A Winning Formula

Image source: IN Noosa Magazine

The Sunshine Coast Business Awards (SCBA) are an important reminder of just how special the people and businesses who make up this region are. SCBA President Jennifer Swaine reflects on the achievements throughout the region.

On Saturday 13 November, we saw the winners of this year’s SCBA named at a sold-out event held at the Sunshine Coast Convention Centre. 

More than 850 representatives of local businesses came together to celebrate not only our finalists and winners, but the fact that these outstanding businesses have demonstrated extraordinary resilience over what has been a very challenging few years.

This year, we again attracted a large number of applicants, with 131 incredible businesses being chosen as finalists. The calibre of the finalists was outstanding, and the feedback from the judges has left me in no doubt that we are doing great things across every industry on the Sunshine Coast and in Noosa.

There were 29 category winners including large and small businesses announced across 16 categories, two Hall of Fame inductees as well as the overall Business of the Year.

This year’s Sunshine Coast Business of the Year – Advanced Aquarium Technologies (AAT) is a world leader in the design, construction, and operation of landmark public aquariums.

Led from Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, AAT has delivered aquariums in more than 25 countries including the national aquarium of Denmark, Den Blå Planet; the Oman Aquarium; the Cube Oceanarium in Chengdu, China; and the Ocean Park Grand Aquarium in Hong Kong; as well as special aquariums inside the Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne, and the Heart of the Reef aquarium at the Whitsunday Airport.

Hall of Fame inductee COYO creates delicious food for healthy folk and a happy planet. All of COYO’s certified organic, dairy-free coconut products are made with 100% natural ingredients and are plant-based, gluten-free, preservative-free, kosher-certified and teeming with a unique blend of plant-powered probiotics, clinically proven to contribute to a healthier, happier world!

Fellow Hall of Fame inductee Kangaroo Bus Lines is a family-owned and operated organisation that provides an integral contribution to the Passenger Transport Industry in Queensland. The company’s expertise is in moving people and connecting communities through complete, personalised transport solutions tailored to specific needs.

Our future is bright.

The Sunshine Coast is a region where small business is the foundation on which we have built a thriving economy. In fact, of the 40,000 businesses we have across our region, 25,000 of those are sole operators, with a further 14,000 businesses employing between 1 and 19 people. 

Around 800 businesses employ between 20 and 199 people and there are only 16 business in our region that employ greater than 200 people. And while in time that may change, for the moment small businesses remains the beating heart of this region.

This is why the SCBA is so important to the business community to provide a platform that recognises the work they are doing and create awareness and recognition that they may not have otherwise received.

 The Awards also provide a proven path to business collaborations that work, creating more success for the businesses involved, along with the region. 

In fact, entrants tell us that even without winning an award, the applications process offers them the opportunity to dissect and re-evaluate their business, allowing them to discover new opportunities and reminding them why they started the business in the first place.

Over the coming years, we are going to see continued migration to the Sunshine Coast and with that will come an increase in knowledge-based jobs, professional business services, innovative manufacturing and high-tech start-ups and we will see an increase in exports and household income.

The depth and breadth of the business acumen our region has is as diverse as the industries all these businesses work in. The strength of our regional economy, which is currently estimated at $17.9 billion, is based in its diversity and strength across several key sectors including healthcare, education, finance and professional business services and is expected to reach $33 billion by 2033. By that time, it is also anticipated that 20% of good and services produced here will be for export. These are significant results for a region that is experiencing incredible growth and attracting serious investment from both the private and public sector.

Congratulations to this year’s finalists and winners. We are proud you have chosen to call the Sunshine Coast and Noosa home and thank you for all that you do for our region.

2021 WINNERS

Accommodation
Large:
RACV Noosa Resort
Small: Narrows Escape Rainforest Estate

Building & Construction
Large:
Advanced Aquarium Technologies
Small: Becker Constructions

Clean Technology
Large: Aussie Tiny Houses
Small: Waste Free Systems

Creative Industries
Large: IN Publishing (IN Noosa + Hello Sunshine Magazines)
Small: 4 Ingredients

Education & Training
Large: Wildlings Forest School
Small: The Eighth Mile Consulting

Experiences
Large: The Ginger Factory
Small: Red Lock Escape Rooms

Festivals & Events
Sunshine Coast Lightning

Food & Agribusiness
Large: Good Harvest Organic Farm
Small: Global Boss International

Health & Wellness
Large: Sunny Street
Small: Stymie

Hospitality
Large: Bella Venezia Group
Small: Kaali Gourmet Indian Restaurant

Manufacturing
Helitak Fire Fighting Equipment

Professional Services
Large: Travis Schultz & Partners
Small: HRM Contracting & Consulting

Retail
Large: White’s IGA
Small: Pleasant State

Social Impact
Large: Coast2Bay Housing Group
Small: Food and Agribusiness Network

Trades & Services
Large: Office HQ
Small: Ms Monaco Hair Society

Export
Advanced Aquarium Technologies

Business of the Year
Advanced Aquarium Technologies

Hall of Fame
Kangaroo Bus Lines
COYO

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