Member News

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  • 10-Jan-2017 13:30 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    Get ready for a business networking and learning experience like no other!

    In collaboration with Campbelltown Catholic Club and the Western Sydney Business Connection (WSBC), Campbelltown City Council are hosting a not to be missed XVenture Experience on Friday 24 March 2017 – and we want your team involved!

    Led by world-class leaders in experiential learning, XVenture, this is the ultimate team, leadership and dynamic networking experience. Teams of six will take on a series of exciting challenges, designed to test all aspects of teamwork, leadership and strategy development. The winning team won’t be the fittest, fastest or strongest – it will be the team which works together and stays together.

    This is a unique experience to engage with Council, local businesses and those from further afield, as well as showcase Campbelltown City. It is not an obstacle course – the event focuses on important elements of high performing teams like leadership, communication, decision making under pressure, creativity, strategy and risk taking.

    Are you up for the challenge?

    If we’ve got your interest, check out the video:

    Register today to secure your place – the event is limited to 30 teams.

    Registration is easy – just click on the link and follow the prompts:

    Cost: $900 (+ GST) for a team of six

    Contact XVenture for more information: 

    Phone: (02) 9922 1622




  • 19-Dec-2016 14:29 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    Celebrate the achievements of women in Western Sydney – women from business and local industry, education, health, charity and community groups – who are committed to improving our local community and the lives of others.

    Nominate these inspirational women for the 2017 Women of the West Awards.

    The awards were established by the University to recognise the significant contributions and achievements of women from the Greater Western Sydney region.

    There are three categories in the Women of the West program:

    • Women of the West – Business
    • Women of the West – Community
    • Young Women of the West (aged 18 to 28 years).

    The winner of each category receives a grant of $5,000, nominees highly commended receive a grant of $1,000, and nominees commended for each category receive a grant of $500, to further progress their leadership and advocacy work in their local community.

    Entries close 10 February 2017.

    The winners will be publicly announced at Western Sydney University’s International Women's Day celebrations in March next year.

    For further information or to submit a nomination, please visit

  • 16-Dec-2016 11:20 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    The City of Campbelltown is set to experience a period of extensive growth and change, and by 2036, it is anticipated that our population will rise to around 270,000 residents.

    Having been identified by the State Government as a priority growth area, it is important that we, as your local Council, plan now for this future growth in order to build a resilient city that remains distinctive and provides a desirable lifestyle.

    We need your help.

    We are starting a conversation that we want you to be involved in. As a community partner, we know that you will have ideas that you can share with us, and thoughts about issues that need addressing within our community.

    Campbelltown City Council is in the process of developing a new Community Strategic Plan that will support Council as an organisation, along with you and the rest of our community, to articulate our aspirations for Campbelltown City into the future. The Community Strategic Plan provides a 10 year forecast, and addresses issues such as lifestyle, the environment, roads and connectivity, the local economy and the responsible leadership of Council.

    As part of the process of developing the new plan, we’ll be seeking the input of the wider Campbelltown community through a range of initiatives, the first of which is an online survey which aims to help us understand the positive aspects of life in Campbelltown City, and to identify opportunity areas as seen through the eyes of our residents, ratepayers, business owners, investors, students and visitors.

    For more information on the Community Strategic Plan and a link to the online survey, click here .

  • 12-Dec-2016 08:55 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    The gift of giving for children in need was twinkling for all to see when Australia’s biggest Christmas festival – the Sydney Santa Spectacular, in conjunction with Events by ATC, launched its charity Christmas appeal last night at Rosehill Gardens.

    The appeal proudly supports the kids and families of Camp Quality and Sydney Children’s Hospital with event organisers inviting attendees throughout the 19-day festival to donate gifts under a towering 15 mere Christmas tree – one of the tallest charity trees in Australia.

    "Events by ATC welcome the Sydney Santa Spectacular after a successful inaugural event last year. The Spectacular is a fantastic event for the whole family and we are proud to be partnering again to raise much needed funds and support Camp Quality and the Sydney Children’s’ Hospital", said Angela Simic, Commercial Marketing Executive at the Australian Turf Club. 

    Pop up stores sold Camp Quality Christmas Crackers with funny and meaningful jokes inside written by Camp Quality kids who are undergoing a cancer journey, with all proceeds going directly to Camp Quality. With seasonal smorgasbord of North Pole experiences for Christmas-lovers of all ages, Australia’s largest open-air ice-skating rink, toboggan slides, Australia’s only double decker carousel and much more, the Sydney Santa Spectacular lit up Rosehill Gardens for a worthy cause.

    The event will run until the 27th December, tickets can be purchased at 

  • 02-Dec-2016 07:49 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    Northcott’s 21st Annual Cricket Legends Lunch will be held on Friday 17 February 2017 in the Noble Dining Room at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

    Enjoy a legendary lunch and lively panel discussion from cricketing greats, with ABC radio personality Adam Spencer as Master of Ceremonies.

    With the support of the Sydney Cricket & Sports Ground Trust, we are delighted to announce that pre-lunch drinks will be held on the hallowed turf of the SCG.

    Proudly supported by our charity partner Cricket NSW, Northcott’s Cricket Legends Lunch has raised more than $1.5 million for children and adults with disability – a remarkable achievement that would not have been possible without our wonderful supporters!

    Click below to book your tickets or contact Annette Sneyd on 02 9890 0131 for more information or to learn about sponsorship opportunities.

    The Details


    Friday 17 February 2017


    12:00 – 13:00

    Pre-lunch drinks on the hallowed turf of the SCG

    13:00 – 16:00

    Lunch in the Noble Dining Room


    Sydney Cricket Ground

    Moore Park Road

    Moore Park

    NSW 2021


    Entertainment Quarter Car Park

  • 30-Nov-2016 13:52 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    City of Parramatta is calling for Expressions of Interest from residents and workers who would like to help promote the City at major events and festivals as part of a new ambassador program being implemented by Council.

    The Destination Ambassador initiative will extend and support the City’s existing Host & Guide visitor services. The program has been established in partnership with TAFE NSW, which will provide accredited training to participants.

    “We are looking for local volunteers who are community minded, friendly and outgoing, to promote Parramatta as a leading tourism destination,” City of Parramatta Administrator Amanda Chadwick said.

    “This is a unique opportunity for participants to meet new people, share their local knowledge and ensure visitors have a memorable experience in our beautiful city.”

    Destination Ambassadors will share their passion for Parramatta with visitors to Council’s major events and festivals, strengthening the City’s status as a leading leisure destination.

    “The rate of growth in visitor numbers to Parramatta over the next five years will surpass most major destinations in NSW. We want to ensure we are well placed to meet the needs of visitors to our City by tapping into one of the best resources we have, our community,” Ms Chadwick said.

    The two-day accredited course for Destination Ambassadors will be held at TAFE NSW Ultimo campus from 20-21 January 2017 and tailored to provide participants with formal and practical knowledge which could help them pursue future employment opportunities in the tourism and hospitality industry.

    Once qualified, Destination Ambassadors will be involved with key events such as Australia Day and Tropfest, and other major community initiatives across the City.

    Expressions of Interest close at 5pm on Thursday 8 December 2016. For more information visit

  • 30-Nov-2016 12:55 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    Training specialists from TAFE Western Sydney delivered a four-day training program with the customer service team from Kingloc Commercial Equipment at Minchinbury.

    The staff at the local refrigeration and storage distribution group participated in classroom activities which were setup onsite at the business. The aim of the training was to improve customer service delivery - assisting with the overall sales outcomes of the company.

    Delivery of first-class service to customers is a cornerstone of every successful business. Offering a smooth and enjoyable transactional experience boosts customer loyalty, encourages repeat business and improves public perception of the company brand.

    Every business and customer base is unique, and the TAFE Western Sydney Customer Service Training Course is designed to identify the individual customer service requirements of not only your team, but your customers as well. We offer the essential skills, techniques and leading industry practices to improve your delivery of service, generate more business and increase profit.

    TAFE Western Sydney Customer Service Training will:

    • Analyse your current business offerings to customers and advise where we can assist you in achieving goals and milestones
    • Evaluate and train your service team in key elements of customer service excellence and best industry practices
    • Create a positive customer service experience, enhance your brand increase awareness
    • Advise on appropriate behavioural techniques for interaction situations unique to your business
    • Identify methods of promoting your brand with marketing techniques
    • Resolve and review situations where customer expectations have not been met
    • Review past performances and plan for continual improvement of customer service delivery.

    Some reviews from our participants:

    “It was good to get a better understanding of opening and closing an enquiry”.

    “Great learning strategies to look after each other, especially in a call centre environment”.

    TAFE Western Sydney provides businesses with solutions that improve productivity through increased skills development. We offer a tailored approach to your business - taking your systems, procedures, culture, and work practices into account and building on the strengths of your business – we offer a solution that’s right for you.

    If your organisation could benefit from a staff training program please call TAFE Western Sydney on 131 870 for a business training consultation.

  • 30-Nov-2016 12:04 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    With the festive season upon us, we will likely close the year out on a high. But what about planning proactively for 2017? If you’re hoping the next 12 months are more profitable than the last, here are some simple ideas that could make that happen sooner.

    Ideally you want to increase revenue without also increasing expenses by the same amount. And that starts with putting your revenue under the microscope.

    1. Get smarter with pricing

    “We talk about seeking ‘positive jaws’ on the profit and loss – where revenue is up but expenses are down,” explains Rob Hayward, Head of Client Solutions, Virtual Adviser Network with Macquarie Wealth Management. “Ideally you want to increase revenue without also increasing expenses by the same amount. And that starts with putting your revenue under the microscope.”

    This may be as simple as putting your prices up. “Our benchmarking consistently demonstrates the profitable firms are the ones who increase their fees. One of my clients was nervous about increasing client fees by 10 per cent – yet he didn’t really get any push back.”

    Consistency is just as important – it’s a good idea to check everyone in the firm is charging the same rates. “You’d be surprised,” Hayward comments. “Some may be more prone to doing ‘deals’ for their preferred clients, and that can add up. For example, we often see financial planning firms who tell us they charge clients a 1% advice fee across the board dipping to an average of 0.8% because of this.”

    He says he is also seeing some accountancy practices shift some of their client engagement models to a retainer or monthly payments.

    “They may scope out the work for the year, and agree an upfront monthly or quarterly charge. This completely transforms their revenue model: it’s predictable cash flow, less time chasing invoices, and you can forecast your year with much greater accuracy. Many firms start this process by changing how they charge for SMSFs from annually to monthly from the SMSF cash account.”

    Another attractive and longer-term benefit of this is the potential to increase the value of your business.

    2. Check your expenses

    The other ingredient for ‘positive jaws’ is lean expense management. Collecting cash monthly is one way to trim expenses – you’ll reduce admin hours following up as well as cash flow loan interest payments.

    Hayward also suggests checking for ‘subscription creep’ with licensing arrangements or technology plans. “You may have upgraded your software in the past, for example, but now you have fewer users or no longer need all the features. They might have a more cost-effective plan you can switch to.”

    He says it’s not uncommon for firms to still be paying for mobile phone plans and other subscriptions for ex-employees. “When you’re looking at your bottom line, look for those lazy expenses.”

    3. Let your unprofitable clients go

    Another hidden factor that could be unintentionally eroding your profits? Some of your customers.

    It’s commonly understood the Pareto rule applies to business – for example, around 80 per cent of your revenue is derived from 20 per cent of your client base. But did you know a small percentage of your client base is actually costing you money?

    Intuitively you probably know who these clients are – the ones that waste your staff’s time, expect more than what they’re prepared to pay for and distract you from more profitable customers. Those high maintenance clients may also be damaging staff morale and performance.

    But before you rush to let them go, do some analysis to check just how much they cost to service by tracking time-based activities on each client or project. Then work out why they are unprofitable. It may be that they need to shift to a different pricing model or service package. And if they don't want to, it’s time to suggest they try a different provider. You’ll see the impact on your bottom line almost immediately.

    Some businesses identify and increase the fees for unprofitable clients and often find that many of these clients stay with the business.

    4. Don’t just grow market share - grow the overall market

    If your growth strategy revolves around generating new customer leads and referrals, you may be able to win some market share from your competitors. But what if you could also grow the overall pie? For example, 2015 research found that just 16 per cent of working Australians use a financial planner. Meanwhile, according to TAL’s research just 33 to 37 per cent of Australians aged 18 to 69 hold life insurance and the Insurance Council of Australia suggests only 63 per cent of Australian small to medium sized businesses have enough business insurance.

    So could there be room to grow the overall market for planners and brokers? Potentially. And the same could apply for other service sectors – think about which audience groups are not using (or are completely unaware of) your services. Are there new products, services or platforms you could create to reach them profitably?

    5. Be tax-effective with your strategy

    Finally, make sure you make the most of any possible tax benefits within your New Year plan.

    First, a word of caution from Hayward. “For example, while the $20,000 instant asset tax write off sounds attractive for small business owners, the reality is it doesn’t really change the dial on your bottom line unless you actually need the asset to generate revenue.”

    Other opportunities include a Research and Development (R&D) tax incentive to help cover the costs of developing new products or processes to meet the unmet needs of that missing market share, or financial incentives to hire older workers.

    Ready to kick start your New Year strategy? It’s a good idea to get your team on board first – so January might be the perfect time to start.


    Macquarie has been providing Business Banking solutions for over 30 years and provides SME clients with tools and strategies to grow and develop their business. You can get regular updates by subscribing to the monthly newsletter, Strictly Business by visiting If you would like to find out more about how Macquarie can support you to take your business further, call Sam McCarthy at our Parramatta office on 0417 518 724 and be connected with one of our banking specialists in your region.

  • 30-Nov-2016 11:56 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    On Wednesday 23 November 2016, both Houses of Parliament passed two superannuation bills which included the proposed superannuation reforms outlined in the 2016 Federal Budget and subsequent changes released in September 2016.

    Click here to view William Buck's full summary of the changes.

    The changes may impact individuals in a number of different ways. In some cases, new planning opportunities may be available, in others doors may be closed.

    In either case you may be required to take action prior to 30 June 2017, particularly in the following situations:

    • You have more than $1.6M in superannuation
    • You plan to make a large once-off contributions into superannuation within the next 12 months;
    • You currently (or are planning to) draw a Transition to Retirement Income Stream;
    • You currently (or are planning to) draw a Defined Benefit Income Stream.

    To discuss the changes and potential strategies that may be available for you, please contact your local William Buck advisor.

  • 30-Nov-2016 11:28 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    It is a natural way of life, when in a relationship to think long term and make plans together. Whether it’s buying a house, new car or having a baby. Those are the things that many look forward to and dream of. We all know what happens to the house and the fancy new car when couples separate. We also know what happens to children. What we are still trying to understand is what happens when couples who plan to have children via IVF separate and still have frozen embryos stored.

    This topic caught the attention of many when Sofia Vegara, an actress well known for her role in the American television series ‘Modern Families’ found herself in dispute with her former partner over their frozen embryos. Whilst in a relationship with Nick Loeb, the couple underwent IVF. As part of the procedure, embryos were frozen and stored. Following separation, Vegara wanted the embroys destroyed whilst Loeb did not. Vegara relied on the contract which was signed by the parties allowing the destruction of the eggs. Will they be destroyed or not? Can a party claim ownership? These questions remain unanswered as the dispute between the pair continues and is yet to be decided by a Court.

    The Family Court of Western Australia was recently faced with determining similar issues in the case of G and G (1). The matter came before Penny J and was heard in November 2006 with judgement being delivered on 22 June 2007.

    The parties in the case commenced living together in 1998 until separation in March 2005. Mr G was 38 years and Mrs G was 35 years. The parties underwent an IVF procedure due to Mrs G’s long history of endometriosis and ovarian cysts (2). As Mrs G was not ready to have children, after fertilization of the eggs the embryos were frozen for future use. The parties consented to this and signed all necessary documents (3).

    In March 2004 the parties signed a form/agreement for storage of the embryo’s and made a nomination for the embryo to be discarded in the event of separation (4). Six embryos were frozen and stored. The agreement time for storage by the parties was three years (5).

    In March 2005 the parties separated. Mr G commenced property proceedings and sought property settlement orders which included that the embryos be transferred to him (6). Mrs G sought orders for property settlement in response to that of Mr G. She also sought an order for the embryos to be discarded in accordance with the agreement entered into between the parties in March 2004.

    The Court referred to the Human Reproductive Technology Act 1991 which required a court order to be made in the event parties are unable to resolve a dispute about use or continued storage of an embryo (7). It was found that the Family Court had jurisdiction to determine the matter and make an order given the circumstances arising out of the party’s marital relationship (8).

    Having considered the relevant sections of the Human Reproductive Technology Act 1991 in particular the sections which require consent of parties for carrying out of IVF procedures, together with the agreement signed by the parties for the embryo’s to be discarded on separation, the Court ordered that the embryos be discarded.

    At paragraph 61 Penny J found “the parties have now separated and can no longer achieve the purpose for which they consented to create and use the embroys” (9).

    Phone: (02) 9635 7966



    (1) [2007] FCWA 80

    (2) Ibid para 2

    (3) Ibid para 3

    (4) Ibid para 4

    (5) Ibid para 5

    (6) Ibid para 8

    (7) Ibid para 51

    (8) Ibid.

    (9) Ibid para 61

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