THE competition was the strongest it has ever been in 2017, with nominees ranging from innovative social entrepreneurs to heavyweight recruitment specialists.
But it was clear that the man at the helm one of Brisbane's fastest growing companies would take the gong for Business News Australia's Brisbane Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2017.
Founder of Recon Solutions, Steve Scanlan topped the 14 category winners at the event which recognises Queensland's best and brightest business minds.
The awards were presented at a special gala event with 300 of Brisbane's most exciting game changers at Moda Portside in Hamilton, and was sponsored by HLB Mann Judd, Bond Business School, Telstra Business Centre Milton, Advance Queensland, Cullen's Patent and Trademark Attorneys, Alex Correa Executive, and Screen Offset Printing.
Scanlan's company, Recon Solutions which he started four years ago, specialises in IT recruitment, and has recently established two new businesses: Recon Technology and Recon Executive enabling Recon to diversify into the finance sector.
Scanlan recently completed a course at Harvard, where he was mentored by some of the world's most successful entrepreneurs like Tesla's Elon Musk, as well as executives from Amazon and Coca Cola.
This year is not the first time Scanlan has come out on top at the Young Entrepreneur Awards. In 2016, Scanlan was the winner in the Professional Services category.
The company is currently on a fast track of exceptional growth, boosted by a several recent accolades. Growing further into Melbourne and Sydney is a priority for Scanlan, but international expansion is very much on the cards.
Scalan says his company has undergone recent success after he realised the way he was managing was "immature" - a lesson he learnt from his time at Harvard.
"They gave me this little saying; they said how they coached an under seven kids' soccer team, and when they put the ball in the middle of the field what do all the seven-year-old kids do? They just follow the ball around the field," says Scanlan.
"But when you become a professional they all have positions on the field, they all have structure. They might pass the ball all the way back to the goal keeper but eventually they'd get an opportunity to strike."
"A lot of businesses, especially Australian owned immature businesses like mine, we were just trying to get cash through the door. We were under seven soccer players. If you want to be a global dominating player and a large professional organisation you need to have the right people with the right roles, and orchestrate strategy in the right way."
Now in its ninth year, the Brisbane Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2017 Awards celebrate the best and brightest thinkers in Queensland's capital.
Serial entrepreneur Bevan Slattery took out the top gong at the very first event. Slattery has since gone on to list three businesses on the ASX, including NEXTDC (ASX: NXT), Superloop (ASX: SLC), and Megaport (ASX: MP1).
Business News Australia managing editor Camilla Jansen says the Awards are testament to the passion and drive displayed by every finalist.
"I want to congratulate Steve and all of the finalists for demonstrating the innovation and ingenuity that drives Brisbane as one of Australia's best places to do business," says Jansen.
"This year was incredibly competitive and brilliantly diverse, and every finalist should be congratulated and proud of their achievements."
"Each year the quality of the nominations gets better and better across all sectors, and this shows just how much entrepreneurial talent is coming through in Brisbane."
"These are the young people who are the future of business in the region and they're the ones that will drive jobs growth and wealth creation.
"This year saw the creation of new award categories, including the Influencer category, where finalists built incredible businesses off the back of social media. This is testament to the emerging power of social media and where the future of entrepreneurship is going."
The Brisbane Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2017 category winners:
Young Entrepreneur Of The Year
Steve Scanlan, Recon Solutions
Ryan Murtagh, Neto
Ben Bradshaw, SponsoredLinX
Peter Ward, Wardy IT Solutions
Marketing, PR & Events
Josh Cobb, Stepps
Health & Fitness
Jeremy Hassel and Tim Butters, City Cave
Retail & Services
Karl Brown, InstyleSolar
Steve Scanlan, Recon Solutions
Karl Hill, Results Legal
Hospitality & Tourism
Tim Johnson, Corbett & Claude and Comuna and Cantina
Arts & culture
Pixie Weyand, The Lost Collective
Daniella Dionyssiou and Natalia Suesskow, Verge Girl
Manufacturing, Wholesale & distribution
Jasmin Robertson, Roza's Gourmet
Property & Construction
Brett Boulton, Bold Living
Jason Loft, Protrade United
Ivana Santic and Maya Wilbrink, Change Make Her
Business News Australia
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