When we were ushered to our seats in the 2nd row from the front in the huge State Ballroom at Government House for the Governor of Victoria Export Awards (GOVEA), we had a feeling that we’d scored ourselves a prize, but we tried to remain modest nonetheless. Of course, shameless selfie-taking ensued.
To help you understand the grandiose nature of both the location and ceremony, excuse us while we run through a quick history lesson. Melbourne’s Government House in Victoria, Australia is right up there with the penguins at Phillip Island & a day trip to Olinda as places you only ever go to on a school tour group or when entertaining guest from overseas. And you know what? It’s a real shame, because it’s such a magnificent property that so many locals don’t know exists. Built between 1871-1976 by William Wardell, Government House is set right next to the Royal Botanic Gardens & surrounded by Kings Domain, and is only a stones throw away from the CBD. It has been in continuous use by the Governors of Victoria since 1934, and before that housed the Governor-General of Australia when Parliament wasn’t in session in Canberra. Set on 11 acres, the building itself covers three quarters of an acre (3035 square metres) and includes roughly 240 rooms – not a bad place to call home if you ask us!
At 5pm, we were ushered towards the imposing gates of the property and security checked by 2 lovely Protective Services Officers. From there we were directed to the car park right at the front of the house, where guests were making their way through the front doors to the grand State Ballroom. Cue selfie #2.
We were greeted by event organisers and staff from Government House, Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR), Victorian Government & Business Victoria, and then directed to the front of the ballroom. Before this we had tried to act pretty suave about the possibility of winning an award, but when we were sat down in a row 2nd from the front, our excitement levels increased significantly. The ceremony kicked off at 6pm with the Australian National Anthem, and a welcoming speech from the Governor of Victoria, Her Excellency the Hon Linda Dessau AM.
From here, things moved along at a steady pace. We were live Tweeting the event & the winners of each category (which required some furiously fast typing), and we’ve listed these below. Congratulations to all winners, as well as the runners up. Hard fought & well won!
- Agribusiness Award – Schreurs & Sons
- Business Services Award – Shopping Links
- Regional Exporter Award – Australian Premium Dried Fruits
- Creative Industries Award – League Of Geeks
- Manufacturing Award – A.W. Bell
- Digital Technology Award – Envato
- E-Commerce Award – Swisse Wellness
- Health & Biotechnology Award – Ego Pharmaceuticals
- Education and Training Award – Deakin University
- Environmental Solutions Award – Geofabrics Australasia
- Minerals, Energy and Related Services Award – Gekko Systems
- Small Business Award – Cornerstone Solutions\
- Health and Biotech Award (High Commendation) – IDT Australia
- Victoria Exporter of the Year Award – Ego Pharmaceuticals
And last but not least…
- Victorian Export Award for Innovation Excellence – Worldpoly
We were pretty chuffed to take home the Victorian Export Award for Innovation Excellence, especially considering we were up against companies the size & calibre of Swisse, Deakin, Ego Pharmaceuticals, Envato, etc. We definitely weren’t expecting an innovation award when we saw the competition, and are now even more honoured that we are able to represent Australia in export markets around the world with our innovative and forward thinking approach.
Photos courtesy of Business Engagement DEDJTR & Nikita Hall