Nominations open on Tuesday for the 25th IMB Bank Illawarra Business Awards.
Executive Director of the Illawarra Business Chamber Adam Zarth said the 2019 awards will have Land Meets Sea as the theme for the silver anniversary.
That reflects how the name Illawarra is the Aboriginal word for "high place by the sea".
Mr Zarth said the menu on awards night at the WIN Entertainment Centre on October 18 will showcase local produce from local farms, wineries, oceans and lakes.
He welcomed IMB Bank as the principal sponsor for a fourth year in a row at the annual celebrating of success for the Illawarra business community that takes in the region's five local government areas.
Mr Zarth encouraged businesses across the Illawarra, Shoalhaven and the Southern Highlands to nominate themselves so their achievements can be recognised regionally and potentially at a state level.
Mr Zarth said there are 18 award categories for the 25th year.
"The new category is Excellence in Micro Business which recognises businesses with between one and four employees that demonstrate exceptional growth in profitability and market share".
IMB Bank chief executive Robert Ryan said the bank was proud to support an event that recognised many exceptional businesses in the region each years.
"Celebrating business success and encouraging entrepreneurial leadership is vital to developing communities that thrive into the future. The IMB Bank Illawarra Business Awards is an integral part of the economic and civic growth in the region," he said.
Award recipients in 13 of the 18 categories including the winner of the new micro business award will have the opportunity to represent the Illawarra at the NSW Business Chamber State Awards on November 22. Corrimal Chamber of Commerce won at the state awards on 2018.
Nominations close on July 29 at 5pm. Entering is as simple as going to businessannualawards.com.au/Regions/Illawarra or calling 4229 4722.
Mr Zarth said becoming a finalist in the Illawarra and NSW awards provides chamber members with a chance to showcase their business to a region-wide audience.
2019 Award Categories
- 2019 IMB Bank Illawarra Business of the Year
- Excellence in Tourism
- Excellence in Business*
- Excellence in Workplace Inclusion
- Excellence in Customer Service
- Local Chamber of Commerce*
- Excellence in Export*
- Outstanding Business Leader*
- Excellence in Innovation*
- Outstanding Employer of Choice*
- Excellence in Micro Business*
- Outstanding Young Employee*
- Excellence in Retail and Hospitality
- Outstanding Young Entrepreneur*
- Excellence in Small Business*
- Start Up Superstar*
- Excellence in Social Enterprise*
- Wollongong City Centre Business Excellence
- Excellence in Sustainability*
- * Award winners of these categories will go on to represent the Illawarra and compete in the NSW Business Chamber State Awards.
Principal Sponsor 2019
- IMB Bank
Category Sponsors 2019*
- Access Law Group
- University of Wollongong
- Dapto Leagues Club
- Venues NSW
- Department of Family and Community Services
- NSW Ports
- Department of Industry
- WIN Network
- IRT Foundation
- Wollongong City Council
Presenting Partner 2019
- Illawarra Mercury