SURFING’S leading brands, products and retailers were recognised for their outstanding achievements in front of more than 200 industry retailers and brand executives at last week’s Surf and Boardsports Industry Association (SBIA) Banquet and Awards.
Held at the Crowne Plaza, Coogee Beach, 27 trophies were handed out by surfing legends Joel Parkinson, Ozzie Wright and Rob Bain. Awards categories covered revolutionary new products, inspirational marketing campaigns, environmental advocates, the industry’s best retailers and account managers.
It was a one-two finish for Torquay in the Sales and Customer Service Office of the Year award, with Rip Curl’s Customer Service Office getting the most votes and the Boardriders Customer Service finishing second.
Strapper Surf was judged runner-up in two categories – Australian Breakout Retailer of the Year (behind Sanbah) and Australian Retailer of the Year – Multi-Door (behind Coopers Surf).
Billabong and Rip Curl took out the top gongs of Ladies and Men’s Brand of the Year, respectively. Rip Curl also picked up Boardshort of the Year and Wetsuit of the Year, while Billabong picked up both Men’s and Ladies Marketing Campaign awards making it another big year for both brands.
Another big winner on the night was Reef, taking out Footwear Brand of the Year and Breakout Brand of the Year.
This year’s Environmental Award, presented by Surfrider Foundation, was awarded to Vissla for their campaign which raises awareness for ocean-related environmental stewardship.
Surf Culture Bondi took out Core Boardstore of the Year.
The all important Surfboard of the Year was taken out by JS Industries Monsta Box Surfboard.
FCS’s revolutionary Freedom Leash took out the judged category of Product Innovation as well as Surf Accessory of the Year, while OTIS Eyewear won Sunglass of the year for the third year straight.
The highlight of the night was Simon Anderson, surfboard shaper extraordinaire and inventor of the three-fin thruster design, recognised with the prestigious ‘Service to the Industry Award’.
On hand to present the Award was World Masters Champion Rob Bain and Industry veteran Dougall Walker.
The night also raised more than $3,000 for Surfrider Foundation with auction items, an Ozzie Wright ‘work of art’ surfboard donated by the team at Volcom and a limited edition Simon Anderson print from Onboard Industries going under the hammer.