The 2016 SBIA Awards Night was held at the
Crowne Plaza, Coogee on Thursday, May 26.

May 27, 2016, Sydney, NSW: The Australian Surf and Boardsports Association held its annual awards in Sydney on Thursday May 26, celebrating the high achievers of the Australia’s multi-million dollar surf industry.  Held at the Crowne Plaza in Coogee, the night attracted over 200 retailers and brand representatives from all over Australia.

Both retailers and brands were recognised with 30 awards presented across a number of retail, product and marketing categories. The prestigious Service to the Industry award went to Australian surfing legend and four-time world champion Mark Richards. Mark is not only one of Australia’s greatest ever surfers, but also one of its leading surfboard shapers and manufacturers, his famous MR label a familiar sight on Australia’s beaches for over four decades.

Mark wasn’t the only Australian surfing legend at the awards with fellow world champs Tom Carroll, Mark Occhilupo and Damien Hardman also on hand to present awards.

There were plenty of highlights in the retail awards, including Saltwater Winner/Stormriders winning the Australian Retailer of the Year for the second year running.  The coveted Core Boardstore was won by Slimes, owned by Central Coast surfer and long-time surf retailer Paul Green while Merewether’s Sanbah was named Breakthrough Retailer for of the year.

On the brand side, relative newcomer Vissla has announced its arrival as a significant player when it was awarded the Breakthrough Brand of the year. Rip Curl’s attention to technical details was well rewarded when it took out product of the year in the boardshort, wetsuit and surf accessories categories. The Otis Youngblood won sunglass of the year while Reef was the number one footwear brand.

It was also a big night for Billabong, taking out swimwear brand of the year and the men’s and women’s brand of the year. To cap things off Billabong also won the men’s and women’s marketing campaigns of the year. Patagonia was another big winner, taking the environment award and also the product innovation award for its neoprene-free Yulex wetsuit. The coveted surfboard of the year was won by Gold Coast based manufacturer JS Industries for its popular HYFI Blak Box II.

It was another big night and SBIA president Anthony Wilson was delighted with its success: “It’s nights like tonight that really sets our industry apart, it really did have it all,” Wilson said. “We acknowledged 4 times World Champ Mark Richards’s contribution with the Service to Industry Award. We fare welled industry stalwarts, Rip Curl’s Steve Kay and Billabong’s Mike Savage, in style and we celebrated our best in class!”

The awards were sponsored by Tyro (Retail Awards), Brandscope (Retail Awards), Shop for Shops (Shop fit-out award), Davidsons Business Advisors (Environment Award),  Sense (Product Innovation), Australian Surf Business magazine (service Awards), Coastalwatch and Surfing World (marketing and brand awards), Stryker Media and Surfing Australia.

About Australian Surf Industry Awards:

The Australian Surf Industry Awards are held annually with entries opening January each year. The awards were launched in 2011 to celebrate the Industry’s outstanding Retailers, Products and Brands. With 30 categories ranging from Core Boardstore to Men’s Brand of the Year the Awards also recognise outstanding Service to the Industry.

Photos from the Awards Night.

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