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Good news stories you may have missed in 2019

Adam Zuchetti
Adam Zuchetti
03 January 2020 3 minute readShare
Green shoots, new life

Looking for some good news and inspiration to kick off the new year? Here’s a look back at some great Aussie business success stories you may have missed throughout 2019.

‘My business is still operating thanks to the army’

Sadly, 2019 ended with devastating bushfires across parts of the country. But at the beginning of the year, Mother Nature was throwing a very different kind of disaster at Australia, as Townsville and surrounds were inundated by floodwaters.

Yet in typical Aussie spirit, adversity brought out incredible kindness, compassion and examples of ordinary people doing extraordinary things – including one man doing flood rescues as his own home and business were consumed, who told My Business “if you can’t give back to people in the community who have been great to our family business, then what can you do?”

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‘Shark Tank’s biggest success story’

The TV series Shark Tank has been a worldwide phenomenon, with start-ups pitching their ideas and fledgling businesses to seasoned entrepreneurs for advice and investment.

So My Business couldn’t pass up the opportunity to speak to the founder of one such business that a judge described as the biggest success story in the US series’ history.

 

Common traits of successful business leaders

March saw the launch of a book profiling 50 unsung Aussie business heroes, who have overcome remarkable odds and adversity to build thriving businesses. Its author shared some insights on the traits common among these inspiring business owners, and what others can emulate to drive their own success.

Aussie firm’s $500k anniversary donation

Many businesses mark a milestone with a sale for their customers and a party for their staff and key stakeholders. But when Sydney business Love to Dream turned 10, it opted instead to donate half a million dollars worth of its baby products to women’s shelters and other organisations that support families in need.

Former dentist builds $10m retail business in 2 years

What on earth makes a dentist quit the field to start up a retail business? And how did that retail business hit $10 million in revenue in just two years? It all comes down to family and prioritising what really counts in life, Omar Sabre and his brother Zane reveal.

Business owner’s journey beyond a suicide attempt

It takes real guts to publicly admit you have struggled with mental health, and even more so to reveal that you once made an attempt on your own life. That’s what made Greg Ward’s story so inspiring.

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He shared what drove him to such lows, but also went into considerable detail to outline how he has been able to take control of his life and his mental health for the better. He bravely shared his own story in the hope that others struggling with anxiety and depression can find hope and meaning within their own lives.

‘A David and Goliath battle and we held true’

We all love an underdog story, particularly when they come out on top. And so it was for Karen Lebsanft, who revealed that her then little food business was faced with prospect of extinction when the likes of biscuits giant Arnott’s began competing with them head-on.

From garage to $8.5m revenue in 2 years

Peter Hull and Richard Bell saw their start-up achieving $8.5 million in revenue and a $10 million valuation within its first two years of operation. The key to making sure such skyrocketing expansion is sustainable, Mr Hull explained, comes down to knowing your numbers.

Meet Australia’s Business of the Year 2019

Winners are grinners, and there were plenty of smiles to be seen from the winners of the My Business Awards 2019 – but perhaps none bigger than that of Steve Fanale, whose logistics start-up Drive Yello was crowned Business of the Year.

And after 20 years working on start-ups, Mr Fanale has plenty of first-hand insights into what makes for a great business, and conversely, a not so great one.

‘No one ever expects to go through that’

This one was a literal rags to riches story: a homeless 17-year-old who within just five years, had completely turned his life around and built a multimillion-dollar business – and all despite him initially not having a roof over his head, an education or even crisp clean clothes in which to attend business events.

Former butcher, cop builds $20m health business

Errol McClelland is the first to admit that as a former police officer and butcher, his journey to being an entrepreneur is fairly unusual. But that hasn’t stopped him from building his own health business that now has annual turnover of $20 million.

SME boosts sales by $60m in a single year

There’s rapid growth and then there is just mind-boggling growth. So how exactly does a fashion start-up, launched in 2016, treble its revenues to a whopping $90 million in a single year?

My Business sat down with its founder to find out the story behind these impressive numbers.

Good news stories you may have missed in 2019
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Adam Zuchetti
Adam Zuchetti

Adam Zuchetti is the editor of My Business, and has steered the publication’s editorial direction since early 2016. 

The two-time Publish Awards finalist has an extensive journalistic career across business, property and finance, including a four-year stint in the UK. Email Adam at [email protected]

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