Perth-based Nuheara and technology leaders Bob Cross and Greg Riebe received honorary prizes at this year’s Lateral INCITE awards.
The awards, which have continued for nearly 30 years, acknowledge the contributions from Western Australian technology leaders, entrepreneurs and companies have made to the sector.
The three recipients were awarded virtually this morning.
The program’s top prize, the INCITE Achiever of the Year award, recognises an individual’s contribution to the ICT industry in WA, as well as nationally and globally.
It was awarded to Dr Cross, who has worked in the ICT sector for nearly 40 years.
Awards chairs Sue Findlay and Niamh Toohey said Dr Cross led software development teams for the implementation of some of WA’s largest ICT projects including with Datec, IBM and Computer Sciences Corporation.
He then moved into the academic world where he established key partnerships for ECU with India, China and South-East Asia.
Dr Cross is currently a director of management consulting business NOW Business Mastery, having served in the role for a decade.
Previously, he was a principal at Whiteknight Business Consulting and the chair of The Professional Association for Australia's ICT sector.
The second honorary prize, the Dr Mal Bryce Tech Company of the Year, was awarded to hearing device company Nuheara.
The business has developed ‘smart hearing’ products including the recent IQbuds2 MAX, which has won multiple innovation awards. It has more enhanced features than Apple’s AirPods and Google’s Pixel Buds, INCITE says.
Ms Findlay said IQbuds2 sat between high-end headsets and sophisticated hearing aids that were both affordable and accessible. Time magazine included the product in its 'Best Inventions of 2020' piece.
The award to Nuheara was named after former WA deputy premier Mal Bryce.
Dr Bryce, who helped establish Scitech's discovery centre, passed away at the age of 74 in early 2018.
The third ICT prize, the Pearcey Award, was presented to Greg Riebe.
It acknowledges entrepreneurs that have taken a risk made or made a significant difference to the ICT sector, INCITE says.
Mr Riebe has worked as a mentor for more than 20 years in the industry, supporting emerging technology businesses. His services included readiness, capitalisation, breakthrough growth readiness and execution.
“He is also a mentor, speaker, adviser and the recent recipient of the 2020 Angel Investor of the Year Award, at a national level,” Ms Findlay and Ms Toohey said.
Awards chief judge Celia Joordan said the panel was impressed with the achievements and contributions from WA entrepreneurs each year.
“This year is no different as we received another round of exceptional entries, with every entry going through a rigorous judging process, involving a number of industry and technology leaders carefully viewing all applications against best practice selection criteria as part of a two-staged judging process,” Ms Joordan said.
“Congratulations to all the 2020 honorary awards nominees for your peer and industry recognition and a special congratulations to the winners."
The ICT Awards is the longest-running and premier technology event in the state, INCITE says. This year marked the 29th program.