September 2021 Winners

Emerging & Micro Business

The Edit Suite

The Edit Suite is a micro business that specialises in video production, live streaming and photography to create digital content. Based in Burleigh Heads, The Edit Suite were selected as preferred suppliers to create professional video content for the 2018 Gold Coast Commonwealth Games’ social events and recently have been busy shooting for Tourism Australia’s Content Creation Initiative, which is aimed at helping in the recovery of local tourism operators by providing a suite of marketing content.  

Family Business

Usher Group

Usher Group provides professional painting, rendering, plastering, signage, electrical service solutions and property maintenance services. Established on the Gold Coast in 2003, the Usher Group has grown from a small family business into a national business that has close to 500 employees. 2021 marks 20 years since Theo Vairaktaris started his first business which now employs 13 family members.

Retail, Wholesale and Distribution

FIST Handwear

FIST Handwear, founded by Sam Moore, designs, manufactures and sells specialist gloves for athletes in extreme sports. Based in Varsity Lakes, FIST Handwear supplied gloves for BMX athletes from 10 countries at the 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games. This included the Gold Coast’s Olympic gold medallist, Logan Martin. FIST Handwear distributes its handwear through 2000 partners in 35 counties.

Construction and Trades

Rivercity Environmental

Rivercity Environmental provides arboriculture, horticulture and landscape maintenance services for South-East Queensland councils, government departments and the commercial sector. Based in Molendinar, the business has grown having one small 400 square metre yard to a total of 4 depots servicing the Gold Coast, Brisbane, Ipswich, Moreton Bay and Sunshine Coast regions.


Gourmet Meals

First opening in 1993, Gourmet Meals is a family operated company based in Labrador that manufactures and delivers high quality, snap frozen, individually portioned meals. Their delivery area spans from Northern New South Sales, west to Ipswich and north to Caboolture. Gourmet Meals supports the community by offering a meal solution for the elderly and needy in the community.

Professions and Services

Protest Engineering

Protest Engineering provides a broad range of construction materials testing and engineering services. Some of these services include structural, geotechnical and civil engineering services, such as drilling and construction materials testing. Established in 2015 with 4 staff, Protest Engineering now employs over 95 staff from locations in Queensland and Victoria.

Health and Wellbeing

Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat

Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat is an Eco Tourism certified health retreat and offers an exclusive health and wellness destination for guests. Fully inclusive packages include stylish eco accommodation, a diverse range of activities, organic cuisine and the largest spa in the Southern Hemisphere. 2021 marks Gwinganna’s 15th year of operation.

IT and Digital Business

onPlatinum ICT

onPlatinum ICT is a Gold Coast owned and operated Managed Service Provider, with multimillion-dollar infrastructure. Established in 2012, onPlatinum offer a single point of contact for their clients’ ICT needs which includes IT, security, consultancy, communications and print support across Australia and internationally. onPlatinum services over 55,000 support requests per month and have over 720 client agreements.

Student Engagement

Barefoot Barista

Barefoot Barista operates three high profile cafes in Currumbin, Palm Beach and Mermaid Beach. Owned and managed by Liz Ennis, the cafes are renowned for their innovative menu offerings offering fresh and nutritious meals and coffees. Barefoot Barista works with local schools and supports students through school-based traineeships, with the goal of gaining a recognised qualification.

Mayor's Innovation GC


Pivotel is an Australian owned and operated telecommunications business with a focus on rural, remote and critical communications solutions. With the company’s global headquarters located in Southport, Pivotel is one of just four mobile telecommunications network providers in Australia. A multi-award-winning company, Pivotel has an international network of more than 275 dealers and now has close to 150 employees.

Tourism, Hospitality and Events

dnata catering

dnata catering specialise in inflight catering and retail, travel retail technology and airport lounge management. Headquartered in Broadbeach and employing over 1500 staff across 9 cities throughout Australia, dnata catering produce over 64 million meals each year. Some of their airline customers include Qantas, Jetstar, Emirates, Air New Zealand, Singapore Airlines and Cathay Pacific.

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