Gippsland Businesses Star in Bendigo Bank Awards

Gippsland Businesses Star in Bendigo Bank Awards

August 30, 2016

Contact Graeme Sennett: 0417 509 149

Businesses from across the whole region have been celebrated at the annual Bendigo Bank Gippsland Business Awards, with Sale business Turnbull Toyota taking out the new ‘Franchise’ category on the way to winning the Business of the Year Award.

Another of Gippsland’s success stories, Sage Technology, was admitted to the Business Awards Hall of Fame for its sustained business excellence.

The Business of the Year, Hall of Fame winner and the category winners were celebrated at the Gala Awards dinner on Friday 26 August, attended by nearly 400 people.

The winners came from across the region. A selection of accompanying judges’ comments explained in part why each won its category.


BIG4 Inverloch Holiday Park – Inverloch 

“An excellent business showing strategic growth over time, detailed understanding of its customer base, their needs and opportunities for business growth. Clear goals.”

Food and Wine Production

Gippsland Strawberries – Shady Creek

“Solid growth, respected product, well articulated plans for future development. Innovative design, clear measureable outcomes. Great business.”

Franchises and Business of the Year

Turnbull Toyota – Sale  

“There was clear articulation of the value of customer service provision and the need for professional development for staff with a variety of training opportunities. The commitment to environmental business practices was enlightening and definitely a positive for the business.”


The Churchill Hotel – Churchill

“Fantastic community involvement aspects. Good redevelopment of a long term entity with some innovative ideas and a capacity to fit with its community.  The community support elements work well and it is in expansion mode. A great example of a business which has been totally turned around and become a key part of the community in which it operates.”

Manufacturing and /or Export

Elite Pack – Drouin 

“Fantastic to see a local manufacturing business which is so dynamic, continually revisiting its way of operating to ensure growth, customer satisfaction and success in such a competitive environment.”

New Business

Embrace Fitness and Wellbeing – Morwell

“Very thorough approach to the business, clear and quantified goals and excellent business initiatives that have been implemented. Good development ideas even if some of these are not necessary new to the industry they obviously work!”


String + Salt – Warragul

“A highly impressive diversified business with niche products and services. Strategies,demonstrated growth and planned goals – superb. A detailed submission noting specifics regarding financial goals and diversification as a growth mechanism.”

Services – Business and Professional

The Grants Hub Services  – Warragul 

“A unique business which has identified a specific market segment and has a clear futuredirection.”

Services – Personal and Other

Blush Professional Beauty Touch – Sale

“Good innovation with the service that goes out to people, and good business model. Excellent demonstrated growth and fantastic grasp of social media platforms.”

Services – Trade and Construction

CPK McLaren Motor Body – Leongatha

“Great approach to making this business different and modern.  Prepared to invest in new ideas to build the business. A compelling application highlighting the development and expansion of the business with an emphasis on a  commitment to include the customer in the repair process, the development of staff and the inclusion of environmentally friendly practices.”


Trafalgar Holden Museum – Trafalgar

“A unique regional asset, whose small town location and  many local exhibits epitomizes the very Aussie icon showcased.  Their vision of success recognizes the benefits that it brings to the local community.”

Hall of Fame

Sage Technology  Morwell

Showing what is possible to achieve in a transitioning economy, whilst successfully surfing an enormous wave of technological change, Sage Technology is an inspiring story of hard work, passion and big picture thinking.   A Morwell-based business, it employs 20 people, including some of the world’s best software designers and developers, specialising in developing and providing electronic permit to work software systems to major industrial companies.

Chair of the Gippsland Business Awards Committee, Graeme Sennett, said the Gala Awards night at the Premiere Function Centre was a wonderful showcase for Gippsland businesses.

Mr Sennett said selecting category winners had been was very challenging, with a high standard of entries. Each finalist is assessed and independently rated by five different judges across ten judging criteria, and as appropriate, receiving site visits or judges undertaking mystery shopper visits.

“The Bendigo Bank Business Awards are a chance to see the best Gippsland has to offer and to celebrate the passion and commitment of our local business community,” he added.

Bendigo Bank’s Head of Business Banking Stephen Gorman presented at the Gala Awards night and said he was inspired by the achievements of Gippsland businesses.

“At Bendigo Bank we understand that local business is the backbone of a community, and by supporting businesses to thrive we are investing in the entire community,” Mr Gorman said.

“Small and medium businesses are often the biggest drivers of regional innovation, so it’s great to see that enterprising culture absolutely thriving here in Gippsland.”


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