GEELONG | BALLARAT | WERRIBEE FOR BUSINESS PROFESSIONALS
Putting the past behind us Are we in the midst of the next industrial revolution?
ISSUE 208 JUNE 2012
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ISSUE 208 JUNE 2012
FEATURES 12. Interesting Times 16. Putting the past behind us 26. Leading Business Men
CONTENTS 4. Editor 5. Biz News 9. Comment 10. New Appointments 19. Business of the Month 20. Regulation 21. VECCI 22. Business Events 24. Legal 25. Tax 30. Recruitment 34. Multi Media 35. Small Biz 38. Tech Guy 40. Arts 42. Community 44. Wine 45. After Hours 50. Whatâ€™s On
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BUSINESS NEWS | 3
The race is on At the time of writing there is a strong rumour around town that a prominent local businessman would soon be officially nominating for Geelong’s first public mayoral election, to stand against incumbent mayor, Cr John Mitchell. Apart from some frankly farcical suggestions of potential mayoral candidates, this is the first inkling that there will be a serious race in the lead up to the November election. It is also an early indicator that the shift to a directly elected Mayor just might do what it was supposed to do, and that is to shake out some of the region’s most qualified and most capable leaders as potential Mayors. That the new role will attract a significantly higher remuneration only further incentivises the role, and works on a theory that almost everyone will be familiar with - a serious pay packet, for a serious job, to attract seriously well-qualified candidates. There are plenty of people who will howl down the suggestion that a Mayor should be paid anything like a $100k salary – that the honour and privilege of the title alone should almost be remuneration enough. They’re
not wrong, of course, but they may have missed the point. By pushing up the pay packet you add gravitas to the position, making it more of a job than an honorary position, and a job that comes with high expectations. The fact is, that the kind of candidates that we want to
in this role – someone who can help develop strategic plans for the growth and development of the city, who can work at securing business investment and job opportunities, who can work with local leaders and organisations to create real pathways for the region’s most disadvantaged people. Most of all, we need a Mayor who wants the job, more than they want the title. We need a Mayor who will stand up for what the city really needs, not what a few visionaries want to tell us we need. We need someone who will fight for strong health and
“We need a Mayor who will stand up for what the city really needs, not what a few visionaries want to tell us we need.” be attracting will already be successful people. I’m sure they won’t knock back the money, but the chances are high that they won’t really need it. And what’s that old saying, you pay peanuts ... A directly elected mayor is an important step in creating a stronger democratic process at the local government level, as the role will be separate from, while working with, the Council. We need a realist
education systems, who will fight for jobs, for business development, for investment and for funding. After all, we already have a Premier who seems more concerned that Geelong be a candidate for hosting the Red Bull Air Race than in addressing the very real challenges facing the city (seriously, what’s the plan Ted?).
ISSUE 208 JUNE 2012 BUSINESS NEWS, an Adcell Print Group publication, is mailed to more than 6000 businesses across Geelong, Ballarat and Werribee. If you would like to receive Business News at your business please contact us. PUBLISHER Maureen Tayler MANAGER Caroline Tayler EDITOR Davina Montgomery firstname.lastname@example.org FOR ADVERTISING Vinnie Kerr M 0409 427 473 email@example.com Trina Currie M 0402 268 624 firstname.lastname@example.org Justin Abrams M 0437 981 510 email@example.com T (03) 5221 4408 F (03) 5221 2233 203 Malop Street, PO Box 491, Geelong Vic 3220 Shop 4/100 Simpson Street, Ballarat Vic 3350
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Carbon price scams - iView, iPad, iPhone therefore I am be warned! Just as necessity, for the practical problem-solvers of the world, is the mother of invention, for the world’s morally bankrupt opportunists, the fear and uncertainty created by big policy shifts like the impending Carbon Tax, is the mother of new scams.
Even just a decade ago, few of us would have guessed that new technologies would touch everyone’s lives in so many ways. There will always be people who can’t wait to get their hands on the latest and greatest, while some will adopt new technologies slowly and cautiously.
SCAMwatch is warning businesses to be on the look out for carbon price scams. Carbon price scams targeting businesses may come in a number of forms, including phone calls and fake websites seeking your personal banking details to pay a carbon tax compensation into your bank account, or to sell you fake carbon credits.
ROY Morgan Research has developed a new Technology Adoption Segmentation of Australians based on their uptake of new technologies. Understanding these segments allows businesses to target specific groups of technology users for product launches, digital marketing campaigns and technology-led offerings.
Follow these steps to protect your business: Be alert to scam survey calls or websites which ask for personal, business or financial details. Don’t provide or confirm your personal or business details over the phone unless you made the call using contact details you found yourself and you trust the information.
of staff authorised to make orders or pay invoices this will reduce the risk of your business paying for something that is not required or is not legitimate. If you spot a scam or have been scammed, you can report it by visiting the Report a scam page on the SCAMwatch website. To read more from the ACCC on carbon price scams, see the commentary on page 20.
Based on a well-established and accepted Technology Innovation Adoption theory, the Technology Adoption Segments comprise: • Technology Early Adopters (17% of us are early adopters of the latest technologies.) • Professional Technology Mainstream (comprising 18% of the total market and the first part of the ‘Early Majority’ of those on the tech take up.)
Don’t enter your credit card or banking details on a website unless you have checked it is authentic and secure.
• Digitalised Students (The second part of the Early Majority, at 14% of the market.)
Avoid having a large number
• Tech Engaged Retirees
(A personal favourite, and while they sit in the Late Majority of the tech take up market, this 9% of the sector gets extra points for mine, because they are the ones changing the way we all view retirement. Bless!) • Technology Traditionalists (At 24% of the tech take up market it seems that many of us remain traditionalists in the tech race.) • Technophobes (The Laggards – we all know them, they make up 18 per cent of the market and include those still confused by DVD remotes and dishwashers!) Andrew Braun, Industry Communications Director, Roy Morgan Research, says: “[This information] will help businesses understand consumers’ preference to technology, internet brands and services, mobile and other consumer technologies…”
BUSINESS NEWS | 5
GPAC welcomes $2m budget announcement $45 million commitment by the City ($20m), State ($15m) and Federal ($10m) Governments to the Library and Heritage Centre; $650,000 for GPAC roof works to preserve the fabric of the building; and the announcement of $2 million for critical works and $200,000 annual operational funding for GPAC. “For some months now, GPAC has been in discussion with Government regarding opportunities to fast track critical upgrades of plant and equipment and to create jobs during these challenging economic times. Additional operational funding will support all areas of the Centre’s operations,” Mr Orton said. THE Geelong Performing Arts Centre Trust and staff were winners in the 201213 State Budget, with an announcement of $2 million to support urgent and critical works, along with an additional $200,000 in annual operational funding. Trust Chairman, Tim Orton, welcomed the ongoing commitment to GPAC and the Arts Precinct - which is recognised as a key priority
project for the Geelong region. “The Precinct redevelopment has always been envisaged as a staged project and today’s announcement complements the delivery of other key elements: the $3 million refurbishment of GPAC’s Playhouse in 2010; the $6.9 million redevelopment of the Old Courthouse Building (completed in 2011); the
“This new injection reinforces the Government’s support for the GPAC and the Precinct. Cultural facilities make a vital contribution to the economic growth, liveability and wellbeing of communities. And it is important Geelong’s cultural facilities are developed to keep pace with the growth in the region,” he said. “A vibrant and redeveloped GPAC and Arts Precinct
will enable the people of the Greater Geelong and, broader region, to enjoy better access to arts and entertainment. We look forward to working with the Government to maximise the impact on the local economy.” Mr Orton and GPAC General Manager Jill Smith thanked the Premier, ministers, and local members, as well as key regional development groups for their long-standing interest and support of the Arts Precinct redevelopment. “We look forward to continuing work with the Government, The City and our Precinct colleagues on this vital project,” they said. During the Premier’s recent visit to Geelong to officially open the refurbished Old Courthouse, he endorsed the planning for Geelong’s Cultural Precinct noting: “Cities that invest in arts and culture, that put arts and culture at the centre of community life reap great rewards. These activities attract people and investment, they stimulate business and tourism and contribute to the liveability and social fabric of our communities.”
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6 | BUSINESS NEWS
What business thinks of the Big 4 banks According to the latest DBM Consultants’ monthly Business Financial Services Monitor (BFSM), the Commonwealth Bank is increasing its lead over the other three big banks when it comes to big business satisfaction.
the Federal Budget. “It will be interesting to see next month what impact these two issues have on the results,” Mr Gupta said.
WHY should we care? Well, whether or not you care is up to you, but the banks themselves are very interested in the results. The BFSM is the survey the banks use to gauge performance, and while big business makes up only 0.3% of Australian businesses, it represents a very significant portion of total business deposits and lending.
The really interesting result this month in the Whole of Market is the coming together of CBA and Westpac ratings. Westpac has consistently rated above all other banks, including CBA, since late 2010. However, the gap has been narrowing since the
The April BFSM results show that CBA has continued its rise and now has a satisfaction rating of 7.9 out of 10, as rated by large business (turnover $50m+). Among the other major banks, NAB at 7.3 and Westpac at 7.2 had both been improving until the past couple of months; however, both have now seen two months of falling results. ANZ at 6.9 clawed back satisfaction levels compared to March. However, the longer-term trend has been downward since November 2011. While ANZ’s rating did improve in April, the
difference between it and the Commonwealth is now one full rating point, yet six months ago in October 2011 the difference was only 0.3 points. CBA’s 7.9 rating is the largest recorded by the monitor and, on current trend the CBA will be the first bank
“The really interesting result this month in the Whole of Market is the coming together of CBA and Westpac ratings. Westpac has consistently rated above all other banks, including CBA, since late 2010.” to have a rating of 8 in the coming months.
start of this year, and this month it has closed.
DBM Managing Director, Dhruba Gupta, said that over the past six months CBA’s satisfaction levels among big business had continued to increase. “At the same time, ANZ’s ratings have declined, although they appear now to have levelled out.”
Mr Gupta noted that while both banks had seen declines in their ratings since January, Westpac’s ratings had fallen from a high of 7.5 to the current 7.3, but CBA’s decline from 7.4 to 7.3 was only marginal.
He said the survey was conducted before the latest Reserve Bank rate cut and
customers of the regional and independent banks. Average satisfaction levels for the Allied banks, which include BankWest (Commonwealth aligned) and St.George, BankSA and Bank of Melbourne (Westpac) are above the Big 4, but well below the regional and independent banks. “The major banks use the allied banks as a key element of their competitive strategy, but our research shows satisfaction levels are dropping,” Mr Gupta said. “We thought the decline could be simply due to tightening economic conditions, but satisfaction levels for the regional banks such as Bank of Queensland and BendigoAdelaide Bank are rising. If satisfaction was falling across all banks and sectors we could assume it was the economy, but these results lead us to believe that the regionals and independents are doing a better job of working with their customers.”
Mr Gupta said the average satisfaction levels of business with the Big 4 banks is significantly lower than for
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BUSINESS NEWS | 7
We need an attitude shift on welfare Welfare has become something of a dirty word in Australia. For some people with long-term debilitating disabilities, dependence on welfare is a necessity. For too many others, the welfare system is just another system to give up on them. Disability support reforms The Rudd-Gillard Labor government is famous for its policy failures, but one of the few bright spots on its report card has been its reforms to the Disability Support Pension (DSP). In every Budget since 2009, the government has introduced substantial changes to the way eligibility for the DSP is assessed. A DSP claimant’s continuing incapacity to work is now more rigorously tested, and the impairment tables for assessing eligibility for the DSP have been revised. These reforms are already showing results, with the total number of people on DSP falling by about 2,000 since the beginning of the year. From July, all DSP recipients under the age of 35 who have some work capacity will be required to attend participation interviews to develop work participation plans.
Unlike in previous years, substantial reforms to the DSP were missing from the 2012-13 Budget. Here are some ideas for further reform. At present, it is possible for a multi-millionaire (or billionaire) to receive the DSP. Anyone assessed as being permanently blind is exempt from income and assets tests. People with disabilities such as cerebral palsy or quadriplegia are not eligible for this exemption. The DSP’s income and assets test should apply to all recipients regardless of disability. The exemption for the permanently blind is inequitable and unfair and should be abolished. Attendance at the proposed participation interviews to develop participation plans is compulsory. These plans will address the disability support pensioners’ barriers to work and can include developing literacy or numeracy skills or drug rehabilitation.
But compliance with the participation plans is not compulsory, which is absurd. Recipients who do not comply with their participation plans should face sanctions. While the majority of DSP applicants are now going through rigorous testing of their ability to work, those who have an obvious and severe (aka ‘manifest’) inability to work as a result of their disability can fast track onto the DSP. This fast track is restricted to a handful of conditions, including terminal illness, category 4 HIV/AIDS, nursing home level of care, and people with an intellectual
disability and an IQ of less than 70. There are thousands of people with an obvious and severe disability currently on the DSP who do not meet the criteria for manifest eligibility. This is one area that is ripe for further reform leading to administrative efficiencies and savings. These suggestions are by no means exhaustive but they are a good starting point for the government to introduce the next generation of reforms to the DSP. Andrew Baker is a Policy Analyst at The Centre for Independent Studies.
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Stressed Savers In October this year Australians will celebrate the fifth anniversary of the month that we switched from borrowing money to saving money, the month that we became the nation that the economic world most wants to be like. THE number of people taking credit for the gravity-defying miracle of Australia’s steady course through the GFC grows steadily everyday – the Howard Government, the Rudd Government, the Gillard Government, the banking industry – but the reality is that the true credit goes to the Australian people who as a group in October 2007 simply stopped borrowing and started saving, as if someone, somewhere had flicked a switch.
of new projects that will magically pump money into the Australian economy.
The amount of free cash in the system is now simply staggering – in retail cash alone there is $544 billion, in business cash almost twice as much – as near as anyone can tell there is about $1.4 trillion of spending paused in the system.
Australian investors now seem to have divided themselves into two separate camps – those who have emerged from the GFC stronger and more determined to become smarter and better investors and those who, even five years after the GFC moved through the world’s economies like a thief in the night, cannot abide the idea of returning to any investment other than cash.
The reason for this is clear. Australian’s are frightened to spend; they don’t believe the Government when they are told that we are going to be fine and there is a pipeline
This kind of pause in investment isn’t without consequences. Housing starts in Australia – the bellwether of so many parts of our economy and economic sentiment – are at a 15-year low, retailing is reinventing itself and fast growth industries like financial services are becoming yield plays.
At CoreData we have been
struck by how these people were suffering from symptoms that are really similar to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). This disorder, first noticed and recorded among French soldiers in the Napoleonic Wars, is usually thought of as something that happens in people who have faced battle. The symptoms, which are listed as general anxiety when facing the issues, hyper-vigilance, acute stress and flashbacks, have been happening to a whole raft of Australian investors when they think about the GFC. What this really means is that to free up the cash that is stuck in the Australian investment system, for investors to once again embrace the idea of shares, and to embrace the idea of advice, the conversation that planners are having with them is going to need to change. At the moment most planners have been skilled at talking about structures, about yields, about tax planning and reporting, about the efficiency of simply staying
in the market, and that may be a conversation that is lost on the 400,000 Australians who have now collectively got more than $1 trillion stuck in cash. Now, the conversation needs to be about what they fear and the small steps that they can take to overcome these fears. There is more than 100 years of good research on Post Traumatic Stress and it tracks pretty closely with the fears of the Australians who think that they can no longer invest and the reality is pretty promising. For those who make it through the stress, they return strong and more dedicated in the places that they were broken – and that’s a challenge for the Australian financial planning, private banking and advice industry to embrace. The longer that we avoid it, the harder it’s going to be to recover from. (This has been another contribution from the insightful minds at Burningpants.com. Burningpants is a product of CoreData.)
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BUSINESS NEWS | 9
NEW APPOINTMENTS EMPLOYMENT SERVICES
Stephen Hanan is a new Employment Consultant for Encompass Employment Services. Stephen spent 3 years with the NT Dept of Education and Training, mentoring ESL Indigenous Assistant Teachers, and holds qualifications in Cognitive Coaching and Community Development.
Encompass Employment Services welcomes Kate Wyllie as an Employment Consultant. Kate has an Honours Degree in Occupational Therapy and has worked with people with a disability in a number of roles. She is also a volunteer coach for an all-abilities netball team last season.
GARDEN SUPPLIES Newcomb Sand & Soil Supplies have welcomed back David Dunoon as their new General Manager. All seven family members are now active in managing this family business, which began trading in the 1950s. For the past 28 years David has managed Swire Group Companies Transwest Haulage & Kalari Transport.
ACCOUNTING STS Accounting Group welcomes Kim Thomas as Manager of the Torquay office. Kim is a CPA and has worked in public practice with Geelong SMEs for over 13 years. Kim is looking forward to helping people on the surf coast with their business, taxation & Self Managed Superannuation Funds.
AGB Human Resources All training is delivered with Victorian and Commonwealth Government funding; Conditions Apply.
HOSPITALITY Damian Giarrusso, the Executive Sous Chef of Customs House Restaurant & Wine Bar, has worked with some of Australia’s elite chefs. From the kitchens of Tutto Bene Italian Restaurant, the Sofitel Mansion and Josephs Restaurant to working with masterchef Gary Mehigan at Fenix Restaurant & Events.
PROPERTY Richard Jenkins has re-joined Knight Frank as Director of Consulting & Research Services in Victoria. Mr Jenkins most recently held the position of Victorian Research Manager at Opteon Property Group, while his previous role was at Knight Frank as Associate Director of Research.
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- Certificate I-IV in Transport and Logistics (Warehousing and Storage) & (Logistics Operations)
Certificate II - III in Driving Operations Diploma of Logistics Certificate IV in Mental Health Certificate IV in Alcohol and Other Drugs Diploma of Community Services (Mental Health)
- Diploma of Community Services (Alcohol and Other Drugs) - Diploma of Counselling - Advanced Diploma of Community Sector Management - Certificate II - III in Hospitality - Certificate IV in Training and Assessment - Certificate IV in Frontline Management - Diploma of Project Management
Apply for RPL before the 30th of June 2012 For more information, or to book a time to come in, please call (03) 5222 3466
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NEW APPOINTMENTS EMPLOYMENT SERVICES Sean Hill joins Encompass Employment Services as Training and Client Support Officer. With many years experience in engineering and more recently, case management, he represents a blend of varied skills and expertise. Sean believes in Encompass’ person-centred principles.
SOCIAL MEDIA Jo Manderson has joined GOOP websites to manage social media set up and strategy for small businesses. Jo has a corporate marketing background, specifically in the services industry, having held senior brand strategy and marketing communications roles at ANZ and Sensis.
HEALTH Barwon Health welcomes Mark Wilkin to the role of Manager – Workforce Partnerships and Services. Mark returns to Geelong after six years with Goulburn Valley Water in Shepparton. Mark was previously employed at Barwon Water as Organisational Development Coordinator.
YOUTH SERVICES Having raised a child with special needs, Debbie Pecar felt that she would be able to draw on this experience when she joined the Encompass Youth Services team as Program Support Worker. She holds a BA in Social Sciences and has published a book “It’s An Asperger’s Thing”, which explains Asperger’s Syndrome to young children.
HEALTH Amy recently started practicing from Kardinia Health in Belmont. Amy is an Accredited Practising Dietitian with a Bachelor in Exercise Science and Nutrition and a Masters in Nutrition and Dietetics. Her previous experience has predominantly been in community dietetics in rural NSW and Victoria.
REAL ESTATE Jan Giddings joins Buxton Highton as the Senior Property Manager with 10 years of experience in the Property Management field throughout Geelong. She is client focused and strikes up an instant rapport with both landlords and tenants and communication between all parties is her great strength.
BUSINESS NEWS | 11
Interesting times If you’ve spoken to anyone working in or around the building industry recently, you’ve probably heard that they are doing it tough. Yet everywhere you look there seems to be new homes going up. Are our tradies really doing it tough, or are we seeing a return to normal following the building boom?
IN 2010, almost 60,000 new home builds were started across Victoria, which was a record high rate of new home building. Since then, a spike in interest rates and the ending of some of the government’s stimulus payments acted as a break to the building boom. In 2011, new home starts fell by around 10 per cent, and the HIA anticipates a further fall of around 17 per cent in 2012. “It’s definitely true that residential building as a whole, and new home building in particular nationwide, is doing it quite tough. In Victoria we’ve seen activity come off quite strongly in recent times, and will probably come off even more strongly. But you have
12 | BUSINESS NEWS
to keep in mind that there are new houses going up all over the place and there has been very strong building, and indeed, Victoria has come off record build rates,” said HIA Senior Economist, Andrew Harvey, when we spoke to him about the state of the Victorian construction industry. So, is what we are seeing a market rationalisation in the aftermath of a period of unsustainable growth, or a genuine downturn in the construction industry? “Basically, even after what are pretty big falls, and a 10 per cent fall followed by a 17 per cent fall are big falls, once they have occurred, we are still talking about around 45,000 new home
starts in Victoria per year, which is pretty much coming back to normal. It’s about coming back to the original trend, but you also have to keep in mind that the original trend was probably a bit low in terms of the amount of housing that Victoria needs as a whole. That’s how you end up with higher costs of new housing than you would otherwise see. But in Victoria, it is definitely about coming back from boom years.” This is hardly music to the ears of builders, tradies and building and trade supply businesses, but the good news is that the industry remains a strong one, with a positive ten-year outlook. “During the boom years in Victoria, new homes and
home renovations made up around 7 per cent of GDP, and on top of that you have the existing building sector and all the services from that, and then you have all the indirect contributions from manufacturers and suppliers, and down the stream you have real estate agents and retailers - so there are many multiples of that 7 per cent contribution to Victoria’s GDP. It’s a big industry and it’s an important industry for the state,” Mr Harvey said. While the industry as a whole is strong, what we are seeing in Victoria particularly is a falling off of around 25 per cent of activity as the housing boom slows down. On an individual building, trade or industry supply business level, that means
FEATURE gearing down business activity by 25 per cent – a big drop for any business to manage in such a short period. While the volume builders tend to cope quite well with these ebbs and flows (although some of the big companies are also feeling the strain), it is the smaller operators - the smaller businesses - that can be hit hard. “Again, it really is a story that is more regional or statebased than it is Australiawide. Because Victoria is coming off record highs, the companies have been geared up, so unfortunately they need to gear down and that means some excess in some places. But if you look more nationwide, there are places where you’ve still got skills in incredibly strong demand, and in some places skills shortages, and in other places skills are being poached by the mining companies,” Mr Harvey said. The building industry is often referred to as a barometer of economic strength or weakness in Australia – with building approvals and new home start figures a favourite reporting tool of many leading economists. There is good reason for this. When confidence is high in the Australian economy, people are more likely to
take out a loan to build a home. House prices rise and the idea of building a home becomes more appealing. When confidence drops in the economy, the housing market softens; people are less likely to want to sell their existing home and therefore less likely to build a new one. “Before I came to the HIA I used to work in the Commonwealth Treasury, and in our models for consumer consumption there was a wealth effect from housing. Basically, as housing prices go up and there is confidence in the sector, people are more likely to spend, and conversely, when confidence is bad and consumers are unlikely to spend, they are unlikely to spend on housing as well. So there is a kind of a feedback loop. With all the confidence problems we’ve had, not just globally, but in parts of the economy outside of mining, the building sector as a whole is taking a bit of a hit,” Mr Harvey said. But while new home building is slowing from the highs of 2010, the home renovation market is holding its strength. The building renovation market is measured in two segments – major renovations, those over $10,000 that include extensions or kitchen
renovations that have to gain Council approval; and small renovations valued under $10,000 including decks or small-scale remodelling projects. The HIA’s data shows that smaller-scale segment of the market has been strong and is continuing to grow. Mr Harvey said the level of growth is small, but when compared to the rest of the market, this segment is performing well. It seems that plenty of us have caught the renovation bug – which is perhaps why television shows such as The Block, Selling Homes Australia and Better Homes and Gardens are such ratings winners. It could also be one reason why it takes so long to get someone to come and do small jobs like replacing a window or building a deck. Interestingly, the HIA actually did a small study into the impact of popular home renovation shows on the renovation market that showed a statistically significant increase in renovation activity when there is a concentration of these sorts of shows on during a particular quarter. “People are still confident that if they invest in renovations that they will get their money back, and when
it’s small-scale projects the risk is a lot lower, and people also get the benefit of living in a little bit nicer home,” Mr Harvey said. While individual consumers are reducing their spending, and perhaps minimising their risk, on building projects, for the wider economy there are some potentially big risks in a scenario of continuing falls in building figures. If residential building falls too far behind the demand for housing in the state, or across the country, the cost of existing housing rises – sometimes sharply – and rising home prices apply considerable inflationary pressure to the wider economy, which is exactly what the Reserve Bank doesn’t want to see happen. How do we walk that line between ensuring sufficient housing stocks to meet the demands of a growing population, without putting downward pressure on the housing market, and therefore on consumer confidence? “That’s probably the number one policy question when it comes to housing. I think that there is enough evidence around to show that we’ve got a considerable housing shortage as a nation. There are pockets where that isn’t
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FEATURE the case, but certainly the National Housing Supply Council thinks there is a shortage of around 200,000 homes across the country – although we think it’s a bit less than that. But it doesn’t matter how we cut the figures, it looks to us that as a nation we are still underbuilding by a reasonable amount.” When we look at housing supply and trying to plan for future demand, industry bodies like the HIA look at household sizes and demographic trends, and these factors indicate to the HIA that we should be building around 169,000 new houses each year. To reach that level of building activity would mean incentivising the system through tax reforms and fee reductions, none of which would happen quickly even if the government moved to implement changes today. “When you look at it, if we’re building under 150,000 homes a year, we’re really not doing society or the economy any justice,” Mr Harvey said. “But as you say, you don’t want to overdo it. If you bring in policy to help the market bring houses on line more quickly, you don’t want to build so many that you stop price growth. So, it’s a case of getting enough reform in place so that you can build a bit more cheaply, and make it a bit easier for those building homes. You want to curtail price growth, but you don’t want to take it out of the system all together.” It is not an easy line to tread and certainly not one I would want to be responsible for. As a nation we remain firmly attached to The Great Australian Dream of owning our own homes, which is perhaps why policy in this area tends to be conservative. There can be no question, however, that it is getting more and more expensive to build a house in Victoria, with the same to be said of most areas of Australia. And while growth
14 | BUSINESS NEWS
in the existing housing market has softened – with price falls in some areas, particularly in the higher price brackets – buying a house is still out of reach for many people. “The HIA actually had the Centre for International Economics do some work for us on taxation in housing. In Melbourne, around 38 per cent of the purchase price of a new home is due to taxes, fees and charges. That is just a massive impost when you’re talking about housing not being that affordable, and certainly for some people in society it’s not affordable. So that is one area that wouldn’t be a bad place to look at, but again, you don’t want to pull it down so fast that you take the bottom out of the existing market,” Mr Harvey said. “It’s widely accepted that stamp duty is one of the worst taxes in terms of business and economic efficiency, so there are some real efforts around the place, or at least enough chatter about stamp duty and the need to remove it, that we will hopefully eventually get some reform in that area. That’s probably the number one place to start if you want to bring housing on a bit more quickly and push down the overall cost of new housing,” Mr Harvey said.
of transactions in housing would go up 40 per cent – so it’s a massive restriction in the market. “What we’re seeing is that when people move for a new job, for example, they are more likely to rent and to keep their existing home, simply because the transaction costs are so high. If we could lower those costs, then the number of housing transactions would increase and everything becomes a bit more flexible - you could even see the labour market becoming more flexible. So there are some really good reasons to get rid of stamp duty.” Australia-wide, the residential housing industry continues to be a big economic driver. The building housing renovation market is worth just over $30 billion annually, and the new home building market is worth just over $40 billion. A $70 billion industry
that really is massive, and certainly much bigger than the population [of the state would suggest]. So it’s certainly been a major part of the Victorian economy, and that’s been important when you have other sectors like manufacturing slowing, and you also don’t have a lot of mining activity in the state,” Mr Harvey said. The industry is a major employer in Victoria, and you don’t have to look back too far to remember a severe shortage of qualified tradespeople in the state. When new home building took off, it took a few years for training and apprenticeships to catch up. Today, the sector has become a major driver of trade skills development, which is just another reason why we don’t want to see building industry activity fall off too far. “In 2011/12, we are looking
“It’s widely accepted that stamp duty is one of the worst taxes in terms of business and economic efficiency.”
Stamp duty, the bane of anyone looking to buy a house, actually acts a dampener on the market. As house prices rise, so does the amount of stamp duty to be paid. While the tax wasn’t popular ten or twenty years ago, it did not have the same impact on the market as it does today.
in a trillion dollar economy is a big industry – accounting directly for 7 per cent of the economy, and with a multiplier of at least 2 (it was estimated that the residential building multiplier went as high as 3 during the boom years) - and when taking into account the upstream and downstream activity generated by the industry, you start to see just how important the sector is not only to the economy, but also to the all-important consumer confidence.
“The way the economics work, you can see that if you do take off stamp duty, the cost of housing doesn’t drop by the full amount, but it certainly does drop by a large proportion of it. The other thing you would see, and there have been some studies done on this, was that if you didn’t have any stamp duty, the number
“That just shows you how big the Victorian housing boom has been,” Mr Harvey said. “When you’re talking nearly $20 billion out of a national $70 billion industry,
When we look at Victoria, across the 2010-11 financial year, $13 billion of new housing was built, with another $6.4 billion worth of renovations.
at a fairly substantial drop off in activity nationwide,” Mr Harvey said. “That’s really due to not only the fall in confidence and the drop in overall economic activity, but also the interest rate hikes we saw prior to the most recent rate cuts. Those rate rises are already in the system, but after that, in the following years, we hope to get back to around 150,000 annual starts – which is a bit below trend, but it’s at least heading back in an okay direction. Certainly another couple of interest rate cuts wouldn’t hurt the market, and wouldn’t hurt the existing home market either. If they come through, at least we’ll have a bit of a floor underneath the industry and we can start rebuilding from that.”
BUSINESS OF THE MONTH
Marketing in the online space iS not that hard It’s an unquestionable phenomenon: online media is well and truly here. Yet, whilst there are a variety of online options for small businesses, these can often seem overwhelming. How do small businesses choose the right online marketing strategy? Is it just a matter of ‘doing it’ and hoping for the best (that it will work) or that it might just go away? Most small businesses don’t have enough time in the day nor the inclination to invest time and effort into developing a strategic online marketing presence… it all just seems too hard. But it need not be, by simply understanding what you need and why, investing in the basics and setting up a simple and practical strategy.
The very basic ingredients needed for investing in an online marketing presence are: • A very Google friendly website • Blog on your website • e-newsletter • Social media accounts ie Facebook, Twitter, Pintrest, Google+, Trip Advisor, Foursquare
What we do as small business website developers At GOOP we are website developers that provide small businesses with websites that work. Well developed websites should provide a return on investment. We seek results. We work with you to create a website that is individually tailored to suit your business’s needs to target potential clients. We put the objective of the website first, not the graphics like many graphics-based web design businesses. If your website looks fantastic but potential customers can’t find it, why bother wasting your money? GOOP offers websites as a proven alternative to other advertising models, particularly The Yellow Pages, which reach a certain client base. As 90% of the online searches in Australia are done through Google and over 10.5 million Australians are using the internet every month (Nielsen netRatings) there is an enormous untapped market for many regional businesses. The ease of Google’s search results can bring outstanding results to a well developed website. For example: if you are a courier business in Geelong, and “courier Geelong” is typed into Google, your business should ideally display on the first page of Google and other search engines. Put simply, if you don’t have a well developed website, you are potentially missing out on a massive customer base.
Blogs and Social Media Getting a top Google rating and driving sales via your website can be enhanced with other online elements such as blogging and social media. We work closely with clients to understand and identify clear objectives to ensure that the right online strategy, ie appropriate and relevant blog content, social media networks and email newsletters, is put in place. We teach our clients how to blog and post, how often, recommending content and engagement strategies. We recognize and understand that there is no ‘one glove fits all’ social media approach and for each business category, there is a variety or targeted approaches to take. For instance, what an accommodation business may do might be completely different to that of a retail business, and we make it our business to ensure your business has the most effective and value-for-money approach possible to reach your goals. GOOP builds websites for business in the Geelong, Surf Coast, Bellarine, Otway, Horsham, Albury, Bendigo and Ballarat regions – GOOP prides itself on its credible, simple and effective business methodology and service philosophy. Visit www.goop.com.au or to talk with Karl Morris, Managing Director, about how an online strategy can help you, please call 03 52224220.
Geelong Small Business Festival – Events hosted by GOOP To book directly, visit www.goop.com.au/smallbusinessfestival
GOOP Websites vs Yellow Page
GOOP and The Gordon Social Media for Retail and Floristry
GOOP and Surf Coast Shire Social Media for Tourism & Retail
• Evolution of Yellow Pages to websites and why websites are causing decline of Yellow Pages directories
• Learn why and how social media can work specifically for the retail industry ie floristry
• Learn why and how social media is relevant to you and your retail business ie Tourism
• why Yellow Pages is not the only advertising option for small buinesses
• How a simple structure and strategy can make all the difference
• this event could potentially save your small business $000’s and increase your revenue
• Discuss scenarios where social media is appropriate and break it down for various retail categories
• Using the right tools and developing a strategy to actively engage your audience
August 14, 5.30pm, Winters Cafe, 330 Pakington Street, Geelong - $25
August 21, 5.30pm, G329 The Gordon, 2 Fenwick St, Geelong - $20
• Setting up social media and using it efficiently and effectively to drive more business August 28, 4.30pm, Surf Coast Shire offices, 1 Merrijig Drive, Torquay - $10
BUSINESS NEWS | 15
Industrial revolution In the rapidly evolving manufacturing sector, the simple truth is that if you fail to change, if you fail to innovate, if you fail to shift with the times, then you die. If you snooze, you lose!
Economic transitioning, industry rationalisation, and globalising business – regardless of how you say it, it all means the same thing: changes are taking place and they’re not going to be good for everyone. There is no doubt that there are businesses doing it tough at the moment, and while regional businesses seem to be coping better with the difficult trading conditions than their metropolitan counterparts, there is a pervading sense throughout the business sector that now is a time to hunker down and hold on until the storm passes. What doesn’t help the sense of unease within manufacturing circles are the almost constant threats of job losses and even closures of some of the big manufacturing operations around the state – particularly in automotive manufacturing, and the current negotiations to keep Alcoa operating its smelter at Point Henry in Geelong. Tim Gooden, Secretary Geelong Trades Hall, providing no-strings-attached government funding to prop up manufacturing is not a good idea. “If you take a big philosophical view of everything, one could be argued and has been argued that capitalism is in a crisis. Regional Victoria and Australia isn’t going to be immune from that, although it seems that we largely have been to date. The crises of finance and big capital have not resolved, and I doubt
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whether they will be able to be resolved. I think it will be an evolving process that will be different, to some extent, in each country. “One thing that will be clear at the end of the day is that societies that have become more self-sufficient and selfreliant on their basics, will then have the opportunity to diversify in other ways.” Mr Gooden said governments should be focussed on the big picture – that supporting the transition of manufacturing has to be just that, supporting transition, not simply propping up the old system. “Some governments, and I’m not necessarily saying this one, but some governments around the world have focussed on bailing out big business – particularly during the GFC, but this was happening long before the GFC,” he said. “My feeling is that Geelong is in a good position – we’re close to the city so we have our commuters bringing their money into the region. We’ve got a big university, we’ve got the health department and we’ve got a tourism industry. The dollar is coming back down again, and who knows, if they finally get this mining tax in, then that will bring the dollar down even further. The higher they get the mining tax, the more manufacturing would benefit.” Bernadette Uzelac, Executive Director of the Geelong Chamber of Commerce, says what the manufacturing sector
is experiencing is all part of the swings and roundabouts about doing business in an ever-evolving world. “Things go in cycles, economic times go in cycles and whilst we may go through some more difficult times, I don’t think we’re going through as difficult a time as we went through during the GFC or during the early 1990s, when they virtually locked the doors to Geelong after the Pyramid collapse.” She said many businesses might find the economic hard times might be far more shortlived than they during previous downturns. “One of the things that I’ve noticed has been the proliferation and growth of
innovation in small business in so many ways. Marketing innovation, innovation of their products and services, their differentiation and their huge take up of social media and the use of an online presence – and that is really changing the game plan for a lot of businesses who are no longer just sitting there and waiting for whatever to happen. They are being very proactive about their business, how they manage it and how they reach their markets. “It’s really exciting to see people having a really good go, regardless of what economists might be saying or what they might be reading about a slowdown in China, it’s not stopping these
COVER STORY 12 years. The GMC held a Clean Technology Conference at the end of May, looking at innovations in sustainability with business applications and the new opportunities arising across the clean technology sector. The GMC are actively promoting the development of sustainable business practices across the manufacturing sector as a means increasing the competitive advantage of manufacturing businesses.
small and nimble operations that are embarking on to the global market. There are some industries that are leading the way in technology and innovation,” Ms Uzelac said.
This is a message that Ms Uzelac suggests businesses should be taking on board.
“Absolutely, and every aspect of business operations is being looked at by those in the inner sector of every industry. There are some great innovations, and there are lots of great local examples where thinking outside the square is taking place. These companies have looked really critically at their operations and looked at where they can make changes and how they can reduce costs without impacting on their output and the quality of the end product,” Ms Uzelac said.
“Without any reference to putting a Carbon Tax on the manufacturing sector, there’s definitely been a change in this direction. This, I think, is opening up new opportunities for enterprising, entrepreneurial businesses to move into the new technology arena. There are real opportunities in developing these new technologies, harnessing alternative power and fuel sources, and being able drive some of those changes. We are seeing quite a bit of that happening in this region, with geothermal and wind technologies.
businesses. The opportunities really are enormous for those that want to take them up.” In Geelong, around 14,000 people are employed across the region’s manufacturing sectors, across some 500 companies. Manufacturing accounts for around 43 per cent of the region’s GDP – producing in excess of $5 billion of business throughout the region and 41 per cent of the region’s employment, generating over $600 million wages. The Geelong Manufacturing Council has undertaken a project to identify and develop sustainable opportunities for manufacturing, with an aim of growing regional exports to $2 billion per annum within
“So I agree that manufacturing is in transition. We certainly need manufacturing in this region, but it is changing, it has already been changing, and I think that those manufacturers who have been early adopters of new technologies and [cleaner and greener] processes are now really embracing these ideas of how they can do things differently.” The earlier that manufacturing companies and industries have moved to update their processes, the better placed they are to take advantage of each new development in clean technology and systems advancements – and this is where we start to see the development of genuine competitive advantages. “There are a number of manufacturing companies that have emerged in this time as well. It’s not just traditional manufacturers; we’re finding that there is a host of new and emerging, innovative,
A significant part of innovation for manufacturing and industry is finding ways to reduce cost overheads – particularly rising energy costs. The more self-sustaining an operation is, the more insulated it is against global financial shifts.
The future leaders of Australia’ manufacturing sector will be those that are already looking at meeting future demand, and one of the big emerging manufacturing markets is in carbon fibre. Carbon fibre composites are at the cutting edge of materials manufacturing, and are almost universally believed to be the building materials of the rest of the 21st century, but also the 22nd century and beyond.
fibres, which are less than a tenth of the diameter of a human hair and very difficult to handle. It robot-automatically loads and tests up to 500 samples which means we can be very confident with our measurements.” Carbon fibre was first produced in the 1960s and 70s, but are really only being developed as a manufacturing material now. Lightweight and strong, carbon fibre composites are transforming the future production of aeroplanes and automotive manufacturing. “The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is 50 per cent composite materials by weight and the new Airbus A350 XWB will be 53 per cent composite by weight,” Assoc. Professor Fox said. “These materials play an enormous role in making aircraft more lightweight so that they are more fuel efficient and produce fewer environmental emissions. “In addition to that, carbon fibre composites have a huge impact on the way we look at alternative energy, particularly blades for wind turbines. They also have the ability to reduce the weight of motor vehicles, for example, in the USA, Tesla use carbon fibre composites as the material of choice for their cutting edge electric vehicles.” Another recent development in Geelong’s ambitions for world leadership in carbon fibre composites is the confirmation that Deakin had reached agreement with Despatch Industries to build a carbon fibre production line on the Waurn Ponds campus.
Deakin University is leading the way in research into carbon fibre composites in Australia and only this year took possession of a cutting edge carbon fibre testing machine, one of only 15 Favimat (AI) Robot2 machines in the world. Associate Professor Bronwyn Fox, who heads the carbon fibres composites group at the University, describes the machine as the ‘gold standard for testing carbon fibres’.
This will be part of the Australian Carbon Fibre Research Facility (ACFRF), the only one of its type in the world, which is to be housed within the Australian Future Fibres Research and Innovation Centre (AFFRIC). The ACFRF is expected to be operational in 2013.
When the machine arrived, Assoc. Professor Fox said, “The Favimat machine allows us to simultaneously measure the linear density and tensile properties of individual carbon
“At the moment there are some scientists doing labscale experiments in carbon fibres and there are others in industry involved production,” Associate Professor Fox said.
BUSINESS NEWS | 17
COVER STORY “They can’t utilise existing carbon fibre production lines for research because it means a loss of production and the lab scale experiments are unable to replicate the tension on the fibre in production. “We have found a real niche for ourselves at the pilot scale for making carbon fibre where we can do some world-class research. This gives us the ability to look at new ways of making carbon fibres as well as developing the next generation of carbon fibres.” Mr Gooden said he would love for his to job to be almost solely about promoting opportunities and bringing in investment in carbon fibre, getting up agreements and getting supported training in those areas. “If I could put my attention on that, that would be great. But what takes my attention away from doing that – and that is something for everybody – is helping the people who come through my door that have been sacked. If I’m dealing with job losses, funding cuts and insolvencies closures, then my time and attention goes to crisis management. This is the case for all business leaders and politicians as well, you don’t have anyone spending time on forums, on investment and really talking about what direction we should be taking on high tech industries and renewable energies and so on. “[We should be] identifying the barriers that are preventing some of these things from happening – like what’s preventing the Solar Flagship money from being spent on those new big solar stations up in central Victoria, because they don’t have a sales contract. The people who have got their investments in brown coal, they’re the ones who are buying the electricity and they’re not going to buy it off the renewables. We should be focussing on removing that barrier and campaigning jointly – manufacturing and the unions together – to remove that barrier. “But we’re not doing that, because next week we’ve got
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to organise rallies and protests and campaigns to stop the Government from cutting Tafe [funding]. This is ludicrous. Here we are trying to move into a carbon-neutral economy on the one hand, but on the other hand, where are you going to do your Diploma in carbon management? The very thing you need, if you’re a company and you want to apply for funding to get co-generation electricity for your factory, or some insulation, when you fill out your application you have to do a carbon audit of your factory. You have to get someone to come in and do that – where do you get people who can do that? At the moment they’re trying to get people to come down from Melbourne, and we’re trying to train up local electricians to do it, but The Gordon, that runs that course, is having its funding cut. This is where Government policy and Government rhetoric just don’t match up,” Mr Gooden said. Transition and change is almost a constant state for regions with a strong manufacturing base, as these regions must change and adapt with the shifts of its industries. This is true around the world, and is certainly true here in Victoria. After all, we’ve seen it plenty of times before. “Geelong started off on the sheep’s back, and wool was one of our staples, with wool and wheat being our major products. It moved into a manufacturing economy at a later stage and now the world is going through a transition, where traditional manufacturing as we know it is really not sustainable. It does need to transition to become more innovative, more niche, more high tech and more directional,” Ms Uzelac said. In Victoria, much of the impetus for change is coming from the energy sector. Being so dependent on brown coal for electricity production makes our state incredibly vulnerable to rising energy costs. We live in a world that is inexorably moving towards carbon neutrality (yes, I know there are plenty
of politicians – Tony, Ted & co. included who don’t want to see it – that doesn’t mean it isn’t happening). The most basic step we can take to support the future of our manufacturing sector is to develop sustainable energy sources – plain and simple. One thing recent history does tell us is that industry can’t rely on political opinion polls and slow moving policy before transitioning. Polls and pollies are notoriously poor predictors of industry outcomes. Think about the Carbon Tax, the arguments against which sound eerily similar to the GST arguments of 1999/2000, albeit on opposite sides of the political fence, right down to Julia Gillard’s declaration that “there will be no Carbon Tax under the government I lead” almost directly mirroring John Howard’s promise to “never, ever introduce a GST”. The sky was going to fall in 2000, and amazingly stayed put.
Fear and self-interest have time and again proved to be poor predictors. But if we are to innovate, the shift and change, to develop new technologies and manufacturing streams, it is important then to maintain and improve the strength of our training and education system across the state. Tafe training took a big hit in the May Budget, and while accountability and performance are critically important in the training sector, it is concerning that this step by the Baillieu Government might have exactly the opposite outcome that it is aiming for – that the quality of training provision will fall, further deepening existing skills shortages and setting back the development and take up of new technologies that require skilled workers. There are challenges before us in Victoria as we move further into the new industrial
“We just need to keep our eye on the bigger picture and see our future for what it’s going to be, whilst managing the present. ” The same thing is true of the arguments against shifting to renewable energies. The naysayers would have us believe that peak load power will simply shut down if we don’t build more coal-fired power stations. But these arguments come from the same kind of minds that argued that ending the logging of the state’s old growth forests would decimate the timber industry. What really happened was that plantation logging is a bigger employer than old growth – it was a win for the industry and for the environment. The same will thing will happen with the renewable energy sector. Renewables are highly labour-intensive processes that create jobs. As for the ability to produce enough power, there are more than enough examples across the world (Germany, Scotland and California are just the tip of the iceberg) to disprove that little furfy.
revolution, but there are as many opportunities as there are challenges, and therein just might lay the keys to the future of our state’s economy. “You’ve almost got to pause, not take a step back as such, but it’s a bit like the calm before the storm at the moment – the storm being a good storm. In those moments, it can seem like things are perhaps chaotic or uncertain, but I think that’s just part of the change,” Ms Uzelac said. “We just need to keep our eye on the bigger picture and see our future for what it’s going to be, whilst managing the present. If businesses can be focused on that, that some of the little niggly problems that we’re experiencing at the moment will subside in time [then they will see] that it’s all just part of the push and pull of change.”
FRIDAY 6TH JULY / THE PIER, GEELONG
Your business and the carbon price Most people would by now be aware that on 1 July the Federal Government will introduce a carbon price. What most people are less sure of, is how the introduction of the carbon price will affect their household or business budgets. The ACCC has warned businesses to be wary of making misleading claims when passing on extra costs associated with the carbon price.
relevant for claims about a percentage change over a period of time);
is not necessarily misleading.)
- calculations from an appropriate business calculator that considers increased costs relevant to your particular business or industry;
- offering to pay carbon price compensation into your bank account;
- information from professional advisors or consultants; for example, accountant reports showing the impact of the carbon price on your businessâ€™ input costs; - information from your industry association and the government, which may provide guidance as to the likely price impacts as a result of the carbon price in certain industries. When estimating the impact of the carbon price and setting prices, it is important that businesses determine prices independently of their competitors, and avoid discussions and agreements with competitors about the price impact of the carbon price. Considering claims made by other businesses or your suppliers
UNDER the scheme, a carbon price will apply to certain greenhouse emissions, with some large businesses being required to purchase carbon credits. Other businesses may also be affected as suppliers pass on the extra costs associated with the carbon price. In either case, businesses can choose to pass on their extra costs by increasing prices. As a business, you need to be aware that if you claim your prices have gone up or are about to go up because of the carbon price, you must ensure your claims are truthful, have a reasonable basis and do not mislead or deceive consumers or other businesses. When making such claims in advertising and promotional material or in sales pitches to customers, you should be
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careful not to overstate the impact of the carbon price. Put simply, if you choose to make a claim about the impact of the carbon price, you must have confidence in it. The type of information to consider before making a claim includes: - invoices showing the impact of the carbon price on your supply chain or business input costs; for example, raw materials, packaging and transport, where relevant; - notices or invoices showing the impact of the carbon price on the cost of your services; for example, gas, electricity, waste disposal and travel; - invoices and other information showing the impact on your products or services before and after a price change (may be
Your suppliers are entitled to increase their prices - just as you are. If they make a carbon price claim about a price increase it must be truthful and have a reasonable basis. If you intend to rely on information from your suppliers when making carbon price claims of your own, you need to assess whether it is reasonable to rely on that information. Here are some tips that can help businesses avoid being misled by other businesses or their suppliers: First of all, look at what other suppliers are charging for similar products and services, and what they are saying about the impact of the carbon price. Second, think twice before taking up supplier offers that say, before 1 July, that prices have gone up due to the carbon price. (Note, that some businesses may flag their intentions early, but that
And finally, be cautious about phone calls or emails:
- claiming you need to pay or transfer money to receive a compensation payment or tax refund - asking scam survey questions about carbon and requesting business or financial details. These may be scams. Information about how businesses can protect themselves from carbon price scams is available at www.scamwatch.gov.au. What the ACCC can do The ACCC does not have a role in formally monitoring, setting or restricting prices linked to the carbon price and cannot stop a business from putting up its prices as a result of the carbon price. It can, however, act against misleading claims if a business falsely links a price increase with the carbon price. Further information The ACCC has developed guidance materials to help businesses and their advisors when considering making a claim. There are five business snapshots, including Carbon price claims â€“ guidance for business advisors and Information to support your claims, as well as frequently asked questions available at www.accc.gov.au/carbon. There is also the recently updated Carbon price claims â€“ Guide for business, also available at www.accc.gov. au/carbon. If you have a complaint or inquiry, contact the ACCC Infocentre on 1300 302 502 or use one of the forms at www.accc.gov.au. Small businesses can also contact the small business helpline on 1300 302 021. And for information on how the carbon price works, visitcleanenergyfuture.gov.au or call 1800 057 590.
VECCI for regional hospitals and schools to underpin regional Victoria’s attraction as a place to live, work and invest.
Breaking down the Budgets The previous month has seen the delivery of respective budgets by the Victorian and Federal Governments for the coming financial year – very important budgets for Victorian businesses, considering the effects of the twospeed economy and the pressures on important industries like manufacturing, retail, tourism and hospitality.
These positives cannot overshadow the fact that ongoing reform is still required in many areas. VECCI has been and will continue to be advocates for reform of the state tax system and further cuts in red tape, while more needs to be done to encourage private sector investment and job creation. We also await the Government’s response to the Victorian Competition & Efficiency Commission draft report into the tourism industry. The draft report highlighted many of the issues that are discouraging investment in the tourism industry, particularly challenges for regional operators, and we eagerly await a response so we can begin to plan ahead for the future sustainability of the industry. From a national perspective, the Gillard Government’s latest Budget also brought about a much-welcomed return to surplus, but there were a disappointingly few initiatives to reduce business costs and tackle structural challenges facing the economy.
Photo: Zed Fitzhume. Source: Flickr THE Baillieu Government’s second Budget provided some pleasing initiatives to address the cost of doing business in Victoria, with the most notable being the decision to cut WorkCover premiums by an average of three per cent. VECCI has called for WorkCover premium reductions for some time and we’re glad the Government has acted on this front. The predicted $155 million surplus will give businesses confidence and should ensure the retention of the state’s AAA credit rating, and the reduction of the public service without harming frontline and essential
services is a positive move to cut costs. The Budget acknowledged the need to support Victorian manufacturing and trade growth, with a range of initiatives to improve access to government information, raise innovation and strengthen trade and investment ties. A focus on infrastructure was also maintained, with funding to progress the business case for Melbourne’s EastWest Link and Metro rail projects, and new funding to increase the capacity of the regional rail network that serves Geelong and other regional centres, plus money
The ‘loss carry-back’ scheme - where companies will in future be able to carry back losses of up to $1 million against tax paid in the previous year - will assist small business owners, although will only apply to incorporated businesses (ie: not sole traders or partnerships). While it was a blow to see a planned company tax cut scrapped, small businesses will benefit from the increased instant asset write-off threshold. As important as the Federal Budget’s focus on families and low income earners is, it should have been geared towards growing the productive capacity of the economy and creating an environment that spurs new private sector investment and job creation.
There was modest investment in skills, targeted at mature age workers, and additional funding to encourage more of a maths and science focus to our education. Also, the National Disability Insurance Scheme will eventually have great economic as well as social benefits. The establishment of the Asia Marketing Fund for Tourism Australia will have benefits for Victoria too, as it should lead to increased trade and tourism relations with countries such as China and India, but the gloss of that announcement was taken away with the announced increase in the passenger movement charge, paid by travellers when they leave Australia. The significant increase of $8 will bring the charge to $55 from 1 July 2012 and may deter our important international visitors. Overall, it was a missed opportunity to tackle many of the challenges businesses are facing, including the funding of higher superannuation contributions, the ongoing effects of global economic uncertainty, and the impact of the carbon tax, especially on small businesses. VECCI, along with our counterparts at the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, will continue to advocate on behalf of businesses for further initiatives in the coming weeks and months.
JAMES GULLI VECCI Regional Manager, Geelong & South West Region VECCI offers a range of workplace relations services, from a telephone helpline to one-on-one consulting. For more information, visit vecci.org.au.
BUSINESS NEWS | 21
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meetings management. The award win is great acknowledgement of the hard work and excellence achieved by Business Events Geelong in attracting corporate events and conferences to the region.
Business Events Geelong is your award winning Convention Bureau for Victoria’s premier meetings destination - Geelong and the Great Ocean Road.
Geelong Otway Tourism (GOT) is proud to announce that Terry Hickey will take on the role of Convention Bureau Manager for Business Events Geelong from 30 April.
Our role is to support you by locating exceptional conference venues, unique function spaces, quality accommodation, professional support services and amazing experiences. Business Events Geelong’s convention bureau services are FREE and include: • Referring the best of our venues, accommodation, professional services and team building activities • Coordinating request for proposals • Conducting venue site inspections and familiarisations • Production of professional bid documents • Assisting with incentive travel reward programs and pre/post touring options • Sourcing local delegate and speaker gifts • Providing delegate boosting materials • Supplying visitor information With the region’s natural beauty, supported by conferencing infrastructure, we are committed to ensuring your next business event is the success you want it to be. Contact: t 03 5223 2588 e email@example.com w www.BusinessEventsGeelong.com.au
New Convention Bureau Manager Announced for Business Events Geelong
Terry comes to this role with over 25 years of senior management experience, the last seven of which have been as Deputy Executive Director of GOT. This senior position had Terry overseeing many facets of the regional tourism body, including Business Events. GOT Executive Director, Roger Grant said, “Terry has demonstrated skills in stakeholder management, marketing and research, which will serve him well when carrying out the duties of this new role.” Terry takes over from Andrew Hiebl who managed GOT’s conference department for 4 years. Earlier this month, Andrew decided to take on a new career challenge as Executive Director of the Association of Australian Convention Bureaux. “I believe that Terry will provide strong leadership and help this vibrant industry sector flourish in Geelong and the Great Ocean Road. I leave confident that our region is in good hands going forward and wish Terry and the Business Events Geelong team all the very best for the future. I also look forward to working with the team in my new capacity with the AACB.” Mr Hiebl said.
Hall of Fame win for Business Events Geelong. Business Events Geelong has been awarded best Regional Destination Marketing Organisation at the Meetings and Events Australia’s (MEA) 2012 National Industry Awards. In taking out the title for the third consecutive year Business Events Geelong was inducted into the MEA Hall of Fame. Significantly, they are the first regional marketing body to achieve Hall of Fame status.
Terry Hickey (left) who is the new Convention Bureau Manager and Andrew Hiebl (right) past Convention Bureau Manager, accepting the award at the recent Meetings and Events Australia’s (MEA) 2012 National Industry Awards.
MEA is a national, not for profit organisation, working to foster professionalism in all aspects of
What sparked from an idea developed around a board table at Geelong Otway Tourism with the General Managers
22 | BUSINESS NEWS
Geelong makes moves to becoming more PCO friendly
of Geelong’s major conference accommodation providers, has finally become a reality. Geelong’s two largest conference hotels, Four Points by Sheraton Geelong and Mercure Geelong, have come together to create a Standard Accommodation Contract, that will assist Professional Conference Organisers (PCOs) when holding business events in the regional city. Manager of Business Events Geelong, Terry Hickey, expressed that “This is not only a first for Regional Australia, but the nation as a whole, firmly placing Victoria’s second largest city as a leading destination when it comes to business events.” An issue firmly identified by the PCO Association’s President, Rob Henshaw, when visiting Geelong over recent years, is the management of multiple hotel contracts, each with their own vastly different terms and conditions. “As Geelong’s largest residential conference hotel with 138 guest rooms and the capacity to cater for up to 600 delegates, Mercure Geelong is excited to be part of a new ‘Standard Accommodation Contract’ initiative in conjunction with multiple Geelong hotels. In an Australian first, the combined agreement will ensure that PCO’s, associations, corporate and conference bookers can focus on booking their conference in the superb city of Geelong without the hassle of trawling though numerous and cumbersome contracts for multiple hotels, especially when their conference is too large for a single property to host.” said Benjamin Krieg, General Manager of Mercure Geelong. General Manager of Four Points by Sheraton Geelong, Bryan Dennis, added, “The Four Points by Sheraton Geelong together with other Geelong hotels have been working hard over many months to finalise a conference agreement which will ensure that event organisers and PCOs receive a Theapproach Geelong Conference simple and streamlined to Centre a purpose built negotiations with the overallisobjective conference being to grow loyalty residential to Geelong as a centre located in the heart business events destination. All GMs, of Eastern Park Gardens Sales and Events Teams are committed tranquil and to the success of thisproviding exciting ainitiative.” distraction-free environment. The next phase of this unique This Great initiative Deal includes one will be to encourage other Geelong main meeting room including accommodation operators a full AV with equipment, arrival business events focus partner the teatoand coffee,inmorning tea, Standard Accommodation Contract working lunch and afternoon program. tea, mints and water – refreshed throughout the day, conference stationery box and free onsite parking.
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$199pp Residential Conference Package* For a limited time you can experience Mantra Lorne for an unbelievable rate. As Regional Victoria’s largest resort and conference destination and as the only beachfront property in Lorne, it is the perfect location for your next event. Offering first class conference facilities, stylishly appointed accommodation and superb dining options all within two hours of Melbourne. T (03) 5228 9748 E firstname.lastname@example.org Valid to 31 August, 2012 *Subject to availability, conditions apply. Based on a min. of 10. Quote “Great Deal” when booking. Business Events Geelong will donate $1 for every $100 spent on conference packages booked via our online booking system, to the NBCF. (Terms and Conditions apply).
LEGAL protection with respect to a potentially reckless beneficiary or from a trustee in bankruptcy and guard against Will challenges.
Donâ€™t put it in the drawer and forget it. Review your Will Anyone who is over the age of 18 and of sound mind may make a valid Will. Regardless of your age, by having a Will you ensure proper estate planning for the future and peace of mind. Your Will is the document that directs the financial and material achievements accumulated during your lifetime and it is important you review your Will every few years to ensure it remains relevant to your wishes. If necessary, a minor change can be made by adding a Codicil, or a new Will may be drafted to ensure clarity of intention. Donâ€™t have a Will? If you do not make a legal Will, your assets will be distributed in accordance with legislation. Your assets may pass to someone to whom you didnâ€™t plan to leave anything, or a person to whom you would otherwise leave your estate may not receive as much as you intended. Tax considerations It is also important to consider
the tax implications of your Will to ensure that your estate is passed on in a tax effective manner. If you leave your assets to your parents, this may impact dramatically on their pension or tax. Where appropriate, you may wish to use a Testamentary or Will Trust to provide a tax effective strategy for your beneficiaries. A Will Trust can offer tax incentives, flexibility in the distribution of income, secure peace of mind asset
Many grandparents are taking the opportunity to set up a Will Trust with the specific intention of assisting in the education of their grandchildren. This is achieved by allocating money directly to the grandchildren for their education rather than it passing through the parent at normal tax rates. A change in your circumstances If you have an existing Will and your circumstances have changed - whether through marriage, change in defacto status, the birth (or anticipation of the birth) of children, separation, divorce or remarriage - you should make a new Will. Your Will is revoked by marriage except for any appointment or distribution in favour of the person you are married to at the time of your death. If you divorce, your Will be revoked in so far as to allows for any disposition to or appointment of your divorced spouse. However, this does not occur until you are legally divorced, so until that time,
even if you are separated, any distribution to your spouse remains valid. Estate Planning You should also give thought to the impact of the global financial crisis on your estate planning. If, for example, you leave your superannuation benefit to one beneficiary (via a Binding Death Benefit Nomination) and your house to another, if the value of your superannuation has decreased in recent times due to the global financial crisis and you pass away, the amount your beneficiaries receive may not be in the proportions you had intended. With this in mind, it may be worthwhile reviewing your Will to ensure you are content with the allocation of your estate to your beneficiaries. A poorly drafted or outdated Will too often results in intended beneficiaries missing out or leaves itself open to expensive and protracted legal argument between family members. You should regularly review your Will with your Lawyer to ensure that it reflects your current wishes and circumstances.
Bronwen Charleson Wills, Estates & Business Succession Planning Lawyer
Disclaimer: This article contains general comments only. Specific legal advice should be obtained in relation to any matters associated with the topic discussed.
BRONWEN CHARLESON 24 | BUSINESS NEWS
ATO Crackdown on Trust Distributions Each year the trustee of a trust is required to make a resolution as to whom the profit will be distributed to. This trust distribution resolution is required by the trust deed of every trust. In the past, these resolutions were prepared after 30 June which was permitted under the ATO’s rulings.
Investments v Commissioner of Taxation (2011). Therefore the ATO’s administrative concession of allowing the trustee’s resolution to be finalised by 31 August has been removed, and such resolutions now need to be finalised by 30 June. More importantly, the ATO has confirmed that it intends to conduct random checks in July 2012 to ensure that trust distribution resolutions for the year ended 30 June 2012 have been prepared prior to 30 June 2012. For more information refer to the ATO link http://www.ato.gov.au/ content/00318706.htm What are the consequences? Where trust distribution resolutions have not been done, the distribution of profits would revert to the rules laid out in the trust deed; in many cases this would mean the trustee will be assessed on the income under section 99A of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936 resulting in tax payable on all of the income for the year at the highest marginal tax rate of 46.5%. Alternatively, depending on what the trust deed provides, the trust’s default beneficiaries will be assessed on the income of the trust.
for tax purposes. This is because new tax legislation provides that a beneficiary can only be “specifically entitled” to franked dividends or capital gains if this entitlement is recorded in writing in the records of the trust for franked dividends (by 30 June) or capital gains (by 31 August). The trustee’s resolution does not need to specify an actual dollar amount for the resolution to be effective in making a beneficiary presently entitled, unless the trust deed specifically requires it. A resolution is effective if it prescribes a clear methodology for calculating the entitlement. For example, the entitlement can be expressed as a specified percentage of the income. Alternatively, if the trustee knows with certainty that the income of the trust will be at least a certain amount, the trustee may choose to make one or more beneficiaries presently entitled to the certain amount, and other beneficiaries entitled to the balance, whatever amount that may be.
In the majority of cases, either of these options would not be the best outcome. What do you need to do?
Deadline for preparation of Trust Distribution Resolutions The ATO has been focusing on trusts since 2010, and following a number of court cases, they have been tightening their approach to the way trustees may apply the rules. They have recently stated that it is no longer acceptable to prepare the trust distribution resolutions after 30 June, and have withdrawn their rulings accordingly.
Income Tax Rulings IT 328 and 329 stated that the Commissioner of Taxation would accept that a payment or application of income made within 2 months of the end of an income year could give rise to a present entitlement as at the end of that income year. It is these two rulings that the Commissioner of Taxation has withdrawn, as foreshadowed in the Decision Impact Statement on the case of Colonial First State
To ensure you are prepared for a potential ATO check, trust distribution resolutions should be prepared before 30 June 2012. As there are a wide variety of trust deeds with different requirements for trustee resolutions, there is no standard format in relation to trust resolutions. The trustee will need to tailor their trust resolution to the trust deed and establish, in one or more beneficiaries, a present entitlement to the trust income by 30 June in any income year. A written record will also be essential if you want to effectively stream capital gains or franked distributions
Wendy Maloney Principal, Accounting & Business Advistory, WHK Geelong office This is information only and readers should not rely or act on the information provided without first obtaining professional advice on this issue. This information was accurate at 23 May 2012
BUSINESS NEWS | 25
Leading Business Men It is its leaders that sets a great business or organisation apart from the merely good. The ability to lead well, to inspire those around you, and to give your team the tools to do their work and the confidence to do it to the best of their abilities deserves celebration. There are big changes underway across all sectors of the business community in Australia. Our economy is having to weather the storm of global financial uncertainty, and we must find ways to both maintain our current strengths whilst innovating and evolving to meet the challenges before us. To do that, we need positive, talented and innovative leaders. To be a leader is much more than sitting at the head of a conference table and securing the best parking space. A good leader must understand every aspect of their business or organisation. They must know its people, and
20% TO F 70% OFiDE STORETw H JUNE
their strengths and challenges. They must understand the environment the business or organisation operates in, and be capable of stepping up to meet both the pressures and the opportunities that arise. But most of all, a good leader must inspire those around them. Real leadership is about not only seeing what lies on the path ahead, but seeing around corners. It is about seeing the possibilities that others fail to see and finding ways to turn potentialities into realities. Real leaders are those who will take us into a bold new future, where change is the only constant.
AHEAD OF THE REST
Browse Fashions Shop 2-3 111 Pakington St, Geelong West Ph. 03 5223 2052 Fax. 03 5222 5391 www.browsefashions.com
. ns apply Conditio
dressing our leading men 26 | BUSINESS NEWS
“The best leader is the one who has sense enough to pick good men to do what he wants done, and the self-restraint to keep from meddling with them while they do it.”
- Theodore Roosevelt
Nathan Murray – Managing Director of Morris Finance Ltd
Nathan has an in-depth knowledge of the finance industry and the many related issues for SMEs. He believes in helping business owners achieve their goals and has a unique ability to recognise the core offering of a business and identify its critical path to success.
Morris Finance was formed in 1998 by Ian and Nathan Murray with a vision to become a leader in the field of commercial leases and loans. The company offers a range of short to medium term finance solutions to businesses and commercial individuals through commercial leasing, hire purchase and chattel mortgage facilities. Nathan is an industry leader and a member of an in-house team supported by a nationwide network of industry specialists. He has been pivotal in the rapid expansion of the business. Nathan has made it a priority to have a variety of industry professionals, ensuring all customers Australia-wide receive the time needed to create finance solutions that will drive their business forward.
Tel: 03 5223 3453 www.morrisfinance.com.au
Andrew Lawson, United Way Campaign 1978 Chairman and later Board Chairman. He was President of the Rotary Club of Geelong in 2000/1, the Club’s 75th anniversary year, and again in 2010/11. Andrew has extensive knowledge of the region’s not for profit sector. The GCF developed from a UW Geelong initiative. Founding Chairman Geoff Neilson appointed Andrew, recently retired from Huyck, as initial EO. He has worked with the very effective Board to raise capital of $12.5 million and make grants totalling $2.5 million. Andrew Lawson, Executive Officer of the Geelong Community Foundation (GCF)
Educated at Geelong College and The Gordon, where he gained a textile diploma, Andrew first worked with Bonds in Sydney. He then worked for Huyck in Geelong, rising to Managing Director in 1973, and then in USA and Canada, where he was promoted to President of Huyck Canada. With a strong knowledge of Community Foundations, he is also the CF Development Officer for Philanthropy Australia; working with 30 CF’s across Australia and representing Australia at international CF conferences. Andrew Lawson on 5222 3775 Email: email@example.com By mail to: PO Box 1, Geelong, Victoria 3220
CEO Michael Martinez was appointed CEO of Diversitat in 2005 Prior to CEO Michael had been with Diversitat for 13 years in a number of roles including Manager of Employment & Training, Operations Manager and then General Manager. He is a member on a number of committees and boards and advocates on behalf of the Diversitat community at local, state and federal government levels. Executive member of SCOA (Settlement Council of Australia) peak National Body representing settlement agencies, Pulse Radio Station Board of Management, RAC( Regional Advisor Council) for the VMC Victorian Michael Martinez Multicultural Commission. CEO Diversitat He is known for his passion and determination working with Diversitat to empower and support disadvantaged communities in the Geelong Region. Diversitat delivers training programs and services throughout regional Victoria and NSW and Queensland. In addition the organisation has implemented a number of overseas projects. Michael is the son of Spanish migrants whose parents settled in Australia in the 1950’s. He is passionate about immigration and the benefits it brings to Australia. Since his role as CEO Michael has been instrumental in getting the Northern Community Hub project built, the expansion of Diversitat Training, the development of the Geelong Media Education Centre at the Pulse Community Radio station, Wholefoods and most recent You Turn. His belief that things can be done and foresight to take up opportunities that may seem unachievable is what makes Diversitat the place it is today. His drive and determination has lead to the growth and success of the now M$13 turnover. Education - Arts Degree in Politics and History from Monash University Current Focus – Michael is currently working with other organisations and government departments on a number of projects related to refugees, training, youth services and aged care.
153 Pakington St, Geelong West Ph: (03) 5221 6044 www.diversitat.org.au Diversitat is a registered charity.
Diversitat organisation recently celebrated its 30 anniversary and its vision is to empower individuals and communities to reach their full potential.
BUSINESS NEWS | 27
“There is no passion to be found in playing small - in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.”
- Nelson Mandela
Adam Alsop started his working life as a teenager with odd jobs around the family office Adam Alsop never thought that 17 years later he would be the CEO of The AGB Group of Companies. After high school, Adam worked in the hospitality industry. At 22 with the upcoming birth of his first child, Adam decided to leave the life of hospitality and to work full time for the family business. Starting in an entry-level position at AGB Engineering Adam learnt on the job whilst completing various business courses. His Adam Alsop, knowledge and skills helped AGB CEO AGB Group engineering expand to include Planet Matters, AGBHR an RTO and Safety Zone @ YCM – OH&S Consultants, becoming the AGB Group of Companies. Adam together with the Alsop family saw the growth of their company created an opportunity to assist the Geelong community. Community Veracity (CV) a not for profit organisation reduces barriers and assists those previously denied education or job opportunities.
The AGB Group of Companies believes in strengthening Geelong, creating opportunities, and building a sustainable future.
31 Barwon Terrace, South Geelong Ph: 5221 2611 www.agbgroup.com.au
28 | BUSINESS NEWS
Julien Uyttenhove is a Lawyer and Registered Patent and Trade Mark attorney living and working in Geelong. He has previously worked in a variety of environments including boutique firms and in-house in the gas and electricity Julien Uyttenhove industry. He was Partner in Principal Lawyer another Geelong law firm Patent and Trade Marks Attorney before establishing Innovate Legal in 2008. Julien continues to run Innovate legal, which focuses predominantly on Intellectual Property law and Patent and Trade Marks Attorney services but also provides related Commercial and Employment law advice. He presents regularly at conferences and seminars. Julien’s qualifications include the degrees of Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Laws and Masters of Laws specialising in Intellectual Property. He has extra qualifications as a Patent Attorney and Trade Marks Attorney.
Innovate Legal is located at: 66 Hope Street, Geelong West 3218. Website: www.innovatelegal.com.au Ph: 52212699
Gorilla Business You’ve been asked to take part in a Gorilla Corporate Program. Are you picturing being very firmly directed through a high-pressure corporate development boot camp by a Packer-esque figure in a serious power suit? You could be in for a surprise. Werribee Open Range Zoo launched its new gorilla corporate program at the end of May, and it seems businesses are going ape over it. Race Around the Zoo – Gorilla Mission is a new corporate training workshop, providing organisations with unique team building experiences, which are becoming
increasingly important for many companies and businesses as they realise the enormous power of collaborative work – and where better to learn about teamwork and collaboration than at a zoo. The zoo corporate program will provide staff professional development activities and incredible opportunities to
National Cyber Security National Cyber Security Awareness Week runs from 12 to 15 June and aims to help Australians understand the simple steps they can take to protect their personal and financial information online. THIS year small to large businesses across Australia will support Awareness Week by hosting events to educate staff, industry and the public with practical cybersecurity and safety information. Forming part of the weeklong focus on cyber security is the Australian Government initiative, Stay Smart Online (www.staysmartonline.com. au). The comprehensive website offers a range of tools for businesses, including free security software and an easy-to-use small business
self-assessment tool. Australians access the internet in many ways and for many purposes, including social networking, internet banking, shopping, and researching and booking holidays. As the types of devices, including smart phones, tablets, computers, and game consoles – as well as the number of people using these devices to access the internet – increases, the need for information and advice
compare human and animal behaviours and group dynamics. The activities are founded on Bruce Tuckman’s model of team dynamics and team development. Team participants will scramble around the Gorillas Calling exhibit on the African River Trail as they try to unravel clues to various challenges. Teamwork is the
only way you can complete this challenge and everyone must work as a team to uncover amazing facts about our new gorillas and the survival challenges of their wild cousins. The program includes zoo entry and Safari Tour. For more information on the workshops visit www.zoo.org. au/werribee/corporate
about cybersecurity and safety becomes increasingly important.
4. Stop and think before you click on links or attachments.
For example, in the 2011 Australian Mobile Phone Lifestyle Index, 67 per cent of respondents owned a smart phone and 63 per cent had data included in their payment plan. This is a substantial increase from 47 per cent in 2010. This increased take up of webenabled technologies is why, more than ever, Australians need to be thinking about protecting their personal and financial information online.
5. Take care when transacting online – check the supplier and use a safe payment method. 6. Only download “apps” from reputable publishers and read all permission requests. 7. Regularly check your privacy settings on social networking sites. 8. Stop and think before you post any photos or financial information online.
Australians are being advised to take 10 simple steps to improve their online security and safety at home and at work:
9. Pay attention to what your child is doing online, including on their smartphone or mobile device.
1. Install and update your security software and set it to scan regularly.
10. Report or talk to someone if you feel uncomfortable or threatened online – download the Government’s Cybersafety Help Button.
2. T urn on automatic updates on all your software, particularly your operating system and applications. 3. U se strong passwords and change them at least twice a year.
For more information visit www.staysmaronline.gov.au
BUSINESS NEWS | 29
Professional development benefits company growth Many employers across Australia are not offering their staff continued professional development, yet this is one strategy to help overcome the skills shortage and retain expertise within an organisation, according to recruiting experts Hays. “Professional development has many benefits for an organisation; it’s not just about the career progression of individual staff,” this is the message from Hays Director, Jane McNeill. “By providing ongoing professional development, an organisation ensures it has the skills and capabilities needed and that all employees are making the best contribution possible. Development also allows an organisation to advance individual employees’ skills in the direction of existing skills and knowledge gaps. “If you consider the
30 | BUSINESS NEWS
increasing trend of candidates keeping their eye on the jobs market in response to a lack of career development over recent years, then it’s also a proven strategy to aid in staff retention and motivation.” Hays provides these five tips for any organisation wishing to implement a professional development program for staff: 1. I dentify and track development needs: Sit down with employees individually to discuss and agree their career development and career goals. Use performance
appraisals, formal and informal discussions and feedback from colleagues and customers to track and review development needs. Know what motivates individual staff. For example, one employee may be motivated by a fast-tracked development program to senior management, but a less ambitious employee could be encouraged to take on more or different responsibilities. 2. Set clear expectations: Professional development does not solely involve training. It is as much about an employee’s ability to see a clear path of progress and know exactly what they need to do to achieve it. So clearly set your expectations for each individual’s professional development pathway. 3. Review progress: Having a process to track and review development is critical; it is far better to invest in development that is actually required rather than perceived to be so. 4. Training that works: Identify the most suitable training. Set clear objectives so that everyone can be involved in measuring the effectiveness. But remember, training doesn’t always have to be in the classroom. Coaching can
be directed to many different scenarios, from correcting poor performance (it is one-to-one which is usually more effective) to improving motivation and encouraging employees to find their own answers. 5. Mentorships: Another common development strategy is the use of mentorships. Provided you have appropriate mentors within your organisation, mentorships allow development to be tailored to your own needs. Through mentorships, less experienced employees gain the knowledge of their more experienced colleagues on a one-on-one basis. Given the informal nature of information exchange and the relationship-basis of mentoring, mentorships allow a firm to retain such knowledge as lessons that have been previously learnt, right through to implicit awareness such as why reports are written in a particular way or who to contact in the organisation for particular information.
Hays, the world’s leading recruiting experts in qualified, professional and skilled people.
Can you ignore union requests to bargain? What happens if an employer refuses to commence bargaining with a union for a new enterprise agreement? For employers, bargaining with unions is often not their favourite type of meeting, but can you really so ‘No’ to a union request to bargain?
A waste management company in New South Wales (JJ Richards) received a letter from the TWU, which notified the employer of the union’s wish to commence negotiations for a new enterprise agreement. The employer wrote back to the union stating: “We hereby advise that at this stage, the company declines to enter into discussions with the Transport Workers Union to negotiate an enterprise agreement for New South Wales. “At this time the company is of the belief that the award, legislative protections and individual benefits afforded by the company are sufficient.”
requests by unions to engage in the bargaining process. The Full Court stated that: “… the ability to take protected industrial action is to be seen as part and parcel of the statutory regime for bargaining in pursuit of, or in resistance to, the making of such agreements.” However, it must be remembered that even though a union may make an application for a protected action ballot, it still has the hurdle of getting a majority of the workforce to vote in favour of the ballot. If the workplace has little union traction, then it is unlikely that ballot would succeed in any event.
The union then applied to Fair Work Australia for a protected action ballot, which would have allowed it to conduct a ballot about taking industrial action at the JJ Richards workplace. If the majority of the employees approved the ballot then the union could take industrial action. The employer sought to argue that the union was being premature and could only seek to take protected industrial action as part of the bargaining process.
AN employer, who has a non-unionised workforce, may be reluctant to commence bargaining with a union, for fear that the union might establish a presence in that workplace. Once bargaining commences, an employer is obliged to inform all of its employees in writing of their rights to be represented in the bargaining process. The employee is entitled to appoint a bargaining representative. If an employee is a member of a union, the default position of an employee who fails to appoint a bargaining representative is that the employee’s union
becomes the bargaining representative. Once bargaining commences, it is clear that one means a union has of putting pressure on an employer is to seek a ballot
The employer also argued that the union had an obligation to first seek a majority support declaration, which would have determined whether there was a majority support among employees in that workplace for the position taken by the TWU. The Full Federal Court recently confirmed that it is not necessary for a union to seek a majority support order
“The Full Federal Court recently confirmed that it is not necessary for a union to seek a majority support order before making an application to Fair Work Australia for a protected action ballot.” for protected industrial action. If the ballot is passed by a majority of employees, the union can embark on a campaign of industrial action.
Jim Rutherford, Accredited Specialist in Workplace Relations Law.
Rohan Kux, Associate
before making an application to Fair Work Australia for a protected action ballot. Accordingly it is now clear that employers cannot ignore
BUSINESS NEWS | 31
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Australian Public Service Benevolent Society Ltd
Australian Public Service Benevolent Society Ltd
Membership of APS Benefits automatically entitles you to a funeral benefit issued by APS Benefits. You should consider the Combined Product Disclosure Statement & Financial Services Guide (available from APS Benefits orservices our web provided site on www.apsbs.com.au) before making a decision to become member ofunder APS its Benefits or buy any products offered by APS Benefits. Financial Financial by Australian Public Service Benevolent Society Ltd area provided AFSL No. 244115 APS Financial Pty Ltd is a Corporate Representative Futuro Financial Ltd (‘Futuro’) services provided by Australian PublicPlanning Service Benevolent Society Ltd Authorised are provided under its AFSLofNo. 244115. APS Services FinancialPtyPlanning Pty Ltd is a Corporate Authorised Representative Financial services APS Financial provided under Futuro’s AFSL No. 238478 No. 305923 of Futuro Financial Services Pty Ltdprovided (‘Futuro’).byFinancial servicesPlanning providedPtybyLtd APSareFinancial Planning Pty Ltd are provided under Futuro’s AFSL No. 238478
Notice the difference a NOT FOR PROFIT financial service provider can make to the public sector, their families and friends. The Australian Public Service Benevolent Society (APS Benefits) is a not for profit organisation that provides a
wide range of financial services to all government departments, their families and friends. Having been in existence for over 105 years, the APS family has earned the trust of over 26,000 members offering the following financial services listed below: APS Tax & Accounting Alfred Mallia at APS Tax, Accounting and Business Services has 24 years’ experience. Whether it is setting up a business, managing your superannuation fund or just obtaining better service and lower fees, Alfred can help you. Financial planning
APS Financial Planning, Timothy Foster provides access to advice and information on the important financial decisions we all face, whether it be superannuation, investments, pre and post retirement planning, life insurance, gearing, managed funds or savings plans. APS Mortgage Broking, Sam Athans treats every mortgage as if it were his own. He has access to 20 mortgage lenders and over 40 years’ experience in banking. APS Insurance (General Insurance Broking) Danielle Rowe heads up our insurance broking team and is a salaried employee of APS Benefits. With 15 years experience in the industry, you can be assured of receiving unbiased advice that meets your insurance needs. We have access to products that include Home and Contents, Motor Vehicle, Boat/Caravan, Landlord, Public Liability, Income Protection, Life, Disability & Trauma insurance. The next time you receive your insurance renewal notice from your current insurer or want insurance for the first time, call Danielle on 1300 131 809. APS Personal loans The APS Benefits’ personal loans team can assist members to obtain an unsecured loan, or they can apply online at www.apsbs.com.au. Either way, loans can be approved within 24 hours. APS Funeral Cover APS Benefits’ Membership Coordinator Jesse Clarke can assist members to gain immediate funeral cover up to $15,000 and protect their loved ones in times of need. Do you have cover in the greatest time of need? Call us on 1300 131 809. Independence is important to APS. Our key advisors are employees of APS, and therefore have no personal bias towards any supplier. Further to this, APS is owned by its members, so any profits are channelled back to members. APS would also like to assist you and your family and friends in making available our wide range of not for profit services. Help spread the word by introducing new members and APS will send you or your nominated charity $50 for each new member you nominate.
For further information on the APS family and its wide range of not for profit financial services, phone 1300 131 809 or visit www.apsbs.com.au
Do you need a website? One of the most frequently asked questions of the digital business age is: Do I Need a Website? The answer, quite frankly, is yes. Even if your business is small don’t be too quick to dismiss your product or service as one that can’t be sold online!
A website in today’s business age is the gateway to your business. With more than 25 million consumers online searching for everything from presents, books, clothing and apparel, real estate, cars, technology and a broad array of services, all the statistics indicate that a high percentage of future business revenues will be derived from online
transactions or offline purchases that were a result of online marketing efforts. Your website, as a gateway to your business, is a quick and sure way for potential clients or consumers to research your business and find out more about you and your product or service. It is not enough to just have a presence on the web, you must now look professional,
engage with potential consumers and leave a lasting impression that encourages them to revisit your site. “Ok, but I’m only a small business,” I hear you say. Having a professional, userfriendly and well-designed site can position you in the market as a much larger organization - which is great for doing business over the Internet. When it comes to having a well planned website, you could be amazed by the benefits to your business. Whether the most effective site for your business is an information-based site with relevant content to your brand, or has a fully integrated online shopping cart facility, or one that offers coupons and discounts to consumers, or one that is used as to generate leads, your website, if used as part of your advertising and marketing strategy correctly, will add strength to your business brand. The exception to this rule is that it is actually better to not have a website, rather than one that positions your business in the marketplace as an unprofessional, out-ofdate business that created a website ten years ago with the same content and information as the day it was built. Believe
it or not, this is more common than what you think. Your website can benefit so many areas in your current business, if you are open to the digital age and new ways to communicate to your target audience. It is critical therefore that the person who builds your website actually takes the time to understand your business and the importance of a digital presence when building a new site or updating an existing site. In the coming months I will discuss important areas which will add strength and visitors to your business website, with topics such as: • Why you should invest in a professional agency to design your website; • SEO (Search Engine Optimisation); • the benefits and strengths of social media; • making friends with Google; and • the importance of a digital strategy. Your website is an important piece of your overall business, make sure you treat it as such.
JUSTIN ABRAMS Director Adcell Group Red Onion Creative firstname.lastname@example.org
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34 | BUSINESS NEWS
SMALL BUSINESS FESTIVAL
Geelong Small Business Festival The Geelong Small Business Festival is back for the second year, presented by the City of Greater Geelong, with an expanded month-long program of advice, skills building and networking opportunities.
Whoâ€™s involved? Event providers at this yearâ€™s Geelong Small Business Festival include: 3 Marketeers ACFE Alchemy Road Astute Business Coaching City of Greater Geelong Augustus Media AusIndustry ACCC Australian Mortgage Brokers Bellarine Tourism BNI Geelong Bay City Borough of Queenscliff Business and Professional Women Geelong Brand Bureau Central Geelong Marketing Consumer Affairs Coverist Pty Ltd DEEWR Dept. of Education & Early Childhoold Development
THE festival, part of the Victorian Small Business Festival, is held across the month of August, with over fifty information sessions and events. Many events are free or low cost. Learn how social media can revolutionise your business marketing, how to increase sales through product display and targeted marketing and how to move your business brand into the 21st century. Find out how networking can reinvigorate your business plans and your employees. Take part in a Business Building Boot Camp, hear about ways to identify
inefficiencies and build leaner business systems. Find out more about finance and how the Carbon Tax may impact your business. For entrepreneurs looking to kickstart their business dreams, find out how to go about starting a new business, what you need to know and the tips and tricks to business success. Hear from HR and Recruitment experts on how to attract and retain good staff. Learn about the grants and government assistance that your business may be eligible for, and how to access funding and assistance.
Geelong Manufacturing Council Geelong Retail Network Goldmine Bookkeeping Solutions GOOP Harvest Recruitment Higher Education and Skills Group HR4 Business Innovabiz MEGT Ocorn Software People @ Work Page One Web Studio Queenscliff Lonsdale Business and Tourism Association Redstick Strategic Communications Roaly Pty Ltd Small Business Victoria Snap Geelong Social Media Tribe Springdale Neighbourhood Centre
Dept. of Innovation, Industry, Science, Research & Tertiary Education
Destiny Pursuit Coaching & Training
Dewey Creative Direct Incite G21 Agribusiness Forum Geelong Chamber of Commerce Golden Plains Shire Geelong Broadcasters K-Rock and Bay FM
The Gordon Tourism Geelong Your Marketing Team VECCI Adcell Group is supporting the Geelong Small Business Festival. Look out for our full event coverage in the July edition of the Business News.
Geelong Otway Tourism
BUSINESS NEWS | 35
Schrodinger’s 40 million dollar plan Here is the goal – the development of a $40 million business. It’s a fine goal, and one that many of us would like to achieve. The question is, how to do it? How do you go from being a small business owner to a successful entrepreneur? Now, that’s a question… I HAVE been in the game of consulting to small business for 24 years and recently I had a first experience. First experiences have been fairly few and far between in recent years, so you can imagine this request was a real surprise. I got asked by a client to provide advice on putting together a plan to achieve a $40M business. Before you scoff at the idea, can I say that the person presenting the idea was both serious and highly capable. But I have to admit that $40 big ones and small business are rarely put in the one sentence. And while I’m on the admitting trail, it was me who spat the coffee over the wall and hogged the toilet
while I had three nervous wees after that meeting… So, with excitement, I got my little gedanken* mind into gear. (Please, if you have ideas email them through, because I am sure that people have more knowledge of this process than I.) Setting the context: this was in a professional service area and there are a few examples around the world where income figures like this have been achieved - with the emphasis on the word ‘few’. We also know that Australia is a fairly small market, so this business would need to be international if it were to succeed. We can also see that it would need to be a peak organisation or similar.
With current international trends, it would most likely avoid being a training institute, as that market seems to be post-prime. When I went further into my gedanken, I could see that it would need the client to become an expert and, if possible, push a paradigm shift then build a corporation behind the jump. The corporate part was clear, because in this field it would take about 100 field staff to generate something close to the required income level, and you can imagine the support structures required. Before I dig further into the model, I need to explain two reasons that a paradigm shift would be required. In many professional service organisations, where you have talented professionals, there is a characteristic called spin-off. This is where the staff gets to a point where they think that their own ability to generate income is significantly higher than the perceived value of staying in the organisation. With a steady out-flow of staff the recruiting and training process is a drain on the growth of the business. With a business that has a high growth potential because it is forging new territory, the perceived values are typically higher, so staff retention is
also potentially higher. For example, if you look at the staff retention rates of Google and Facebook and Apple, they have been far better than the average for most of their history. The second reason for the need for the business to be based on a paradigm shift is that the sales level is much higher than a typical business working in this arena. Okay to this point, but the question of how you generate a paradigm shift is the next big issue. When you are embedded in an industry, it is often hard to see the building blocks of the paradigm. There are many ways to achieve a paradigm shift, but these three might help us identify the most fertile ground to hunt for the change agent. In no particular order: Using the Medici principle, looking for a reverse salient, and a disruption. - The Medici principle is a fancy term to indicate the advantage achieved through cross fertilisation from different industries and studies. It has been used well in the past where advances have been made by modelling the rich interplay of talent that happened in the renaissance period under the tutelage of the Medici family. The renaissance was perhaps
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36 | BUSINESS NEWS
SMALL BIZ the biggest leap in universal development. - A reverse salient is when an industry is held back by some factor and has adapted to this limitation. Often the industry leaders get to accept the limit and look at ways of improving the limiting characteristic – the reverse salient – rather than removing the problem in its entirety. A classic example is the funny streamlining that was happening on biplanes and the early monoplanes.
This was to cope with the huge air resistance of the appendages (wheels hanging below the plane were a particular problem). Then along comes Niels Christensen who saw a new use for his O-ring and made the first effective hydrolytic undercarriage, and then there was no need for the fancy streamlining. After that we saw a huge surge in the development of aircraft. - Disruption is more of a marketing process, in that all products and services
go through a steady ageing. Once a product or service is post-prime, it is then ripe for a new approach. For years the introduction of new products or services was a hit or miss affair, but through the work of Clayton Christensen, we can be more systematic in the way that these changes are introduced. Unfortunately, along with the higher success rate of the introduction, there is a cataclysmic disruption of the market place. The old
players crumble while the new one comes to the fore. The thing to note with these investigations is you are looking for the right opportunity. There are often accountants who sit in the corner rooms who are quick to get the pencils out and start assessing the business’s current capabilities and with a shake of their heads say that it is not going to happen. In one way they are correct, because once the opportunity is identified the hard work of assembling the business begins, as it won’t grow using standard small business models. After all, a definition of an entrepreneur is someone who sees a business opportunity that is beyond the resources they currently control. Marking out the opportunity is just the first step - just like Neal Armstrong said. (*A Gedankenexperiment is a thought experiment that requires thinking about the potential consequences of a particular principal. The most famous example is Schrodinger’s cat, illustrating quantum indeterminacy.) Australian Business Development Centre www.abdc.com.au
BUSINESS NEWS | 37
TECH GUY Audi e-Bike
The Tech Guy Every month, our Tech Guy, Jon Mamonski, brings us the wildest, most mind-blowing gadgets he can find... IN an ever-increasingly techcentric world, there will always those that run ahead of the pack. This month, it’s secret agent style data destroyers, iPhone projectors, racing simulators and, in true Bond style, technology that can take you live into the Olympic Games from
the other side of the world. There are uber-cool watches, carbon fibre electric pedal bikes and collar-mounted dog monitors for pampered pooches… What will they think of next!
When riding your bike must be a public statement, Audi’s e-bike Worthersee prototype - with the carbon fibre transport and strong 2.3kW motor - will do the trick. The motor-assisted pedalling mode will take you up to 80KPH, and you can still ride at 50KPH if you just want to cruise leg-free. With a very light 1.6 kilo carbon fiber frame and a quick 2.5-hour charge-up time, the e-bike Worthersee sounds like the real deal. No rush though, Audi is calling the prototype a “show bike,” which is a sign than the design as-is won’t show up before Christmas.
Pebble Smart Watch
Take the blue pill
Yes, like mousetraps, there is always a better watch. By adding Bluetooth 4.0, the classy looking Pebble Smart Watch reached a critical mass for production and its initial 85,000 units are now sold out.
For all the James Bonds in the world... RunCore, a Chinese company that makes solid state drives, has cooked up a SATA II guaranteed to guard your privacy, (ASIO take note). This unit protects your data from disreputable eyes.
Thank goodness, there’s a second batch on the way.
The drive’s piece de resistance incorporates a dual-button scheme for destroying data. Much like Neo in The Matrix, with a two coloured choice to make: select the green button for “intelligent elimination” (overwriting of data) or for the sledge hammer approach, go to the red button, which applies a current to the flash memory for actual physical destruction of your data. So, whether you’re a forgetful government official in the Middle East or just someone who lives in constant fear of missing data, rest assured your secrets can be vanquished forever.
38 | BUSINESS NEWS
TECH GUY Olympics enough already
Drowning in ads about Olympic mums and every manner of food, pills and soft drink sponsoring the Pommy show? Your only escape is to avoid a certain channel formerly owned by Packer and the BBC. That doyen of all things British, the BBC aims to provide “the most comprehensive coverage ever,” with a list that includes 2,500 hours worth via the broadcaster’s site and up to 24 live HD streams. Live coverage will be offered up for every sport and each sport, athlete, venue and country will have its own page on the site. The BBC will also be providing a free mobile app, a mobile browser site and apps for connected TVs - yes, and with 3D as a bonus.
An office must
In desperate need of some stimulation to get the heart pumping and the creative juices flowing? Be the first in your office to install a race simulator. The TL1 has the world’s first 180-degree spherical projection unit, giving you that “all round view”. Its seat not only adjusts to fit different breeds of cars and aircraft but, if you opt for it, tucks in a motion transducer that will properly jolt you when you hit a bump in the road. What may please extra-serious racing game fans the most is that it will work with any typical Windows XP or Windows 7 desktop game or simulator software. A mere $19,000 will get your throttle started that is, if your accountant hasn’t throttled you first.
Project your iPhone
Imagine going into a meeting and pulling this stunt. Whilst not a new concept, this iPhone add-on pico projector is the real McCoy, essentially turning your device into a video display. According to the manufacturer, it’s capable of 960 x 540 video output and can give you up to two hours of “playtime” on a single charge - achieved by way of micro-USB. It appears to be a bargain at just over $100.
Some people are barking mad about their dogs, you know, really attached. So, for when you’re at work or on hols and Fido is in the doggie hotel, Fujitsu has a new collar-mounted device designed to monitor your dog’s activity level. This one actually provides helpful health monitoring, including activity, external temperature and the link to a cloud-based health service set to launch later this year. Yes, I’m serious - it is coming.
BUSINESS NEWS | 39
ARTS perfectly all right, except for being too old and fat to ever have sex again.
Hilarious office comedy asks a serious question Office workers might recognise themselves or someone they know in Stop. Rewind, the next show in GPAC’s 2012 Alcoa Theatre Season in partnership with Deakin University. Red Stitch Actors Theatre presents the world premiere of Stop. Rewind from Australian playwright and filmmaker Melissa Bubnic at GPAC from June 13-16. THE second work developed through the Red Stitch Writers program, Stop. Rewind is a deft and recognisable comedy with heart that begs the question, is it too late to live the life you’ve always wanted? As a disparate group of coworkers at a departmental
40 | BUSINESS NEWS
office struggle to hold onto their dreams, we glimpse the series of compromises that has led each to their place in the eclectic community. Trevor is worried he’s wasted his life. Dim wants to be a musician, but he’s been in this ‘temporary’ admin gig for 13 months now. Heather is
Tabitha is fine with having sex, only it’s with her married co-worker Grant. And Nina’s trying to hang on to her family home without the help of her couch potato philosopher husband. Life continues at its painfully familiar pace until a catastrophic event in the department forces everyone to examine their own lives, what they want, and what they are really prepared to sacrifice to get it. “I wanted to explore what it means to be a success in a culture where Hollywood, the self-help industry, and Australian Idol tell us to follow our dreams,” says Bubnic. “How are you supposed to build a life of contentment and self-fulfilment when you’re obsessed with chasing something that’s almost always out of reach?” And if the dream doesn’t come true… does that mean you’re a failure?
Stop. Rewind is funny, but not lightweight. It’s a comedy that beautifully balances light and dark. It cleverly exposes the unspoken private thoughts that people have in delicate situations. Do you bite your tongue and suppress pent-up emotions, or do you speak your mind and reveal yourself? Red Stitch’s new comedy shows us both options, with hilarious and poignant consequences. Stop. Rewind comes to Geelong for four performances in The Drama Theatre from June 13-16. Tickets are now on sale. Contact GPAC Box Office on 5225 1200 or visit www.gpac.org.au ‘Go and see Stop. Rewind – it is very funny and a hugely satisfying, well-developed piece which will delight many more once it goes on tour. Stop. Rewind is an unequivocal success. A triumph…’- Liza Dezfouli, Australian Stage Online
Marion East, Black & White 4 2009 60cm x 56cm Oil On Canvas.
Marion East & Lars Stenberg
of Arts and a Diploma and Bachelor of Education in Melbourne, Australia.
Two painters respond to the Victorian landscape. Marion East grew up near the Brisbane Ranges and the passion in her work is underpinned by decades of familiarity and understanding; Lars Stenberg arrived in Victoria from Scotland in 2002 and his response is shaped by the contrast of the Victorian light to the muted colours of his native Scotland. Both artists’ works communicate a love of the unique light and patterns of the environment of central Victoria.
Kedem has held numerous lecturing positions at schools and universities around the world and was the artist in residence at Bialik College.
Art Gallery of Ballarat. artgalleryofballarat.com.au
Kedem will also be conducting a Master Class at Qdos Arts, ‘Tapping the Creative Well’, from July 3 to 5.
7 July – 5 August
Rimona Kedem 1 – 22 July
Widely acclaimed Israeliborn artist Rimona Kedem is presenting an evocative collection of work at Qdos Arts in July. Kedem has exhibited internationally since 1967 and her work is held in public and private collections around the world. Formally trained at the Avni Art Academy in Tel Aviv, she was awarded a scholarship to the Art Academy of Mexico and went on to receive, amongst other qualifications, a Bachelor and Masters
She has been commissioned extensively for her stunning glass metaphorical illustrations and has decorated four major synagogues in Melbourne, including the Toorak Shule, which houses a major installation developed over a 35 year period.
Lars Stenberg, Daybreak Mount Buninyong acrylic on linen
Indigenous Artist of the year, Human Rights Award, Walkely Award, Business of the Year and many art accolades. He has been published in more than 900 publications and is recognised as one of Australia’s leading photographers, with exhibitions in Europe, USA, Asia, South America and recently Cuba.
Wayne’s photographic works were recently purchased by the Wyndham Council for the foyer of the Wyndham Cultural Centre. This exhibition forms part of a broader program celebrating NAIDOC week in Wyndham. Wyndham Art Gallery, Werribee. yncc.com.au
Kedem’s lyrical paintings draw on the comic-tragic, metaphysical fabric of life.
Qdos Arts & Sculpture Park, Lorne. qdosarts.com
Home - Wayne Quilliam June 20 – August 5
Adjunct Professor Wayne Quilliam, local artist, is one of Australia’s leading photographers. His work in Indigenous Affairs in Australia and overseas has been recognised by dozens of international organisations with numerous awards including NAIDOC
BUSINESS NEWS | 41
Girls’ Big Day Out A unique event, Girls’ Big Day Out is designed to introduce Year 9 girls to the possibilities of non-traditional career options before being called upon to make important future subject choices. With trades featuring prominently on the Victorian Government’s Skills Shortage List 2012, the event provides a wonderful forum to foster female interest in trades.
horticulture, plastering, painting, information technology, sport & fitness, GTEC engineering and metal craft. Feedback from the girls was extremely positive with the vast majority finding it fun, as well as interesting and challenging. “I liked it because I could get my hands dirty,” one girl said, “…and I got to make something awesome for my Mum.” At the end of the day the students each received a show bag that contained relevant career information, a diary, some fun items such as a frisbee, along with some girly items courtesy of Target, to remind them that working in trade does not mean a compromise to your femininity. It is hoped that by attending the Girls’ Big Day Out, some of the students will eventually go on to make subject choices that will lead them towards taking up apprenticeships or enrolling in courses in non-traditional trades at The Gordon.
Hands on experience is welcome break from the regular classroom. BacLinks, in partnership with The Gordon, recently held the 5th Girls’ Big Day Out event at the East Geelong Campus, Boundary Road. Girls from ten regional schools that provide VET in Schools Programs attended the event, which was generously sponsored by the Alcoa Foundation, Gforce Employment Solutions, the Geelong Manufacturing Council, Adecco Trades and Mentor. Each of the sponsors are interested in encouraging girls to take up trade career options, and the event provides an opportunity for them to meet with the girls, answer questions and pass on information about apprenticeships and career pathways. “This annual event gives Geelong girls in Year 9 an opportunity to learn about the
42 | BUSINESS NEWS
21st century tradesperson. The Girls’ Big Day Out showcases the large variety of career paths that are available, while offering a small sample of what it is really like to work in the field. The day also demonstrates how important a combination of academic, technical and social understanding is to these jobs,” said Warren Sharp, Acting Location Manager, Alcoa Point Henry Smelter. “We hope this event helped the students to make more informed and confident career decisions.” Under the guidance of specialist Gordon instructors, the girls got genuine hands on experience in two activities on the day. These were drawn from a selection of trade courses undertaken at the Gordon and included joinery, electro technology,
gives aspiring hospitality students the opportunity to learn from the best in the business, it promotes the hospitality industry and VET in Schools Hospitality Programs, and showcases the quality and range of local produce. Following up on the heels of the Girls’ Big Day Out, this year’s competition will launch this month. The students will have the opportunity to prepare over a number of weeks for the final challenge under the guidance of award winning local chefs and possibly earn the chance to go on to compete in the final for the coveted award and some wonderful prizes. If your business is interested in contributing in a meaningful way to your community by being a part of events such as these, or by participating in the varied range of other events and projects facilitated by BacLinks, give the team a call on 5249 8989 to find out how we can assist you to make a real difference.
Another initiative of BacLinks, in partnership with The Gordon, that supports the VET in Schools Programs is the annual ‘Y’Chef Cooking Challenge. This competition
Jazzmin from Matthew Flinders constructs a quality CD box in joinery.
Business challenge saving lives Only two months into the Geelong Business Challenge and seventeen local businesses have rolled up their sleeves to so far help save hundreds of lives by giving blood. The Challenge is put out by the Australian Red Cross Blood Service, encouraging staff at organisations across Geelong to donate blood - not only to support their community, but also in hope of their company taking out this year’s title.
Secondhand Saturdays LOAD up your car with preloved clothes, furniture in good condition, electrical appliances, metal products and other bric-a-brac and drive to any of the three Secondhand Saturdays: 16 June at Drysdale Potato Shed, 30 June at Corio Council Depot (opposite Corio Leisuretime Centre). You don’t even need to get out of your car, simply drive in and the staff will take care of it all for you. You can drop off on any of the days as many times as you like between 8.30am until 3.30pm. It’s free! For a full list of accepted items go to www.2ndhandsat.com.au or call 1300 687 261.
The challenge is on between companies to see who can donate the most blood between 1 March and 31 August; with seventeen businesses already signed up for the challenge, it is sure to get everyone’s blood pumping! Whether you’re from a white collar or blue-collar industry, the challenge is on! Leading the way is the Gordon Tafe, with 21 donations made, closely followed by a business new to supporting blood donation, Powercor, with 16 donations. WHK is just taking the lead of the small to medium sized businesses with 14 donations made, however competition is tight. Stephanie Reynolds, Community Relations Officer for the Blood Service said that getting involved in blood donation is a great way for a business to give back to the community, as well as a great team building exercise. “One in three Australians will need blood at some stage in their life, so chances are it could be someone you work or a loved one, ” said Miss Reynolds. “It is fantastic to
see these businesses leading the way. It would be lovely to see more businesses follow their lead, to help the Blood Service collect the 27,000 blood donations it needs to collect each week. Not only do you feel good about giving blood, but you’re helping to save three people’s lives with every donation.” The following Geelong businesses have are competing in the Geelong Business Challenge: Gordon Tafe, Powercor, St Laurence Community Services, WHK, LBW Chartered Accountants, Morris Finance, Hodges, PRD Nationwide, Evologic Technologies, The Body Shop, DeGrandi Cycle & Sports, Bendigo Bank, Perisic & Thomas Lawyers, Express Promotions, Dennis Family Homes, Signature Homes and QBE.
Healthy Parks program receives national award THE Healthy Parks, Healthy People ‘Geelong’s Active in Parks Program’ was awarded the Excellence in Parks (Social) Award at the 5th International Parks Management and Leadership Conference ‘Parks Beyond Boundaries’ in Adelaide in May. The award recognises excellence and best practice in operational programs that encourages the use of parks by groups that do not usually visit or recreate in them. The awarding organisation, the Parks Forum, is the peak body for park management organisations with members across Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the United Kingdom
and the United States. In accepting the award, the People and Parks Foundation thanked major sponsor the Medibank Community Fund, key partner Parks Victoria, as well as G21 Geelong Region Alliance, Barwon Medicare Local, Department of Planning and Community Development, Department of Health and the many organisations in the Geelong region who have been supporting partners. The Parks Forum commented that whilst there was a very strong field, the ‘Active in Parks’ program was favoured because of the extensive stakeholder engagement, the strong buy-in with local organisations and the robust sustainability framework underpinning it. The first stage of the pilot program was launched in September 2011, and involves health professionals including doctors, maternal and child health nurses, and youth workers referring their clients and patients to organised activities in parks to improve their health and wellbeing. The pilot is designed to be replicated in other areas of Victoria, with funding available and plans underway, to implement the program at Brimbank Park in Melbourne’s west. Other award recipients included the Tasmania Parks and Wildlife Service and the Tasmanian Aboriginal Land and Sea Council for their work on the Needwonnee Walk, the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority for work on Rio Tinto Naturescape Kings Park and Centennial Park and Moore Park Trust for Ponds Improvement Projects.
For more information about the getting your business involved in the Geelong Business Challenge, please contact Stephanie Reynolds on 5224 7413. Roll up your sleeves and give blood. To make an appointment call 13 14 95 or visit www.donateblood.com.au.
BUSINESS NEWS | 43
Whine Bar In April a very interesting article caught my attention. A small, local long-standing liquor store in Geelong West was hoping to convert their licence so they could serve wine in a relaxed (more conservative than we’re used to) environment.
for a more intimate and high brow drinking experience.
amphorae for storing and shipping wine.
In Roman times, wine bars were seen on every street. Wine was the drink of choice and seen to be a healthy beverage. Wine was popular amongst not only the aristocracy but the average guy as well.
Wine mixed with herbs and minerals, was assumed to serve medicinal purposes. During Roman times, the upper classes might dissolve pearls in wine for better health. Cleopatra created her own legend by promising Mark Antony she would “drink the value of a province” in one cup of wine, after which she drank an expensive pearl with a cup of wine.
The Roman Empire had an immense impact on the development of viticulture and oenology. Wine was an integral part of the Roman diet and wine making became a precise business. In Roman times, the first evidence of a cellar was documented, where wine storage rooms were built facing north to protect the wine from hot summers. As the Roman Empire expanded, wine production in the provinces grew to the point where it was competing with Roman wines. Virtually all of the major wine producing regions of Western Europe today were established during the Roman Imperial era.
Wine making technology improved considerably during the time of the Roman Empire. Many grape varieties and Unfortunately it met with gone by wine bars were cultivation techniques were some conservative reactions commonplace, but now have developed, including barrels, from local residents who were been replaced by simple invented by the Gauls. Later, concerned, I’m guessing bars and pubs. In most major glass bottles were invented with how it would impact on cities, we are finding a return by the Syrians and began their sleepy suburb. In days to wine bars and microbars ak_lambys_gcwinter-gbn(bleed)_090512.pdf 3 9/05/12 3:11 to PM compete with terracotta
Over the years the wine bars in Australia were all the rage, especially on the streets of Melbourne in the 60’s and 70’s. The very famous Jimmy Watson’s wine bar is an institution and has been operating since 1935 in Lygon Street Carlton. Pubs, clubs, diners, bistros, cafes and restaurants are all names we apply to places we drink and eat, but none have been named specifically to describe the specialist beverage you might drink when you get there. There are once again many wine bars springing up around Melbourne and I think it’s about time Geelong had their own.
ADRIAN MARCHIARO Adrian presents wine tasting evenings at Lamby’s Restaurant + Bar.
eVeRY FrIDaY FrOM 5pM
Free Entry, Free Wine Tasting, Free Gourmet Platters For Patrons, Free Live Entertainment Each Week - The Ideal Post Work Get Together
1st June – Winter Reds to warm your heart
22nd June – Do all roads lead to the Rhone?
8th June – A Tuscan love affair!
29th June – Cabernet & blends or should it be Cabernet & friends?
Come taste som big Aussie reds that are sure to keep you warm this winter Entertainment: Warm Sands
It’s time to dress up and get into the spirit or should I say wine of Italy! Entertainment: Chic
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15TH JUNE - SCOTCHMAN'S HILL SHOWCASE
JOIN US FOR A SPECIAL TASTING WITH SCOTCHMAN'S HILL WINERY! PROVIDING THEIR OWN WINES AND HOST, THIS TASTING WILL BE ONE NOT TO BE MISSED! TO GET YOU DANCING, WILL BE ANDY POBJOY AND FOUR PIECE BAND Come taste wines from the home of Grenache and Syrah, Frances Rhone Valley Entertainment: Chic
Wines made from Cabernet Sauvignon and the many varieties it can be blended with Entertainment: Warm Sands
AFTER HOURS Photos: Nicola Hadskis Gordon
Saying ‘thank you’ to our admin professionals On the morning of Friday 27 April, a fantastic event was held at The Pier Geelong to celebrate the 10th Annual People @ Work Administrative Professionals Breakfast, with $10,000 raised for Give Where You Live. This event gave workplaces around Geelong and surrounding areas the opportunity to send their Administrative Professionals for a morning of celebration as thanks and reward for their hard work, enthusiasm and dedication. Over 400 Admin Professionals attended from different Geelong businesses such as WHK, Geelong Chamber of Commerce, Morris Finance, Powercor, Vic Roads, G21 and GMHBA. Also in attendance was Mayor John Mitchell and Cr Cameron Granger – Deputy Mayor. The fantastic event was hosted by BayFM’s Mark Hyland and each guest enjoyed a neck
massage from Endota Spa, delicious breakfast, fantastic raffle prizes, an inspiring speech from 2012 GWYL Campaign Leader and Managing Director of Brand Bureau Kylie Warne, not to mention a live Fashion Parade hosted by Westfield Stylist, Renée Enright and Rebecca Maddern. Each guest also received a gift bag provided by Myer Geelong! Give Where You Live would like to give recognition and sincere thanks to the Naming Rights Sponsor, People @ Work, and In Kind Sponsors Myer and Westfield Geelong for their ongoing support.
BUSINESS NEWS | 45
AFTER HOURS Photos: Elisha Lindsay, elphotography.com.au
Water plan revealed at After 5 Attendees at the Geelong Chamber of Commerce’s May After 5 gained an insight into Barwon Water’s five-year business plan – Water Plan 3. Barwon Water Chairman Dr Michael King gave a presentation on the corporation’s draft 20132018 Water Plan – a document that will drive corporate and business operations for the next five years. He outlined the Board’s focus on driving down prices while meeting growth, maintaining service standards and managing debt. The draft plan will be submitted to the Essential Services Commission in late May and released for public comment. More than 170 business
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professionals and business owners attended the event, hosted by Barwon Water at Simonds Stadium. The Geelong Chamber of Commerce’s After 5 networking events are held monthly, providing members with a networking opportunity outside of business hours. After 5 events are free for Chamber members to attend. More information can be found on the Geelong Chamber of Commerce website.
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AFTER HOURS Photos: Terry Broun Jnr
Spirit of adventure leads to entrepreneurial success From the production line at Warrnambool’s Nestle factory to the transformative Managing Director of Peregrine and Geckos Adventures, Glenyce Johnson’s career has been an adventure in itself. At the annual BPW Geelong Moving On Up Breakfast in May, Glenyce shared some of the secrets of her success. Glenyce dreamt of travelling the world playing the pro-tennis circuit, but like all mere mortals, she had to find another way to live the dream. As Managing Director of travel agency Peregrine Adventures for the past seven years, she has found the perfect antidote to her wanderlust. Her world has changed beyond anything she could have imagined as she toiled at her first job, on the production line at the Nestle factory in Warrnambool in the 1970’s. Glenyce is one of Australia’s outstanding female entrepreneurs; she has received major accolades in recent years, including being a State Winner and National finalist in the 2006 Telstra Business Woman’s awards; being featured in many publications; holding positions on numerous boards, chairing Marie Stopes International Australia (MSIA); and working to raise funds and awareness for many charities. In her role as Managing Director, she has transformed the
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business from breakeven to a sustained 10% EBIT return, and achieved top line revenue growth in excess of 100% over 6 years. Now in its 8th year, the Moving On Up Breakfast is designed to encourage women in the Geelong Community to strive to ‘move on up’ in their lives and careers. BPW (Business and Professional Women) Geelong President, Jenny Gretgrix, said Ms Johnson’s insights were valuable to the local business community. “Ms Johnson believes in the importance of community responsibility to encourage, improve and educate customers and staff, on how individual contributions matter,” Ms Gretgrix said. “Community responsibility is valued by those of us who work and live in Geelong, as an integral part of doing business in this community-minded regional city.” BPW would like to thank Business Technology Specialists (BTS) for their ongoing sponsorship of this event.
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WHAT’S ON Network will mean for you. Information will be given out in English and relevant community languages. Where: The Geelong Hub Arunga Ave, Norlane. www.nbnco.com.au
15 - 16 June Wacky Winter Tales They begged... and begged... and begged, BUT she’s back anyway!!! Barb-ee returns!! And Does This make My Bum Look Big? Two one act plays by the outrageous 3triple2 gang. Bring a Basket supper and get ready for some laughs! Rated R 18+ incl. licenced bar, Table bookings Where: Potato Shed, Drysdale. www.geelongaustralia.com.au
15 - 16 June Tracey Moffatt and Gary Hillberg video collaboration, Other, 2009. DVD, 7 minutes, Edition of 200, (Still). Image from the 1971 Nicholas Roeg film, Walkabout, courtesy the artist and Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney.
JUNe - 01 July
Tracey Moffatt: Other By tracing a thread through the history of cinema and Hollywood’s representation of relationships and sexuality, Moffatt documents how we have seen and thought about questions of race, morality and sexual identity. Where: Art Gallery of Ballarat. www.artgalleryofballarat.com.au
INXS - Coast To Coast Tour Where: Deakin University Waterfront Campus. Details: www.gpac.org.au Frankenstein V1. Oscarwinner Danny Boyle (127 Hours, Slumdog Millionaire) returned to the theatre to direct this visionary production of FRANKENSTEIN with Benedict Cumberbatch (Sherlock, Tinker Tailer Soldier Spy) and Jonny Lee Miller (Trainspotting). Where: Her Majesty’s Ballarat. www.hermaj.com
Gareth Sansom: Alternative Persona Gareth Sansom’s work is like a theatre of the absurd, with a motley cast of manic and macabre characters drawn from the world of the artist’s fertile imagination as well as from religion and history, pop culture, street art, underground comics and cinema. Where: Art Gallery of Ballarat. www.artgalleryofballarat.com.au
08 June The Class of ‘59 - Rock Around Australia Tour Australia, it’s back... by overwhelmingly popular demand! A celebration of classic rock ‘n roll. Where: GPAC. www.gpac.org.au
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08 - 11 June National Celtic Festival 2012 The National Celtic Festival is the home of Australia’s largest and most diverse Celtic celebration. Where: Township of Portarlington. www.nationalcelticfestival.com
13 - 14 June Tell Me A Story, Sing Me A Song GPAC and Diversitat bring to Musical Mornings a premier production that celebrates the wonderful stories and songs of some of Geelong’s migrants
and refugees. Where: GPAC. www.gpac.org.au
David Campbell Let’s Go! Where: 15 June at Her Majety’s Ballarat, 16 June at GPAC. www.gpac.org.au
13 - 16 JUNE
From 16 June
Stop. Rewind. 2012 Alcoa Theatre Season show. Where: GPAC. www.gpac.org.au
2012 Scarf Festival Scarf lovers - welcome to The Journey! This year’s theme is a textile exploration of what it means to each of us to travel. Inspired by daily trips, happy holidays and special sojourns, this theme examines the paths we choose and the extraordinary discoveries we make along the way. Where: National Wool Museum, Geelong. www.nwm.vic.gov.au
15 June Missy Higgins The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle Tour. Where: Deakin University Waterfront Campus. www.gpac.org.au
12 - 29 June Magic in the Museum! Inspired by the tale of the Sorcerer’s Apprentice, children (suitable for preschool to Grade 2) will become wizards and magicians in training. Become a part of the story as we travel through the museum searching for a magic key to unlock the Magician’s book. Where: National Wool Museum, Geelong. www.nwm.vic.gov.au
15 June NBN Community Information Session Find out what the roll-out of the National Broadband
16 & 30 June Secondhand Saturdays Load up your car with preloved clothes, furniture in good condition, electrical appliances, metal products and other bric-a-brac and drive to either of the Secondhand Saturdays. Where: 16 June at Drysdale Potato Shed. 30 June at Corio Council Depot. www.geelongaustralia.com.au
WHAT’S ON 26 June
03 - 05 June
Dorothy the Dinosaur’s Beach Birthday Where: Wyndham Cultural Centre. www.wyncc.com.au
The Man in Black The Johnny Cash Story.
28 June The School of Wives. Bell Shakespeare production of the classic Moliere play. Where: Her Majesty’s Ballarat. www.hermaj.com
30 June 13 -17 June
Guy Sebastian ARMEGEDDON 2012
Geelong Chamber Music Society 2012 Concert Series. Where: McAuley Hall, Sacred Heart College. www.gpac.org.au
Where: 13 June at Her Majesty’s Ballarat, 17 June at GPAC. www.hermaj.com, www.gpac.org.au
22 June - 07 July 19 June Soul Sister Swing Back by popular demand we welcome back to Morning Showtime 2012 the amazing Soul Sister Swing. Where: Potato Shed, Drysdale. www.geelongaustralia.com.au
20 June Winter Solstice Warm Fires and Poetry Get nice and toasty with the Warm Fires and Poetry Winter Solstice celebration. Including fire pits, mulled wine, music and original poetry, this casual, cosy night coincides with the shortest day and the longest night of the year! Come and present your own poetry, listen to others rendition of known and original poetry and chill out as the Potato Shed hots up for the winter season. Where: Potato Shed, Drysdale. www.geelongaustralia.com.au
21 June ACT UP for Sustainability. Where: GPAC. www.gpac.org.au
Romeo and Juliet Where: GPAC. www.gpac.org.au
22 - 23 June The Housekeeper Two of Australia’s best comic actors, Evelyn Krape and Peter Moon, combine in this offbeat, delightfully zany comedy about a middle-aged, rather stuffy bachelor and the eccentric bag lady he hires as a housekeeper. Where: Wyndham Cultural Centre. www.wyncc.com.au
Carmen. A Melbourne Opera presentation. Where: Her Majesty’s Ballarat. www.hermaj.com
01 July Soul Friends 5 Benefit concert for Anam Cara House. Geelong artists give freely of their time and talent in this concert to raise funds to support the work of Anam Cara House in caring for those with a life-limiting illness, and offering respite to their families. Where: The Basilica of St Mary of the Angels, Geelong. www.musicatthebasilica.com.au
Tex Perkins and the Tennessee Four celebrate the life and music of Johnny Cash. Where: 03-04 June at GPAC, 05 June at Her Majesty’s Ballarat. www.gpac.org.au, www.hermaj.com
06 July All That Jazz Blue and White Ball A night of great entertainment fundraising to help much needed funds to secure affordable housing for Geelong. The Gala Ball includes dinner and drinks on the night. Where: The Pier, Geelong. www.stlaurence.org.au
07 July James and the Giant Peach Roald Dahl’s children’s classic comes to life in this brilliantly entertaining stage show. Where: GPAC. www.gpac.org.au
23 - 30 June Dick Whittington Where: GPAC. www.gpac.org.au
24 June Miserere Music at the Basilica Inc presents The Australian Chamber Choir conducted by Douglass Lawrence. Where: The Basilica of St Mary of the Angels, Geelong. www.musicatthebasilica.com.au
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