Mansholt-Business Award for Sustainable Entrepreneurship (M-BASE)

The Mansholt Business Award for Sustainable Entrepreneurship is reserved for successful entrepreneurs who manage their companies with enthusiasm and sustainability. The guidelines for corporate social responsibility established by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) form the basis of this award. These guidelines focus on such issues as chain responsibility, human rights, child labour, and the environment.

Mansholt Business Award for Simon Groot of East-West Seed

The University Fund Wageningen has awarded the Mansholt Business Award for Sustainable Entrepreneurship (M-BASE) 2015 to Simon Groot of East-West Seed. Under his leadership the company has developed a market for vegetable seeds in South East Asia with the result that small local farmers can now produce and earn more. Groot stimulates knowledge sharing, and the company regularly collaborates with researchers in Wageningen. The prize was presented on Monday 7 September 2015 during the opening of the Wageningen University & Research academic year.

Terms and conditions and procedure of granting

Term and conditions Mansholt-Business Award for Sustainable Entrepreneurship (M-BASE)

  • The entrepreneur is graduate of Wageningen University & Research (BSc, MSc, PhD); or has at least three years of scientific research at Wageningen University & Research; or has a direct working relationship/active cooperation with a partner of Wageningen University & Research.
  • The entrepreneur has been working in the domain of Wageningen University & Research: "Healthy food and Living environment": that includes one of the following fields of expertise: health, lifestyle and living conditions, nutrition and food production, environment.
  • The entrepreneur has an independent company founded and/or is as driving force working in the enterprise. The entrepreneur himself and with personal risk to corporate leadership, form and content, sustainable economic activities (International) impact.

  • The entrepreneur has proven to result in sustainable entrepreneurship according to OESO guidelines.
  • The entrepreneur is not only investor (or shareholder), institutional investor or leader of apublic sector organisation.

  • The company existsat least 3 years.


The jury notice in particular on the following aspects that should be commented on within the motivation:

1. Sustainable entrepreneurship in accordance with OESO guidelines

2. Financial health

3. Stimulating effect for economics and employment

4. Contribution to share and unlock knowledge

5. Innovative use of knowledge

6. (International) social influence

7. Relevance to the domain of Wageningen University & Research

    Procedure of granting

    1. The entrepreneur must be prepared to any request of the jury to the relevant company information (including financial information) to are quest to act.

    2. The Board of the Wageningen University Foundation knows the price on a proposal from the jury. The Board shall appoint the members of the jury.

    3. The jury is composed of five members; preferably with the following composition, a successful entrepreneur, a former business award winner, Member of the Board of Wageningen University Foundation, a former juror Mansholt Prize and a representative of the press.

    Nominees were informed in the week after 26 August 2015.

    Award ceremony was on Monday 7 September 2015 between 15.00 – 17.00 hours during opening academic year 2015/2016 in Orion building on campus in Wageningen.

    Definition sustainable entrepreneurship

    Entrepreneurship focus on economic performance (profit), with respect for the social side (people), within the ecological constraints (planet): the triple-P approach. (in accordance with OESO richtlijnen MVO).

    Jury 2015

    The jury in 2015 consists of the following persons:

    • Mr. Ir. J.K. Mak, General Manager Deers, Chair Wageningen University Fund
    • Mr. Ir. L. Noldus, Managing Director Noldus Information Technology, former winner Business Award
    • Prof. R. Rabbinge, Emeritus Professor of Sustainable Development & Food Security, Board Member Mansholt Foundation
    • Mr. Ir. H. Webers, senior advisor Witteveen + Bos
    • Mr. Ir. W. Schoonen, editor in chief Trouw

    Winner 2012

    Jan Hadders

    The committee of the Wageningen University Fund has granted the Mansholt-Business Award for Sustainable Entrepreneurship to Jan Hadders of Dacom.

    The goal of the award is to illustrate how Wageningen University & Research alumni and entrepreneurs directly related to the university actively contribute to sustainable entrepreneurship that has a large societal and possibly international impact. The award is extended to those successful entrepreneurs who manage their company in an enthusiastic and sustainable manner.

    Jan Hadders (on the right) received  €25.000, a bronze sculpture of the ‘Wageningen Tree’ by Sjoerd Buisman and a degree.

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