2018 Annual IBN Conference Awards




Ever since joining the Independent Builders Network over five years ago, Mitch Butler has always been an absolute brand leader for IBN representing his beloved Sunshine Coast with aplomb.

Always the first to book in for our Annual Conference regardless of where it’s held, IBN has always come to count on Mitch and his overwhelming enthusiasm to encourage and inspire other Builder Members in the group.

And with every working day, we also can count on Mitch to live and deliver the five key factors that make your local IBN Member, an outstanding Builder.

Sincerity – Mitch is hands-on with his display home and can be found dealing directly with Clients and Prospective Clients each weekend and they have an absolute joy working in with Mitch.

Excitement – with unquestionable enthusiasm, any conversation or experience with Mitch leaves you in no doubt his passion for building, helping others and networking with fellow IBN Members.

Competence – there are very few Builders that take their job in providing the biggest product anyone would ever buy, as seriously as what Mitch does, with every home carefully supervised and created with attention that belies his strong size as a Builder.  Mitch never rests on his laurel and is always found at each Professional Development opportunity provided by IBN and he never stops learning and coaching others.

Sophistication – anyone who pays attention to the quality of work that Mitch does not only with his display home but with each design and specification he does with his clients, know that a good eye for the latest trend is what also drives Mitch to deliver a cultured product.

Ruggedness – we often say that the perfect IBN Member works hard and plays harder.  When we spoke earlier of Mitch’s passion for all things done to better his business, he also has a driven passion for his fishing and is often seen after hours taking the family camping and proudly displaying his mighty catches to anyone who cares to see.

After five years of consistent work, encouragement to others, support to IBN Head Office as well as fellow Members, 100% attendance at all training and conferencing, we don’t wish to take Mitch Butler for granted any longer and we are proud to finally reward Mitch with the IBN National Builder of the Year Award and we are sure the Sunshine Coast will know all about it!

Congratulations Mitch “Strong” Butler! 



Having such an array of product to submit for this Award, it was inevitable that Owen Built Homes were going to win this award having provided James Hardie with many prime examples of an aesthetic use of the Scyon Product.

In the end, it was four architecturally designed homes at the stunning The Mill precinct, which is situated not far from the Warrnambool CBD and adjacent to the mouth of the Merri River where it meets Bass Strait, that got the gong from James Hardie.  The four townhouses showcased all Scyon products in their glory and with more custom designed homes following these in The Mill, there was an abundance of the cladding on show and it was definitely reward for merit and volume that allows Owen Built to further develop their local strong brand that is all powerful in Victoria’s South West coast region.

Chris and Anna Owen are multiple National Builder of the Year winners with IBN and this year they wanted to strive for this prestigious award and managed to showcase a lot of homes in order to win the highly sought-after prize.

We are proud to announce Owen Built as the 2018 Best use of Scyon award.




With 100% attendance at this year’s IBN National Conference, it was confirmation that our choice for Zone of the Year, Melbourne Outer East, was a resounding winner!

Made up of prolific Builder Members, RMH Homes, Lifestyle Boutique Homes, Craft Built Homes, Transform Homes and diligent newcomer, CH&L Builders; this consistent zone meets regularly, assists each other with trade support, fully supports the IBN Home Show promotions through the whole show and is always in touch with IBN Head Office for new ideas to help enhance our service offering to fellow members.

Melbourne has enjoyed a very strong economic climate over the past few years and it’s challenging times for all Builders with the strong workload being placed on them so now’s better than any other time for the Network to kick into gear. Sandbagging our future work during these biggest times is very important for the Builders and being in a non-competitive environment with each other has allowed IBN to cater for the workload without losing quality control and this Zone acts as a reliable team and we are proud to Award them the National Zone of the Year for 2018.




It’s hard to drive around the Mildura region taking in Gol Gol which sits over the border and not come across the name UBS, Ultimate Building Solutions.

Since joining IBN over two years ago, “Chicken” Macleod as he is affectionately and locally known is as well represented as a trusted brand himself, as he has recruited and built one of the best Builder and Customer Service teams throughout regional Victoria.

Under the watchful eye of Sales & Marketing guru, Mark Cleary, who has good experience working in the New Homes industry under a competing franchise builder, UBS has managed to corner all corners of integrated marketing communication by exposing the UBS IBN brand in print media, including local newspaper and lifestyle magazines; sports sponsorship and massive signage at Gol Gol Football Ground; unique site signage at the NSW – Victoria Border with a backlit site sign; participation in the Mildura radio launch of “OK Google” and the “Home or Away” house and land giveaway promoted via local radio station, River1467 am; a very influential social media campaign backed up by a significant use of IBN First Homes signage around the land estates in the region. Nailing all of this with the inclusion of the IBN logo which is represented by 3-Builders in the Town, gives Mark and Chicken a walk up start for any potential customers looking to find a Builder they can trust.

With a new Display Home underway which has been designed by Mark, UBS will continue their journey of being one of the best and strongest brands throughout all of IBN and are a worthy recipient of the 2018 Best Branding Award.



Business partners Rob Rule and Cameron McInnes, pride themselves on the work they put in to creating and delivering homes of excellence.  Yet as we all know, there are sometimes you need to put your hand up and outsource things out of your speciality and bring in the best to deliver things out of your control hence why so many successful IBN Builder Members concentrate on Building and allow professionals to enhance the customer experience.

It is with this thought that Rob engaged Sarah Mathieson from Harshmellow Media + Design who has taken their business through the digital stratosphere as marketing leads throughout the whole IBN Membership which is covered in 5-states through Australia and an absolute advertisement for Townsville creativity and performance.

Whilst Townsville has not been in the strongest of economic times for the building industry over the past decade you wouldn’t know it with the exposure that Reef Coast IBN North Queensland has engaged with since taking on the partnership with Harshmellow and we all know that when the market picks up, Reef Coast will be the number one brand on prospective clients’ shopping lists!  As we always say to our Builder Members, “when it’s busy prepare for when you’re quiet, and when you’re quiet prepare for when you are busy” and with changes in the market comes security for the smart Builders of which Reef Coast are indeed.

Combining the latest in industry and local news, sharing IBN relevant posts and their own blogs, Reef Coast has done an amazingly consistent job of delivering information that helps them create a brand awareness unsurpassed by any IBN Members through 2018 and you would be surprised after witnessing their posts that Reef Coast aren’t themselves a National Builder such is their command of their digital media!

For a combined effort and reward for strong dedication through tough times that will see them reap what they have sown very soon, we congratulate Rob, Cam and Sarah for their hard work and we look forward to seeing more positive posts in time to come.



It’s very unique that a first-year Member with the Independent Builders Network wins a National Builder of the Month Award, so it is no surprise that we have awarded Adam Nielsen, Rose City Constructions in Warwick, placed in the Queensland Darling Downs district, our National First Year Builder award.

As outlined when Adam managed to win a National Builder of the Month award, he has worked closely with our Chairman, Kevin Renwick OAM, who assisted him utilising the best out of the National and Local Supplier deals that IBN provides to its Members.  Being in a smaller town this enabled Rose City to compete with the larger, impersonal “out of towners” as he calls them and through co-branding with IBN he has built a strong local brand for the locals to follow.

Reducing build costs has assisted Adam with his retail pricing and is now noticed as a competitive builder whilst retaining his hands-on construction skills and this has cumulated with strong land developer relationships which enables Rose City to capture a strong market.

We will definitely be seeing Rose City more and more as they progress.




For the Independent Builders Network Head Office, there are times when reward for Members’ effort is sweeter than anything else we can achieve in our business.  It also becomes more satisfying when you have a genuine “nice guy” or in this case “Nice guys” who, through their own work ethic a willingness to learn and have a go and you soon see a great result.  This is where that honest Husband and Wife, family business, becomes a successful small business with a credible work/life/spirit balance which is what William and Crystal Braaksma of Lifestyle Boutique Home Builders enjoy late in 2018.

As mentioned above, Will and Crystal follow through with action on all that they are taught and through their on-field success, have been able to assist the next generation and are also assisting state-wide regional Land Development business, Vic Property Group - another family business, owned by the Cellante Family – with their picturesque Korumburra Estate and soon will be building Land Sales Display Home a new Alpine Range design.

With consistent delivery of quality new homes and a winning relationship with their clients, being so hands on has been brilliant for the Braaksmas and they enjoy a very strong reputation for excellence in their field and that is obviously recognised by IBN with acknowledging Will and Crystal this Award.





When first joining the Independent Builders Network, Rhys Auliff managed to quickly get himself to his first National Conference and immediately he knew that IBN was the perfect fit for him and his business.

Chasing volume work Rhys realised he needed to get off the tools and empower and delegate to his staff the roles that Builders can be reluctant to let go of.  Working on the business rather than in the business and with a clear vision, Rhys has been able to find the right people to take OneBuild where it needs to go and strong communication and good people make that a winning formula under his guidance.

Saying NO to renovations and being clear on his product mix has also been a factor that many builders find hard to do and having clarity on what you need to be excellent as has resulted in Rhys being recognised for this National Award that places OneBuild as the biggest deliverer of Homes throughout the Network.




When it comes to the Network in the Independent Builders Network’s name, none do it any better than Greg Paull who represents Transform Homes.

You will see Greg and his great team, Business Partner, Clive Webster and possibly more of his staff helping out each day at the Melbourne Home Shows and you will also find them attending Zone Meetings on both sides of Melbourne where Greg’s expertise, generosity and teamwork is highly sought after by many of the Melbourne Builders who are grateful for his honesty.

On top of this, IBN relies on Greg as one of our Advocates who is always available to chat to prospective and new Members and anyone looking to join IBN is left with no doubt that the business is a strong and useful service offering and that Builders also need to “make it happen” which is the catchcry of our Founding Chairman, Kevin Renwick OAM.

From the IBN Head Office, we are grateful for Greg’s integrity and commitment to all things IBN and we thank Greg Paull for being there for both us and his fellow Members.




The Chairman’s Award is personally provided by Founder Kevin Renwick OAM, and recipients traditionally have been outstanding in our Field for going well and truly beyond the basic requirement for a successful IBN Member.


This chairman award goes to Kev Morris for making it happen which seems to be Kevin Renwick’s doctrine and something Renwick asks of his Members regularly. Kev is well into his 4th year with IBN and is currently embarking on his 2nd display home with IBN, an "Adaptable Living" display home and has designed the new "Sarah" Design to meet the Silver LHA standard.


Kevin proudly co-brands with IBN to show his potential clients that he is part of a larger national network however still providing the service of a local builder. Congratulations Kevin Morris.





As one of the longest standing Members in the whole Independent Builders Network, Ingomar Mathes and Brian McNamara, have virtually joined up with Sales Guru, John Lizars, and jointly taken them to places very few Builders in regional Victoria, let alone Gippsland, have ever been with half a decade of many beautiful homes handed over.

The joint Family Business takes in many wonderful people to make it happen and our Chairman, Kevin Renwick OAM, has watched the business grow and succeed and has taken much joy in how well IBG has done in their time with IBN.

With outstanding display homes and savvy shop space displayed in the past, IBG is set to continue their amazing journey and we wish them the best for the new year.

That's a wrap on another IBN Annual Conference - bring on next year!