Entries for the prestigious 2017 Sydney City Region business awards program are now open, with two new categories reaching out to startups and social enterprise businesses.
The two additional awards – Startup Superstar and Excellence in Social Enterprise – join a list of 12 traditional categories attached to the awards, which the City of Sydney has supported since 2004.
Entry into the awards program is free and applications close on 29 May.
The City has boosted its sponsorship of the annual NSW Business Chamber Business Awards program, committing $80,000 a year for the next three years to create the expanded awards program available to local businesses.
Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the City’s support for the awards will help raise the profile of more local businesses.
“These awards will allow more local companies to showcase their achievements and create new opportunities for growth,” the Lord Mayor said.
“Small-to-medium sized businesses are the lifeblood of the city’s economy, representing 85 per cent of our businesses and contributing an estimated $20 billion to the local economy.
“We’re ensuring all city businesses have the market exposure and access to networking opportunities this awards program delivers, as well as our ongoing support through the City’s business programs, seminars and grants.
“The City has supported business awards programs since 2004 and sponsors the Excellence in Small Business award across NSW. This is another great opportunity to further promote Sydney’s outstanding local businesses and see they receive recognition at a state level and beyond.”
Under the Sydney City Region Business Awards, enterprises do not have to be members to participate. They only need to become members of the NSW Business Chamber or a local chamber if they advance to the state level of the Business Chamber Awards.
NSW Business Chamber Chief Operating Officer, Jane Nicholls, said the expanded partnership will encourage more Sydney businesses to enter the awards.
“I urge all businesses to get involved with these great awards. This is not just a great chance to celebrate the success of our state’s innovators and entrepreneurs, it will offer businesses the chance to build networks and explore new business opportunities,” Ms Nicholls said.
An Alexandria-based dog product business, Ivory Coat Companion Goods, walked away with the Excellence in Small Business award at both the 2016 Sydney City Regional Business Awards and the NSW Business Chamber State Business Awards.
The Excellence in Small Business category celebrates businesses with fewer than 20 employees that have attained significant and sustainable growth.
Steven Deveraux-Stanford, Ivory Coat Companion Goods Founder and CEO, says the company had enjoyed significant growth since entering the local awards.
“Last year we saw around 370 per cent growth and we’ve already doubled revenue again this year,” Mr Deveraux-Stanford said.
“We’ve certainly had a lot of businesses contacting us since the awards looking for strategic partnerships, looking to range a product and looking to understand the business more.
“Anyone who’s thinking of entering the awards should just enter.”
The Sydney City Region business awards finalists will be announced in July and the Sydney City Region business awards event will be held on 2 August at Sydney Town Hall. The state awards will be held in November.
For more information on the Sydney City Region Business Awards program and how to enter, www.cityofsydney.nsw.gov.au/business/business-support/programs-and-seminars/business-awards or email email@example.com