Pest exterminators named Telstra Northern Territory Business of the Year

Media Release, 22 July 2013

A Darwin pest control team that’s turned ‘roaches into riches’ and taken its expertise across the Pacific was named the 2013 Telstra Northern Territory Business of the Year in Darwin tonight. The award was presented by Hon David Tollner MLA, Deputy Chief Minister of the Northern Territory and David Coventry, Executive Director, Telstra Business Managed Customer Sales Service.

Top End Pest Control provides all areas of pest management, from cockroach, ant and spider control to termite protection for pre and post construction, in servicing urban and remote Territory locations and international customers in East Timor, Micronesia and Guam.

The business, which also won the Small Business Award, is the result of a lifestyle change for former Victorian police detective Tim Lambert and his wife Cory, a human resources manager, who purchased Top End Pest Control in 2004 and moved to Darwin with their six-week-old baby.

Not content on just helping people get rid of their pests, the couple teamed up with a registered training operation to spread their pest management expertise to other industry companies, external clients and remote Indigenous communities.

Mr Lambert said they had not been satisfied with a ‘stagnant industry’ and constantly looked for ways to improve it. “We saw the opportunity to develop and expand a pest management business and lift the professional standard of service to customers across the Northern Territory.

“We continually look to improve our policies and procedures to ensure we are at the top of industry service delivery and technical expertise,” he added.

Other winners of the Telstra NT Business Awards were Borroloola-based building and civil construction company Cairns Industries and Alice Springs-based online business italklibrary.

Cairns Industries was created by Shaun and Kym Cairns in 2006 to fill a gap in tradespeople in the South West Gulf region while italklibrary was founded by Christopher Brocklebank to use modern technology in creating new learning opportunities to help people overcome literacy barriers.

Italklibrary has created a national database of stories in multiple languages, including 14 Australian Indigenous languages, and Mr Brocklebank says: “They say a picture speaks a thousand words - our pictures speak a thousand languages.”

Will Irving, Group Managing Director Telstra Business and Telstra Business Awards Ambassador, said Top End Pest Control was a great Territory business that had not only excelled in its own right but had raised industry standards and created broader community opportunities.

“Judges said Top End Pest Control has been a quiet achiever in the Northern Territory business community - but not anymore!” Mr Irving said.

“The judges were impressed with Top End Pest Control’s rigorous business frameworks and practices and its use of technologically advanced environmentally friendly pest control solutions throughout the Territory and internationally.

“This visionary, strategic and highly collaborative business has been a key driver in enhancing the professionalism, credibility and skill level of the pest control industry.”

The Telstra Australian Business Awards were launched in 1992 to recognise the achievements of small and medium businesses and to share their growth ideas and strategies in a way that benefits the wider business community.

“We are thrilled each year to learn about businesses that innovate, persevere and thrive, even through tough economic conditions, and I encourage Territorians to nominate businesses now for the 2014 awards,” Mr Irving said.

The winners of the 2013 Telstra Northern Territory Business Awards announced tonight at the Darwin Convention Centre were:

Telstra NT Business of the Year

Top End Pest Control, Darwin

Micro Business Award

italklibrary, Alice Springs
A business launched by Christopher Brocklebank in 2002 that is dedicated to turning written information into stories that can then be spoken in any language and placed online at Judges acknowledged the incredible personal story and journey taken by the business owner and were impressed by italklibrary’s business model and outcomes.

Small Business Award

Top End Pest Control, Darwin

Medium Business Award

Cairns Industries Pty Ltd, Borroloola
A building and civil construction company servicing the government-identified growth town of Borroloola and other remote areas of the Territory, Cairns Industries employs 33 people, 20 per cent of whom are Indigenous workers. Awards judges were impressed by the clear vision shared by management and staff and the strong relationships Cairns Industries had built with key customers. They noted that the business was a strong part of the community and were strong supporters of the local Indigenous community.

Regional Award

Cairns Industries Pty Ltd, Borroloola
Winners of the Telstra Northern Territory Business Awards will be judged against category winners from other states and territories in the lead up to the national Telstra Australian Business Awards to be announced in Sydney on 22 August. Winners of the 2013 Awards will share in more than $500,000 in cash and business products, which is split among state, territory and national winners.

For more information about the Award winners, or to nominate for the 2014 Telstra Australian Business Awards, visit the Telstra Business Awards website.