Victorian innovative, visionary and entrepreneurial businesses and individuals driving the manufacturing industry now and into the future won big at last night’s Victorian Manufacturing Hall of Fame Awards.

Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Trade Martin Pakula congratulated the winners and finalists for their work in continuing to take Victorian businesses to the next level.

The theme for the 2019 Manufacturing Hall of Fame is Industrial Evolution – highlighting the resilience of Victorian manufacturing and the people who drive the industry, supporting hundreds of thousands of jobs.

Inaugural awards were presented to Air Radiators as a Leader in Innovative Product Development and Commercialisation, and Holden Special Vehicles as Leader in Global Supply Chain Partnerships

For their excellence in leadership and innovation in the manufacturing industry, Rochelle Avinu from Leica Biosystems was awarded the Woman Manufacturer of the Year award, and Nicholas Orchowski from RUAG Australia received the award for Young Manufacturer of the Year.

The Manufacturer of the Year (Large Business) was awarded to Dulux Australia, while Robert Bosch Australia took out the Leader in Industry 4.0 award and Barker Trailers was awarded the 2019 Leader in Workforce Skills Development.

“Our manufacturing industry is one of Victoria’s greatest strengths and successfully exports, invests and contributes to our thriving economy” Minister for Jobs,  Innovation and Trade Martin Pakula

Geoffrey Bell was inducted into the Hall of Fame Honour Roll in recognition of the evolution and growth of A.W.Bell established as a family pattern making business in 1952 with the company now employing 100 people and providing unique and one-off metal parts and prototypes for businesses and entrepreneurs.

A number of other companies were also recognised with awards for excellence, including Safetech and Columbia Australia, with RUAG Australia the latest company inductee into the prestigious Hall of Fame.

The Victorian Manufacturing Hall of Fame has been recognising outstanding businesses and individuals in the manufacturing industry since 2001 and recognises Victorian manufacturers who have made an ongoing impact on the industry through innovation, investment and trade and supply chain connections.

Victoria’s manufacturing industry contributes over $30 billion to the Victorian economy annually, employs more than 270,000 people and competes globally with $19.6 billion annual exports in 2017-18.

For the full list of winners and finalists at the 2019 Victorian Manufacturing Hall of Fame Awards, visit Business Victoria's website.