News: Zaha Hadid was named businesswoman of the year at the Veuve Clicquot awards in London last night.
Judges from champagne house Veuve Clicquot, which was helmed by Madame Clicquot in the early 19th century, commended Hadid's "great zeal as a businesswoman" and her success in growing her firm, Zaha Hadid Architects, in a male-dominated industry.
The awards, now in their 41st year, are presented to business leaders who have shown entrepreneurship and financial success as well as a commitment to corporate social responsibility and their role in encouraging other women into the industry.
Hadid said: "It's hard to believe, but it's still difficult for women to break the business barrier. Through perseverance and hard work, I've been able to do so, but it's been a long struggle. When I started my career in architecture it was very much a male-dominated industry, but in recent years I've seen a growing number of talented female architects join the profession and succeed."
The Iraqi-born architect pipped other finalists including Dorothy Thompson, the chief executive of Drax power company, and Thea Green, chief executive of cosmetics brand Nails Inc.
Earlier this month in Milan, Hadid launched a bench shaped like a block of ice formed in a glacier and a sofa based on natural rock formations.
Her recent architecture includes an under-construction cultural complex on the edge of a lake in Changsha, China and five boutiques in Seoul and South Korea – see all projects by Zaha Hadid.
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