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Telstra held the Telstra Business Women’s Awards 2017 Gala Dinner last night and announced Singapore-based Damco executive Saskia Groen-in’t-woud as the winner of the Telstra Business Woman in Asia Award.

As the Asia Chief Operating Officer of international logistics provider Damco, Ms Groen-in’t-woud manages over 3,500 people in Operations across Asia Pacific. She is recognised as a forward-thinking business leader, who has championed diversity in a male-dominated industry and driven significant operational improvements within her organisation through the pursuit of technology and process simplification oriented around customer needs. Since commencing her role in 2015, she has played a pivotal role in supporting Damco’sfinancial turnaround from a $300m loss in 2014 to turning a profit in 2016.

“I have always chosen the non-traditional route in my career and I take seriously the opportunity to continue to pay it forward by encouraging women to take difficult roles. Now as a leader, I am also committed to make things easier for women to come through,” said Ms Groen-in’t-woud.

“It takes courage and conviction for women in business to succeed, but it is also essential for us to leverage our natural strengths – to learn from others, listen and collaborate. That’s why I am ecstatic and delighted to be here at this point in time where so much change is possible. Winning the Award is so exciting – not just for myself, but for women across Asia.”

David Burns, Telstra’s Group Managing Director of Global Services and International, said the Telstra Business Woman in Asia Award marked another year of great success in celebrating brilliant women in Asia, especially with the expansion of criteria to include female entrepreneurs and women from not-for-profit and social enterprises.

“I congratulate Ms Groen-in’t-woudon winning the Telstra Business Woman in Asia Award. She is an outstanding role model,” said Mr Burns. “This award is a recognition of her drive and leadership in the transformation of the supply chain and logistics industry. By applying technology to digitise Damco’s operations, she will continue to enhance the customer experience and ensure the company achieves its goals.”

This year’s finalists of the Telstra Business Woman in Asia Award also include Anna Tham from ACE EdVenture Group (Malaysia), Fern Ngai from Community Business (Hong Kong), Gayathri Vasudevan from LabourNet (India), Geeta Dharmarajan from Katha (India), Michele Lai from Kids4Kid (Hong Kong), and Nicole McMillan from Mars Wrigley Confectionary (Singapore).

“The Telstra Business Women’s Awards shine a light on women’s achievements as business leaders with an Alumni network of more than 2,000 women who have been named finalists over more than two decades. We welcome the Asia Award finalists this year to join the network as they celebrate the positive results of inclusive leadership, such as better organisational performance, increased competitive advantage and, at a macro level, a thriving economy,” said Mr Burns.

For more information on the Telstra Business Woman in Asia Award and to nominate outstanding women for the 2018 Awards, visit https://www.telstrabusinesswomensawards.com/