Four city businesses win state awards

Winner of Excellence in Small Business award, Digital Crew. Image courtesy of City of Sydney

An iconic men’s swimwear brand, an organisation helping students volunteer in remote Indigenous communities, a childcare centre and a multilingual digital marketing firm have taken top honours at the 2017 NSW Business Chamber State Business Awards.

The City of Sydney-based businesses aussieBum, Red Earth, Kids Club Elizabeth Street and Digital Crew took home the Excellence in Export, Excellence in Social Enterprise, Start Up Superstar and Excellence in Small Business awards respectively.

The four award winners were among eight City of Sydney businesses shortlisted for the 2017 state awards. They were presented at a ceremony in Sydney with more than 1,000 businesspeople from across NSW in attendance.

Lord Mayor Clover Moore congratulated the four city-based businesses on their wins.

“It’s terrific to see businesses from the City of Sydney being recognised alongside the best in the state at these prestigious awards,” the Lord Mayor said.

“The annual business awards program celebrates success in all areas of business, from start-ups to social enterprises, and is a fantastic platform for promoting the talents and capabilities of our business community.

“The success of the winners is an inspiration to all businesses across the state. Everyone involved should be proud of their achievements.”

Excellence in Export award winner, aussieBum, has found success both locally and internationally as a menswear designer, manufacturer and online retailer, exporting to almost 150 countries around the world.

“To be recognised in a forum like this is a real sense of achievement and validation. Coming together with other businesses that we hold in high esteem is an opportunity that will inspire us to grow,” aussieBum founder and director Sean Ashby said.

Excellence in Social Enterprise award winner, Red Earth, creates opportunities for inner-city high school students to live with Indigenous communities in remote areas to learn about their culture, live with local youngsters and volunteer on projects.

“It’s important for young businesses to have this wonderful stamp of approval that allows us to go out into the broader business community and say, ‘This is what we’re doing, and we think we’re onto something good here’,” Red Earth director Arthur Alla said.

Start Up Superstar award winner, Kids Club Elizabeth Street, was formed to fill a void in the local childcare industry by providing a premium quality long day care service, and achieved 100 per cent occupancy within six months of opening.

“Winning this award is a tremendous achievement for Kids Club, and we are incredibly proud of our business and our team. We are thankful to the NSW Business Chamber for giving us the exposure to share our passion in childcare and educate families on the changes in benchmark that we strive to offer,” Kids Club director Corie Stone said.

Excellence in Small Business award winner, Digital Crew, is one of Australia’s fastest-growing multilingual digital marketing firms, helping both Australian and international brands navigate the Chinese market.

“The awards are a very important platform for business – they bring people and businesses together and give businesses exposure at a national level. This recognition is important for all businesses,” Digital Crew director and co-founder Ophenia Liang said.

The City has supported business awards programs since 2004, and for the first time in 2017 was the Principal Partner of the Sydney City Region of the statewide awards. The City is also the official sponsor for the statewide Excellence in Small Business category.

Applications for the 2018 Sydney City Regional Business Awards will open in early 2018, with the finalists to be announced in July 2018.

The full list of winners at the awards are:

Excellence in Export – aussieBum, Sydney City

Excellence in Social Enterprise – Red Earth, Sydney City

Start Up Superstar – Kids Club Elizabeth Street, Sydney City

Excellence in Small Business – Digital Crew, Sydney City

Excellence in Business – Flavourtech, Murray-Riverina

Young Business Executive – Sheri Carolan, Slater and Gordon, Western NSW

Young Entrepreneur – Gilat Gold, Bake Bar, South Eastern Sydney

Business Leader – Vicki Lynn Waters, Pymble Ladies College, North Eastern Sydney

Excellence in Innovation and Business of the Year – BeeInventive, Northern Rivers

Excellence in Sustainability – Warrigal, Illawarra

Employer of Choice – Marathon Health, Western NSW

Local Chamber of Commerce – Gunnedah and District Chamber of Commerce, New England North West

Source: City of Sydney

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