Our Industry

2020 Investing for Growth Awards

Despite the past year being dominated by the COVID-19 global pandemic, we still want to recognise and celebrate the achievements of our member firms in growing great Australian businesses across every sector of the economy in the 12 months to 30 June 2020.

These awards acknowledge the people and firms that demonstrate excellence in leadership, investment acumen, diversity and the broader contribution to they make to our community through their investment activities. Fund managers, investors and advisers all participate in the awards jointly, and each nomination is judged by an independent panel of experts who assess the details of each nomination and identify the standout winners in a variety of award categories.

Leadership Category Winners

Michael Hirshorn Award

Awarded jointly to Quadrant Private Equity for its investment in APM & BioScience Managers for its investment in Avita Medical

The Michael Hirshorn Award honours a private capital backed company whose products or services have been instrumental in delivering a direct positive impact to the community. This year the judges have decided to present the award to two firms, as their nominations were outstanding and representative of how private capital contributes to better community outcomes. These two very diverse businesses presented compelling stories and were difficult for the judges to separate. Both businesses:

  • were local innovators that reached global industry leadership positions;
  • they delivered strong community and social benefits through development and expansion of their care-focused products and services; and
  • provided investors with a great outcome.

Avita Medical and APM are stories that the Australian investment community can be proud of.

Leadership in Diversity and Inclusion Award
QIC Global Private Capital

The purpose of the Leadership in Diversity and Inclusion Award is to showcase firms that demonstrate leadership in diversity and inclusion within the Australian private capital investment industry. This award recognises the work these firms have done amongst industry peers. ‘Diversity in the workplace’ in this context refers to having people in an organisation from a wide range of backgrounds and with different skills, talents and perspectives. This can include having employees of different ages, gender, ethnicity, physical ability, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, work experience, educational background, cognitive style, tenure and organisational function.

It is fantastic to see investors taking a leadership position in terms of the diversity agenda for the industry. This sends a great message to fund managers that will drive important discussions within the investment community.


Firm of the Year
Quadrant Private Equity

Quadrant was 'on the front foot' during the crisis phase of the COVID pandemic, and earned the praise of LPs for proactive communication and investment protection steps. The judges were impressed by how Quadrant has supported the management teams of portfolio companies to respond to challenges during bushfires, health crises and economic fallout of the pandemic. Quadrant paints a great picture of the compassionate, supportive roles private equity can play. Quadrant also impressed the judges with steps it has taken internally to expand into the growth segment and to diversify the gender and cultural mix to of staff to better engage with a broader set of business founders and leaders in portfolio companies.

Presented by:


Deal Category Winners

Venture Capital Investment -

BioScience Managers for their investment in Avita Medical

At Avita Medical, our biggest achievement was the reset of the company’s approach to the regulatory pathway that eventually led to the US FDA approval − the first treatment to be approved for severe thermal burns in over 20 years. The positioning of the company for a successful commercial launch also depended on significant commitment to training the clinicians, and their medical staff, in the use of the new ReCell product. The overnight success took seven years in the making, requiring patience and persistence from the Board, the management, and loyal shareholders.

Small-Cap Investment under $100 million -
Fortitude Investment Partners for their investment in Sunfresh

Sunfresh’s structural and innovative approach to new product development, combined with its strong reputation for food safety and quality, gave the business a competitive advantage to adapt in a rapidly changing consumer demand environment. The successful exit process during the COVID-19 environment was an attribute to the alignment between each of the founders, management, Houston’s Farm and Fortitude. The merger which established the new entity – HS Fresh Food – combines the strengths of the two businesses and creates a third major competitor in the Australian salad market.


Mid-Cap Investment between $100 and $250 million -
Anchorage Capital Partners for their investment in Contract Resources

Operational improvements and major capital investment programs to further improve the quality of the Contract Resources business were implemented under the ownership of Anchorage Capital Partners (ACP). This included the construction of the southern hemisphere’s largest mercury waste treatment plant, commissioned in July 2018, mid-way through ACP’s ownership. Located in the regional community of Karratha, Western Australia, the facility can handle all mercury-contaminated waste produced by the Australian oil and gas sector, now and into the foreseeable future. The facility sets the international benchmark for best practice in safe and efficient mercury waste management and recycling of all elements for alternate use, avoiding the need for mercury contaminated landfill or further processing, as required by other technologies.


Upper Mid-Cap Investment between $250 and $500 million -
Quadrant Private Equity for their investment in Advanced Personnel Management (APM)

Quadrant was attracted to an investment in APM due to its market leading position in the Australian employment services market, including being the largest and highest performing participant in the Disability Employment Services program and a leading participant in the JobActive Employment Services program. The opportunity to partner with APM founder Megan Wynne to continue to grow the strong base in Australia as well as leverage this base to grow into international markets was an attractive investment thesis for Quadrant.



Venture Capital Investment - Carthona Capital for their investment in Sparesbox

Small-Cap Investment under $100 million - Anacacia Capital for their investment in Yumi's Quality Foods

Mid-Cap Investment between $100 and $250 million - Pacific Equity Partners for their investment in Manuka Health

Large-Cap Investment more than $500 million - Bain Capital for their investment in MYOB

Leadership in Diversity and Inclusion - Allegro Funds and One Ventures

Firm of the Year Winner - Anacacia Capital

Best Venture Capital Investment - Brandon Capital Partners for their investment in Elastagen

Best Small-Cap Investment under $100 million (joint winners) - Mercury Capital for their investment in Novotech & Pacific Road for their investment in Aurelia Metals

Best Mid-Cap Investment between $100 - $250 million - Quadrant Private Equity for their investment in ZIP Industries

Best Upper Mid-Cap Investment between $250 - $500 million - CHAMP Private Equity for their investment in Accolade Wines

Michael Hirshorn Award - Quadrant Private Equity for their investment in ICON Cancer Care

Leadership in Diversity - M.H. Carnegie Co

Firm of the Year - Quadrant Private Equity


25th Anniversary Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Industry

Michael Alscher Phil Latham
Gareth Banks Sandy Lockhart
Cameron Blanks Greg Minton
John Brakey Callen O'Brien
Peter Chapman George Penklis
Bob Christiansen Andrew Rothery
John Dyson Tim Sims
Patrick Elliott Joe Skrzynski AO
Paul Evans Judith Smith
Bill Ferris AC Greg Smith
Chris Hadley Brigitte Smith
Rupert Harrington Stuart Wardman-Browne
Robert Inglis Peter Wiggs
Anthony Kerwick John White
Julian Knights


Best Investment of the Last 25 Years - special recognition 
JAFCO for their investment in ResMed
Pacific Equity Partners for their investment in Frucor Beverages
Macquarie Direct Investment for their investment in JB Hi-Fi
CHAMP Ventures for their investment in Amdel
Archer Capital and Bain Capital for their investment in MYOB
Brandon Capital Partners and GBS Ventures for their investment in Spinifex Pharmaceuticals
Anacacia Capital for their investment in Appen
AMWIN for their investment in SEEK

Best Investment of the Last 25 Years - (joint winners)
Advent Partners and KKR for their investment in GenesisCare

GenesisCare provides high-quality, specialised care to patients with cancer and cardiovascular disease – Australia’s two most chronic diseases. Advent Partners invested in GenesisCare in 2009. While in partnership with Advent, the business significantly grew its national footprint and developed a unique shareholding structure by allowing key doctors to own a majority of the shares while retaining responsibility for management of clinics. In 2012, it was sold to KKR, who took the company into its next phase of growth, including expansion into overseas markets. Over the last five years, GenesisCare has won three Australian Investment Council Awards: Best Management Buyout over $500m in 2017 and the Michael Hirshorn Award in 2013 and 2017.

Lifetime Contribution Award 
Peter Wiggs