WhiteWater, a leading waterpark manufacturer, has announced that its President & CEO, Geoff Chutter, has been named EY Entrepreneur of the Year 2019 Pacific.
WhiteWater is proud to announce that Geoff Chutter, President & CEO, has been recognised by this honour. The awards were announced by Ernst & Young on the 3rd October, where Chutter was also won the Business to Business category as well as being named overall Pacific Regional winner. He will now go on to the Canadian final.
Chutter started WhiteWater in 1980. He began the company in the town of Penticton, BC, which became one of North America’s first water slide parks. With the experience gained from building his own park, Chutter decided to start a company dedicated to the design and build of water slides. This way, he could share the vast amount of knowledge he had gained from his own park.
True entrepreneurial spirit
WhiteWater has now been going for almost 40 years and has a presence all over the world. The company has offices in Shanghai, Barcelona, and Dubai and is regarded as an industry leader, with a finger on the pulse of the latest trends.
While accepting his award, Chutter thanked all the people who have helped him to realise his achievements. “Thank you to my grandfather for exposing me to entrepreneurship, my parents for introducing me to globalization, and my colleagues for finding the right people. What we do is make families happy, and that makes us happy,” says Chutter.
The judging panel selected Chutter due to his positive approach and entrepreneurial spirit. “When an economic downturn comes knocking, consumer discretionary spending is typically the first to go,” says Lui Petrollini, EY Entrepreneur of the Year Pacific Program Director. “But Geoff didn’t let this stop him in the early 2000s. Instead, he turned it into an opportunity and has made WhiteWater a force to be reckoned with ever since.”
Going from strength to strength
WhiteWater has bucked the trend, growing by 185% in the past 14 years. This is due to the company’s focus on its customers, as well as its innovation in product design and its willingness to engage with emerging markets.
“I realized that being an expert in life was knowing just a little bit more than the fellow beside you. It all comes down to the people. To my colleagues at WhiteWater and the clients who have believed in us and supported us throughout the years, I say a tremendous thank you,” Chutter says.
The judging panel were also impressed with the team culture that Chutter has created at WhiteWater. The company has many employees who have been with the company long-term and also puts on several social events.
The company supports Give Kids the World Village in Florida. It also helps a family in need every Christmas through a local food bank. Chutter serves on the Development Committee of Covenant House in Vancouver, a local homeless charity.
In addition to Chutter’s award, the company was recently recognised with multiple European Star Awards, including two for Europe’s Best Family Water Slides (2019) and one for Europe’s Best Thrill Water Slides. The ceremony took place during IAAPA Expo Europe last month in Paris.