CEO of OpenRoad Auto Group named finalist for entrepreneur award

The finalists in Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of the Year Awards 2018 Pacific program have been announced. Christian Chia, CEO of Richmond-based OpenRoad Auto Group, has been named amongst the list of B.C.’s entrepreneurial trailblazers.

As the leader of the region’s largest automotive retail group, Chia is being recognized for his leadership in business innovation and entrepreneurship in the Business to Consumer category.

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“It is a great honour to be recognized by EY as a finalist among such an esteemed group of entrepreneurs,” said Chia.

“At OpenRoad, we’ve worked very hard to stay ahead of competition and to offer a superior car ownership experience at every turn, so this recognition is really a tribute to the dedication of the entire OpenRoad team.”

Each year, Ernst & Young recognizes entrepreneurs who drive growth and build their businesses with creativity and purpose.

This year, 35 finalists across nine categories had made the list of finalists. Over the past 25 years, the program has recognized more than 3,800 finalists and presented more than 1,000 awards to inspiring Canadian entrepreneurs.

The panel of judges has selected Chia as a finalist based on his demonstrated entrepreneurial leadership in the rapid growth of OpenRoad Auto Group since 2000 to become the largest auto retailer in B.C., according to the company.

OpenRoad has become one of B.C.’s 40 fastest-growing private companies, and the operator of 26 retail locations:  23 dealerships, 19 brands, and three collision centres. The company plans to expand further in western Canada and Washington State. 

Chia now employs more than 1,200 staff and is building the company’s success by investing in strong employee and customer loyalty programs; a premium automotive brand portfolio; excellence in business intelligence; an enhanced customer experience online; and a superior overall car ownership experience.

The Pacific finalists will come together on Sept. 25 in Vancouver, where EY will name one winner in each of the nine categories selected by the independent panel of judges.

One of those category winners will be named the overall Pacific Entrepreneur Of The Year and will later compete with regional winners from Atlantic, Québec, Ontario and Prairies for the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Canada title.

The Canadian winner will go on to compete with winners from across the globe for the title of EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year in June 2019.

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