Ernst & Young has named Allyson Ames, founder and CEO of Wonderland Lifestyle Brands and Wonderland Bakery, to its 2012 list of Entrepreneurial Winning Women. The prestigious honor recognizes 12 extraordinary women entrepreneurs from across the country.
Ames founded Wonderland Bakery in Newport Beach in 2005, and her company has grown to include Wonderland Lifestyle Brands, comprised of 11 registered trademarks associated with Ames, including Wonderland Bakery.
“This is an exciting time in my business with the expansion of the brand beyond baking with Wonderland Lifestyle Brands to include merchandising, media and entertainment properties,” Ames said. “The resources, programs and mentoring within the Ernst & Young Women Entrepreneurial Winning Women program are the catalyst that will help to scale my business exponentially.”
Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneurial Winning Women, in the five years of the program’s operation, has grown to become a competitive and prestigious award recognizing highly driven, innovative and successful businesswomen. Winners have represented a wide variety of industries across the U.S., with participating companies’ growing in reported revenues by 50 percent each year, as well as average annual jobs increasing by 25 percent.
“Over the past five years, the Entrepreneurial Winning Women program has grown into a highly competitive platform to help women entrepreneurs think bigger and scale their companies to new heights,” said Kerrie MacPherson, partner and Entrepreneurial Winning Women executive sponsor at Ernst & Young. “Allyson Ames is an exceptional business leader with extraordinary potential, and we are pleased to honor her as one of this year’s winners.”
The program was launched in 2008, to recognize a growing bright spot in the economy: women entrepreneurs have been starting businesses at a faster rate than their male counterparts. Despite a volatile market and continuing high unemployment, nearly half of privately held companies across the U.S. are at least half-owned by women, according to Ernst & Young. The selected businesses recognized in each year’s winning class are invited to participate in E&Y’s customized program designed to improve the company’s growth, enhance leadership skills, expand the business and increase visibility.
Ames will join executives from the 10 other companies recognized in this year’s program at the Ernst & Young Strategic Growth Forum. The event brings together thousands of executives and entrepreneurs to share strategies and discuss business development.
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