EQUITANA Melbourne was proud to introduce the first time to Australia the 2018 EQUITANA Business Awards proudly partnered with Show Pony Graphics. This new initiative was developed to support, promote and reward our Australian Equestrian Businesses.The awards presentation was held on the Saturday Night in conjunction with the VIP Event which was a huge success. EQUITANA Australia Event Director Rod Lockwood and Despina Mitrakas from Show Pony Graphics presented the awards on the night.

The Innovation award celebrates new and innovative products which are the driving force of the equestrian industry. This award is for products that have not been on the market for more than 24 months and are either significantly different to what is currently available on the market, or seek to improve what is already out there.

Thank you to the judges of the EQUITANA Melbourne Innovation Awards: Sue Mckay, Deena Peters and Dr Luke Wells-Smith. They had a tough job judging over 50 entries across the two categories, and we exceptional feedback on all entries.

The Rider Innovation Award finalists included the Seaver Connected Girth, The Rescue Swag, the Ferrari Trifecta and Horse Happening.

Congratulations to the winner the Rescue Swag submitted by TCB Innovations Pty Ltd. The judges comments included “Love this rescue sway, having always travelled with a homemade kit in my float I love the versatility of this little pack.” “This looks like it is a great idea.” “Very well thought out product. Great for use in the equine world. Versatile, easy to transport and uses smart technology.”

The Runner Up was a new interactive website called Horse Happening submitted by Horse Happening Pty Ltd. The Judges’ comments included: “Great idea”. “A marketplace where horse related events are posted is a great concept. Easy to use booking system and simple to browse different events. Interesting to see if health care professionals jump on board with this concept as well”

The Horse Innovation Award finalists included airFEED, the Orscana Horse Monitor, Equivan and Off Grid Solar.

Congratulations to our winner Off Grid Solar submitted by Sonaray Australia. The judges’ comments included “Love this, would love one on all the shelters in the paddocks.” “Great concept, solves a problem and differentiates itself from other competitors by being easy to assemble and install.” “Always good to help the environment”.

The Runner Up was a super new and innovative horse transport solution Equivan submitted by Rowville Horse Trailers. The Judges comments included “Great concept – appears to bring some of the features only available in luxury trucks to a smaller scale.” “Fantastic Idea” ” I would love to own this, frees up the car to whizz into town when you’re at an event.”

The EQUITANA exhibition display awards were designed to celebrate the thought and effort that goes into the beautiful trade displays at EQUITANA. All of the 2018 EQUITANA exhibitors were automatically entered into the awards and with the large amount of quality displays, it was very hard to judge!

Thank you to our Large Exhibition Display Judge David Webster and Small Exhibition Display Judge Michael Begg.

The finalists in the Large Exhibition Display included Coprice, Chaballo, Peter Horobin Saddlery, Geohex / Dowell Equine / Sonaray Australia / Koyuga Electrics and Stable Comfort.

Congratulations to the winner Peter Horobin Saddlery Epsom Site 445. The judges’ comments included “Peter Horobin Saddlery is one of EQUITANA’s longest returning exhibitors and has once again re-invented their space. The white neon sign on the black wall is the first thing that grabs your eye as you walk into the Epsom Pavilion. The on trend industrial theme that has been embraced by Peter Horobin Saddlery is a great change.With a coffee machine and “Peter Horobin Saddlery” custom made cookies, the buyer is placed in a welcome and engaging space.”

The Runner Up was having a super show, already winning the Horse Innovation Award! Congratulations to the combined display of Geohex / Dowell Equine / Sonaray Australia and Koyuga Electrics.
The judges comments included “The collection of companies that make up site 139 are a perfect group for any horse owner. Whether it be stables, lighting or surfaces this group of companies is your one stop shop. The well laid out site clearly demonstrates the capabilities of the products on offer.”

The winner of the Small Exhibition Display was a very excited Schleese Saddlery Stand 185, who were exhibiting in Australia for the first time! The judges’ comments included “Really well laid out, very engaging, professional uniforms and attentive staff. Hands on approach from management.” The Runner up was from a beautiful well thought out display Equinology – Stand 220.

Finally the People’s Choice award was won by Outback Traders. Comments included, Great display, professional, interesting and engaging.

The inaugural EQUITANA Melbourne Business Awards have been a huge success, look out for them at EQUITANA Melbourne 2020.