Tonight’s 2019 IMB Bank Illawarra Business Awards saw business excellence celebrated in front of a crowd of more than 650 Illawarra business leaders and VIPs at a gala dinner at the WIN Entertainment Centre in Wollongong.

The awards take on a special significance in 2019 as they marked the 25th year of the Illawarra Business Chamber running the event. Tonight saw the bar lifted again in the highly-prestigious and competitive honours.

‘Illawarra: land meets sea’ was the theme for the evening, which saw the region’s unique and beautiful natural environment reflected in the food, drinks and entertainment, and the WIN Entertainment Centre transformed into a coastal and bushland wonderland.

“Our winners tonight are an exceptional group of businesses and individuals who have been judged as the Illawarra’s finest by our esteemed independent judging panel,” said Illawarra Business Chamber Executive Director, Adam Zarth.

“The Illawarra Business Awards celebrate the achievements of our business community over the past year, and the contribution it makes to the life and the economy of our region.”

Symbio Wildlife Park was crowned the 2019 IMB Bank Illawarra Business of the Year, in addition to taking out the Excellence in Tourism and Excellence in Customer Service categories.
David Hiscox of Dapto Leagues Club was named Outstanding Business Leader.

Other category winners on the night are provided below.

The alignment of the Illawarra and NSW Business Awards means that 13 of the 18 Illawarra category winners now progress through as finalists in the NSW Business Chamber Awards on 22 November 2019. This provides regional winners with state-wide recognition and promotion.

“The Illawarra is home to the most innovative, driven and dynamic business community in the state, and our winners tonight exemplify these traits,” said Adam Zarth.

Media Contact: Adam Zarth (0404 146 829)


2019 IMB Bank Illawarra Business Awards

Category and Sponsor


Excellence in Customer Service
Sponsored by Peoplecare
Winner: Symbio Wildlife Park
Local Chamber of Commerce
Sponsored by Illawarra Mercury
Winner: Corrimal Chamber of Commerce
Excellence in Innovation
Sponsored by Wollongong City Council
Winner: IRT Group
Excellence in Sustainability
Sponsored by South32 Illawarra Metallurgical Coal
Winner: Green Connect
Excellence in Export
Sponsored by NSW Ports
Winner: Aceit Sportswear  
Highly Commended: FinoComp
Start Up Superstar
Sponsored by Apprenticeship Support Australia
Winner: All Care Health Services Group
Excellence in Tourism
Sponsored by Venues NSW
Winner: Symbio Wildlife Park
Wollongong City Centre Business Excellence
Sponsored by Wollongong City Council
Winner: Easy Agile
Excellence in Workplace Inclusion
Sponsored by NSW Department of Communities & Justice
Winner: The Flagstaff Group
Outstanding Employer of Choice
Sponsored by CareSuper
Winner: FinoComp  
Excellence in Social Enterprise
Sponsored by IRT Foundation
Winner: The Flagstaff Group
Excellence in Retail and Hospitality
Sponsored by IOH
Winner: Cupitt’s Winery
Excellence in Micro Business
Sponsored by WIN Network
Winner: Mt Hay Retreat
Excellence in Small Business
Sponsored By NSW Department of Education
Winner: J&T Dale Plumbing
Excellence in Business
Sponsored by University of Wollongong
Winner: RMB Lawyers
Highly Commended: Symbio Wildlife Park
Outstanding Young Employee
Sponsored by Dapto Leagues Club
Winner: Ashleigh Barry (Kells Lawyers)
Highly Commended: Kay-Lea Edmistone (Quest Nowra)
Outstanding Young Entrepreneur
Sponsored by BlueScope
Winner: Christopher Murphy (All Care Health Services)
Outstanding Business Leader
Sponsored by Access Law Group
Winner: David Hiscox (Dapto Leagues Club)
Highly Commended: John Lamont (Nowchem)
IMB Bank Business of The Year
Sponsored by IMB Bank
Winner: Symbio Wildlife Park