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Aussie exporters face 2020 with grit and ingenuity

Australian exporters who adapted to the challenges of 2020 by embracing technology, developing new products and breaking into different markets have been recognised for their achievements in the Remarkable Australian Exporter showcase.

The Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, Simon Birmingham, has congratulated Aussie exporters who overcame extraordinary challenges this past year. 

Tim Beresford, acting CEO of the Australian Trade and Investment Commission, praised exporters saying, “It’s been an extremely tough year for Australian businesses working internationally. Restrictions on travel disrupted global supply chains and increased the cost of doing business.

“Our exporters demonstrated incredible resilience and a willingness to adapt.

“The businesses featured in the exporter recognition program are all great examples of Australian ingenuity and determination to succeed in a year of unprecedented challenges.” 

Eight exporting businesses were featured in the 2020 online Remarkable Australian Exporter showcase, from a field of more than 340 companies: 

Summernats (ACT) A ban on mass gatherings forced the postponement of Australia’s premier car festival but didn’t stall the event’s rise in popularity in the United States, thanks to a gaming app that has been downloaded more than 1.5 million times.

Flavourtech (NSW) A commitment to “keep the family together” and a willingness to innovate and explore new technologies has helped this high-tech manufacturing company ride out an extraordinary year. 

Darwin Aboriginal Art Fair Foundation (DAAFF) (NT) When COVID-19 hit Australia, rather than cancelling its art fair, the small but passionate DAAFF team went digital, developing an online platform within just three months.

Icon Group (Qld) As the largest dedicated provider of cancer care in Australia, the group has transformed the way it works, with teams embracing cutting-edge technology including augmented reality headsets to continue delivering essential care. 

Bec Hardy Wines (SA) As the year has progressed, this McLaren Vale family business has shifted its focus from overseas markets to Australia, significantly growing brand awareness domestically. Simultaneously, the company has adapted and diversified its export strategy to target nine new markets when borders reopen.  

Novaris (TAS) The pandemic significantly impacted this family-owned electrical componentry manufacturer’s access to suppliers and manufacturing. The company has moved from having clearly defined parameters of small product manufactured in Malaysia and larger devices in Australia, to completely different products being produced in Australia.

Care Essentials (VIC) As COVID-19 wreaked havoc nationally and demand for safety equipment grew, medical device manufacturer Care Essentials pivoted its focus to produce a range of PPE products, surgical face masks and N95 respirators. 

Epichem (WA) As Australia’s leading provider of synthetic and medicinal chemistry services, the company met the challenges of COVID-19 head-on, by protecting its business and employees while supporting the community and launching new innovations. 

Despite the challenges Australian exporters have faced this year, they continue to make an enormous contribution to the Australian economy, with one in five jobs tied to trade. 

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Clare Loewenthal

Clare Loewenthal

Clare is an author, business commentator and passionate contributor to Dynamic Business. She was the Founder and Publisher of Dynamic Small Business magazine, which became Australia’s largest small business publication.

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