Silvia Del Vitto is new Whirlpool MD for Oceania

WORLD-LEADING appliance manufacturer, Whirlpool Corporation, has relocated its new Oceania managing director for integrated business, Silvia Del Vitto to Melbourne from Singapore.

Ms Del Vitto relocated to Melbourne in March with a mission to focus on continued growth for the Whirlpool and Ariston brands in the Australian and New Zealand markets, as well as across Oceania.

An experienced global executive with Whirlpool, Ms Del Vitto has spent the last 15 years of her career with the organisation in a wide variety of management roles, most recently as market director of the Far East region for the Ariston and Indesit brands, which included Australia and New Zealand. 

Prior to this, Italian-born Ms Del Vitto spent many years working in Whirlpool’s Europe. Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region based in Europe, as product marketing director and senior brand manager. Whirlpool Corporation South Asia president Arvind Uppal said Ms Del Vitto brought “global insight, hands-on experience and management strategy” to her new Oceania region role.

“I’m very excited to be joining the Oceania team and bringing my global Whirlpool experience to the region at a time of such positive growth in the business,” Ms Del Vitto said.

Whirlpool has re-asserted its place in Australian homes over the last 12 months by driving compelling product offerings and wide national distribution with The Good Guys. In 2016, Whirlpool began with a focus  on its cooking range and has since successfully re-launched back into the laundry and refrigeration sectors.

“While the local business has grown significantly, especially in the last 12 months, there is so much more to be done,” Ms Del Vitto said.

“Our multi-brand portfolio ensures we have many compelling options for our key channel partners, which is backed by our global commitment to drive innovation in the (sector Whirlpool calls) Smart Kitchen, Smart Laundry and beyond.”

The corporation’s Ariston brand continues to be one of the premium cooking brands in the country, its Italian heritage and strong presence in Harvey Norman cementing its place with Australian consumers “who have relied strongly on the quality of Ariston products for more than 20 years” she said.

“These are iconic, trustworthy brands already well-known to Australian and New Zealand consumers, and I’m looking forward to being involved in the next chapter of their growth across this region,” Ms Del Vitto said.

Mr Uppal said, “Silvia brings a strong background in product and brand development from Europe. Combined with her recent stint in Asia Pacific in operations she is ideally suited to develop and build the Oceania business where our focus is to build a multi brand/channel strategy with largely European sourced products.”

Whirlpool Corporation, Mr Uppal said, was “the number one global appliance manufacturer in the world” with 97,000 employees and 70 manufacturing and technology research centres globally.




EY Entrepreneur of the Year among equals

ASPEN MEDICAL founders Andrew Walker and Glenn Keys have been jointly named 2016 Australian EY Entrepreneur Of The Year.

As the Australian winners, Dr Walker and Mr Keys will travel to Monaco in June next year to compete against national winners from more than 60 countries, for the chance to be named the 2017 EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year – a feat Australian Manny Stuhl achieved last year.

Dr Walker and Mr Keys founded Aspen Medical in 2003 to provide high-quality healthcare in challenging and under-resourced environments. Today, Aspen Medical employs more than 2,200 healthcare professionals and support staff across Australasia, Africa, the US, Europe and the Gulf Region. 

Chair of the independent judging panel, Josephine Sukkar, who is the co-owner and principal of Buildcorp, said there was strong competition among this year’s applicants but Aspen Medical stood out for its capacity to drive economic and social change on a global scale. 

“Aspen Medical is an extraordinary business with the potential to make a huge impact in the health sector,” the judges’ comments read. “Andrew and Glenn design solutions to problems in a way that can move the world forward. It is an innovative and noble Australian business with global reach.”

Aspen Medical was named this year’s winner at a ceremony attended by EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year 2016, Manny Stul and a selection of Australia’s leading entrepreneurs, alumni winners and judges at the Star Casino in Sydney in October.

Five other impressive Australian entrepreneurs also took home national trophies from the awards ceremony.

Other national category winners were Tim Gurner, of GURNER in the Emerging category; Bec Scott of STREAT in Social Entrepreneur; Ray Dennis of Lightforce Australia in the Technology category; Radek Sali of Swisse Wellness in the Industry category; and the Honan Family’s Manildra Group won the EY Family Business Award of Excellence.

EY Oceania CEO and area managing partner Tony Johnson congratulated the winners, saying at a time when innovation and entrepreneurialism was top of mind for the Australian government and business community, there was much to be celebrated.

“The quality and creativity of the finalists this year is proof of the overwhelming potential of Australian businesses and entrepreneurs,” Mr Johnson said. “We congratulate Dr Andrew Walker and Glenn Keys, and we wish them all the best in the EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year competition in June next year.

“The entrepreneurial spirit and bold efforts of these two men are to be applauded. Aspen Medical combines philanthropy with a service model that delivers affordable, efficient, and exceptionally high quality health solutions.

“As businesses and governments respond to previously unimaginable levels of disruption, entrepreneurship has never been more important to our future.  Recognising the contribution of leading entrepreneurs and empowering them to innovate is key to EY’s purpose of building a better working world,” Mr Johnson said.

“EY Entrepreneur Of The Year is much more than just an awards program – it’s an opportunity for participants to embark on a lifelong journey with a network of like-minded and talented program alumni.

“It’s part of EY’s long history of nurturing and supporting the entrepreneurial spirit and enabling individuals to take risks and deliver a vision which could make a positive difference to us all.”




LeadershipHQ chief wins Diversity Champion Award for empowering women

PROMINENT Brisbane-based leadership consultancy LeadershipHQ’s chief executive, Sonia McDonald, was presented with a 2016 Diversity Champion Award by the Australian Centre for Leadership for Women (ACLW) last month.

LeadershipHQ and Ms McDonald were acclaimed for ‘Empowering Women in a Community or Organisation in Australia’ and awarded second in the Diversity Award category. 

Started in 2000, the ACLW is a virtual centre on a mission to advance women ethically and with integrity through its three main pillars of transformation, empowerment and recognition.

Ms McDonald was awarded the ACLW prize at a ceremony at New South Wales Parliament House in September for her development work with Shelley-Anne Brace, a senior legal professional who benefited from participating in the LeadershipHQ course in late 2014.

Ms McDonald, who received the award from the NSW Minister for Women, Pru Goward, and sponsor AON’s CEO Lambros Lambrou, said she was “tremendously honoured by the recognition”. 

“The ACLW champions the cause of developing women as leaders in Australia so to be acknowledged by that organisation is a massive honour,” Ms McDonald said.

“The ACLW is about identifying, developing and empowering women in leadership roles, which is exactly what we do at LeadershipHQ.”

The Diversity Award was a timely precursor to the October release of LeadershipHQ’s second book, Leadership Attitude: How Mindset and Action can Change Your World.

Ms McDonald said the book focuses on “identifying personal strengths and acting upon them, using a mentor, and empowering others, to develop leadership qualities that motivate, influence and inspire”.



Nabulsi leads Cook Medical Australia

COOK Medical Australia has appointed Samih Nabulsi as its new general manager, taking over the reins from Cook Medical Asia Pacific director and Cook Inc vice president, Barry Thomas, who continues in those roles.

Dr Nabulsi has been with Cook Medical for 12 years and has previously held positions as the regional director of operations and director of research and development for Cook Medical Asia Pacific. 

Dr Nabulsi said he was delighted to have been appointed as GM to build on Mr Thomas’ expansion of the company with significant research and development opportunities on the horizon and the growth of domestic and international business partnerships.

“It is an exciting time to take on this role as we continue to make significant advancements in the medical device industry,” Dr Nabulsi said. “Medical technology is always evolving and that provides good opportunities for us as a company and for health care.

“The people at Cook are incredibly committed to finding solutions that improve people’s quality of life. I am looking forward to continuing work with our colleagues here and abroad to pursue innovative health care solutions,” Dr Nabulsi said.

Mr Thomas said Dr Nabulsi was recognised for his leadership in the research and development sector and brings a wealth of experience at senior executive level across a number of areas of Cook Medical.

“Samih brings a fresh perspective to the role and reflects Cook’s core values in his decision making and work ethic,” Mr Thomas said. “His philosophy is that business success and the innovation of technology is optimised in a team-based environment that exhibits strong leadership, nurtures creativity, and empowers employees which makes him the ideal person to lead us into a new era.

“I’ve been incredibly proud to lead Cook Medical Australia and it has been a privilege to work with so many competent colleagues around the world. I look forward to continuing to work with Samih and this exceptional group of people through my role as director of Cook Medical Asia Pacific, vice president of Cook Inc. as we explore new markets and opportunities for the company,” Mr Thomas said.