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13 March 2024

Sotirios Zavalianis of AKESO holding a.s. becomes EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023

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The twenty-fourth EY Entrepreneur Of The Year of the Czech Republic title was awarded to Greek-born entrepreneur Sotirios Zavalianis. He had previously won regional rounds of the competition in the Central Bohemia Region. His company, AKESO Holding, is active in private healthcare across medical disciplines and is innovatively developing a range of projects. The judging panel further recognised his activities in the field of social responsibility. The award, now also under the auspices of Czech President Petr Pavel, was received today at Prague’s Žofín Island from judging panel chairman (and last year's recipient) Jakub Havrlant, and Martina Kneiflová, managing partner of EY Czech Republic.

Beroun Rehabilitation Hospital, Hořovice Hospital, Multiscan within the Comprehensive Oncology Centre of the Pardubice Region, the Mental Rehabilitation Centre in Beroun and Ondřejov Psychotherapeutic Day Sanatorium are just some of the medical workplaces that AKESO Holding successfully operates. Here they apply a number of innovative approaches in primary, acute and follow-up care, work with artificial intelligence and are deeply involved in projects in the field of telemedicine and distance medicine.

It was 1998 when Sotirios Zavalianis acquired a stake in Mediscan Group s.r.o. and with it his first experience in running an outpatient and diagnostic centre. Over time, he managed to build a unique network of medical centres, one of the most modern in the Czech Republic in terms of the level of provided care.

“I consider the award to be the figurative highlight of my business career to date. I’m very pleased to receive the award from an independent judging panel. It signals to me that I should continue doing what I’m doing and serves as motivation to further improve our business, said EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 of the Czech Republic Sotirios Zavalianis after receiving the award.

Jakub Havrlant, owner and founder of Rockaway Capital and Entrepreneur Of The Year 2022 of the Czech Republic, Sotirios Zavalianis, owner of AKESO holding a.s. and Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 of the Czech Republic, Martina Kneiflová, EY Czech Republic Managing Partner

“Sotirios Zavalianis has made a significant contribution to the development of healthcare in the Czech Republic. He has proved that our domestic medicine is among the best in the global context. His approach to patients, his care for employees and his activities in the field of education and support for the needy are worthy of recognition alongside his unquestionable business achievements,” said Martina Kneiflová, managing partner of EY Czech Republic, adding:“This year's EY Entrepreneur Of The Year competition once again presented remarkable Czech business personalities who may boldly compare themselves with the best of the best. I believe our winner has a great chance to impress and succeed in the competition’s global finals.”

“At a time when the world faces constant challenges and uncertainties, the courage, innovation, perseverance and creativity of the nominated entrepreneurs should be recognised. Their tireless work and efforts are an example to us all. Their success strengthens the business environment as a whole and their stories can inspire not only the current generation of entrepreneurs, but also the next,” summarized Maciej Galant, CEO of BMW Czech Republic s.r.o., representing this traditional competition partner.

The judging panel also selected this year's five finalists and candidates for the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 of the Czech Republic:

  • František Zykan, Area Four Industries
  • Jan Hasík, HSF System a.s.
  • Ladislav Semetkovský, Primoco UAV SE
  • Martina Šmídlová, Šmídl Holdingová Společnost a.s.

Each year, specialised judging panels also select the winners in other categories:

  • EY Technology Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023: Jindřich Houžvička, CRYTUR, spol. s.r.o.
  • EY Emerging Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023: Aleš Novotný, Elisdesign s.r.o.
  • EY Social Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023: Ondřej Širočka, REkrabička | REkelímek
  • MF DNES and Readers Prize for Best Entrepreneurial Story 2023: Eva Bokišová, Monika Drobná, Ergona Opava s.r.o.

Sotirios Zavalianis will participate as a national representative in the global final of the competition, which is announced by EY in nearly 60 countries worldwide and whose winners are selected by independent judging panels according to uniform criteria. The EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year will be announced in June this year at a gala event traditionally held in Monte Carlo.

Partners of the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 competition

The official car of the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year 2023 competition is BMW Czech Republic s.r.o. The competition’s main partner is Česká spořitelna a.s. SAP is also a competition partner. The main co-organizer is the daily MF DNES and The main media partners of the competition are Czech Television and Forbes magazine; other media partners are Czech Radio, Seznam Zprávy and CZECH CRUNCH. The competition is supported by the CzechInvest agency and the Association of Social Responsibility and is held under the auspices of the President of the Czech Republic.  

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