*Scroll down to see a list of finalists.
LOCAL businesses old and new, high-tech and low-tech, are competing in the 27th CGU Commerce Ballarat Business Excellence Awards, with the finalists announced on Tuesday.
The categories range from manufacturing to e-commerce, creative industries and emerging business.
Several companies and organisations are up for more than one award, but Karden Disability Support Foundation is leading the not-for-profit sector, up for training and governance gongs.
“Valuing people is the key to success, and making sure you have clear culture and values,” Karden chief executive officer Karen McCraw said.
“We’re in an environment with not a lot of growth, but we’ve got a clear mission and know what we’re doing.”
Ms McCraw said Karden had expanded 1000 per cent since its foundation eight years ago.
Commerce Ballarat chairman Andrew Rowan said the success of Ballarat businesses in a sometimes tough economic environment was a testament to their hard work and good ideas.
“Businesses that take the time to grow and excel will reap the rewards and overcome any wider economic concerns,” he said.
“We encourage business owners to apply for awards like this because through the application process they can focus on what they do well. It’s like doing a business plan.”
The winners will be announced at a gala dinner on August 28.
Haymes Paint Family Business Award
Coronet Breakfast and Lunch Bar
Bohan Cleaning Services
Harwood Andrews Small Business Award
The Athletes Foot Ballarat
Proven Resume Results
Regional Development Australia – Grampians Staff Training and Development Award
Karden Disability Support
City of Ballarat Restaurants, Cafes and Pubs Award
The Forge Pizzeria
The Western Hotel
Mitchell Harris Wines
Power FM B2B Business to Ballarat Award
Lake Wendouree Luxury Apartments
The Courier New and Emerging Business Award
Rubilicious Wax and Beauty Bar
Rococo Hair Lounge
Le Chic Beauty Lounge
Remingtons Insurance Brokers Creative Industries Award
Michelle Dunn Photography
Miss Mao Mao
The Crafty Squirrel
Ballarat Technology Park – Federation University Australia Innovation Award
Argus Connecting Care
Central Highlands Water Trade Business Award
LaTrobe Street Mega Meats
Laser Electrical Ballarat
CGU Insurance Community and Government Award
Karden Disability Support
The WIN Network Customer Service Award
Telstra Stores Ballarat and Wendouree
Ballarat Lodge and Convention Centre Professional Service Award
OAMPS Insurance Brokers
Yellow Brick Road Ballarat
Powercor Australia Manufacturing Award
Ballarat Regional Tourism Special Events and Attractions Award
Rural Lifestyle Expo
Ballarat Rotary Swap Meet
Nova Pharmacy Health and Wellbeing Award
Lake Health Group
Ballarat Business School – Federation University Australia E-Commerce and Online Award
Loreto College Ballarat
Fernwood Fitness Ballarat