Outstanding entrepreneurs honoured at Adelaide awards night

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The top entrepreneurs from across South Australia and the Northern Territory were announced last night at the 2012 EY Entrepreneur Of The Year® Central region awards ceremony in Adelaide.

Winners of the 2012 EY Entrepreneur Of The Year Central region awards, by category, were:

  • Emerging – Stephan Knoll, Barossa Fine Foods
  • Industry – Mark Laucke, Laucke Flour Mills
  • Services – Ben Lucas, Lucas Earthmovers
  • Technology – Patrick Power, PowerHealth Solutions

Also recognised in the non-competitive regional award categories were:

  • Social entrepreneur – Geraldine Cox AM, Sunrise Children’s Villages, Cambodia
  • Champion of Entrepreneurship – Dr Tim Cooper AM and Glenn Cooper AM, Coopers Brewery Ltd

EY Adelaide Office Managing Partner, Chris Sharpley said this year’s Central region winners were well-deserving of the awards, showing vision, passion and determination to succeed.

“Entrepreneurs inspire others with their innovative approach. By challenging the status quo they create significant economic benefit and social change,” Sharpley said.

“The EY Entrepreneur Of The Year awards are a celebration of the successes of these individuals, each of whom play a vital role in creating jobs, boosting economies and improving communities, both locally and on a national and global stage.

“EY congratulates all of our 2012 Central region award winners and nominees and commend them for their innovation, determination and entrepreneurial spirit,” Sharpley said.

“Our Central region winners and award recipients will travel to Sydney in November to contend for the title of 2012 Australian EY Entrepreneur Of The Year at the national awards.

“The overall Australian winner will then go on to compete in the EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year awards in Monte Carlo next year,” Sharpley said.

EY Entrepreneur Of The Year is considered the world’s most prestigious business award and the only truly global program of its kind, with entrepreneurs participating in 140 cities in more than 50 countries.

Over 1,000 outstanding entrepreneurs have been recognised through the Entrepreneur Of The Year program in Australia since 2001.

For more information on the EY Entrepreneur Of The Year program go to www.eoy.ey.com.au.

2012 EY Entrepreneur Of The Year category winners, Central region

Category: Emerging
Stephan Knoll – Barossa Fine Foods

Since taking over the family business in 2004, Stephan Knoll has more than tripled the company’s turnover and developed a sustainable financial model in a highly competitive industry. Barossa Fine Foods is a family owned company in the meat and smallgoods business. The company supplies products to Coles and Woolworths, and independent delis and supermarkets across Australia. About 60% of its products are sold in South Australia. By buying over 90% of its pork directly from farms, Barossa Fine Foods has reduced annual costs by $200,000 and improved product quality. Stephan aims to continue with 25%-30% annual growth, and expand interstate.
What the judges said: Stephen is a dedicated young entrepreneur who has commercialised a local small goods company and taken a different approach to marketing to compete effectively with bigger players in the market. Stephen is continuing to grow the company with his innovative business approach, a quality product and strong brand equity.

Category: Industry
Mark Laucke – Laucke Flour Mills

Mark Laucke began helping in the family business, Laucke Flour Mills, as a child, and was the third generation to take leadership. Laucke Flour Mills provides specialty flours and mixes for the food industry and home bakers through the core milling of wheat, rye, spelt and triticale. It has a special focus on human health and certified organic artisan flours. The business is strong enough to warrant reinvestment and Mark is building an industry best-practice mill at Bridgewater, Victoria. He says this mill will be crucial to growth as it is well situated, will produce differentiated products, and will reduce costs and increase capacity. Mark has held numerous industry board positions including President of the Flour Millers Council of Australia.
What the judges said: Mark’s ability to effectively and innovatively respond to market needs has helped him build a solid and sustainable business. Mark has spent time at the coalface, developing a deep understanding of the business. Now at the helm of a South Australian icon, he has successfully adapted to new market opportunities, making Laucke Flour Mills a very progressive and modernised business.

Category: Services
Ben Lucas – Lucas Earthmovers

Ben Lucas has worked at all levels within his family’s business, Lucas Earthmovers. He has established the business as a recognised national contracting company in contract mining, civil construction, quarrying and crushing, site rehabilitation and remediation. Ben has grown what was a small family business to one with over 450 full time employees and 40 contractors. Lucas Earthmovers currently has projects underway across Australia with large resource companies and industry partners. Ben is focused on long term contracts, repeat business, delivering on commitments and providing a “total contract solution”. A commitment to safety, integrity and a can do approach has been a key to success and growth of the business.
What the judges said: Having worked in all aspects of the business, Ben has an abundant understanding of the construction and mining contracting sector. Lucas Earthmovers is extremely scalable and has outstanding growth potential. Under Ben’s leadership, the company has taken a quantum shift in growth and, with a very strong client list and diversified projects, is in line for continued success.

Category: Technology
Patrick Power – PowerHealth Solutions

Patrick Power is the founder of PowerHealth Solutions (PHS) and has over 20 years of healthcare experience specialising in the areas of healthcare funding and costing. Patrick has always specialised in health and has lived and worked across several countries including Australia, New Zealand, the United States, United Arab Emirates and England. PHS began in 1995 as a small consulting firm providing Australian hospitals with expertise centred on decision support. In 2000, Patrick transformed PHS into a software development firm in order to exploit a gap in the marketplace. PHS, based in South Australia, now employs 62 staff and is a market leader in its field in Australia, New Zealand, Ireland and Hong Kong.
What the judges said: Tackling many challenges and offering solutions for a perennial problem in hospitals, Patrick has forged an innovative and niche technology solution to address a very complex business problem. PowerHealth delivers excellent growth and strong returns, and has huge global market potential.

2012 EY Entrepreneur Of The Year non-competitive award recipients, Central region
The Social entrepreneur will compete at the National awards against their regional counterparts.

Category: Social entrepreneur
Geraldine Cox AM – Sunrise Children’s Villages, Cambodia

Together with her Khmer and Australian colleagues, Geraldine Cox operates Sunrise Children’s Villages (Sunrise) in Cambodia, caring for more than 200 orphaned, disadvantaged and vulnerable children. Sunrise will soon open a third centre to provide for the needs of over 200 children with HIV. Since 1994, Geraldine has been able to attract the funds needed through speaking engagements and media opportunities. She acknowledges that it is becoming increasingly difficult to raise the $90,000 a month she needs to keep the doors open. She is indebted to a strong, committed Australian board, which provides IT, financial and legal expertise.

Category: Champion of Entrepreneurship The Champion of Entrepreneurship award is a lifetime achievement award that recognises individuals who: have a long-term record of outstanding entrepreneurial achievement; have driven the growth of an Australian company, or companies, over a sustained period of time; and have made a significant contribution to their community.

Dr Tim Cooper AM and Glenn Cooper AM – Coopers Brewery Ltd
Dr Tim Cooper AM and Glenn Cooper AM and are fifth-generation family brewers. Founded in 1862, Coopers Brewery is the largest Australian-owned brewery in the country.

Tim Cooper began his professional life as a doctor, joining the family business in 1990. From 1999-2001 he oversaw the development of the new Coopers Brewery at Regency Park, which substantially increased Coopers’ brewing capacity. As Managing Director, he initiated the formation of the interstate distribution subsidiary, Premium Beverages.

Glenn started off his working career with qualifications in electronic engineering, computing and marketing. He joined the family brewery in 1990 in sales, and today is Chairman and Marketing Director. Glenn has passionately promoted the Coopers brand throughout Australia and overseas.

Production has grown from 26 million litres of beer in 2001, to 65 million litres in 2012.

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Contact details:

Rebecca Aley
EY Australia
Tel: +61 2 9276 9305 or 0418 835 849