Packers Plus Energy Services takes home Canada's Ernst & Young Entrepreneur
Of The Year(R) 2009

Survey reveals leading entrepreneurs are pursuing growth

VANCOUVER, Nov. 25 /CNW/ - Packers Plus Energy Services Inc., the Alberta-based company that created revolutionary drilling technology to change the way oil and gas is extracted, has been named Canada's Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year 2009.

"By challenging traditional thinking, Packers Plus has developed and proven brilliant new technology that is profoundly changing Canada's energy sector," said Colleen McMorrow, National Director of the Entrepreneur Of The Year Awards. "As this year's winners, they showed a remarkable level of entrepreneurial spirit and have established what's sure to be a lasting impact on their industry."

Formed in 2000 by Dan Themig, Ken Paltzat and Peter Krabben, Packers Plus Energy Services introduced the StackFRAC(R) system, technology that has ultimately resulted in a dramatic increase in the amount of recoverable oil and natural gas. Packers Plus has made reserves, previously thought to be uneconomic, both highly productive and profitable. The trio's invention has simplified pressure-pumping operations and improved completion time. The system also reaches large natural gas and oil resources that can't be tapped through conventional drilling and completion methods.

A recent Ernst & Young survey, Lessons from change - Future market leaders, revealed that leading entrepreneurs, like Packers Plus, have successfully made pursuing growth opportunities their number one priority despite a tough economy. The survey also found that entrepreneurs are placing a renewed focus on the customer - ensuring their loyalty while expanding into new markets.

"Entrepreneurs see the world differently from most people, and Packers Plus is no exception," said McMorrow. "They seek out opportunity in the unlikeliest of economic conditions and take calculated risks to grow despite the challenging environment."

Before joining Packers Plus, Themig, Paltzat and Krabben all worked at multinational oil services companies. Their company was initiated on the foundations of a common belief that innovative completion technologies would fundamentally change the economics and business practices of the oil and gas industry. Now, with almost 400 employees, the company is expanding rapidly on a global basis - with offices and operations in Canada, the United States, Mexico, China, the Middle East, Chile and Argentina.

"Trailblazers like Packers Plus are vital to the world's economic recovery. They see how the world is changing and adapt to new circumstances," said McMorrow. "The economic climate is challenging all businesses, but the future market leaders are responding in their own unique way: by drawing on their extraordinary ability to innovate."

In October, Themig, Paltzat and Krabben were named Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year 2009 in the Prairies region. They were awarded the national distinction last night, at a gala held in Vancouver. The regional recipients of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Of The Year 2009 Awards were also honoured last night:


    Ryan Beedie
    The Beedie Group / Burnaby, British Columbia

    Specializes in the design, construction and management of industrial
    buildings in Greater Vancouver and Alberta.


    Tom Jenkins
    Open Text Corporation / Waterloo, Ontario
    Developer of enterprise content management software, used by corporations
    and government agencies in 114 countries.


    Jacques Larivière
    Demilec Inc. / Boisbriand, Québec
    Specializes in the research, development and manufacture of several high-
    quality polyurethane foam systems.


    David Wilson
    Wilson Group of Companies / Truro, Nova Scotia
    Heating/cooling equipment manufacturer, distributor and installer, as
    well as a fuel marketer and ski hill operator.

    Special citations

    Many of the regional award recipients merit special mention for their
unique contributions to Canada's entrepreneurial landscape. Our national
judges have selected seven of the regional category award winners in
recognition of their embodiment of entrepreneurial values.

    Design and product innovation

    Dr. Jason Neale
    OmniGlobe Networks / Pointe-Claire, Québec
    Global telecommunications company that delivers reliable and affordable
    broadband, cellular and satellite communications services to areas around
    the world where terrestrial communications are unavailable, unreliable or
    too expensive.

    Entrepreneurial leadership

    Peter Marrone
    Yamana Gold / Toronto, Ontario
    Gold producer engaged in mining and related activities, including
    exploration, extraction, processing and reclamation. Yamana has
    significant properties in Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Mexico and Central

    Manufacturing excellence

    Russel Edwards
    WGI Westman Group Inc. / Winnipeg, Manitoba
    Operates manufacturing, sales and distribution facilities in 24 centres
    in Canada and the US, maintains dealer networks across North America, and
    has a worldwide customer base.

    Partnership with the community

    Brett Hodson
    Corix Group of Companies / Vancouver, British Columbia
    Helps communities build and manage infrastructure for water, wastewater
    and sustainable energy.

    Product and marketing excellence

    Ronnen Harary, Anton Rabie, Ben Varadi
    Spin Master Ltd. / Toronto, Ontario
    Designer, developer, manufacturer and marketer of consumer products, as
    well as the production of television and other media properties, for

What's next?

The Entrepreneur Of The Year Awards recognize the spirit and contribution of entrepreneurs here and around the world. In June 2010, Themig, Paltzat and Krabben will travel to Monaco and compete with more than 50 country recipients for the title of Ernst & Young World Entrepreneur Of The Year(R).

About Ernst & Young

Ernst & Young is a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. Worldwide, our 144,000 people are united by our shared values and an unwavering commitment to quality. We make a difference by helping our people, our clients and our wider communities achieve their potential. For more information, please visit

SOURCE EY (Ernst & Young)

For further information: For further information: Amanda Olliver,, (416) 943-7121; Brooke McLachlan,, (604) 899-3597; Marie-Ève Graniero,, (514) 874-4313

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