Like so many other people, Justin Lange's garage was full of clutter.
His lack of space and frustration at not being able to easily access his car led to Justin developing Stow-High - a remote-control storage device that uses overhead wall space.
Using the remote, the storage shelf lowers automatically when someone wants something from the shelf.
The idea saw Mr Lange named the overall winner of the Be.Bendigo Invention and Innovation Awards on Monday night. He also won the open category.
"Fundamentally, I had the problem of a (cluttered) garage," Mr Lange said. "Space was my issue and I needed something up high that comes (down) to me."
Other winners from the awards were Will Yang in the health category and Andrew Steed with Studio U in the environmental sustainability category.
Mr Yang developed the Lenexa Medical Smart Sheet System, a smart sheet overlay that features information technology that uses a body heat map to allow clinicians and carers to see where and when a patient is likely to develop a pressure injury.
Mr Steed and Studio U developed a prefabricated housing system that uses hempcrete to produce a negative carbon footprint and can be constructed in less than two weeks.
Before inventing Stow-High, Mr Lange unsuccessfully tried to find something similar at national and international hardware and manufacturing stores.
"It was in my head for a couple of years before I got the opportunity to invent a solution for it," he said.
The opportunity came when Mr Lange took a voluntary redundancy from his job to focus on his idea.
"It was a moment in time where I thought 'if I don't do it now, I'll never do it'," he said. "It was over a year of processing, designing and refining it then getting feedback. We're aiming for December to begin manufacturing and are hoping to have it assembled and distributed in Bendigo."
Mr Lange's storage solution has already proved popular with consumer testing opening up other possibilities for the storage solution.
"It keeps evolving. The concept was to solve my problem but from the consumer testing I did, others said they would use for shoes, put in the laundry for chemicals or outside for garden equipment. Areas I hadn't thought about," he said.
Connecting entrepreneurs with businesses and bigger picture thinking was the theme at the BIIF's symposium on Monday.
Festival director David Hughes said the symposium featured three different spaces - Seed, Growth and Vision - targeted at start-ups and entrepreneurs, small-to-medium businesses and big picture thinking respectively.
"A lot of the value in an event like this comes from the networking angle," he said.
"If we just got a bunch of founders, start-ups and entrepreneurs together, it's great that they can network, but how can they connect to small, medium or big business who might be their customers who purchase from them?
"Creating that networking is one of the reasons we do this."
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