Multi-award winning co-founder of South African retail giant, Hirsch’s, Margaret Hirsch, together with her husband co-founder Alan Hirsch, were announced as finalists in this year’s EY World Entrepreneur Awards South Africa this week. They were recognized for their incredible achievements as entrepreneurs and major brand builders in the prestigious Master Category of the Awards.
The award ceremony celebrated business leaders and those community members who have made a difference in their countries and their economies as a whole. And finalists were selected on entrepreneurial spirit, financial performance, personal integrity and influence, innovation, community or global impact and strategic direction.
Margaret and husband Alan, who started their appliance and electronic business 37 years ago in a tiny shop in Durban North with just R900 in the bank, were delighted to have been nominated for the award and, as the only unlisted JSE company in their category, were proud to have gone so far. They also took the time to congratulate Peter Mountford from Super Group, who was the category’s winner and who will go on to compete against others from 50 different countries for the EY World Entrepreneur Award next year.
“Peter Mountford was a very deserving winner and we know that he will do South Africa proud in the World Entrepreneur Awards at Monte Carlo in June next year,” said Margaret. Speaking about their own success this year, she said: “This has been a successful year, generally, for the Hirsch Group.” They recently opened their 18th branch in South Africa in Carnival in Brakpan, and earlier this month announced that the company had experienced double-digit growth over the last 12 months, despite the economic climate in South Africa.
The company has won several awards recently and Margaret has won 18 business awards in the last four years, culminating in her Global Inspirational Women Leadership Award and the United States Congressional Commendation Award by the Centre for Economic and Leadership Development. She was also nominated as one of Watch! magazine’s top 100 most influential women in emerging economies.