The 2012 Blue Mountains Business Awards began with Kath and Kim impersonators asking the audience to “look at them” but by the end of the night all eyes were on the team from Accounting and Taxation Advantage.
The small business based in Glenbrook and North Sydney was awarded the biggest prize at the Fairmont Resort on October 26 — the Harry Hammon Business of the Year Award, presented by Scenic World owner Phil Hammon.
It also won three category awards (customer service, employer of the year and the Blue Mountains Gazette Innovation Award) and received a high commendation in the business services category.
Delighted owner/director Melissa Browne told the Gazette winning three categories at last year’s awards was very special, “but we didn’t think or expect to win the Business of the Year Award tonight”.
“I see it as a great reward for all my staff because they have really worked hard.
“We’ve been a business for 11 years, we have two offices now and have put on two more staff, but it all started as a home-based business in Glenbrook.
“I think the secret to small business success is you need to plan ahead and innovate, but at the end of the day you just have to go and get things done and work hard.
“If you don’t, that great business idea of yours might as well be worthless — you have to go and make it happen.”
She will enjoy a two-night stay at the Emirates Wolgan Valley Resort thanks to her awards night success.
The other multi-award winner was Leura day spa and beauty products manufacturer iKOU, which won the beauty services and environmental business services categories and received a high commendation in the retail business category.
Awards host, comedian and radio 2UE presenter Peter Berner, kept the night running smoothly while entertainer Brad Blaze made a memorable appearance with his high-speed painting skills, producing portraits of famous people in just minutes.
The art works were auctioned on the night to raise money for the Blue Mountains Cancer Help and International Day for People with a Disability planning committee.
2012 Blue Mountains Business Award winners
Retail Business: Priceline Pharmacy Springwood
Highly Commended: iKOU
Entertainment and the Arts: Wild Valley Art Park
Skilled Trades: Mountain Mechanics
Business Services: Choice Home Loans
Highly Commended: Accounting & Taxation Advantage
Beauty Services: iKOU
Customer Service Award: Accounting & Taxation Advantage
Highly Commended: Choice Home Loans
Highly Commended: Priceline Pharmacy Springwood
New Business: Mountain Mechanics
Highly Commended: dbl ristretto
Environmental Business Practices: iKOU
Highly Commended: Katoomba Veterinary Clinic
Blue Mountains Gazette Innovation Award: Accounting & Taxation Advantage
Community Contribution Award: Klipt Kanines
Employer of the Year: Accounting & Taxation Advantage
Employee of the Year: Karina Schwarz, Katoomba Veterinary Clinic
BlueMountainsAustralia.com People's Choice Award: Rubyfruit
Tourism Business of the Year: Life's an Adventure
Harry Hammon Business of the Year Award: Accounting & Taxation Advantage