Gold Coast Young Entrepreneur Awards to put local talent in the spotlight

Gold Coast Young Entrepreneur Awards to put local talent in the spotlight

Photo: City of Gold Coast, via Facebook.

It has now been a year since the revelry of the 2022 Gold Coast Young Entrepreneur Awards when as the event was seemingly drawing to a close, a local founder - James Marshall of MWM Advisory - spontaneously took to the stage to give an impassioned, rousing speech challenging negative, outdated stereotypes about the city's culture and celebrating its achievements. 

After what had already been an inspiring evening, spirits were lifted even higher with an electric atmosphere of camaraderie that was typical of the city's highly successful, close-knit and welcoming business community. 

Now in their 16th year, these awards continue to be the place to catch the next wave of the Gold Coast's young business talent.

Last year the top prize went to Dr Anuj Gupta and Mannu Kala of Covax Australia, now KnG Group, joining an illustrious list that includes LSKD founder Jason Daniel, National Veterinary Care founder Tomas Steenackers, Grace Loves Lace founder Megan Ziems and Tammy Hembrow of Tammy Fit.

It is anyone's guess who will be crowned 2023 Gold Coast Young Entrepreneur of the Year tonight when the city's finest young business minds converge on The Star for the gala dinner event.

Despite a more challenging economic environment in 2023, this year's finalists notched a combined turnover of $244 million in FY23 and continue to employ thousands of people.

Whilst some have raised external capital and are blitzscaling or investing heavily to set the foundations for growth, the Gold Coast Young Entrepreneur Awards cohort is largely defined by its bootstrapped majority and profit margins that exceed other cities on average.

Notably, almost half (46 per cent) of the finalist companies in tonight's awards have at least one female founder - a proportion that far exceeds national averages for business ownership and leadership.

Young Entrepreneur Awards founder Camilla Jansen is excited to be able to host this iconic event again, highlighting the remarkable success of the Gold Coast's ambitious young founders who are striving forward like never before.

"I know that the road ahead will not always be easy, but what I love most about these events is the community that it builds, bringing together founders from so many different industries and stages of their journeys with such diversity of backgrounds and ideas," she says.

"Over the years entrepreneurs have been giving invaluable support to one another, and close friendships have been formed as we continue to encourage entrepreneurship as a natural career choice for the youngest in our society to believe their own ideas and capabilities to act on them. 

"Congratulations to all the finalists and a massive thank you to everyone who took the time to nominate. 

"We aim to foster a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship on the Gold Coast that will help to attract more talented founders and professionals, and create a more vibrant business ecosystem."

Jansen also thanks the event's corporate sponsors Maserati, City of Gold CoastMGICoraggioVentureCrowd, and iVvy.

"We wouldn't be able to do this without their help," she adds.

Gold Coast Lord Mayor Tom Tate says that from start-ups to recognised global brands, the coast’s star is on the rise.

"Take just one look at the talent listed in this year’s Gold Coast Young Entrepreneurs Awards, and you know the future is bright," he says.

"Smart minds, incredible innovation and a burning desire to drive change - that’s what inspires the young leaders of today.

"As we know, the winners will go on to represent the coast at the national finals. Just being nominated is a huge honour and in my eyes, you are all winners when it comes to driving greater economic opportunities for your enterprise."

Aside from the two major awards of Young Entrepreneur of the Year and Trailblazer, the gala will span a range of sectors with 14 different award categories including:

  • Digital Disruptor
  • Finance
  • Food & Beverage
  • Health & Medicine
  • Hospitality & Tourism
  • Marketing
  • PR, Media & Events
  • Professional Services
  • Property & Construction
  • Retail & Services
  • Specialist Services
  • Startup
  • Sustainability & Social Responsibility
  • Technology

Meet the 2023 Gold Coast Young Entrepreneur Awards finalists (in alphabetical order)

Michael Luker - Ace Health Centre

Satnaam Singh - Alchemist Academy

Will Hawkins - Appifany Australia

Sky Kolade - Association of Professional Builders

Bernard Mangelsdorf - BITS Technology Group

Michael McGovern - Black Hops Brewery

Drew Pollock & Brodon Hirst - Clarity Technology Group

Katie Jones - Country Girl Management

Parham Hamidian, Alenka Tomse, & Shawn Maftounian - D' La Rosa

Kristie Baird - Drip IV

David Lethbridge - DGE Electrical Services

Monique Jeremiah - Diversity Models

Jackson Earngey - Earng Media

Barratt Kennett - EFCOMM Sales and Marketing

Emilly Hadrill - Emilly Hadrill Hair

Courtney Scott - Empowered Living Choices

Sterling Ririnui-Sheddan & Dillon Adams - Fastway Enterprises

Dayle Filliponi - Filliponi Finance Solutions

Nova Jane - Fitcover Group

Beau London & Zac London - Frase Skin

Joel Prokic, Matthew Nikolai & Jason Smit - G1 Asset Management

James Carney, Alec Carney & Paul Carney - Gemelli Group

Diogo Giglio - Giglio Construction and Development

Sophia Rizzo - Glitter Girl

Luke Ridden - Granddad Jacks Craft Distillery

Natalie Durack - Happy Hounds Dog Walking and Pet Sitting

Lincoln De Assis Neto & Kevin Berot - Here Agency

Michael Huxley - Huxley Group

Rebecca Dickson & Rebecca Tarrant - LightLab Beauty

Diana Awad - Linked Financial Services

Stacey Hollands - Lust Minerals

Brodie Cook & Roger Cook - Lucent Globe

Mike Kellett - Macro Mike

Jared Ooi - Maco Electrics

Luke Morgan - Mayfair Marketing

James Marshall - MWM Advisory

Damien Svarcas - My Gutter Guards

Adam Jarrett & Shane Berland - Nexus Sports Nutrition

Jasminne Hirstic - NGO Training Centre

Katie Bryan - Propeller Advisory

Sam Moore - PYRA

Heidi Rein - Rawlicious Delicious

Paul Billing & Alexandra Rofe - Send Payments

Leo Plaza & Broden Johnson - Spruces

Daniel Herr - Tech Help Direct

Dayna Cooper - The Jefferson Restaurant Group

Matthew Srama - The Srama Group

Jacob Ritchie - Two Birds Social

Luke Vaughan - Vaun Group of Companies

Larni Spilsbury - Wipe Credit Clean

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