At a ceremony in Oslo this morning (20 March 2018), the Business for Peace Foundation declared its 2018 Honourees. Mr Martin Naughton has been announced as the first ever Irish Honouree by the Foundation following his nomination by Chambers Ireland in conjunction with the Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry and South Dublin Chamber.
An Tánaiste Simon Coveney said: “Martin has made an immense contribution to the island of Ireland and I warmly welcome the awarding of the Oslo Business for Peace Award to him. Martin is a true business innovator and a superb example of the entrepreneurial spirit of Ireland. Martin’s businesses have for a long time been excellent case studies of sustainable economic development in combination with a world class vision and world beating technology. In this the 20th year of the Good Friday Agreement it is fitting that a man who has tirelessly supported cross border business, relations and economic development is honoured. ”
Ian Talbot, Chief Executive of Chambers Ireland, said: “We are delighted to have had the opportunity to propose Mr Naughton for consideration by the Foundation. This is an incredible global accolade for one of Ireland’s most successful business leaders who has worked tirelessly to promote economic and educational development as a means to foster peace, inclusion and economic wellbeing. The active support of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in this process also demonstrated the tremendous esteem in which he is held.”
Ann McGregor, Chief Executive of the Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said: “The efforts of Mr Naughton to foster and develop business and education on an all-island basis are a model for all our entrepreneurs and society as a whole. We welcome this unique recognition of his outstanding work.”
Peter Byrne, Chief Executive of South Dublin Chamber said: “Mr Naughton is a true business pioneer. From a modest start in Newry he has created a global business which is now playing a significant role in the development of low-carbon, sustainable heating systems. His successful work in the spheres of education and the development of North-South and Irish-US relationships are a testament to his outstanding public-mindedness.”
Background to Foundation and Honourees:
The Business for Peace Foundation is an NGO based in Oslo which was created in 2007. Its mission is to support, inspire, and recognize the global business leaders who are positively changing the face of business.
The Oslo Business for Peace Honourees commenced in 2009. Mr Naughton is the first Irish Honouree. Previous honourees include Elon Musk, Emily Cummins, Sir Richard Branson, Durreen Shahnaz, Jeffrey Immelt and Ratan Tata.
The selection of Honourees is undertaken by an independent Award Committee comprising 5 Nobel laureates in Peace and Economics who are all outstanding role models within their respective fields, with a passion for improving society driving their endeavours. The 2018 panel comprised Ms. Ouided Bouchamaoui, Dr. Shirin Ebadi, Professor Finn Kydland, Ms. Leymah Gbowee, and Professor Eric Maskin.
A formal ceremony will take place in Oslo City Hall on 16 May to celebrate this award.