Perm Saini, founder of Birmingham-based property investment company Claremont Group, has been shortlisted in the retail and property category of the First Women Awards.
The national awards, which recognise female pioneers who have broken down difficult barriers in competitive industries, are split into eight categories including manufacturing, finance, retail and property, business services, media and leisure and tourism.
The awards, which are now in their third year, are run jointly by the CBI and Real Business magazine. Previous winners include Professor Yvonne Carter, dean of Warwick Medical School, Carole Burke, managing director of Coventry-based Unipart Eberspacher Exhaust Systems and founder of Pall-Ex freight and logistics company Hilary Devey.
Sarah Brown, founding partner of PR company Hobsbawm Macaulay Communications, and wife of Chancellor Gordon Brown, was announced patron for the First Women Awards in 2007 after attending last year's ceremony.
Ms Saini has been shortlisted with four other high fliers in the retail and property category, including Diane Carter, supply chain operations director from Sainsbury's, Liz Earle, co-founder of Liz Earle Cosmetics, Denise Road, chairman of Swansea department store JT Morgan, and Sophi Tranchell, managing director of Divine Chocolate.
A Lifetime Achievement award winner will also be announced at an awards ceremony on June 12 at the Marriot Hotel, Grosvenor Square, London. Last year the award was won by chief executive of BUPA, Val Gooding.
Ms Saini, aged 42, broke through the property industry's traditional male monopoly after racking up a portfolio of 45 investment properties while she was actually on maternity leave.
In 1999 she then founded Claremont Group, which sources property investment opportunities in the UK and overseas on behalf of its clients, with her brother Manjit Deol. She now employs a team of 14 at the firm's office in Edgbaston.
Ms Saini was recently ranked in Property Week's listing of the top 100 influential women in property. She was the only Asian and one of only two women named from the Midlands.
Claremont Group has invested in several landmark buildings in the UK and abroad, including Birmingham's Rotunda where it bought half the apartments and six penthouses for £27.5 million.
It also snapped up the first 75 apartments at The Cube, the final phase of the development in Birmingham's Mailbox, for £13 million, before the scheme was launched to the public.
Claremont Group's most recent project is First Goa - a £100 million holiday resort in south Goa - which is its first development. It will include a five-star hotel with up to 500 villas and apartments, all offered for sale.