TEF Awards

(Texas Tamil Entrepreneurs)


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For all questions and queries please write to teftalk2018@fetna.org

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What is TEF Awards?

TEF Awards recognize and promote entrepreneurism among Tamil Community in the United States. TEF Award will champion the entrepreneurial spirit, cultivate the entrepreneur culture and also support an ecosystem among our Tamil Community.


TEF 2018 Awards

TEF 2018 Awards aim is to recognize and celebrate the achievements and success of Tamil Entrepreneurs in Texas.

Award Categories

  1. Entrepreneur Champion of the Year

    Awarded to an individual who has a proven track record of championing for the entrepreneurial journey. This can be through volunteering, mentoring, investing, or collaborating

  2. Outstanding efforts in Entrepreneurship in Micro & Small Enterprises

    Awarded to the entrepreneur who has been in business for over three years and has a proven track record of sustainability, strategic direction, future growth and community involvement.

  3. Outstanding efforts in Entrepreneurship in Medium Enterprises

    Awarded to the entrepreneur who has been in business for over three years and has a proven track record of sustainability, strategic direction, future growth and community involvement.

  4. Emerging Entrepreneur

    Awarded to the entrepreneur who has been in business for one to three years and has a proven track record for sustainability with room for growth.

  5. Disruptive Innovation / Game Changer Award

    Awarded to an innovative entrepreneur who has created a new market network value or displacing established market leading firms, products and alliances.

  6. Social Entrepreneur

    Awarded to a social entrepreneur who had exhibiting excellence in its approach to the environment, ethics, community interaction, and corporate social responsibility

  7. Inspiring Women Entrepreneur

    Awarded to an outstanding female entrepreneur in the North Texas Region. The winner of this award will be submitted to the Small Business Administration’s National Small Business of the Year Award.

  8. Young Creative Entrepreneur

    Awarded to a young creative entrepreneur exhibiting excellence in innovation, in any sector, through leveraging new knowledge or technology to solve real world problems. Proof can be demonstrated through innovative business practices such as new business models and strategies, organizational development, and/or product and services creativity.

  9. Entrepreneurial Achievement

    Awarded to a company exhibiting average annualized growth rates greater than 20 percent per year, over a three-year period, and with 10 or more employees at the beginning of the period. Growth can be recorded in terms of revenue or employment (number of employees).

  10. Entrepreneurial Support

    Awarded to Tamil Individuals who had demonstrate excellence in advancing entrepreneurship through their leadership, innovation and impact.

Who can submit a nomination ?

  • Nominate a Friend

    Anyone who knows a successful entrepreneur can nominate a candidate. This includes spouses, employees, bankers, attorneys, public relations managers, friends, or other entrepreneurs themselves.

  • Self-nominations (encouraged..)

    After all, no one knows all the dimensions of an entrepreneur's success better than the entrepreneur.


Minimal Criteria

  • Nominee should be a member of ANY TAMIL SANGAM from STATE OF TEXAS at the time of filing the nomination
  • Nominee’s business must have been registered in the STATE OF TEXAS, and the business must be a for-profit business
  • Nominee must be the owner, founder or controlling shareholder of their company and principally responsible for its operation.

General Guidelines

  • The Awards Committee reserves the right to move the nominee into another category during preparation of the materials for their judging.
  • All nominee information forms, letters of support, and any other information will be given to a panel judges who will determine the winners.
  • The judge's decisions are final and will be honored.

Award Criteria

  • Recognized as an entrepreneur by others.
  • Currently engaged in a leadership role in a social or business venture.
  • Has started at least one venture.
  • The person actively demonstrates values in work and life and the venture workplace is guided by strong values.
  • The individual has had an impact on the community, industry, employees and kind matter.

Added Criteria for Social Entrepreneur

  • Has made a demonstrated impact on a social or community issue through the work of the venture they started or currently lead.
  • Has transformed how a social or community issue is addressed.

Judging criteria

  • Entrepreneurial Spirit: Commitment, vision, calculated risk-taking, capacity for personal growth. Demonstrates perseverance in the face of adversity and to overcoming obstacles. Has tasted significant disappointments and learned from experiences. While he/she relies on trusted individuals and the team, also shows capacity to be an independent thinker and to take risks in the face of uncertainty.
  • Financial Performance: Return on equities, revenues, profitability, and growth rate indicating long-term sustainability. This is reflected in the strength of the organization’s financial performance today; the track record in raising finance; the quality of past investments; and the provision in place for long term sustainability.
  • Strategic Direction: Creates and turns business visions into business realities. Builds and rebuilds the teams’ commitment to the common goals. Demonstrates entrepreneurial maturity by building strategic alliances and surrounding him/herself with talented people—individuals, teams, the Board, and a range of advisers/allies to ensure success for all.
  • Community/Global Impact: Making an impact in terms of job creation and improved living economics in their own community and globally if business has expanded successfully overseas.
  • Innovation: Pioneers a new approach or technology. Recognizes business imperative of anticipating and embracing changes occurring in the competitive environment through continuous improvement and innovation in all aspects of the business. Creates a culture of innovation.
  • Personal Integrity/Influence: Living their values has earned him/her great respect from staff, competitors, advisers, family and wider community. Coupled with the ability to communicate ideas, this creates the potential to influence others.
  • Response to adversity: Examples of problems faced in the nominee’s business and the methods used to solve them.

Applicant - Data Points

As an applicant you are competing against scores of other entrepreneurs so the more information provided, the greater the detail and the more compelling the story told, the greater the chance that your institution and your client will be recognized for achievements,

  • Business growth: Please explain the history of the business, what it is, how and when it was started, the revenue/sales volume when began and how it looks today; what do they sell on a monthly basis. How many branches do they have compared to when they started or has the operating facility been expanded or changed. Identify any multiplier effects that this business has had on other business—identify the benefits its suppliers or buyers have enjoyed as a result of this businesses growth noting whether these businesses’ are within the community, outside its district or beyond.
  • Employment creation: Share the evolution of number of employees. Has the business moved from sole proprietorship to employ more people including non-family members? How many people were employed initially and what the total is today. What is the gender break down of the employees?
  • Sustainability: Does the business meets its costs, is it formalized or considering registration. Is its success dependent on the entrepreneur or will it continue – based on the structure in place?
  • Innovation: What does the business do differently to make it successful? Does it offer a unique service or product? Have they introduced information and communication technologies or energy saving equipment to make it run more efficiently?
  • Financial discipline: Has the Client shown high degrees of financial integrity related to savings, loan repayments and investment of repeated increasing loan funds? Please provide specific information regarding credit and savings history.
  • Family impact: How has the success of the business positively impacted the family life? Has the business success enabled the client to improve housing, health care, education for children, sanitation etc. Please provide specific examples.

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