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News release
Lenka Čermáková
Ernst & Young
Tel.: +420 225 335 967
Mobil: +420 731 627 166
E-mail: [email protected]
Roman Pavlík
Fleishman Hillard
Tel.: +420 224 232 650
Mobil: +420 777 791 878
E-mail: [email protected]
František Piškanin of HOPI has been named Ernst & Young Entrepreneur
of the Year 2012 in the Czech Republic
Karel Volenec of ELLA-CS becomes Technology Entrepreneur of the Year 2012
Prague, 14 February 2013 – František Piškanin, owner of the logistics company HOPI
s.r.o., has been awarded the prestigious prize for Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the
Year 2012 in the Czech Republic. He accepted the winner’s trophy on 13 February at the
Žofín Palace in Prague from Bohuslav Svoboda, Mayor of the City of Prague, and
Magdalena Souček, Country Managing Partner, Ernst & Young. The contest has been
organized by Ernst & Young in the Czech Republic since 2000. The Technology
Entrepreneur of the Year award went to Karel Volenec, director of ELLA-CS, s.r.o. This
year also saw a prize awarded for Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 in the Czech
Republic, which was won by Robert Schönfeld of the International School of Music and
Fine Arts. The judging panel’s prize was won by Zuzana Ceralová Petrofová of PETROF,
spol. s r.o.
“What I experienced today is unforgettable for me. I have to admit that when my sons nominated
me for the competition, I pointed out that I have a strategy ‘less talk, more work’. Today, I have to
say that I’m truly proud how many capable entrepreneurs I’ve had the opportunity to get to know
since entering Entrepreneur of the Year. It goes to show that the saying “golden Czech hands”
applies as always. Indeed, HOPI is celebrating twenty years and this award, which belongs to
the entire HOPI team, certainly motivates me to continue on,” recounted winner František
Piškanin about his immediate impressions.
“I believe that František Piškanin will successfully represent Czech entrepreneurs at the world
finals in Monte Carlo and that his business story will impress the judges there as much as it
impressed us,” says Magdalena Souček, Country Managing Partner of Ernst & Young in the
Czech Republic, adding: “The aim of the Entrepreneur of the Year award is to support business
development in our country and to make the word ‘entrepreneur’ respectable again. The
competition nominees lead firms that have succeeded in the face of stiff competition and
A member firm of Ernst & Young Global Limited
complex economic conditions. They share a sense of honesty and place emphasis on business
ethics, diligence, responsibility and humility. And perhaps it is these very qualities that have
kept them among the best and make them worthy of our respect.”
Winner profile: František Piškanin – HOPI s.r.o.
If you ever do your shopping in a supermarket, then most of your items will have been
delivered by František Piškanin’s firm. And yet when František Piškanin began his business
activities he had nothing. He opened a small grocery shop in Karlovy Vary in 1992. He had the
idea of providing comprehensive quality services for supranational chains and Czech and
international production firms with the support of his lifelong mentor, Mr Houdek. These days
the HOPI logistics and transport group is one of the largest players in Central and Eastern
Europe, employs more than 3,300 people in the CR, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland and Romania,
and is planning to start business in Austria. This is a purely Czech family firm that, in his words,
has a Czech heart and an international body. It provides its comprehensive logistics services to
the most important international and Czech companies, including P&G, Makro, Metro, Unilever,
Billa, Tesco, Ahold, Kraft Foods, Nestle, Agrofert, Bohemia Sekt, Nutricia, Emco and many
others. At present it is consolidating its no. 1 position in Central Europe in the logistics of frozen
products by constructing further freezer plants. During the time it has existed HOPI has
contributed almost CZK 5 billion to the state budget. HOLLANDIA and Agro Otročín also belong
to the HOPI group. František Piškanin is pleased that his sons also work for the company. He
believes that a family approach, combined with unique knowhow, is the competitive advantage
enjoyed by HOPI. In his free time he remains active and devotes himself to his foundation,
lectures, is a member of many associations, and enjoys riding a motorbike, tractor and rallying.
Don´t worry, be HOPI.
The other 2012 Entrepreneur of the Year finalists were:
Lubomír Stoklásek, AGROSTROJ Pelhřimov, a.s.
Remon Leonard Vos, CTP Invest, spol. s r.o.
Mieczyslaw Molenda, GASCONTROL, společnost s r.o.
Zdeněk Pelc, GZ Digital Media, a.s.
Josef Novák, VEBA, textilní závody a.s.
The winner of the Technology Entrepreneur of the Year award for 2012 is Karel Volenec of
ELLA-CS, s.r.o., a company that owns many Czech and international patents and is at present
the only global manufacturer of unique medical devices: a degradable truss (stent), the Danis
stent for stopping variceal bleeding, and an extractor that every year protects thousands of
lives and is lauded the world over.
Ernst & Young and the Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship this year presented the
Social Entrepreneur of the Year award to Robert Schönfeld of the International School of
Music and Fine Arts. Eva Katrušáková of the charity Every Czech Reads to Kids was voted
a finalist in the competition Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2012.
This year the judging panel decided to award a special prize for an exceptional contribution. The
prize was won by Zuzana Ceralová Petrofová of PETROF, spol. s r.o., the world famous Czech
manufacturer of grand and upright pianos, for its ability to maintain the tradition of the production
of musical instruments in the Czech Republic.
The recipient of the MF DNES and Reader’s Award for the “Best business story” is
Helena Bednářová of Centrin CZ s.r.o. A private organisation Centrin CZ s.r.o. provides longand short-term residential social services to senior citizens.
The Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2011 competition is open to any company owner
or manager with a 25 % or more ownership interest in the company, or a co-owner of a public
company who is primarily responsible for its performance and is an active member of top
management. The company must be at least 2 years old and employ at least 10 people.
When reaching its decisions the judging panel abides by international rules. The main
evaluation criteria include strategic orientation, global reach, and of course a company’s
financial results, which are a clear indicator of the health and future prospects of a firm. The
evaluation process is complex and as well as financial data takes into account the personality
of the competitor and their business story. The members of the judging panel also examine the
business spirit of each nominee, their honesty and fairness, and their activities outside the
company in society at large or the region.
The competition is co-organised by the daily newspaper MF Dnes and The
competition partners are Accredio, Raiffeisenbank and g82. Support is also provided by the
CzechInvest, the TUESDAY Business Network, the Czech Venture Capital Association, and the
US Business School Praha. The media partners are the magazine FORBES, the weekly
EURO, and Czech Radio Radiožurnál. The competition is held under the auspices of the
Czech Chamber of Commerce.
Attachments to the news release:
1. Members of the judging panel
2. Profiles of winners and finalists
3. Regional winners
About the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year competition
Entrepreneur of the Year, which selects the most successful business pioneers and innovators, was started by Ernst
& Young in the United States in 1986. The contest has continued to grow and expanded to a number of countries
worldwide. Currently the only internationally recognized competition of its kind, it is regularly held in nearly 50
countries on six continents. Its aim is to introduce to the public outstanding individuals in the field of business who
may serve as examples for young, up-and-coming entrepreneurs. The Entrepreneur of the Year contest has been
conceived as an international competition, so the judging criteria are comparable in every country where it takes
place. For more information, please visit
About Ernst & Young
Ernst & Young is a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. Worldwide, our 167,000 people
are united by our shared values and an unwavering commitment to quality. We make a difference by helping our
people, our clients and our wider communities achieve potential.
Ernst & Young refers to the global organization of member firms of Ernst & Young Global Limited, each of which is a
separate legal entity. Ernst & Young Global Limited, a UK company limited by guarantee, does not provide services
to clients. For more information, please visit
Attachment 1
Entrepreneur of The Year 2012 judging panel members
Jannis Samaras, judging panel chairman, KOFOLA, Entrepreneur of the Year 2011
Adam Walach, WALMARK, Entrepreneur of the Year 2010
Eduard Kučera, AVAST Software, Entrepreneur of the Year 2009
Vladimír Kovář, Unicorn, Entrepreneur of the Year 2008
Pavel Juříček, BRANO GROUP, Entrepreneur of the Year 2006 for the Czech Republic
Zbyněk Frolík, LINET, Entrepreneur of the Year 2003 for the Czech Republic
Jana Ryšlinková, dean, US Business School Prague
Petr Šmída, investor, ENERN
Tomáš Ventura, deputy editor-in-chief of
Pavel Páral, editor-in-chief, EURO
Advisory Board
Radim Jančura – STUDENT AGENCY, Entrepreneur of the Year 2005
Miroslav Řihák – ANECT, Entrepreneur of the Year 2004
Kvido Štěpánek – Isolit-Bravo, Entrepreneur of the Year 2002
Petr Koblic – Prague Stock Exchange
Štěpán Lacina – Accredio
Lubor Žalman
Technology Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 judging panel members
Ivan Pilný – judging panel chairman, TUESDAY Business Network
Ondřej Bartoš – Credo Ventures
Jiří Beneš – 3TS Capital Partners
Jaroslav Klíma – TESCAN, Technology Entrepreneur of the Year 2011
Josef Suska – HOKAMI CZ, Technology Entrepreneur of the Year 2007
Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 judging panel members
Petra Vitoušová – judging panel chair, Bílý kruh bezpečí, Social Entrepreneur of the Year
Dolores Czudková – Ergon, Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2011
Pavel Křížek – Ochrana fauny České republiky o.s., Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2010
Drahoslava Kabátová – Letohrádek Vendula, Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2008
Jozef Baláž – Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2007
Sandor Nagy – Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship
Monika Mudranincová – Mladá fronta DNES, head of the City Magazine
Attachment 2
Ernst & Young Technology Entrepreneur of the Year 2012:
Karel Volenec, ELLA-CS, s.r.o.
Karel Volenec has dedicated his life to research. Everything started at the Medical Faculty of
Charles University in Hradec Králové, where Karel was involved in new methods of treating
tumours. The faculty was not equipped to put these methods into practice, and so Karel was
almost obliged to start doing business. He got into debt because of the construction of a
laboratory, but by selling his first colleague’s car he was able to buy a lathe. However, he had
faith in his vision and research and the results gradually began to bear fruit. His firm’s
inventions save thousands of lives every year and are appreciated the world over. ELLA-CS
owns many Czech and international patents and is at present the only global manufacturer of
unique medical devices: a degradable truss (stent), the Danis stent for stopping variceal
bleeding, and an extractor. The company is best renowned for its biodegradable truss, the only
one of its type in the world, which helps clear the digestive tract and is today regularly referred
to in medical literature in Europe and the USA. Karel likes to devote his free time to farming in
the Šumava Mountains and is a sports pilot. He recharges his energy from the results of his
work, deriving the most satisfaction from saving human lives and being commended by his
colleagues, world specialists in this field.
Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2012:
Robert Schönfeld – International School of Music and Fine Arts
Robert Schönfeld studied at the Academy of Music in Prague and has an MA in music and art
history and the violin. Upon returning from a study trip to Finland in 1997, he realised that the
Czech Republic was not offering a musical education in anything other than Czech. He also
saw how limited job opportunities were for Czech artists, whom the education system at that
time did not allow to combine the obligations of a concert artist with teaching activities. He
decided to establish using his own finances a school that would be innovative in its approach
both to teachers and students. This would be an institution providing top class Czech artists the
backup allowing them a regular income and offering children the possibility of expanding their
talent in a natural, playful form. The International School of Music and Fine Arts, the first
international school of its kind in the CR, first opened its doors in 1998 to a small group of
pupils. These days the school has 500 students and provides work for more than 100 teachers.
As well as music the school offers creative and dance lessons, organises concerts, exhibitions
and educational seminars for music teachers. Robert Schönfeld is a businessman and
philanthropist, and founder of the RSBC group.
Finalist of the Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2012:
Eva Katrušáková, Every Czech Reads to Kids, o.p.s.
After completing her studies at the Philosophy Faculty of the Palacký University, Olomouc, Eva
Katrušáková worked as a teacher. At the end of the 90s she opened the Pygmalion private
foreign langue school. In 2006 she changed course, entered the non-profit sphere and founded
the organisation Every Czech Reads to Kids (CČČD). The organisation, which conducts a
successful educational and media campaign around the whole country, aims to create strong
family bonds through reading together. Scientific research and practitioners in the field have
shown that reading aloud to children is of huge significance in the development of their
emotional maturity. And 20 minutes a day is enough. Reading aloud develops language skills,
memory and the imagination, as well as teaching moral values. The campaign is especially
important these days, when a child’s leisure time is dominated by the computer and the
television. Though the original inspiration came from abroad, the campaign has a distinctively
Czech flavour. Great credit for the work of the CČČD goes to dozens of volunteers acting as
regional coordinators, who disseminate the campaign’s ideas to all corners of the CR. More
than 80 well known personalities have actively joined the campaign, including the Havels,
Michal Horáček, Barbora Špotáková and Jaromír Nohavice. So far most of the nurseries,
schools and libraries involved in the campaign are located in the regions of Central Bohemia
and Moravian Silesia.
Finalists of the Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 in the Czech Republic:
Finalist Lubomír Stoklásek, AGROSTROJ Pelhřimov, a.s.
Lubomír Stoklásek began doing business in 1992 and now owns six firms. He joined Agrostroj
Pelhřimov, one of the oldest engineering firms in Europe producing agricultural technology, in
1997, when he won a tender for the purchase of a majority interest. Under his management the
company underwent restructuring, turnover increased by hundreds of percent, and the firm
became of the leading employers in the Vysočina region. Agrostroj Pelhřimov is the most
important producer of agricultural technology in the CR and the largest universal
subcontractors in Europe. Its production programme comprises its own finished machines, the
manufacture of tools, and almost 90 percent of the delivery of machines and assembly units
within the framework of cooperation with important supranational companies such as Claas,
John Deere, Krone, DAF, Scania, Volvo, etc. At present the firm supplies 36 plants around the
world and exports make up 98 %. Lubomír believes that, apart from knowhow, employees are
the key. As he says, anyone with money can buy technology. However, the most valuable
assets are reliable, technically educated people, of whom there are still too few on the market.
He offers opportunities to young people and trains his employees himself. Lubomír is actively
involved in educational issues. He recharges his batteries by playing golf, yachting and scuba
Finalist Remon Leonard Vos, CTP Invest, spol. s r.o.
Remon L. Vos’s father and grandfather were also business men, though not in the sphere of
real estate. Remon always reflected on the fact that they had to work year in, year out, in order
to support themselves. What attracted him to real estate was the fact that you accumulate a
certain portfolio, provide yourself with a long-term income, and create value for the future. A
native Dutchman, Remon had been attracted by the CR since secondary school. When he
visited the country for the first time at the start of the nineties, he realised immediately that
there were a host of opportunities for him, and so began working as broker between Czech and
Dutch firms. Later he founded CTP spol. s r.o., and these days his company is the leading
developer on the commercial real estate market. He runs the largest network of industrial
parks, as well as building office blocks. He owns more than 200 buildings and has around 400
tenants. The company is still growing and its value has doubled since 2007. However, Remon
regards people as the most important asset. Since commencing his activities he has spread
the good name of our towns and regions during his trips to customers abroad. Recently, for
instance, he travelled with representatives of the City of Brno to the USA to introduce Brno as
the ideal location for a high-tech company. He acquires energy from successful deals. He
spends his free time with his family and mountain bike riding.
Finalist and Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 for Prague and Central Bohemia
Zdeněk Pelc, GZ Digital Media, a.s.
Little did he suspect when Zdeněk Pelc started work for Gramofonové závody that he would be
the longest serving manager in one function in the CR. These days his firm is no. 1 in the
production of vinyl discs and one of the most important firms in its sphere. It is involved not only
in the reproduction of audio and visual recordings and software, but in extensive polygraphic
production, and specialises in complete, more expensive products backed up by top class
service and distribution. The firm’s customors include Universal Music, EMI, Sony Music,
BlackBerry, Samsung, Symantec, LG and IKEA. However, not everything went smoothly. After
the wild period of privatisation investors brought security to the firm, headed by Kenneth D.
Brody, former president of the Export-Import Bank of the US and a partner at Goldman, Sachs
& Co., who remains a business model for Zdeněk. The investment paid off and was 14.5 times
higher when returned to investors nine years later. According to Zdeněk success resides in the
art of being able to adapt to market conditions, motivate employees, and innovate. In 2011, on
the 60th anniversary of the production of the first black disk, the firm constructed a new logistics
centre. Zdeněk is planning to withdraw from day-to-day management in the future and focus
more on strategy. He does not have much free time, and so what he does have he spends with
his children.
Finalist and Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 Moravia Silesian region
Mieczyslaw Molenda, GASCONTROL, společnost s r.o.
Mieczyslaw Molenda did not originally set out to do business, though these days he has no
regrets. Though he was satisfied working for a Czech-Danish company, when the company
started laying off people, he and his colleagues left and in 1992 set up Gascontrol. The firm
expanded thanks to the demand at that time for regulatory gas stations. These days it is the
leading Czech producer and supplier of technology in the sphere of energy, engineering and
construction, and employees around 1,000 people. It specialises in research, production, and
the assembly and servicing of equipment for the gas, energy and water industries. It provides
its services to small consumers and businesses, distributors and municipalities. Gascontrol is
expanding its network of CNG filling stations around the whole of the CR at petrol stations.
Mieczyslaw sees potential for further development in energy and CNG, and his vision is to
enter the management of energy in the CR and abroad. The company does business in
Poland, Slovakia, Ukraine, the Baltic States and Russia. Mieczyslaw believes that research and
innovation is fundamental, and so at Gascontrol they run a “Research centre for energy and
plastics” and cooperate with universities and research centres in the CR and Europe.
Mieczyslaw’s model is Tomáš Baťa. He recharges his batteries with his family and
grandchildren, and enjoys relaxing in the mountains or with a good book.
Finalist and Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 Hradec Králové region
Josef Novák, VEBA, textilní závody a.s.
Josef Novák has been loyal to his company VEBA all his life. He joined the firm in 1978 as a
marketing clerk and by 1992 had made his way up the career ladder to be chief executive and
chairman of the Board of Directors. VEBA is part of a long tradition of textile production in
Broumov stretching back to the 13th century. It is an important employer in the region, and since
it is located in a protected region lays great emphasis on an ecological approach to production.
Its owner is pleased that it withstood the wild phase of privatisation and challenges faced by
foreign competitors. These days VEBA is one of the most important producers of patterned
cotton textiles in Europe. The company focuses on the production of clothing and household
ranges, 90 % of which is intended for export to Western Africa and Europe. The company is at
present the largest Czech textile manufacturer in traditional production and the largest
producer of African brocades in the world. It cooperates with top class designers in the Czech
Republic and abroad. VEBA developed specially modified brocade from the most subtly
combed yarns from Egyptian fabrics exclusively for Africa. Josef would like to export to other
African and Muslim countries, and the company is planning investment in new technology for
this purpose. He relaxes with his family, doing sport and driving his car.
Judging panel prize 2012:
Zuzana Ceralová Petrofová, PETROF, spol. s r.o.
PETROF, the world renowned factory for the production of grand and upright pianos,
represents the family silver of the Czech Republic. The factory was established in 1864 by the
carpenter Antonín Petrof and is at present being led by the fifth generation of his family. In 1948
the family was confiscated and after the revolution the family had to take on debt into order to
regain it. When Zuzana Ceralová Petrofová joined the company, she encountered a socialist
behemoth manufacturing mass produced pianos. She moved from the PR department to the
highest position and decided to return its world reputation to the firm. However, this was no
easy matter. As Asian competitors rapidly gained ground, 2004 was a year during which the
company fought for survival. The economic crisis of 2009 also required decisive interventions.
Zuzana had to take many unpopular but essential decisions, including the laying off of
hundreds of employees. However, she saved the firm. The first lady of PETROF sees the
future as involving the production of expensive, top quality instruments. The popularity of the
magnificent sound of a PETROF is growing, especially in Russia, Japan, China and Australia.
Next year the company celebrates its 150th anniversary. It will mark the occasion with a grand
piano featuring the name of its founder, Antonín Petrof, which will be the production flagship
and the price of which will exceed by hundreds of thousands of crowns that of the company’s
most expenses piano to date, which sells for almost CZK 2 million.
Best business story, MFDnes and readers’ prize:
Helena Bednářová, Centrin CZ s.r.o.
Helena Bednářová decided to devote herself to the sphere of social services on the basis of
negative experiences with the care provided her grandparents in an institution for those with
long-term illnesses and an old people’s home. She also learned not to be indifferent to the
needs of others when looking after a young boy being fostered by her parents. In 2007 she
founded Centrin CZ, a private organisation providing long- and short-term residential social
services to senior citizens. She took out a loan and bought her first property in Zruč nad
Sázavou, and her parents sold land in order to help her start up. The number of clients rose on
the basis of good references, and the company opened up new premises in Prague. In the
meantime Helena studied social work and psychotherapy at university and in 2011 opened a
third residential care centre in Unhošť near Kladno. The centre includes an old people’s home,
a home specially designed for people suffering Alzeheimer’s disease and various forms of
dementia, and a respite service. These days the young businesswoman employees 200
hundred people and almost 300 senior citizens live in her three homes. She is proud of her
employee collective, which has helped her create a home for clients where they can happily
spend the autumn of their lives.
Attachment 3
Regional winners
Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 North Moravia region
Pavel Sobotka, Frentech Aerospace s.r.o.
Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 Pilsen region
Zdeněk Blažek, REPLAST holding, spol. s r.o.
Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 Moravian Silesian region
Mieczyslaw Molenda, GASCONTROL, společnosti s r.o.
Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 Olomouc region
Josef Žáček, Česko-slezská výrobní, a.s.
Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 Hradec Králové region
Josef Novák, VEBA, textilní závody a.s.
Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 Prague and Central Bohemia
Zdeněk Pelc, GZ Digital Media, a.s.
Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 Olomouc region
Josef Žáček, Česko-slezská výrobní, a.s.
Josef Žáček’s father came to Zlaté Hory in 1945. He began doing business and passed on his
love of work to his son. Before the successful family business was nationalised, the son had
learned a lot from his father about metals and people. After 1989 Josef Žáček left his
managerial position at Geologický průzkum and in 1993 founded the company Česko-slezská
with his partners. The company began by manufacturing containers for municipal garbage. It
was successful and two years later bought up the indebted engineering firm Geologický
průzkum. Cooperation with the Austrian firm Containex resulted in a fundamental change to the
ownership of the firm, but this difficult decision proved to be the right one. These days Českoslezská výrobní manufactures residential and sanitary containers and buildings from container
modules for the whole world that are used not only on building sites but during sports events,
for charity organisations, and are even used for housing nurseries. The company is able to
create space simply, immediately and anywhere. Josef Žáček believes in investing in
innovation, for instance in new paint lines. However, he is convinced that the most important
investment is in people. This year the firm celebrates its 20th anniversary and its owner is
justifiably proud of it. He would not change a thing, save perhaps if he had been able to start
doing business earlier. Both his sons work for the company and after work they all enjoy
hunting and bee-keeping.
Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 North Moravia region
Pavel Sobotka, Frentech Aerospace s.r.o.
Pavel Sobotka began doing business after leaving Tesla Brno, where he trained as a metal
lathe operator and subsequently produced electron microscopes. Along with an emigrant living
in Germany, after the revolution he launched the production of automatic parking systems, but
later sold the firm. He founded the now 100 % Czech Frentech Aerospace in 1994 with Dutch
partners, focusing on medical technology and micro-electronics. These days Frentech
Aerospace is known around the world as a supplier of precision mechanisms for the aviation
and aerospace industry. To begin with Pavel rejected an offer from Airbus that would have
meant entering this sphere, but eventually delivered parts for USD 170. These days there is no
Airbus aeroplane that does not feature the firm’s parts. He gradually began to deliver
components for telecommunications satellites and participate on projects being implemented
by the European Space Agency. He also supplied special mirrors for huge antennas in the
Atacama Desert in Chile. Frentech Aerospace is a member of the Czech Space Alliance and
last year won the largest ever commercial contract in the sphere of space technology in the
history of the CR (by participating in the project IRIDIUM NEXT). Pavel believes in
responsibility, diligence and social awareness. He is involved in the fight against cancer, clears
his head by driving fast, and his hobbies include music, painting and cookery.
Entrepreneur of the Year 2012 Pilsen region
Zdeněk Blažek, REPLAST holding, spol. s r.o.
After the revolution Zdeněk Blažek was set the task of liquidating unnecessary stocks from
buildings that had been returned to their original owners. Via an advertisement in the Economic
Chamber in Regensburg he was contacted by his future partner, who owned a recycling and
garbage disposal company in Germany. This meeting was a turning point for Zdeněk Blažek,
since together they established the companies REPLAST PRODUKT and RECYKLO in the
CR, which later became part of the REPLAST holding. His former partner transferred his share
in the firms to Blažek, who is now the sole owner. The group of firms is involved in the
processing and recycling of electrical cables, electronic waste, and the waste from iron,
coloured and precious metals. In the sphere of plastics he specialises in the production of a
range of products made from PVC insulation cable. The product range includes more than 80
kinds of products, e.g. floorboards for use in agriculture, industry or sports stadia, transport
signage components, cable bridges, and covers for conduits and cisterns. Annually the firm
sells more than 80 % of its production abroad. Zdeněk Blažek and his company have won
many awards. As a former national volleyball player he most enjoys relaxing by playing this

News release