mix of dinner and entertainment, awards presentations and speeches.
The Honorable Joe Oliver, Canada’s Minister for Natural Resources was the Chief Guest for the evening while Phaneesh Murthy, President and CEO of iGate was the keynote speaker. The event recognised prominent Indo-Canadian achievers from across the country in several categories through the evening.
Female Entrepreneur: PravinaBudhdev, CEO Huntington Travel Group of Companies;
Male Entrepreneur: Harpreet Sethi, CEO, Grand Victorian Convention Centre and Radisson Plaza, Mississauga;
Female Professional: Dr. MadhurAnand, Director of Global Ecological Change Laboratory;
Male Professional: SunitRadia, Master, Market Strategy & Planning, Procter & Gamble Inc;
Young Achiever: AkashSahney, Co-Founder and CTO, My Voice;
Technology Achievement: Suneet Singh Tuli and Raja Singh Tuli of Data Wind Ltd;
Corporate Executive of the Year: SriramIyer, President and CEO, ICICI Bank;
Humanitarian of the Year: ChandrakantSachdev, President, BAPS Charity;
Lifetime/Outstanding Achievement award: Dr. PawanSingal, Professor of Physiology and Director of Cardiovascular Studies at St. Boniface Hospital and University of Manitoba, Winnipeg;
President's Award: Preeti Saran, Consul General of India in Toronto;
Member of the Year: KasiRao, Senior Advisor, Indo-Canada Chamber of Commerce;