16 December, 2011

At a special ceremony of honor held at the American University of Armenia on December 16, 2011, VivaCell-MTS General Manager, Mr. Ralph Yirikian, was awarded the AUA School of Business and Management’s Business Leadership Award. Mr. Yirikian received the award in recognition of exceptional professional excellence and accomplishment, and the demonstration of a clear strategic vision with effective implementation at the organizational and industrial level.

A representative committee composed of the faculty, students, alumni and external stakeholders voted to recognize Mr. Yirikian as the first recipient of this Award.

The AUA Business Leadership Award was established by the AUA School of Business and Management. This is an annual award with the following selection criteria for the nominee:

  • A notable level of professional excellence and accomplishment
  • Demonstration of a clear strategic vision with effective implementation at the organizational or industrial level
  • Institutionalization of policies and practices within the organization, resulting in significant improvement in the quality of work life
  • Adherence to corporate ethics and responsibility
  • Significant contribution to the alignment of the model of the organization with sustainable business practices
  • Commitment and service to the community at large in significant and meaningful ways.

The award was presented to Mr. Yirikian by Dr. Bruce Boghosian, President of AUA, and Mr. Eric Guevorkian, interim dean of the School of Business and Management. In his remarks, Mr. Guevorkian said: “One of the reasons that makes the choice of Ralph Yirikian a very relevant one is that he has all the qualities to be a good role model for current and future businesspeople in Armenia. I sincerely hope that this award will somewhat open the way for more Ralph Yirikians in the future.”

After the official award ceremony, Mr. Yirikian presented his vision of the effective business leader: “One can list hundreds of preconditions of effective business leadership – such as being able to sense the thirst of the market, gathering a good team of professionals and becoming its engine, ability to bring together breakthrough ideas, understanding industry trends, and commitment to innovation and keeping up with R&D, etc. No doubt, all of them are necessary but yet insufficient conditions for creating a sustainable business model. Yet the true leadership is leadership by example. And it’s not limited to new business behavior and approaches being successfully institutionalized and ingrained across all levels of the Company. As a team we share the belief that we have to roll out our successful business model further across the whole business community in Armenia.  If we could create a business and make a success story out of it, so can you. VivaCell-MTS is a living example that could not have been achieved without the efforts of our VivaCell-MTS family members. We have an obligation to share with all Armenians the prosperity we see in our homeland and the potential of its growth,” concluded Mr. Yirikian.   

Mr. Yirikian (center) received the AUA Business Leadership Award 2011 from Dr. Boghosian (right) and Mr. Guevorkian (left)

Mr. Yirikian, Dr. Boghosian and Mr. Guevorkian surrounded by MBA students who actively took part in organizing the award ceremony

VivaCell-MTS (K-Telecom CJSC) is Armenia’s leading mobile operator, having the widest 2G/3.5G/4G network reach and spreading a wide range of Voice and Data services all across Armenia. Having the best of the Armenian people interest at heart since its launch on 1st July 2005 and in a short period of time VivaCell-MTS has managed to build a nationwide network and a considerable customer base. VivaCell-MTS drives innovation and aims at always being at the forefront of any development serving the Armenian mobile communications market. For more information, visit www.vivacell.am

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Mobile TeleSystems OJSC (“MTS”) is the largest mobile phone operator in Russia and the CIS. Together with its subsidiaries, the Company services over 100 million subscribers. The regions of Russia, as well as Armenia, Belarus, Ukraine and Uzbekistan, in which MTS and its associates and subsidiaries are licensed to provide GSM services, have a total population of more than 230 million. Since June 2000, MTS’ Level 3 ADRs have been listed on the New York Stock Exchange (ticker symbol MBT). Additional information about MTS can be found at www.mts.ru

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The American University of Armenia is a nonprofit institution of higher education. It is fully accredited member of the U.S.-based Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) and is affiliated with the University of California. AUA provides teaching and research programs that prepare students to address the needs of Armenia and its surrounding region for sustainable development. A unique case in the region, the WASC accreditation is an ongoing process of continued improvement and quality control to ensure the highest standards of education. This allows AUA degrees to be respected and recognized worldwide. Additional information about AUA can be found at www.aua.am.

The AUA School of Business and Management (SBM) is the leading business school in Armenia and in the region and has catered to Armenian and international students, business corporations, and communities for the past 20 years. Its flagship program, the MBA degree, is a rigorous program that offers a balance between theory and practice, the quantitative and qualitative perspectives, and the economic and social responsibilities of business leadership. SBM values entrepreneurship and innovation, rigor and excellence in academic work, and adheres to strict ethical standards. Additional information about AUA can be found at www.sbm.aua.am .

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