SOURCE: Ernst & Young

June 16, 2010 10:00 ET

Ernst & Young Announces Tim Spring as Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2010 Award Finalist

Former Marcal CEO Recognized for Innovation and Performance

ISELIN, NJ--(Marketwire - June 16, 2010) -  Ernst & Young LLP announced today that consumer goods turnaround specialist Tim Spring has been named a finalist for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2010 Award in New Jersey. The renowned program recognizes entrepreneurs who demonstrate extraordinary success in the areas of innovation, financial performance and personal commitment to their businesses and communities.

"Turnaround CEOs are entrepreneurs who go looking for trouble, and that describes Tim to a T," said Mark Keuhn, an attorney at Gibbons Law firm based in Newark, who nominated Spring. "Tim is fearless in taking on challenges, and in developing and realizing new ideas, making them succeed, time and again. His nomination recognizes a remarkable body of work in consumer packaged goods."

Spring's 25-year career is marked by innovation at every turn. In 1986, he worked with two other entrepreneurs to launch a first-of-its-kind snack cracker, made from day-old bagels. Bagel Crisps® went on to become a national phenomenon, and is still found on grocery shelves today.

At NJ-based Reckitt Benckiser, Spring transformed the U.S. air freshener industry by launching Airwick Woodland Fruits®, the category's first "natural fragrance" product. At the company's French's Food Products unit, he brought honey mustard to mainstream U.S. condiment aisles for the first time in the mid-1990s.

Operating in the private equity environment, Spring generated outstanding financial results for investors C. Dean Metropoulos and HM Capital, helping restore a bankrupt Vlasic Foods to financial stability. Vlasic was acquired by Pinnacle Foods, owned by The Blackstone Group.

Spring most recently served as CEO of Elmwood Park, NJ-based Marcal Manufacturing, where he created Marcal Small Steps®, the first-ever nationally marketed, 100% recycled line of napkins, paper towels, and bath and facial tissue. The brand is influencing Americans' recycled paper usage, growing from a current two percent of all household paper purchases toward the more than 20 percent Europeans have purchased for years. Prior to the Small Steps launch on Earth Day 2009, major manufacturers largely resisted using anything other than freshly killed trees to make paper goods. Since then, Kimberly-Clark has launched a product called Scott Naturals®, and Cascades has launched Nature's Choice®.

"Tim was supported by a team of exceptional advisors," said Frank Cannone, Corporate Chair at Gibbons. Spring's nomination also cited a team of skilled executives in a range of areas with whom he's been long associated, including Bob Ryan, President of Topspin Marketing, Princeton; Hal Fass from Consumer Dynamics, a New York-based marketing consulting firm; John Dupuy from Irvine, California-based Advantage Sales & Marketing, and Charlie Zunda, head of the Connecticut-based packaging design firm Zunda Designs.

"Entrepreneurship is especially vital as our nation recovers from recession," said Stephen Gatto, Ernst & Young LLP Entrepreneur Of The Year Program Director for New Jersey. "These finalists create jobs in our area, encouraging healthy growth, development and innovation in the local economy."

Spring was selected as a finalist by a panel of independent judges, from among more than 40 nominations. Award winners will be announced at a gala event on June 24.

About the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year awards program

The Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year awards program celebrates its 24th anniversary this year. The program has expanded to recognize business leaders in over 135 cities in 50 countries throughout the world.

Contact Information

    Stephen Gatto
    Ernst & Young
    (908) 881-4748
    Email Contact