GRAND RAPIDS, June 27, 2022 – Ernst & Young LLP (EY US) has announced that John Sammut, CEO of Firstronic and Jochen Lipp, COO of Firstronic were named Entrepreneur Of The Year 2022 Michigan and Northwest Ohio Award winners. Entrepreneur Of The Year is one of the preeminent competitive business awards for entrepreneurs and leaders of high-growth companies who think big to succeed. An independent panel of judges selected the team based on their entrepreneurial spirit, purpose, growth and impact, among other core contributions and attributes. Sammut and Lipp previously won the Entrepreneur Of The Year 2006 Central Great Lakes region award for their work at EPIC Technologies.

“I’m really honored to accept this award for the second time. I feel it is a testament that the formula Jochen and I have developed for instilling operational excellence into manufacturing organizations gets repeatable results. It is also a tribute to our entire team’s dedication because our superior performance has been driven by their efforts. Finally, it is a significant milestone to mark our evolution in becoming part of LACROIX, a major player in electronics manufacturing services headquartered in France,” said Sammut.

“For more than 35 years, the award has recognized entrepreneurs who test the limits of the possible. I’m humbled to be in the select few recognized twice by a program with this legacy,” said Lipp.

“While our four years as a minority investor in Firstronic showed us the quality of the team LACROIX ultimately acquired at the end of 2021, this award helps demonstrate that we gained more than just revenue growth and geographic reach. Firstronic brings a culture of operational excellence that will enhance the EMS solutions we can offer our customers. I congratulate both John and Johen on this award,” said Stéphane Klajzyngier, LACROIX executive managing director.

As Michigan and Northwest Ohio award winners, Sammut and Lipp will now be considered by the National independent panel of judges for the Entrepreneur Of The Year 2022 National Awards. National finalists and winners, as well as the Entrepreneur Of The Year National Overall Award winner, will be announced in November at the annual Strategic Growth Forum. The Entrepreneur Of The Year National Overall Award winner will then move on to compete for the EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year Award in June 2023.

Founded and produced by Ernst & Young LLP, the Entrepreneur Of The Year Awards are presented by PNC Bank and SAP America. In Michigan and Northwest Ohio, sponsors also include Donnelley Financial Solutions (DFIN), Trion Solutions Inc., Foley & Lardner LLP, and Tanner Friedman Strategic Communications.

About Firstronic

Following the acquisition of Firstronic by LACROIX in Dec. 2021, the combined entity ranks #43 in the world EMS market and provides advanced electronics manufacturing services and optimized supply chain solutions for the electronics industry via locations in North America, Europe and Asia. Visit to learn more.

About Entrepreneur Of The Year

Entrepreneur Of The Year is the world’s most prestigious business awards program for unstoppable entrepreneurs. These visionary leaders deliver innovation, growth and prosperity that transform our world. The program engages entrepreneurs with insights and experiences that foster growth. It connects them with their peers to strengthen entrepreneurship around the world. Entrepreneur Of The Year is the first and only truly global awards program of its kind. It celebrates entrepreneurs through regional and national awards programs in more than 145 cities in over 60 countries. National overall winners go on to compete for the EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year title. Visit

About EY

EY exists to build a better working world, helping create long-term value for clients, people and society and build trust in the capital markets. Enabled by data and technology, diverse EY teams in over 150 countries provide trust through assurance and help clients grow, transform and operate. Working across assurance, consulting, law, strategy, tax and transactions, EY teams ask better questions to find new answers for the complex issues facing our world today. EY refers to the global organization, and may refer to one or more, of the member firms of Ernst & Young Global Limited, each of which is a separate legal entity. Ernst & Young Global Limited, a UK company limited by guarantee, does not provide services to clients. Information about how EY collects and uses personal data and a description of the rights individuals have under data protection legislation are available via EY member firms do not practice law where prohibited by local laws. For more information about our organization, please visit Ernst & Young LLP is a client-serving member firm of Ernst & Young Global Limited operating in the US.

L R Jochen Lipp and John Sammut

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