WinTranslation President and founder, Huiping Zhang, was honoured for her contributions to Ottawa’s economy as a recipient of the City of Ottawa’s Immigrant Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
Now in its seventh year, the Immigrant Entrepreneur awards recognize Ottawa’s business leaders who were born outside of Canada and have harnessed their entrepreneurial skills to make a significant impact on the economy in the National Capital Region. The selection criteria looks for candidates who have shown a commitment to hiring local talent, mentoring other entrepreneurs and those that take an active role in the local community.
“I am very grateful for the city’s recognition of tremendous barriers immigrants have to overcome to build a successful business. It was amazing Mayor Jim Watson came out to support the award recipients. ” said Zhang.
Zhang first came to Canada as an international student to complete her M.A. in Communication Studies at the University of Windsor. In 1994 —with just $3000 in savings — she founded wintranslation, a translation company that provides translation and project management services for the technology sector and has unique offerings in Canada’s Indigenous languages. In 2006, she moved the headquarters to Ottawa and under her leadership, wintranslation grew into a multi-million dollar company.
To deliver wintranslation’s services, Zhang employs a network of translators, many of whom are Canadian newcomers and Indigenous people. Currently, an estimated 90% of Huiping’s employees are immigrants and 70% are female.
“Being an immigrant myself, I recognize and admire the resilience of people who are uprooted and have to start new in a country. To me, having the courage to take that journey says a lot about that person. Those attributes such as resilience and adaptability are very valuable in business and I love hiring immigrants!” said Zhang.
The 2018 Immigrant Entrepreneur of the Year awards were presented by Mayor Jim Watson as the kick-off to TiECon Canada. In addition to Zhang, five other business leaders were recognized this year including Raman Agarwal (Akran Marketing), James and Donna Baker (Keynote Group), Karla Briones (Karla Briones Consulting), and Hamed Zadeh (SINIX Media Group).
“They add value to our city in many ways, from the development of innovative technologies and the launch of groundbreaking companies to the creation of new jobs in Ottawa,” Mayor Jim Watson said in his opening remarks.
Zhang and wintranslation have been recognized for other prestigious awards include the Top Forty under 40 and the Women Enterprise of the Year Award by WeConnect International, the world’s leading diversity procurement advocacy organization.
“In 2019 I look forward to continuing to expand on wintranslation’s services,” said Huping. “Three years ago we started offering translation in Canada’s Indigenous languages and this is a niche that has a lot of room for growth.”