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Jack Cowin – Founder and Exec Chairman of Competitive Foods

Jack Cowin started his presentation at the EY Entrepreneurs workshop with a quote “An entrepreneur needs to be a cross between a microbiologist and an astronomer.” He believes that true entrepreneurs are special in that they can be both detailed and visionary.

He was a judge in the EY Global Entrepreneur of the year program in Monte Carlo for 2010. It was a delight to have him in the room sharing his insights – not just from his own amazing entrepreneurial journey – but also from the many business founders he has met along the way.

He made the following observation: Those businesses that own the technology or the system, ie they have a level of exclusivity gain great advantage. They have the magic of what people will pay for and it makes it difficult for competitors to invade that space. If a business cannot own the technology (or systems and processes) then it must own the brand.

Jack reflected following the EY event that in his opinion the six traits of great entrepreneurs are:

  1. We have a fundamental curiosity – we want to explore things.
  2. We are persistent beyond reason
  3. We search for better ways to do things – we agitate for change
  4. We are endlessly positive in every part of our lives
  5. We are focused and able to run lean and mean
  6. We have exemplary people skills – we understand leverage and that we cannot do it on our own.

Reader Interactions


  1. detailed and visionary – how true! Some think it is an oxymoron. No, it is the basic attitude required to be an entrepreneur. But observers – even professors of the field of entrepreneurship – can get confused: hey entreprenur: are you a turtle or a butterfly?

    Well written every point!

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