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SEND IN THE CLOUDS Take a closer look at cloud computing

CANBERRA INTERNATIONAL MUSIC FESTIVAL A unique creative marketing opportunity for business

SUPER AND ESTATE PLANNING Make sure you're across the new rules MAY 2013





GROWING Identify your key market



How to influence customers



Ways to








Healthy Identity looks at the benefits

What to avoid when recruiting

The relationship between the board and management

Green thinking makes good business sense

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Grow your business Grow your business - the cover story for this issue is all about growing your business. RSM Bird Cameron have put together an eye catching feature TIM to highlight the elements BENSON that will assist to help Editor your business grow. These include: Identifying your ket market; reducing waste; influencing customers and the lifetime value of your customers. In addition to this you are also invited to a free seminar on 12 June at - The Eye, Regatta Point Business Centre. Check out this great story now at page 21 and reserve your spot at the free seminar. Lasting the test of time - Also in this issue we continue our series on OPC and the services they provide to their clients. This month we look at the Gillespie Group. OPC has been providing IT services to the Gillespie Group for over 24 years. Find out why this relationship has lasted the test of time (page12). Changes to 457 visas - Elringtons lawyers outline in their 'Business Law' advice column this month changes to 457 visas that will come into effect from July 2013. There has been a lot of 'hoo haa' about these visas lately, but it seems everyone has one - including one of the Prime Minister's staff (page 28). That old chestnut - The Australian Institute of Company Directors discusses the 'Relationship between board and management' in their 'Corporate Governance' advice column this month. Phil Butler explains why it is important to setting culture and tone of the relationship between the board and the CEO and rest of the senior executives.

Canberra International Music Festival - B2B is a proud sponsor of the CIMF which runs from 10 - 19 May. If you love classical music then this is for you. More violins and cellos than you can poke a stick at. And of course a good smattering of pianos and violas to-boot. All performing in the delightful ambiance of some of Canberra's best venues. So if you want to get along, or even sponsor some high-art, read the story on page 16. RSPCA Million Paws Walk 2013 - B2B is also a proud supporter of this great event put on by the RSPCA. My family, Liz, Alexandria and the two golden retrievers, Casey and Honey, will all be pounding the pavement on Sunday 19. But it isn't only for dog owners. The RSPCA says come on down and join the walk and support the RSPCA raise a million dollars (see advertisement Send all comments to back page).



your gateway to business support Visit our website for a full list of events, latest news and more!



CONTENTS OPINION 10 When did we start and when did we finish − Farrar Gesini & Dunn explains

FEATURES 12 Unique solutions for unique clients − OPC IT and Gillespie Group


16 Philanthropy In Concert With Creativity 18 Send in the Clouds - Sinking or Soarin with Susan Kirally

COVER STORY 21 Growing your business with RSM Bird Cameron


29 ADVICE FROM THE EXPERTS 30 ACCOUNTING 7 ways to minimise tax liabilities before the EoFY By RSM Bird Cameron BUSINESS LAW Employing foreign workers By Elringtons Lawyers 31 BUSINESS RELOCATION Organisations on the move By Allied Pickford's Business Relocations


CORPORATE GOVERNANCE Relationship between board and management By Australian Institute of Company Directors 32 DOCUMENT MANAGEMENT Green thinking makes good business sense By Ricoh ESTATE PLANNING New super rules and estate planning By Certus Law


33 HEALTH Road tripping: eating healthy By Healthy Identity


34 WEBSITES Five steps to improve your website By Synapse Worldwide A2B: ASSOCIATIONS TO BUSINESS 35 MINISTERS MESSAGE: Australian Business License and Information Service 36 CANBEERA BUSINESS COUNCIL: High Speed Rail Recommendations – Anything But High Speed! 37 ACT EXPORTERS: Have you entered the ACT Chief Ministers Export Awards this year? 38 ACT & REGION CHAMBER OF COMMERCE & INDUSTRY: ACT & Region Indigenous Expo BUSINESS NETWORKING 06 B2B @ ACT & Region Chamber of Commerce & Industry Business after Business, Irish Club 06 B2B @ ACT & Region Chamber of Commerce & Industry Young Business Network 07 B2B @ ACT & Region Chamber of Commerce & Industry Business after Busines, Crowne Plaza 08 B2B @ Chamber Women in Business Series Luncheon 09 B2B @ Chamber Women in Business Networking 41 PROPERTY 42 BENDIGO BANK It's that other time of year again. 44 BRINDABELLA BUSINESS BROKERS Potential for the business going forward

RECRUITMENT The top 10 mistakes managers make when hiring By PCA People


ISSN 1833-8232

34 RISK MANAGEMENT Risk Management 101 By Paladin Risk Management Services



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When did we start and when did we finish? Defining when a relationship starts and when it ends is not as simple as you might think

By Ann Northcote, Director, Farrar Gesini Dunn


ne of the first things a family lawyer will ask a new client is when their relationship started and ended. To some people this is not a difficult question. They may not have lived together until their date of marriage and that after a period of unhappiness, they moved out on a particular day. The reason why it is important is because the legislation is built around concepts such as the duration of the marriage or relationship and contributions made including indirect contributions, nonfinancial contributions, and contributions as homemaker. The duration of a defacto or same sex relationship is also important for jurisdictional purposes. Unless you have had a child together or substantial contributions have been made, for defacto and same sex couples you need to have been in the relationship for two years. Similarly, you only have 2 years from the date you separate to make an application for financial issues to be resolved. Your date of separation is important if the law is about to change. In the family law area, there have been at least 3 occasions when the date of separation was crucial. The first of these was in 1975 when the Family Law Act was introduced and the entire family law system was overturned. In 1989, the child support system was overhauled but only applied to people whose marriages had broken down after October 1989 (or who had a child born after that date). In more recent times, in 2009 the federal system took over


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property settlement for same sex and defacto couples but only applied to those couples whose relationship had ended after 1 March 2009. The date of separation has always been important for obtaining a divorce since the legal requirement is separation for 12 months. To separate, you need to form the intention, communicate that intention and then act upon it. Couples often don’t live together although they regard themselves as still in an intact relationship. For example, one person is posted overseas but the rest of the family remains behind either because the posting is unsuitable or children need to finish schooling. Similarly, one party may be in a nursing home and not be living with the other person but the relationship has not ended. Therefore, if you form the view while living separately from your spouse that your relationship is over you need to communicate that either verbally or in writing. You can, however, be separated while still living together. This is a concept known as “separation under the one roof”. Your lawyer can assist you in helping work out whether you have been separated under the one roof or not. Just as knowing when a relationship ends can be difficult; knowing when it starts can be even trickier. If parties gave up their individual leases on premises they were renting and took out a joint lease on a property then again that is simple. However, what often occurs is that


parties spend occasional nights at each other’s homes which, over time, increases until it may be full time. There may be periods where fewer nights are spent or where the relationship is suffering some problems and they spend few nights together. Knowing when you are in a relationship is not just important in the family law arena. Government benefits and allowances are different depending on whether you are in a relationship or not and there are penalties for failing to disclose at the appropriate time. Similarly, members of the defence forces and people on overseas postings are entitled to certain allowances depending on whether or not they are in a relationship. Superannuation benefits upon death may be payable to a person in depending on the duration of the relationship with the deceased person at time of death. Next month we will discuss a question that is related to this topic. Forget about duration of relationship-what happens if one party says: ”We were never in a relationship”? For Family Law Advice contact Farrar Gesini Dunn Level 5, Colonial , Mutual Building 17-21 University Avenue, Canberra City ACT P (02) 6257 6477 | F (02) 6257 4382 E |


John Gillespie (Principal, Gillespie Group) & Brett Norton (Managing Director, OPC)

Photo by Andrew Sikorski



he Gillespie Group is a team of accountants and financial advisors who offer a wide range of expertise and experience in the world of business, taxation, wealth creation and finance. They are focussed and committed to providing the highest levels of personalised support to their clients and, like OPC, they understand that people and their businesses are unique and require timely and accurate solutions tailored to suit their individual needs. Their clients, like OPC’s, come in all shapes and sizes. OPC has been supplying the Gillespie Group with their hardware and IT support services since 1989. Our business philosophies are similar in that we understand that there is no such thing as one size fits all when it comes to financial services or IT. We are committed to excellence in our respective fields and believe that working in partnership with our clients is critical. “Effective IT support is about understanding the business imperatives of an organisation and being flexible to meet those needs” said Brett Norton, Managing Director OPC IT


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Being client-focussed requires innovation, flexibility and adaptability. In order to be able to provide its myriad of services to its multitude of clients, Gillespie’s has relied on OPC to look after the information hub of its business – its IT infrastructure. OPC provides a tailored Managed Service Solution (MSS) to Gillespie’s that ensures its internal operations and remote accessibility is performing perfectly at all times. Gillespie’s have also engaged OPC’s skills for several major infrastructure projects over the years. “OPC has provided Gillespie Group with professional and reliable IT services for over 24 years. Without OPC’s strong systems and support we would not be able to provide our clients with the high quality financial services we pride ourselves on” said John Gillespie, Principal Gillespie Group

Since 1985 OPC has become synonymous with the provision of the highest standards of technical services and provision of business solutions throughout Canberra and the surrounding regions.


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Braces are just for kids. False. Technology has changed a lot over the past 10 years, there are more options for adults who would like to finally do something about their teeth. In fact, at Embrace Orthodontists, almost half of our patients are adults. Have a look at the three options now available overpage.


of women associate straight teeth with a nice smile*

* Results from the Galaxy Invisalign Smile Survey from females 18-35 years


1 SureSmile

2 Invisalign

3 Lingual Braces

what is it?

what is it?

what is it?

SureSmile involves taking a 3D scan of the patient’s teeth and jaws. The information is then logged into a computer program, which sends the treatment to a robot—there are only four of these in the world. The robot bends the wire very precisely, at an angle human hands can’t. As a result, you have super accurate wires that are moving the teeth more directly and efficiently. It gives the Doctor more accurate control over the patients teeth movement and reduces the time in treatment by up to 9 months. Embrace Orthodontists is the only provider of SureSmile in the ACT.

Invisalign uses a series of clear, custom-made aligners to gradually move your teeth.

Hidden behind the teeth and out of sight, no one will know you are wearing braces— unless you tell them! Embrace provides both types of lingual braces, Incognito and Lingual SureSmile. Incognito braces are individually customised to each tooth, giving precise and accurate control. Lingual SureSmile, also hidden from view, is combined with our SureSmile wire technology to significantly reduce overall treatment time.

PROS: Significantly faster treatment times CONS: Visible, need to avoid certain foods and take care to make sure you brush properly

How much does it cost to straighten my teeth?


PROS: Virtually invisible, comfortable to wear and easy to remove. Can be taken out to clean your teeth, when eating and for special occasions CONS: Longer treatment time than compared with fixed braces Temptation to take alingers out but you must keep them in to get the results

PROS: Virtually invisible and high quality control over tooth movement CONS: Every appointment is longer as it is more labour intensive. Tongue placement feels different initially

Before & After


t Embrace Orthodontists we realise that orthodontic treatment is an investment in your health and wellbeing. We truly believe that everyone should be able to enjoy the benefits of having a perfect smile, so we try and make it that bit easier by providing interest free financing options and plans from as little as $75 a week. The total cost of treatment depends on the individual case—how complex it is and how long you will be in treatment for. For example, some people may need Invisalign on their upper arch only, whilst other people may need a full set of braces. As a general figure, treatment ranges from $5,000–$9000. (Lingual Braces are not included in this estimate as cases can vary significantly.) Early intervention cases (phase 1) vary from $1500–$3000. For more information on Early Intervention, please go to

The above pictures are actual patients of Embrace Orthodontists. Individual results do vary. Taking the time to have an initial consultation with one of our Orthodontists is important. After all, they can listen to your concerns, assess the complexity of your case and best explain the different options that are suitable for you as an individual. The initial consultation is between 30 to 40 minutes and the fee for the consult is $115. So don’t put off the decision any longer—book an appointment at

embrace orthodontists I Manuka I Belconnen For more information or to book an appointment:


Philanthropy In Concert With Creativity A Unique Creative Marketing Opportunity For Business By Suzanne Kiraly


f you are a B2B enterprise it makes sense to be advertising in the B2B magazine and other vehicles just like this, to reach that specific, highly targeted market. You know the audience and you are not wasting dollars in a “scattergun” approach, where you have no idea of the audience you are reaching. Of course, creativity and clarity in your messaging should certainly be a feature. Creative approaches will differentiate you from your competitors. Your business should also be considering supporting local creative community initiatives. Corporate social responsibility is an idea that has been around for decades, but it has certainly gained currency of late, since global communications and social media make such mass exposure possible. Supporting a “not-for-profit” organisation offers positive exposure and wide reach. Indeed, it is creating meaningful experiences for many. There is an army of corporations out there who have not only recognised this new opportunity, but have embarked on partnerships with Not-For-Profits, in creative marketing projects. But there are lessons to be learnt. Take the Pepsi Refresh Project, which was originally a social impact strategy that Pepsi embarked on, after making the bold decision to replace their expensive advertising for the Superbowl. They partnered with many charity organisations and it was a campaign “for good”, which asked such questions as “What do you care about?” and urged us to “Do good.” But it was far too broad, much too wide, and with too many stakeholders involved. It wasn’t long before Pepsi changed their tack – they now have a new approach. They are now tapping into a “Live for now…” philosophy and cashing in on our need in today’s world, to be living in the here and now – instant gratification - as well as the WIFM factor. (What’s in it for me?) It’s an interesting case study and there is a good analysis of what went wrong here: posts/why-pepsi-canned-the-refresh-project So, is it a swap from “do good-ing” 16

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and does it infer that we have become a hedonistic society, only interested in self and no one else? Well, not really! Psychology tells us that we do indeed care about others and the growing army of volunteers in this country attests to that. But we do care about ourselves too. What makes sense from a business marketing perspective is an approach that benefits us and benefits others at the same time. Research shows that people feel good when what they spend on, benefits others. Pepsi recognises this and so too, should we! Now, if you find a not-for-profit organisation that you can support, which provides a unique cultural and entertaining experience for the many, you have the right formula for a successful marketing campaign! You see it’s a win-win-win formula from all stakeholders. And if that organisation is a cultural asset to your own city – a local festival with the highest per capita attendance at music events in Australia, then that’s a proposition well worth your consideration!

The Canberra International Music Festival

There is growing recognition that music is one of Canberra’s greatest cultural assets. Canberra is home to a vibrant and dynamic music scene and the Canberra International Music Festival (in its 19th year), is regarded as Australia’s foremost fine music festival, in part due to its policy of commissioning new works from Australia’s leading composers. It’s the Festival’s point of difference. Businesses will benefit from an association with such a major annual event, which is one of the highlights of the Centenary of Canberra celebrations in 2013. The Festival showcases the very best of what Canberra has to offer. And it is just one example of a community run event, which provides a range of opportunities for partnerships with the local business community.


Greater engagement by Canberra’s business community in developing our cultural assets will deliver long-term benefits – a culturally vibrant community is a great place to live and work as well as a major tourist destination. The following options are available for businesses that wish to support a local community run event like the CIMF: • Contribute to the CIMF annual Community Commissions Fund ($150 $5000) All the funds to support the Festival’s commissioning policy are raised from external sources. The CIMF 2013 Community Commission will support the commissioning and presentation of Great South Land, by the prominent Australian composer, Peter Sculthorpe. The Festival is seeking to raise $20,000 to fund the commissioning of what will be the largest and most ambitious work it has commissioned to date. The work will premiere at the 2013 CIMF. • Support an individual concert ($1000 - $2000) • Support an international artist performing in the Festival ($2000 - $5000) • Naming rights to a concert of your choice ($5000) • Become a long term sponsor (various levels of sponsorship available commencing at $5000) Of course, there may be other creative ways your business could support this local festival. The Festival presents more than 30 concerts and runs from 10-19 May. “Hearing is Believing”. For more information and enquiries go to

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Send in the clouds – sinking or soaring? Cloud computing first came to my notice when I tipped the contents of my coffee mug onto my Macbook Pro and congratulated myself on having the forethought of regularly backing up all of my files on an external hard drive. Only to find that when I had purchased the replacement laptop and plugged in the external back-up drive, it too, was faulty! It was a wake-up call in terms of the business implications of losing all your files. Luckily, I found a geek service, which managed to successfully recover the data off the external drive. But it was a lesson I heeded well so I embarked on a journey to discover the virtual world and what it can offer to business. For those not yet in the know, “cloud” computing simply refers to the internet. It is about accessing your information and programs virtually, rather than having the information/programs sitting on your computer. Benefits • The cloud offers flexibility, It means you can connect to your business from anywhere and anytime. • Cost benefits are also a consideration. Rather than paying for costly programs, for example, that you may not need to use too often, you can subscribe to a platform-based program • Collaboration Capacity – you can use cloud computing to collaborate on documents and communicate with others working with your organisation


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• Flexibility of work practices – in the age where working from home (or anywhere) gives us more freedom, this is a definite advantage Risks Of course there are sometimes risks involved in terms of security, data protection and continuity, when working in the cloud environment. Each business considering working virtually should have a Plan B in place in the case of disaster, whether it is a natural disaster or to do with the service provider’s reliability, it is important to consider your options prior to commitment. The Australian Government has provided some valuable information on security considerations here at: infosec/cloudsecurity.htm I personally welcome the development of Cloud computing, as I believe that the benefits far outweigh the risks for me personally, but then I am not a large corporation and the risks for me are smaller. In short, every business must consider both sides before plunging deeply into the Clouds – after all, in a business sense, it pays to be proactive as you would much prefer to soar than to sink! Suzanne Kiraly (Digital Consultant, Business Storyteller & Social Media Trainer)

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the web

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Corporate Partners

(02) 6285 55 02






Identify your key market



How to influence customers



Ways to



CUSTOMER LIFETIME VALUE Striving for increased growth is an objective for most businesses however the path is not always a smooth one. RSM Bird Cameron want to help you make it easier by giving you the tools to grow your profit and improve your business. Having the rights tools and getting a plan together makes it easier.

B 2 B M A G A Z I N E   M A Y 2 0 13






Profit is the lifeblood of any organisation. Without profit and cashflow you won’t be able to guarantee your long term survival. Profit generates the capital that you need to grow your business. Without it you cannot reinvest for the future. Waste removal in any organisation is the easiest opportunity to increase profits. Studies have found that waste in a company can be as much as 30% of the operating costs. This leaves a lot of room for improvement in all businesses. To eliminate waste it is therefore important to fully understand exactly what waste is and where it can be found. We need to identify the most prominent areas where waste occurs in organizations and what tools and processes are available to help us with this task. Taking a strategic approach to managing waste reduction can bring a range of key benefits to your business


ANALYSIS We a spend a lot of time working on our own business – but do we take the time to look at what our competitors are doing? Why do we need a Competitor Analysis? Your competitors are your best friends. They test the market for you. They leave gaps in the market for you. They make mistakes that advantage you. By first analysing and then monitoring your competitors you can significantly improve your own business – even if it is just by learning from their mistakes. Most of your customers will have dealt with your competitors. They will know who is the most expensive in the market, who has the better quality and the better service. They base their purchase decisions on this information. You also need to know this information as it is the cues that they respond to. A formal competitor analysis will allow you to discover any gaps in the competitive advantage of your rivals and to develop specific plans to overcome them.


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LIFETIME VALUE Estimating Customer Lifetime Value will help you make decisions about how to allocate your marketing and business development resources. How? It will provide you with an estimate of the value to your business of each customer over the expected lifetime of your business relationship. You can then make informed decisions about what resources you should invest in and then building that relationship. It will also help you answer questions like where should you apply your marketing focus and how much should you spend on existing customers versus new ones. When you know what each customer is worth then marketing is an investment in the future of your business, not an expense.



SEGMENTATION Market segmentation is simply a tool that helps you to understand your market and the needs of your customers. Once you understand this better you can refine your product or service, positioning and marketing. A key to growing your business is to review the market regularly. You can segment the market by Product, Geography or Customer. This then lets you answer questions like: • • • •

Is your segment size enough to make a profit? Is it seasonal or cyclical? Is this long term or a quick profit? Is it shrinking or growing?

waste in a company can be as much as 30% of the operating costs”


DEMAND Do you really think about the ways that you can increase demand for your product or services? Do you work on ways that can help customers come to you? A lot of success in the modern business environment is generated by creating demand and creating triggers for customers. This can be critical to the sales process and driving growth. We estimate that only about 10% of your customers are in the “buying” stage. Good business should be looking beyond this part of the customer buying cycle and putting energy into the potential customers that are still in the “satisfaction” stage. Understanding the customer buying cycle helps us to do this and generate sales demand. This is where we can generate real revenue growth and hit those sales targets that will make your business a success.

VISION Defining the vision for your business will make your future as clear and as powerful as it should be. Your vision should give you a clear understanding of where you are heading so that when we consider the “now” you know what is important and what is not. Clearly defining your vision allows you to prioritise the principles aligned to the achievement of your business objectives. Once you have this you can then set achievable targets and timeframes. In setting your vision we consider – what we do, what are we good at, who are our customers – now and in the future, what do they value and how will we measure our success. Once we understand all of this the plan for the future growth of the business becomes easier to develop.

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GROWTH STRATEGIES Why do we want to grow – because a business that is not growing and changing stagnates. Growth gives us the returns that help to meet personal goals and ensure that your business is sustainable. It allows you to improve what you are doing and the product or service that you are delivering. There are four main ways that you can grow a business and they include market penetration, market expansion, product expansion and diversification.

Double check that you have thought of all the options. Can you think of any existing products that you can grow within your existing market? This is what we term market penetration. Have you got any existing products that we can sell into new markets? We call this market expansion. Have you any new products that we can sell into your existing markets? We call this product expansion. Have you got any new products that you could develop in your new markets? We call this diversification.


Most times when it comes to pricing we are either guessing or copying what others in the market place are doing. This means that we may not be maximising profits and could be leaving lots of revenue on the table – either by not charging enough or by charging too much. Deliberate pricing strategies can help you maximise the return from your business. How often do you feel that you need to be the lowest price to win the sale? Evidence shows that price is not always what a customer cares about. However you need a strategy to be sure. You also need to consider a strategy for raising your prices – at what level can you raise your prices without customers objecting. If you get this strategy right, you can raise prices without them even knowing that you are doing it, let alone objecting. 24

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BUSINESS SEMINAR RSM Bird Cameron is committed to helping you grow your business. Talk to us today and we can start helping you achieve the results you want. Our free seminar on 12 June 2013 is a great place to start learning what you need to know to improve your business. You will benefit from our years of experience helping business. We will also be applying the tools developed by the accountants network Mindshop – some to the best secrets to business. To attend the free RSM Bird Cameron Growing Your Business seminar email your details to and we will send you further details.



BUSINESS SEMINAR Striving for increased growth is an objective for most businesses however the path is not always a smooth one. Understanding what products, services, people, industries and market segments will provide you the desired growth and then what strategies are required to ensure you achieve your goals is critical. This workshop is designed to enable attendees to develop growth strategies for their organisations and then build in safeguards to ensure continued success.

Identify your key market 5 steps in reducing waste How to influence customers 4 ways to grow a business Customer lifetime value The workshop culminates in the use of the one page plan to document your goals.


Wednesday 12 June 2013

Where The Eye, Regatta Point Business Centre Time

5.30 – 6.30pm

Refreshments will be served after the presentation. RSVP required Cost


(02) 6217 0300

ADVICE 30 30




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7 ways to minimise tax liabilities before the EoFY by Mateusz Jakubaszek, RSM Bird Cameron

BUSINESS LAW Employing foreign workers by Nanae Yoshiwara, Elringtons Lawyers

Organisations on the move By Gary Green, Allied Pickfords Business Relocations

Relationship between board and management By Phil Butler, Australian Institute of Company Directors

DOCUMENT MANAGEMENT Green thinking makes good business sense By Iain Heddle, Ricoh

ESTATE PLANNING New super rules and estate planning By Stephen Bourke, Certus Law

Road tripping: eating healthy By Robbie Manzano, Healthy Identity

The top 10 mistakes managers make when hiring By Allison Guy-Ritchie, PCA People

RISK MANAGEMENT Risk Management 101 By Rod Farrar, Paladin Risk Management Services

WEBSITES Five steps to improve your website By Sam Gupta, Synapse Worldwide B 2 B M A G A Z I N E   M A Y 2 0 13



By Mateusz Jakubaszek


7 ways to minimise tax liabilities before the EoFY

With the end of the financial year fast approaching, organisations need to start looking at ways to minimise tax liabilities. While business owners should have strategies in place all year round to reduce tax liabilities, 30 June presents some additional opportunities and is a critical deadline for minimising tax for the financial year. Seven key opportunities to reduce tax liabilities are: 1. Superannuation- The minimum super business owners must pay is 9 per cent of each eligible employee's 'ordinary time earnings'. Payments must be made at least four times a year by 28 days after the end of each quarter, including the quarter ending 30 June 2013. Business owners can generally claim a tax deduction for super contributions that are paid on time. However, super is one contribution that can’t be claimed until it is paid so would need to be paid before 30 June to claim it in the 2013 year. 2. Personal super- Like employee super, business owners also need to pay their personal super contributions prior to 30 June to get a deduction. 3. Bad debts- These should be written off prior to 30 June to be eligible for a deduction. Business owners should go through their debtors list and write off anything that is not collectible. 4. Stocktake- A 30 June stocktake is required to determine the correct value of closing inventory and find any obsolete or damaged stock. Business owners can choose to value the stock at cost, replacement or market sale price depending on what is lower. This means that stock that is obsolete or damaged can be written off or reduced in value for tax purposes and claimed as a deduction. 5. Bring forward expenses- Do some forward planning and look at expenditure for the next few months. There may be some expenses that will be incurred but would be better brought forward. Consider items like training, repairs and maintenance or prepaying some interest. The $6,500 instant asset write off commenced in the 2012/13 year, so businesses may consider bringing forward any capital expenditure of less than $6,500 to receive the automatic deduction. 6. Shareholder loans- Ensure that loans are set up properly or repaid by the end of the financial year to avoid a dividend and some unexpected tax. 7. Trust distributions- If operating a trust, ensure the trustee decides and records how the profit will be distributed prior to 30 June.

30 June presents some additional opportunities and is a critical deadline for minimising tax for the financial year.

by Nanae Yoshiwara

Employing foreign workers – Subclass 457 visas and changes from July 2013

The Temporary Work (Skilled) (subclass 457) Visa (“subclass 457 visa”) is in practice the most common work visa used in Australia. Its popularity has continued despite the substantial changes to the 457 program in 2009, when it became more expensive and more onerous for an employer to recruit overseas workers. These changes were implemented to prevent abuse of the scheme. The number of primary visa holders of subclass 457 visas in Australia on 28 February 2013 was 107,510.

The reforms include a new requirement for employers to demonstrate a genuine need for skilled workers from overseas. The reason for the popularity of the subclass 457 visa may be the flexibility - the length of sponsorship can be between 1 day and up to 4 years. Businesses can tailor the length of the sponsorship according to the length of the employment contract that they want to put in place. The most common way to sponsor a skilled worker using the subclass 457 visa program is for an employer to become a “standard business sponsor” (“SBS”), which is usually valid for three years and can be extended. While an employer is an SBS, they are permitted to sponsor an unlimited number of subclass 457 visa holders. Applications to be an SBS can be lodged online, and are processed relatively quickly. On 23 February 2013 the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Brendan O’Connor, announced a number of reforms to the subclass 457 program. These changes are expected to take effect from 1 July 2013. The reforms include a new requirement for employers to demonstrate a genuine need for skilled workers from overseas. Employers will have to show genuine attempts have been made to open job opportunities up to Australians before being able to access foreign workers. In addition, the English Language requirements for certain positions will be raised. These reforms are said to be the Government’s response to a trend: that the program is being increasingly used by temporary visa holders, such as those already in Australia on a “working holiday maker visa” or a “student visa”, who are seeking to remain in Australia. This is contrary to the purpose of the subclass 457 program which is designed to supplement the skilled Australian labour force from overseas by filling gaps in the skilled Australian labour force. The 1 July 2013 changes will further complicate the requirements for Subclass 457 sponsorship and visa applications which are already very complex. If your business currently employs, or is intending to employ, foreign workers, you should seek specific professional advice early to ensure your compliance as an employer/sponsor.

Bird Cameron

Chartered Accountants

For more information, please contact Mateusz Jakubaszek, Accountant at RSM Bird Cameron, on or (02) 6217 0356.


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Nanae Yoshiwara Contact Elringtons T: (02) 6206 1300, Level 7, 221 London Circuit, Canberra City visit:


A passion for the finest of details and absolute excellence are the things which have made Artex famous for over 50 years. With a diverse range of leather goods for all your personal and business needs; Artex offers the best materials, quality workmanship, and a lifetime international guarantee.

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by Gary Green

Organisations on the move

We’ll get your business and your people set up, in place and ready for work on time. Total Solutions For You We have expertise in professional relocation management and commercial relocation services. We understand the wider issues, the need for careful planning, detailed project management and clear communication with your staff. Our experienced team takes total responsibility for your relocation, leaving you to concentrate on the day today running of your business. Whatever the scale of your business relocation and challenges we have the expertise and resources to make your relocation successful. Everything You Need We are able to do it all for you, whether a small office or a major corporate relocation. Allied Pickfords have the people, systems and specialist equipment on hand to have the best practicable office relocation. The Allied Pickfords Project Management Team has the experience to oversee and direct each stage of your move. From dismantling workstations, through to safe handling and transport of computer equipment, using our specialised equipment. Our Project Management Team leaves nothing to chance we work with you every step of the way to make for a successful relocation. Getting Back To Work Our aim is to minimise your downtime and should you wish to take advantage of our nightshift or weekend services, it’s often possible with proper planning and implementation, to finish work one day in your existing location and start back the following day in your new location. No fuss, no panic just a fast efficient and totally reliable service. Not An Office Not all businesses operate within the office environment and Allied Pickfords has the experience and knowledge to assist in these relocations. Our people understand the practicalities of moving machinery, specialised equipment, materials and stock. We have experience in relocating, Libraries, Laboratories, Hospitals, Factories and Warehouses, Hotels, Universities and Schools. Services We have a full suite of services designed to make your relocation quicker and easier. Packing, Asset Relocations, Internal Relocation Services, Handyman Services, Storage, Security Destruction, Paper Recycling, Refurbishment Programme, FF & E and Computer Disconnect and Reconnect. We can also assist with the relocation of staff locally, interstate and overseas. Organisations on the move are moving with Allied Pickfords Business Relocations.

Gary Green can be contacted at Allied Pickfords Business Relocations on 0423806702. visit:


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by Phil Butler

Relationship between board and management

There has been much discussion recently on how to develop a productive and harmonious relationship between the board and management. We know that this is critical for good governance and

In an ideal situation, the board and management are trying to achieve the same vision and objectives so a partnership based on trust and respect is appropriate organisational effectiveness but can be difficult to achieve in reality. The importance of this relationship is critical across all sectors whether the organisation be in the Private, Public or Not for Profit sector. In an ideal situation, the board and management are trying to achieve the same vision and objectives so a partnership based on trust and respect is appropriate. Central to this partnership is a clearly defined set of roles, delegations and boundaries which allows each side to respect the other’s contributions. The relationship depends on the free flow of information in both directions. One of the most important first steps is to ensure that everyone clearly understands what the overall vision of the organisation is. Setting the culture is a key role of the board, and this includes establishing the tone of the relationship with the CEO and senior executives. This includes explicitly discussing and writing down the boundaries between governing and managing and how best to work together. The chair has an extremely important role in ensuring that this is implemented and adhered to. The relationship between the Chair and the CEO is vitally important. It is important for management to understand the board’s role in relation to monitoring and questioning. With management much more involved in the organisation, board members rely on them to pass on all information needed for decision making to fulfil their legal obligations as directors. Directors also anticipate that the information provided for board meetings relates to board issues, not management issues. The board expects management to ask advice and make use of the directors’ wealth of experience as well. Similarly management’s expectations of the board are that the board will trust them to implement strategy and deliver outcomes. The CEO specifically expects from the board clearly stated performance objectives and defined boundaries of authority. Because the CEO is implementing the board's strategy, he / she will also expect regular and honest performance feedback. Setting the right relationship between board and management is critically important for an organisation to achieve its long term goals.

Phil Butler is Manager - NFP, Public Sector & ACT at the Australian Institute of Company Directors. For more information about AICD ‘s course programs and events, T: 02 6248 5954.


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Green thinking makes good business sense

By Iain Heddle

According to recent studies (including by Accenture)1, the overwhelming majority of business leaders see sustainable business practices as fundamental to the growth of their companies. And for good reason: factors such as spiraling energy and resources costs, along with increased emphasis on corporate social responsibility and other factors are combining to make sustainability a ‘must have’ for business. The good news for companies? Embracing sustainability can help you cut your operating costs. Reducing your energy consumption, for example, has a direct impact on the bottom line. Since Information Technology (IT) is one of the largest consumers of energy within a business, you can make a significant difference by streamlining your IT processes: especially your printing processes, which typically consumes the most energy and resources within IT. 2 For example, older printing devices draw far more power than you may realise. Recent advances, such as Ricoh technology that goes beyond Auto-Off/Sleep and Energy Saver mode, with the Green Mode Activated program and exceeding Energy Star compliance requirements can make quite a difference to your power usage - and your carbon footprint. In addition, one of the key benefits of moving to a managed model – such as Ricoh Managed Document Services (MDS) – is that it can directly lower your energy bills. At the heart of the MDS model, Ricoh sets a baseline for your systems – including hardware, supplies and usage pattern – with strategies for improving environmental sustainability targets – usage, consumables, paper and overall CO2 footprint. MDS features also include streaming documents to the right printer locations (to optimise your ink usage), using both sides of the paper as well as precise Energy Saver Timers that reduce energy consumption without compromising the availability of your devices. Going one step further, you can develop a roadmap for making document management part of your environmental initiatives. The design can include both hardware and process recommendations, with projections for the ROI you’ll achieve through cost savings and, potentially, through productivity gains. Whether you want to start with firm targets or a single project, the important principal is that environmental initiatives can save you money. Once you start implementing sustainability goals, though, you might also discover that your projects help boost your company’s image in the eyes of employees and stakeholders. Who knows? The environment could even give your business a competitive edge. 1 “A New Era of Sustainability: UN Global Compact - Accenture CEO Study - 2010,” events/8.1/UNGC_ Accenture_CEO_Study_2010.pdf 2 Ricoh Group Sustainability Report (Environment 2011)

Iain Heddle, Branch Manager – ACT 10/161 Gladstone St, Fyshwick T: (02) 6123 1888 E:


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by Stephen Bourke

New super rules and estate planning

It is early days yet and of course there is no certainty that the Labor Government’s changes will pass Parliament (and who knows whether the Liberals will roll them back anyway if they win the coming election). However, here are a few thoughts on the effect of the proposals on Estate Planning if the amendments pass. It is proposed that where a superannuation fund has income over $100,000 in an income year from property supporting an income stream, a tax of 15% will apply to amounts in excess of the $100,000. The threshold amount is per individual. The government asserts that this will only impact on funds where the investments exceed $2,000,000 on the assumption that the fund has returns of 5%. But it also applies to capital gains. Some points to note. First, it should be noted that the tax applies to income of the fund, not to income of the members of the fund. Second, the changes are particularly important for members of SMSFs. SMSFs often have “lumpy” investments such as real estate. It is common to wait until pension phase after 60 before selling real estate to fund an account based pension as the sale would be CGT exempt, rather than CGT of 10% (where it is held for more than a year) as is the case before age 60. Take the following scenario: John Doe has a member entitlement in an SMSF of $800,000. On 5% annual returns this would provide a pension of $40,000 per annum without touching the capital. If the bulk of the SMSF was made up of a commercial property worth $700,000 with a cost base of $200,000 and the remaining investments earned $5,000 per annum, he would need to make the following choice before retirement: 1. Sell the property before retirement resulting in a CGT liability of $50,000. His pension income in retirement would then be $37,500 per annum; or 2. Sell the property after retirement. The sale would result in income over the $100,000 threshold in that year with tax of $60,750. His pension income in retirement would then be $36,962. The decision would largely depend on the capital gain in comparison to the pre and post retirement tax rates as well as other income realised by the fund. Strategic advice will be important. If a member dies, their adult non-dependent death benefit nominees are liable to tax on the taxable component of 16.5% (including the medicare levy). The death benefits have to be paid as a lump sum. The sale of investment property which results in a capital gain over $100,000 attracts tax of 15% and the payment of the death benefit on the taxable component attracts tax of 16.5%. This makes the tax rate on amounts over the threshold and effective rate of 31.5%. Estate planning and superannuation just became more complex.

Certus Law specialises in superannuation, trusts and estate planning. Visit Certus Law at Level 5, 28 University Avenue, T: 6268 9090,



By Robbie Manzano


Road tripping: eating healthy

Promoting a healthy work environment is one thing but promoting a healthy work environment hundreds of kilometres away from home can be difficult. Unfortunately, the road trip environment does not promote healthy eating. Petrol stations in the middle of nowhere are made of sugar, and fast-food stores are in the areas we pullover to rest and recuperate. Think back to the last time you purchased petrol. Visualise the inside of petrol station - Where were the potato chips, lollies and chocolate? Where was anything remotely healthy? The majority of foods at roadside stops are high in sugar and not energy dense, ultimately leaving you in a poor physical and mental state to drive. When arriving at your final destination the complications don't disappear. Hotel food is limited and knowing places to purchase a simple meal can be restricted by the limited time you may have. By following the 5 travelling work tips below, eating healthy on the road isn't too difficult. • Stay cool with a cooler • If driving to your destination - packing a cooler of sandwiches, fruit and water will help you avoid unhealthy meals and snacks at a roadside fast-food outlet or petrol station. • Have a meal before you travel • Before you drive or fly make sure you've had something to eat. Try to avoid foods that are high in sugar and fats. • Do some research before you leave • Locating a grocery store at your destination or during your road trip before you travel will save you time. Purchase fruits, muesli and nuts for hotel snacks and if you're lucky enough to have a fridge, head to the deli and buy supplies for a healthy sandwich. • Who doesn't love choice? • If the area isn't grocery store accessible, a sandwich shop (e.g. Subway) is an alternative option. The best thing about these types of stores is you choose what you eat. • Don't just eat restaurant food, enjoy it! • There is a good chance we'll find ourselves eating out. Remember it's all about balance, enjoy your meal and don't ruin it by overeating. Skip the over-priced and unhealthy entrée and instead load your plate up with vegetables and choose an alternative to fried dishes (e.g. baked) if possible. This week's challenge is to do everything possible before and during your road trip to access and consume healthy foods and beverages. Enjoy!

Robbie Manzano is founder and managing director of Healthy Identity. Robbie has degrees in Human Nutrition and Coaching Science from the University of Canberra and has completed a Graduate Certificate Public Health from Curtin University. 0423 366 014

The top 10 mistakes managers make when hiring

By Allison Guy-Ritchie

1. Look Deeper A lot of excellent talent was downsized during the GFC and more recent times. Look deeper into what the candidate has been doing with that time off — it might be an eye opener.

Be professional and decisive You may need to interview twice ... however ensure that you do this with expedience and value the candidate’s time and their own processes. 2. Talking too much Sure, it’s natural to want to talk about your business when hiring. We like and should talk about our expectations and management style, but it’s just as important for us to listen, and then probe deeper based on the answers you hear. Remember, two ears – one mouth! 3. R-E-S-P-E-C-T Respect the interview process and your candidate. They have taken time to arrive on time so don’t be late. We’re all busy but imagine the impression you’ll leave on your candidates. 4. Scare tactics This amounts to self-sabotage. Every job has challenges, but there are ways of framing those. Be truthful but mix the good with the bad 5. Don’t lead them on Pretending to be interested after the interview just to avoid being uncomfortable is spurious and disrespectful. Be honest in your interview feedback. Acknowledge their strengths but also let them know if their depth of skills aren’t the right fit for you at this point. 6. What’s in it for them? Most managers are quick to list what they need in a candidate, but they also need to be able to explain why the position is a good fit for the candidate. 7. Show me the money Some managers think that as long as they know the salary range and the candidate’s salary history, they have enough to justify a low-ball offer. But managers need to consider market data to ensure that you can attract the best candidate at market rate. 8. Understand the legal and risk management issues Don’t ask, “Who will look after your children when you return to work?” or “Are you planning on having another baby?” Encourage your managers to represent your company with professionalism and to be aware of legal and risk management issues in interviewing and recruiting. 9. Be professional and decisive You may need to interview twice – maybe three times, however ensure that you do this with expedience and value the candidate’s time and their own processes. 10. Be honest to your word If there is an unavoidable delay between the offer and the start date, keep your new employee engaged.


Level 3, Canberra House, 40 Marcus Clarke Street, Canberra City T: (02) 6257 1010 |

B 2 B M A G A Z I N E   M A Y 2 0 13



Risk Management 101

by Rod Farrar



by Sam Gupta

Five steps to improve your website

Risk management – a complicated skill that requires outside assistance or a simple business process that can easily be carried out by those who know the organisation best? The consultant in me wants to say it’s the former – but the reality is that the latter applies. Organisations are often overawed by the notion of identifying risks, assessing likelihood and consequence and then coming up with a risk level before developing treatments. It needn’t be this complicated however. So how does an organisation effectively manage its risk? The answer is simple – just ask a number of questions. The first question to ask is: what do we do? Understanding the organisation and its activities will set an excellent foundation for the risk management process. The next question to ask for each activity is simple – what can go wrong? Let’s take the case of a takeaway food outlet. One of its activities is cooking food. One of the things that can go wrong (risk) is: “Member of staff burnt by hot oil”. Once we have identified the things that can go wrong the next question to ask is: what will cause it to go wrong? This is actually one of the most important parts of the risk management process. By identifying what would cause the event to occur, the opportunity exists to implement controls that would prevent the event occurring (reduce Likelihood). In the example above, some of the causes may include: lack of training, lack of skills and experience of the operator, item drops into oil and oil too hot (just to name a few). Once we understand the causes the next question to ask is: what would happen if it did go wrong? Identifying the consequences if the event were to occur will allow the organisation to identify those events that would have the greatest impact on the organisation. In our example the range of consequences may include: injury to staff member, loss of productivity; investigation by Worksafe and increase in Worker’s Compensation premiums. The next obvious questions to ask are: what can we do to stop it happening and if it does happen – how do we minimize the consequences? This is the point in the process where the organisation focuses on developing controls to reduce the likelihood that the event would occur and/or controls to reduce the impacts if the event does happen. So what controls would you implement for the example above? So there you have it – risk management made simple.

What would you do if a potential customer walks through your office or shop door? Would you ignore them? Would you try to find out what they are looking for? Would you not direct them to the right department or shelf? Many potential and existing customers fly through your website every day. You can use following steps to improve your website and possibly boost your conversion rate. 1. Know your visitors First things first – you got to know who you are talking to online. Your website could be attracting many different types of visitors and it is obviously hard to please everyone. But, you should know your core visitors or target market. Where do they come from? Why to your website? How long do they stay for? How important are they for your business? Understanding the behaviour of your online visitors is the key to improving the effectiveness of your website. 2. Answer their key questions Once you know and understand your visitors, the next step is to address their problem. What are they looking for on your website? The best way to think is, what would you have answered if they were to come to you in person? Resolve their query through your website by pointing them to the right solution. 3. Establish trust online Trust is the most important ingredient of any relationship. There is no silver bullet for this; every business is different. It is not just about the look and feel of your website. Understanding the behaviour of your visitors will allow you to understand how to go about establishing trust online. In most cases, whatever works offline will work online also. 4. Seek customer feedback Although putting yourself in your customer’s shoes is a great way to analyse and improve a website, it just cannot replace the value of real customer feedbacks. Remember, small things count! Try it; you will be surprised by the feedbacks. 5. Manage expectations Represent your business well. Your website should reflect the core values of your organisation. The client should not feel any discrepancy between your physical and online presence. Don’t underestimate your website. It represents your business 24/7. Take the time to get it right. Once you have gone through the improvements, promote your website wherever you can. I would love to discuss your website and how you can improve it. We offer free one hour consultation for this. Simply call me on 1300 785 230 or drop me an email on

PO Box 359, MITCHELL ACT 2911 Australia T 0400 666 142 | F 02 8208 7398 E W:

Sam Gupta is the managing director of Synapse Worldwide. Sam would love to hear your thoughts on this advice column. Please contact him on 1300 785 230 or

M A Y 2 0 13




Australian Business Licence and Information Service


ustralia’s federal system involving the eight state and territory governments and the Commonwealth can create confusing and potentially conflicting requirements for businesses operating across borders. But now, for the first time, businesses that operate in the ACT and other jurisdictions can go to one online service – – to understand their compliance obligations. The Australian Business Licence and Information Service, ABLIS, was launched recently, to provide a one stop shop so that businesses can create a custom list of information about how to comply with the rules and regulations that apply to their specific situation.

Through the Business Development Strategy I released this time last year, the ACT Government is supporting the growth of local businesses through red tape reform, by reducing unnecessary regulatory burdens. After entering the nature of your business (for example, restaurant or accountancy firm) and the states and territories you work in, you then plug in more specific details (for example, whether you are selling alcohol, handling dangerous substances, or providing audit functions). The powerful search tool then provides a customised list of the information relevant to your business, including rules and regulations imposed by both the Commonwealth and state/territory governments. This will save time and effort, and replace the separate services that were provided by state and territory governments, and I am pleased to report that the ACT Government has had an ongoing role in the design, development and implementation of ABLIS. ABLIS is an initiative of the Council of Australian Governments, and is part of the Australian Business Number and Business Names Registration Project – one of 27 regulatory priorities under the Council of Australian Governments red tape reform initiative.

The project has also delivered a national online registration process for business names, with links to simplified trade mark searches. The project will also deliver improved ongoing online interactions between government and business using the Australian Business Account. Through the Business Development Strategy I released this time last year, the ACT Government is supporting the growth of local businesses through red tape reform, by reducing unnecessary regulatory burdens. In addition to our ongoing role in red tape reform at a national level, we have established the Red Tape Reduction Panel, which is investigating and removing regulatory impediments to Canberra businesses. Supporting the work of the Red Tape Reduction Panel, the online feedback tool Fix my Red Tape is now operating to provide a quick and easy mechanism for businesses to identify red tape, provide feedback, ask questions, or lodge complaints, see: app/forms/fix_red_tape ACT Digital Hub Broadband policy is receiving no shortage of media debate these days, but the revolutionary nature of superfast internet connection is only just starting to be understood. Whether you’re a large or small business the National Broadband Network – currently being rolled out across Gungahlin, to be followed by the rest of Canberra – will have massive benefits. The NBN Digital Enterprise Centre in the ACT, which is based at the Canberra Business Point facilities provided by the Canberra Business Council, conducts NBN training in conjunction with the new Digital Hub at the Gungahlin Library. The Digital Hub is providing free community workshops and training to improve digital literacy and knowledge of NBN functionality. I encourage you to check out the Digital Hub at:



B 2 B M A G A Z I N E   M A Y 2 0 13




High Speed Rail Recommendations Anything But High Speed... CHRIS FA U L K S



UPCOMING EVENTS 15 May 2013 Federal Budget Breakfast TIME: 7:30am VENUE: Parliament House 29 May 2013 Succession Planning Workshop TIME: 8:00am VENUE: CBC, 216 Northbourne Ave, Braddon 22 May 2013 SALES & MARKETING WITH HERBERT J FIELD TIME: 9:00am VENUE: CBC, 216 Northbourne Ave, Braddon 5 June 2013 ACT BUDGET BREAKFAST TIME: 7:00am VENUE: National Press Club For registration go to


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hile the Phase 2 Report on High Speed Rail (HSR), released on 11 April 2013, was broadly welcomed by everyone, the ridiculously slow start and rollout timetable were not only ridiculed they put the credibility of the project itself and the Government’s commitment to it, in real doubt. It was particularly pleasing that the report supported Canberra Business Council’s long-held view that the optimal staging of an east coast HSR network is building the Sydney - Melbourne line first, starting with the Sydney-Canberra sector. Canberra Business Council has lobbied hard over many years to ensure that Sydney-Canberra is the first section of HSR built. We have argued that it is the optimal first stage because the distance between Sydney and Canberra is a good minimum length for HSR and there is strong demand from business and tourist travellers for a fast reliable link between the two cities, making it likely that HSR will be economically viable. A Sydney-Canberra HSR line would be one of the most cost effective sections to build because of the relatively easy terrain and lower costs of purchasing land for the corridor (unlike, for example, the Sydney to Newcastle sector). It would also have enormous benefits for regional development and it would relieve growth pressures in Sydney. You could easily live along the route and commute daily to Sydney or Canberra for work. Finally, it would immediately allow Canberra Airport to act as an overflow airport for Sydney while a second Sydney Airport is planned and built - by easing passenger and freight congestion and reducing movements at Sydney airport by 25%. All good reasons to get started now on a HSR link between Sydney and Canberra rather than move into more years of public and industry consultation and liaison with States and Territories. Australia has been talking about HSR for over 30 years while thousands of kilometres of HSR have been built all around the world. In 2013 only two contingents still do not have HSR - Australia and Antarctica! Yet the report is suggesting more decades of studies, consultation and bureaucratic procrastination. CBC is proposing that, rather than wait decades to start, the first stage - the Sydney to Canberra section - should be put to the market now to seek expressions of interest from consortia to design, build and operate. This would provide the private sector B2B M AGA ZINE

with an opportunity to express interest in investing in and constructing the Sydney to Canberra section; it would enable the proposed route, location of stations and extensive use of tunnelling to be looked at more realistically and it would elicit a range of public-private funding models.

Canberra Business Council will continue to lobby for an immediate start to the first stage -Sydney to Canberra - because we believe it will be a “game-changer” for economic development, employment and investment in Canberra and the region.

Obviously the Government would need to make it clear that it is prepared to invest substantially in the project but that it wants to see what the market can offer. The successful implementation of a first stage would demonstrate the demand for HSR travel along the east coast of Australia and would make it easier to attract private sector financing for later stages of the network. Another major concern in the Phase 2 Report is the proposal for the Canberra station to be located in Ainslie Avenue near the city centre rather than at Canberra Airport. A Civic location would require expensive tunnelling under Mount Ainslie which will add significant cost to the project affecting its financial and economic viability and make it less attractive for investment from both the public and private sectors. A civic location would also have poor parking for commuters (parking is already available at the airport), poor connections to the other transport networks and to the city centre and importantly, it would fail to leverage off the potential for Canberra to be a significant hub for international tourists with direct international flights from NZ and Asia. Canberra Business Council will continue to lobby for an immediate start to the first stage -Sydney to Canberra - because we believe it will be a “gamechanger” for economic development, employment and investment in Canberra and the region. Whatever happens lets stop talking and get started on building HSR in Australia.



Have you entered the ACT Chief Ministers Export Awards this year?


he ACT Chief Ministers Export Awards for 2013 are underway, with the launch of the Awards and the online application portal on May 1, 2013. Be recognised for your exporting and international business achievements and join the likes of Canberra success stories such as Aspen Medical, Intelledox and Datapod, all of whom have been recognised for outstanding export success. Winning an Export Award gives you recognition; it provides a chance to profile your company in front of a wider audience and gives you free PR. Getting an export award is not just about winning – it’s also about having your peers recognise your company’s excellence. Past entrants have found that entering Awards is also a great way of evaluating how your company is going. The information that goes into the Export Awards application should be used for updating your business plan. All successful companies review their business plans on a regular basis. The Export awards provide a perfect reason for reviewing your strategies, plans and finances. Success breeds success – when you enter and win an Award, you can put the Export Awards symbol on your letterhead, websites and promotional material. It commands respect. Entering Awards programs are also a great way of evaluating how your company is travelling, and provides an opportunity to celebrate with your staff, and contacts along your supply chain! For previous ACT Chief Ministers Export Award winners, XP Solutions, the real prize was qualifying for the APEC Business travel card. The scheme allows accredited business people to obtain an APEC Business Travel Card for multiple short-term visits to other APEC economies over a three year period. This saves business people time and effort involved in applying for individual visas or entry permits each time they want to travel for business. The Card is like the Gold card for travel – it allows you to fast track immigration processing lanes! There are 18 of the 21 APEC economies who fully participate in the APEC Business Travel Card scheme. These countries are:

Brunei Darussalam Mexico Japan Chile Papua New Guinea the Philippines Korea Chinese Taipei

Indonesia China New Zealand Peru Hong Kong Singapore Malaysia Thailand



Vietnam Sudesh Mudaliar, of XP Solutions said ‘The APEC Travel Card makes travelling overseas for business so much easier. It simplifies the Visa process, because the card covers the Visas for 18 countries for 3 years. But more importantly for a frequent business traveller, I can fast track through airport immigration queues around the world. No more standing in line for hours on end!” XP Solutions won the Information and Communication Technology Export Award in 2012. They provide software technology and professional solutions to engineering organisations, environmental management organisations, and government agencies worldwide to plan, design, simulate and manage the physical and social environment. The Export Award Categories this year have been changed to better reflect Australian businesses, and to make the naming of the categories more meaningful to businesses. To enter the 2013 ACT Chief Ministers Export Awards please go to export/act/mylogin.php. To assist you to enter the ACT Chief Ministers Export Awards, The ACT Exporters’ Network will be running export and business plan webinars. Please go to, or contact Ellen Pope, for further details. Please note, applications for the Export Awards close on 15 August, 2013, and the Awards are announced at a celebration lunch on Thursday the 26th September, 2013.

The ACT Exporters’ Network works with exporters from the Canberra region, to build opportunities in overseas markets. If you require assistance, would like to be involved in our events, or find out more about the Network, please visit our website ( or contact Ellen Pope, ellen.pope@ or 02) 6247 4199

Key dates for the ACT Chief Minister’s Awards in 2013 are: 1 May Launch and Applications Open 15 August Applications Close 26 September ACT Chief Minister’s Awards Gala Ceremony

B 2 B M A G A Z I N E   M A Y 2 0 13




ACT & Region Indigenous Expo JO POWELL



he progress of Reconciliation depends on full participation from all members of our community. Ensuring that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in Canberra and the surrounding region are given every chance to see the breadth of opportunity available and make the connections they need to support them in pursuing their dreams.

The ACT & Region Indigenous Expo aims to increase awareness of career and education opportunities including support services available to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in the ACT and region. The Expo will provide both Indigenous and non-Indigenous businesses and job seekers an opportunity to connect and network, and it will showcase the breadth of engagement across the Indigenous community.

Corporate Sponsors ACTEWAGL, 104.7 / Mix 106.3, Prime TV, The Canberra Times, The Good Guys Tuggeranong, Duesburys Nexia, Synapse Worldwide, B2B in Canberra. Associates and Affiliates Retail Traders Association, Australian Industry Defence Network

It is for this reason that the ACT & Region Chamber of Commerce and Industry is excited to be involved with the second annual ACT & Region Indigenous Expo, which will take place at the National Convention Centre on Tuesday 21 May. Once again the steering committee consisting of the Indigenous Business Chamber, Habitat Personnel and the National Disability Coordination Office have worked in collaboration with the Chamber. The ACT & Region Indigenous Expo aims to increase awareness of career and education opportunities including support services available to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in the ACT and region. The Expo will provide both Indigenous and non-Indigenous businesses and job seekers an opportunity to connect and network,

Foundation Member Australian Chamber of Commerce & Industry


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and it will showcase the breadth of engagement across the Indigenous community. An integral component of the Expo is the 2013 ACT & Region Indigenous Excellence Awards, to be held on the evening of Monday 20 May at the Abbey in Gold Creek. The Tourism Industry Council joins the steering committee in hosting this event, which will see celebrity chef Mark ‘Black Olive’ Olive, host of the Lifestyle Channel’s Outback Café, return to Canberra. The evening will honour the achievements of local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in the last twelve months and celebrate their contribution to our community. Nominations are now open, please visit for further information. The Expo was developed to enhance partnerships between the federal government, local governments and other sectors. It demonstrated the important nexus between the employment and training of Indigenous jobseekers, corporate business, industry, education and training institutions, school leavers and the wider community. These stakeholders met together in one place to showcase their innovative and creative approaches to employment, health and welfare. As a result of this collaboration there were only positive outcomes for all involved and in attendance. The ACT & Region Indigenous Expo and the ACT & Region Indigenous Excellence Awards provide a very unique sponsorship opportunity. Information on this and exhibiting is available at While the Expo runs for only one day, the Indigenous Business Chamber and the ACT & Region Chamber of Commerce & Industry are always looking to support initiatives that increase participation rates and give Australians a boost to their employability. If you have any initiatives we may be able to help with, please get in touch with our Education and Training Adviser, Jo Powell, on (02) 6283 5200 or

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COMMUNITY BANKING It’s that other time of year again

POTENIAL FOR THE BUSINESS GOING FORWARD Jason Klose discusses what you need to consider when you aquire a business

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It’s that other time of the year again. Christmas is over, New Year has gone and we’re well into 2013, and for many of us there is a sense of dread as the credit card statements arrive following the annual spend-up.


nd then we have pundits and pollies telling the community how badly the economy is going. It’s all very depressing. As a fairly ordinary family man but also as the Chairman of the Bendigo Community Banks I am not convinced that either scenario is in fact accurate. The annual Christmas spend is apparently essential to the economy, otherwise the retail sector will suffer. Through November and December the retail figures let we ordinary citizens know that we are failing the retail sector by not shopping enough. Then in January we are beset by adverts about debt consolidation. Sometimes it’s hard to work out what the average family is supposed to do for the best. How do families fit into the plethora of information? What does it mean? And how do we sort what is actually relevant to our daily lives from the high end bump that the so called money managers deem essential? I’m not sure how many of us actually with our morning toast and Vegemite and work out the impact of a rise or fall in the TWI or a barrel of Tapis crude on our daily lives, but, as I talk with people in my community I sense that we are beset with a surfeit of information and possibly a lack of direction. Maybe even education and much of that leads to the view that things are worse than they really are.

Is there a recipe for living within our means? Perhaps we might all look at beginning the year with a commitment to living well. That will mean different things to us all, but for me it means contributing time to community, living a healthy life and working locally to make each neighbourhood a better and more inclusive place. For many people the easiest is to accept what the journos tell us, that we’ll all be ruined if this or that index or set of figures isn’t within a certain range. For most of us in our daily lives that is nonsense. If we analyse some of the more choice nuggets of advice from pollies and pundits much of it is self serving. As examples: carbon pricing arrived and the sky did not fall in, nor did it have any major impact on daily life for the majority of people. Rates have not tripled and none of us have been bankrupted by such innovations as public art and the arboretum. Electricity costs have risen because companies, which for decades ignored infrastructure maintenance and improvement, have found it necessary

to upgrade. Most things happen for a reason and not always for the reason purveyed by the 24 hour news cycle. And some politicians use convenient versions of truth, not actuality in the polling phase. For most of us the cost of living is self defined. We look at what is essential for each of us in living our daily lives and adjust to fit income and other responsibilities. We feed the kids and the cat, aim to get a mortgage and own our home , pay our bills and save what is left over. If we have to we put money into Super. That in itself is new. Superannuation used to be the province of the well to do, now it is the norm. That has to be good? Or is it simply that Government now wants us to fund our own pensions because with increased life expectancy pensions for all are just not affordable. Is there a recipe for living within our means? Perhaps we might all look at beginning the year with a commitment to living well. That will mean different things to us all, but for me it means contributing time to community, living a healthy life and working locally to make each neighbourhood a better and more inclusive place. I’ll pick up themes from this column in later articles, in the meantime let’s all enjoy 2013, it promises to be an interesting year.

Jayson Hinder is Chairman of Molonglo Financial Services MFS operate the Calwell, Curtin, Jerrabomberra and Wanniassa Bendigo Community Bank Branches. Calwell, Curtin, Jerrabomberra and Wanniassa Community Bank Branches


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Jason Klose, Managing Director t: 0414 890 286


hen you are looking at buying a business, financials only tell 50% of the business story. It is important you are giving attention to all the other factors that will influence you buying decision. Financials are straight forward, but like any game of sport, you are only as good as your last game. Therefore buyers want to see how the business is currently trading and use financials from the past to gauge where you are now when compared to prior years. If the profitability of the business has been increasing then little explanation is required, but if turnover and profit are down, as a buyer you will want to understand why they are down. However it is important to give just as much attention to the other areas of the business. Some of the areas you need to consider further are: • Strength of the lease, the landlord you will be dealing with and likelihood of receiving a new lease once the current one expires. • Growth areas for the business and more importantly the likelihood of growth going forward.



If you want to make a net profit of $180,000 with a franchise food business run under management than you will need to move quick. Some of the benefits of this business: • No owner involvement • Located in one of Canberra’s strongest food courts • Strong lease • Like new fit out

This bar/pub is run under full management with no owner involvement. Short operating hours for a 7 day business. Some of the benefits of the business: • 2012 turnover $1m • GP 69% • Net Profit $186,000

$395,000 + SAV



• Expenditure required in the next 2 to 3 years – is a minor or major fit out required? the condition of the machinery used in the business, what needs to be spent on the business to take it to the next level? • Owner’s role and staff roles in the business. If you take over the business can the owner be replaced an impact on the business once these changes occur. • Market going forward – are there new laws to be introduced, developments in the area, technology changes, location of the business with its customers? • Why is the owner selling – are the owners tired, not suitable for the business, can see changes that will impact the business, ready for retirement, change in lifestyle? Let’s use the example of a 5 day cafe. You obtain the past three financial years and the profitability is not great for the business hence the reason for sale. You present the financials to your accountant and advice will be easy on this one – do not buy if you plan to run the cafe in the same manner. So financials in the case help you understand what not to do but give you some of the likely running costs. This is when you need to concentrate harder to understand why the cafe has not been profitable and how you can put in a formula for how you can run the business going forward. In summary if you are buying a business what the business did 10 years ago helps you to understand the business you are buying now – but where will the business be again in 10 years time? What is the potential for the business going forward after you acquire it? This is what you also need to consider when you acquire a business.



This run under management beauty salon has a like brand new fit out and revenues are continuing to grow. Specialises in waxing and tanning. For the period 1 July 2012 to 31 December 2012 showing profit to the owner of $73,000. Why would you set up a salon when this business will pay itself back very quickly. Owner lives in Sydney.

The owner is ready to retire and has currently being running his Civic business really to suit his own lifestyle i.e. open limited hours. This restaurant has a strong lease at $59,000 incl GST, excellent fit out including large bar area, seating for 100 people and located next to the Canberra Theatre. Owner knows how strong this business will be for the next owners hence the 50% vendor finance on offer.

$115,000 + SAV

$265,000 + SAV

Contact Jason Klose on 0414 890 286 for more information or visit

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B2B May 2013 issue 82  

B2B magazine May 2013 issue 82

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