Brilliant businesses export South Australia to the world

Media Release, 04 June 2014

South Australian businesses attracting international demand from the seafood, manufacturing and equine therapy industries are among the 19 finalists in the 2014 Telstra South Australian Business Awards.

The skills and specialties of the finalists are as diverse as their geography, with businesses in the heart of cosmopolitan Adelaide, the iconic Barossa Valley, the Riverland and the Adelaide Hills, coming from sectors including irrigation, advertising and social media, veterinary care, tourism and hospitality.

Telstra Business Group Managing Director and Telstra Business Awards Ambassador, Will Irving, said the breadth and calibre of the 19 South Australian Awards finalists was a positive sign for the state’s economy.

“It’s fantastic to see finalists from the length and breadth of South Australia and representing such varied industries. These brilliant South Australian businesses are at the heart of many local communities and they’re the backbone of the Australian economy.

“The Telstra Business Awards recognise the brilliance of Australian businesses and help them reflect on their strategies, goals and how they can achieve a better future, but they also inspire their communities by highlighting the hard work and creative force that go into keeping a small business running, fulfilling business owners’ passions and dreams,” Mr Irving said.

Ferguson Australia’s Andrew and Debra Ferguson, who send sashimi-grade lobster, lobster medallions, lobster oil and cooked lobster meat to the plates of consumers in Asia, the UK, the UAE and the US, were recognised for a decade of export growth when they participated in this year’s G’Day USA event.

Other finalists include Heatlie Barbecues’ Andrea and Mal Mead, who have expanded their outdoor gas barbeque sales into Hong Kong, Dubai, the UK and Fiji, and another manufacturer, Anthony Kittel of REDARC, has clients in France, North America and New Zealand for his range of electronic accessories and power sources.

Jo Schneider, owner of Mount Barker business Animal Therapeutics Online, retails her equine therapeutics to the professional equestrian and racing communities in Australia and NZ with clients including Olympic gold medalists and international champions.

Reflecting SA’s international flavours and migrant culture are finalists Robert Ziolek, who trained as a pastry chef in Switzerland before joining with Darek Pietka to open Muratti Cakes & Gateaux, Zoi Kokotis and Stephen Lowery, owners of Irish, French and Mediterranean-inspired Eire Café, and Franz and Barbara Knoll, whose Germanic family traditions are on display at their Adelaide Central Market small goods business Barossa Fine Foods.

Regional finalists include the Clare Valley Motel, family-run Bowhill Engineering, whose founders Brendon and Averil Hawkes turned a small rural machinery maintenance business into a specialist fabricator of heavy and complex structural steel, and Steve and Kym Brown’s wine tour business Tour Barossa.

More than $800,000 in prizes is available for winners of the 2014 state, territory and national Telstra Business Awards - a program that has celebrated brilliant Australian small and medium businesses since 1992.

The finalists for the 2014 Telstra South Australian Business Awards are:

Start-Up Award
Blakes Crossing Veterinary Surgery, Blakeview
Eire Café, Clapham
Kate Ellis Photographer, Torrens Park
Social Media AOK, Stepney
The Marketing Box, Walkley Heights

Micro Business Award
Animal Therapeutics Online, Mount Barker
Future Footprints Conductive Education, Mile End
Posture Podiatry, Kent Town
Virtual Ad Agency, Payneham

Small Business Award
Better Business Basics, Adelaide
Clare Valley Motel, Clare
Heatlie Barbecues, Edwardstown
Muratti Cakes & Gateaux Pty Ltd, Prospect
Tour Barossa, Tanunda

Medium Business Award
Barossa Fine Foods, Edinburgh North
Bowhill Engineering, Bowhill
Ferguson Australia, Hendon
REDARC, Lonsdale
Waterfind Australia Water Market Specialists, Adelaide

Regional Award
Animal Therapeutics Online, Mount Barker
Bowhill Engineering, Bowhill
Clare Valley Motel, Clare
Ferguson Australia, Hendon
Tour Barossa, Tanunda

Winners of the Telstra South Australian Business Awards will be announced at the Adelaide Entertainment Centre on 27 June 2014. They will proceed to the national Awards in Melbourne on 7 August.

Awards information and tickets for the Awards Gala Dinners can be purchased by visiting the Telstra Business Awards website or by calling 1800AWARDS between 9am and 7pm AEST Monday to Friday.