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Ilja Laurs, the European Manager of the Year 2011 - European Business Press voted for the CEO of GetJar


09 Jun 2011



The European Business Press (EBP) presented the "European Manager of the Year 2011 Award" to Ilja Laurs, the CEO of GetJar, at its General Assembly in Athens, today.

The award is based on a vote of the EBP members, among them publications such as the "Financial Times", "The Wall Street Journal Europe", "Handelsblatt", "Les Echos", or "Milano Finanza". EBP was founded in Como, Italy, in 1962. Today the organisation counts 52 leading European business newspapers and magazines in 27 countries.

In 1991, EBP began presenting the award to top European managers and companies. Among the recipients were personalities such as Ingvar Kamprad of Ikea, Jorma Ollila of Nokia, Bernd Pischetsrieder, former CEO of BMW and Volkswagen, Wendelin Wiedeking, CEO of Porsche and Wolfgang Mayrhuber, the Chairman of Lufthansa.

Ilja Laurs was given this award by European business journalists for his outstanding work in leading GetJar to become the world’s largest open mobile application platform among industry heavyweights playing in the same field as giants such as Apple, Google, Microsoft and Nokia. In the booming app space, GetJar’s philosophy calls for an open, internet-like model where apps are not constrained by technical, commercial, billing or other restrictions nor are their revenues taxed by other app stores.

Recognized as an industry thought leader, Ilja speaks at major telecommunication conferences and is regularly quoted in the BBC, Forbes, The New York Times, USA Today and other media. Recently, GetJar was selected as a 2011 Technology Pioneer by the World Economic Forum. Ilja was featured in Time Magazine with GetJar as one of "10 start-ups that will change your life."

Since 2005, GetJar provides a global mobile application distribution and monetization platform to over 350,000 developers, from one-man shops to established brands like Google, Microsoft and Facebook. To date, GetJar has served 2 billion downloads across all major handsets and platforms to consumers in more than 200 countries through its own site and a network of OEM and carrier partners that include Vodafone, AT&T, LG, Sony-Ericsson and others.

Born in 1976 in Lithuania, Ilja attended school at a time when the country was part of the Soviet Union.   He enrolled in an American student exchange program and graduated from Jackson High School in Ohio in 1994. Ilja came back to Lithuania to attend Vilnius University where he studied Economics, paying his education by teaching schoolchildren English. Since 1999 Ilja has launched over 10 successful projects, as diverse as Lithuania’s largest hotel reservation system,, mobile payments system MicroPay and mobile games studio Midas Mobile. Fluent in Lithuanian, Russian and English, Ilja has a keen interest in basketball, tennis, chess and watches and enjoys traveling.