17th September 2012
Founders of Postcode Lottery receive Royal Honour
Boudewijn Poelmann and Frank Leeman, founders of the Postcode Lottery format, were today named Officers in the Order of Oranje-Nassau by Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands.
The equivalent to the OBE in the UK, they received the royal honour from Joyce Sylvester, the mayor of Naarden, in the North of Holland. She praised their passion for charitable causes and their innovative entrepreneurship and leadership – qualities that have enabled them to create an organisation that has become the third largest private donor in the world.
Speaking about their award, Boudewijn Poelmann said, "Frank Leeman and I are really honoured and happy that the work of the Lotteries is being valued this way. Although it is us receiving the honour, we feel we achieved this with all of our co-workers. It is recognition for our charity lotteries in Great Britain, the Netherlands and Sweden.”
Bill Clinton was amongst one of the many leading figures who voiced their support for Poelman and Leeman's nomination. Alongside the founders' passion for improving the world and their entrepreneurship, their continued aim in raising funds for charities and publicising their activities also contributed to their award.
The Postcode Lotteries in Great Britain, the Netherlands and Sweden are also joined by the BankGiro Loterij and the VriendenLoterij, both of which are based in the Netherlands. Together, the players of the lotteries have raised over €5.4 billion.
Poelmann and Leeman were presented with their award at the penultimate final of the Postcode Lottery Green Challenge, the world's biggest annual international competition for climate-change-fighting business ideas. The Postcode Lottery launched the contest in 2007 to encourage green entrepreneurship around the world.