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Awards reveal brilliant small and medium businesses doing it their way in WA

Business owners helping fly-in fly-out (FIFO) workers and their families, along with regional stars of the state’s tourism industry are among 24 finalists in the 2015 Telstra Western Australian Business Awards.

Telstra Business Group Managing Director and Telstra Business Awards Ambassador Will Irving said the WA finalists are a unique group of businesses making an important contribution to their local communities including Albany, Geraldton, the Pilbara and the Kimberley Region, as well as the state economy. “The Telstra Business Awards reward innovation and celebrate the unwavering passion of Australia’s small and medium businesses. They have poured their savings into a dream of independence and doing what they love in their own way – and they are doing it exceptionally well.” With the growing prevalence of WA’s FIFO community, finalists are leaning on their own experiences in the field to tackle real and often unseen needs among FIFO workers and their families. Finalists addressing these issues include:

  • Perth-based Acorn Life Path, established in 2011 by Ruth Murdoch, which combines financial mentoring with relationship and goal-setting coaching for resources industry FIFO workers and their partners; and
  • FIFO Families, a social support service and network created by Nicole Ashby, whose experience as the wife of a FIFO worker gave her the impetus to help others to make the lifestyle positive and rewarding.

Tourism businesses named as finalists include Albany’s award-winning HideAway Haven and The Lake House Denmark, an idyllic south coast property that offers its own wine-inspired body care products and gourmet condiments, as well as Kununurra-based Shoal Air which hosts scenic tours of the Kimberley Region and operates freight and logistics services. Niche businesses using technology such as cloud computing in innovative ways to make a difference to their clients’ productivity are also among the finalists. These include Fortuna Accountants & Business Advisors and start-up Digit Books, which uses accounting software to manage the bookkeeping for SMBs, while injuryConnect offers paperless processing to minimise the administrative burden of workers’ compensation claims. The Telstra Business Awards were established in 1992 to celebrated brilliant Australian small and medium businesses. Winners of the 2015 Telstra Western Australian Business Awards will be announced at Crown Perth on 7 July. WA winners proceed to the national Awards in Sydney on 20 August.

The finalists for the 2015 Telstra Western Australian Business Awards are: Start-Up Award

Digit Books Osborne Park
Engine Room Espresso North Perth
KBSS Engineering Karratha
Siobhan & Fionnuala Boutique Garment Manufacturing Perth
The Game Changers Mandurah

Micro Business Award

Acorn Life Path Pty Ltd Aubin Grove
FIFO Families Perth
Fordham & Roast Perth
HideAway Haven Albany
Scope Training West Perth

Small Business Award

A Fine Balance Physiotherapy Pty Ltd Joondanna
CATS Corporation Welshpool
Collins Street Surgery Kalgoorlie
Fortuna Accountants & Business Advisors Perth
injuryConnect Applecross
Great Southern Distilling Company Albany
Microanalysis Australia Victoria Park

Medium Business Award

Executive Risk Solutions Myaree
Mandurah Cruises & Gift Shop Mandurah
Panaceum Group Geraldton
WA Skills Training Welshpool

Regional Award

Great Southern Distilling Company Albany
HideAway Haven Albany
Lakes Electrical Distributors Goldfields Kalgoorlie
Panaceum Group Geraldton
Shoal Air Pty Ltd Kununurra
The Lake House Denmark Denmark

Awards information and tickets to the WA Gala Dinner can be purchased by visiting or by calling 1800AWARDS between 9am and 7pm AEST Monday to Friday.

Media contact: Mark Thompson 0477 701 814

Reference: 093/2015

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