The stars of Australia’s franchise world have had a chance to shine at their annual gala event. Both franchisees and franchise brands alike were recognised for their contributions and commitment to business.
Franchising’s top performers were recognised at the Franchise Council of Australia’s starstudded annual black-tie evening, with its awards showcasing the strength and dynamism of the services sector, and three brands going home with multiple trophies: Finn Franchise Brokers, GJ Gardner Homes and Hire A Hubby.
The house-building business GJ Gardner Homes won the main title, Australian Established Franchisor of the Year, fighting off competition from a line-up of service-based franchise finalists – Hire A Hubby, MBCM Strata Specialists, Mister Minit and The Leather Doctor.
GJ Gardner had just scooped up two other awards, being named national winner for both Excellence in International Franchising and for Franchisor Social Responsibility.
“We’ve been so fortunate to take out three awards tonight, and it’s really thanks to the team – our franchisees, our master franchisees and our strategic partners,” GJ Gardner Homes CEO/managing director Darren Wallis told award guests. “It’s a massive recognition of the effort our team has put in over the years we’ve been franchising. It’s just so good to be recognised by our peers and by the franchising industry.”
General manager Lee Moore said that winning a Franchise Council of Australia award was great for business. “From an international perspective, it will mean that new franchisees will see us as a leading franchisor in the business. Certainly, from a social and community responsibility perspective, it is great for our customers to see we are really involved in the community.”
Handyman network Hire A Hubby was rewarded for Excellence in Marketing, and named national winner for Franchise Innovation, a hotly contested category with fellow service business Fastway Couriers and food brands Jamaica Blue, Spudbar and Zambrero the national finalists. Turn to page 37 to read more about Hire A Hubby.
Healthy fast-food chain Soul Origin was named Australian Emerging Franchisor of the Year after opening 80 stores in three years. Other finalists in the category were Bonbons Bakery, Bookwiz Bookkeeping, KX Pilates and Shoebox Bookkeeping.
“I’m a little bit overwhelmed because we didn’t expect to win this award,” said Soul Origin CEO Chris Mavris. “To be recognised by our peers in such a way gives us real credibility in the industry ... and means more to me than anything we’ve achieved so far.”
Fastway Couriers celebrated its 25th anniversary of working in Australia by taking home the award for International Franchisor of the Year for the second time in three years. “The award really recognises all the hard work that goes on, not only in our franchise support office but in our 27 regional franchise locations,” said Australia CEO Richard Thame.
Finn Franchise Broker’s Ryan Willsher had a double celebration, taking out the Franchisee Community Responsibility and Contribution Award then going on to win the Multi-Unit Franchisee of the Year category.
Career banker turned franchisee Nellie Dicks, who joined the Bank of Queensland in 2004, was named SINGLEUNIT Franchisee of the Year (two or more staff). She is featured in the September/ October Inside Franchise Business edition.
The Single-Unit Franchisee of the Year (fewer than two staff) title went to this issue’s cover star, Beverley Taylor of InXpress. Turn to the feature on page 18 to read how she catapulted to success in just four years.
Designed to help young entrepreneurs seeking to grow their businesses by franchising, The Next Gen in Franchising FranShark Competition was won by KX Pilates founder/CEO Aaron Smith. The competition is run by Octomedia, the publisher of Inside Franchise Business, supported and judged by the FCA Hall of Fame.
Smith goes on to attend the finals of the global competition, at the International Franchise Association’s convention in the US in February. Last year’s Australian winner, Salts of the Earth, was this year’s global runner-up.
Another highlight of the awards was the induction of Rod Young into the Franchise Hall of Fame. Considered one of the world’s foremost franchising consultants, Young is chairman/global CEO of the $250 million Cartridge World group.
The Supplier of the Year Award went to MST Lawyers, a regular contributor of legal advice for the Inside Franchise Business website, FranchiseBusiness.com.au.
MYOB FCA Excellence in Franchising Awards 2017 winners
Australian Established Franchisor of the Year: GJ Gardner Homes Australian Emerging Franchisor of the Year: Soul Origin
International Franchisor of the Year: Fastway Couriers
Multi-Unit Franchisee of the Year: Ryan Willsher, Finn Franchise Brokers, North Perth and Regional Western Australia Single-Unit Franchisee of the Year (two or more staff}: Nellie Dicks, Bank of Queensland, Richmond Single-Unit Franchisee of the Year (fewer than two staff): Beverley Taylor, InXpress, Bondi
Franchise Woman of the Year: Sandra Carrington, Fad Cheer and Dance
Field Manager of the Year: Eric Celik, Pack & Send
Supplier of the Year: MST Lawyers Excellence in Marketing: Hire A Hubby
Excellence in International Franchising: GJ Gardner Homes Franchise Innovation: Hire A Hubby
Franchisor Social Responsibility: GJ Gardner Homes
Franchisee Community Responsibility and Contribution: Ryan Willsher, Finn Franchise Brokers, North Perth and Regional WA
Franchise Hall of Fame Inductee: Rod Young
NextGen in Franchising, FranShark Competition: Aaron Smith, KX Pilates