Thursday, August 30, 2012

Small Business Under attack – Government looking to remove Export Grants and Support Innovation

Grants such as  Commercialisation Australia and the Export Market Development Grant, which are already suffering funding issues, are under threat of being axed.
Wayne Swan announced a freeze on federal grants on Monday as it races to arrest a drop in revenue, due to a 37% drop iin Iron Ore prices. 
Is the Government going to kill a programme that generates $12 of revenue for every $1 of Government support to increase revenue?  Government should encourage more exports and increase support for Innovative Exporters.. Specifically Small Business!!
Killing these Grants will have a significant detrimental effect on innovative Small Businesses who have an export focus and use the EMDG to play on a Level Palying Field. More funding is needed at a time like this.
Pulling support of SME’s Government Innovation and Export Programmes , with a rising Dollar and a Flat World Economy is not the solution to build a robust economy!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Exclusive Property Release: Glebe - Heritage Conversion Townhouses

Our Financial Planning Firm, Ark Total Wealth, is proud to bring to market
11 townhouses built incorporating the existing facade of the Old Glebe Townhall. 
A webinar will be held on Monday 3 September 2012 @ 5:30pm

For more information, see below, or feel free to contact an Ark Adviser
Exclusive Property Release: 

Glebe - Heritage Conversion Townhouses
Ark Total Wealth are pleased to bring to market, a boutique development of 11 townhouses that will be built incorporating the existing facade of the old Glebe Town Hall.

Seconds away from the restaurants, shops and small bars of cosmopolitan Glebe Point Rd, the development sits directly across the road from a large park and is serviced by buses at its door step ferrying you directly into the city, or Glebe light rail station that is only 300 meters away.

Locations simply do not get more blue-chip than this!
The townhouses themselves are large internally at 107 sqm, and consist of 2 bedrooms , 2 bathrooms and a dedicated media room/ office, perfect for DINKS, or those with a small family.

Rental yields are expected to be between 5.0% - 5.7% according to local agents appraisals, and the heritage conversion should add a funky element to their appeal among tenants or future purchasers.

Ark Total Wealth is conducting a Webinar release event on Monday 3rd of September at 5:30pm, where we will provide a run down of the development, research on the area as well as exploring the individual floor plans.

Demand is expected to be high and given the boutique size of the development we do not expect the individual townhouses to be available for very long.

If you are unable to attend or wish to review the information at hand before the Webinar please contact us and we will provide you with the development particulars.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Spark Magazine August Issue Out Now!

Untitled Document
Spark Magazine is now available monthly, click here to read the full magazine, 
or choose from some of our feature stories listed below.
Please feel free to comment on articles that you think are awesome.
Best regards

Cover Story: The New Face Of Business!
Want to get your business into the social
medium but don't know how to go about it
successfully? Spark talks to blogging
sensation Aley Greenblo,whose fashion blog 
'Tickled Pink' has had over 4.3 million views!

Roadmap To Success
SME's (Small to Medium Enterprises) are
struggling at the moment.With the financial
pressure of two GFC's followed by the instability
in Europe, many small business owners are
wondering just whenthey will catch a break.
The problem is, the global economy can't 
be fixed with a batch of home-printed flyers
dropped in local letterboxes;and that trip  to
the bank for a top-up on the business loan just got 
a whole lot more daunting.
So what can Australia's Small Business Owners do?

Meet Mao's Last Dancer, Li Cunxin
He spent his life transforming.
From starving child in a Chinese village,
to ballet student in China's rigorous training
program, to one of the world's leading ballet dancers
with the Houston Ballet Company. Named Australian
'Father of the Year' in 2009 and the subject of an 
acclaimed movie based on his autobiography
Li Cinxun has now transformed into a successful 
stockbroker. He talks to spark about...

How To Get Cashed Up
Businesses that have established a position
where they can demonstrate their capability
and potential, may approach angel investors
and venture capital funds to provide capital to help
commercialise and grow the business.These
investors look for a high return to compensate
for their high level of risk and will typically look to...

Contract Confusion
Why your 'best endeavours' could turn out
to be your last endeavour!The common view
is that there is a spectrum of words you can select
from to throw into contracts, when communicating
the amount of effort you are prepared to go to, for
 someone you are in a contractual relationship with.
I often wonder if people say they will use 'reasonable
endeavours' because they do not really want to...

How Good Is Your Customer Service?
One of the basic concepts used in customer service is
that of moments of truth. This concept was developed by
Jan Carlzon, CEO of Scandinavian Air Services (SAS) in 
the 1980s to describe the aspects of customer contact
 that the business needed to control to ensure...

Build a better business community, forward Spark Magazine to your Business Contacts

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Perth and Brisbane leading Population Boom is expected to fuel the next Property Boom

They say "buy in gloom and sell in boom."  With a reduction in interest rates, and an increased demand for property, it seems as if it is a good time to start investing in strategic growth areas in Australia.

Property Boom in Perth Expected
I have just read an article in Australian Property Investor which points to an opportunity of investing in Perth and Brisbane.

The ABS’s population projection  estimates Perth and Brisbane’s population over the next 50 years to grow by over 110% .

Over the last 10 years, Perth and Brisbane boosted population figures by 25.2%, Darwin 20.8% growth, Melbourne 18.3%, Canberra 15.2%, Sydney 11.6%, Hobart 9% and Adelaide 8.8%.

In Perth, major planning and transport reforms under way to support the projected population boom as a result of the massive influx of workers servicing the resources sector. It is expected that Perth’s population will grow from 2 million to 4 million and house prices will rebound to reflect this.

An aging population, a new generation of homebuyers who want to be close to the city and an influx of immigrants who are more accustomed to high density living, will drive demand for units that are near public transport and  within easy reach of the CBD or places of employment, and where available property is in limited supply.

This will result in increased property prices.

Just as Sydneys Inner West (Newtown, Petersham and Dulwich Hill have gentrified into trendy and highly sought after suburbs, many Perth suburbs will have the potential to do the same. Growth areas being gentrified  include Victoria Park,  Belmont, Redcliffe and Cloverdale, Bayswater, Bedford, Dianella and Yokine

In Brisbane, the winning suburbs will be the transport hubs where rezoning has either already occurred or is under way. Growth areas include  Indooroopilly, Toowong, Carindale and Mount Gravatt, and more affluent suburbs expecting growth include  Brisbane’s leafy west and northwest, including suburbs like Ashgrove, Bardon and Toowong.

If you would like to invest in residential property, its best to chat with Alex, Miles, Chris or Dylan at Ark Total Wealth

3 Year Interest rates at under 5.95%

Interest rates are at their lowest point since the global financial crisis (GFC) as competition between lenders for a slice of the fixed home loan market continues to heat up.

Most lenders have dropped their three-year fixed loan rates since July  by up to 9 basis points, averaging 5.9%.

While variable home loans are still the popular choice fixed rates should be looked at over the coming year, taking advantage of this aberration.

Fixed home loans finance in June accounted for just over 10 per cent of all mortgages (Australian Bureau of Statistics,). That represents an increase from 6.9 per cent in the same period last year. “There’s uncertainty about which direction official rates will move, and we expect to see more borrowers taking up fixed home loans.” says Sandra Crossland of Liquidity Finance

Pay off your Mortgage in 6 years and save $300k + in interest repayments!

Mike and Jenny Jones (DINK’s) (Double Income no Kids) came to Liquidity Finance to see how they could pay off their home loan sooner.  They both worked hard, had relatively high disposable incomes, but for some reason always barely came out, without much to show at the end of each month!
“It seems that the more we earn, the more we spend!” said Jenny.

Sandra (Australia’s premier mortgage broker at Liquidity Finance) , together with Myles (a financial planner with Ark Total Wealth), went through a planning exercise with them, developed a strategy enabling them to pay off their home loan in 6 years, saving 19 years off their home loan payments and $306,241.26 in interest payments (non-deductable or “bad- debt”) without taking any risks.
A few key strategies enabled this to happen:-
1. A mortgage refinance from $400k to $430k paying off the credit card debt and car loans.
2. Interest rate reduction from 6.75% to 5.82%
3. On refinancing, the first repayment was made as soon as the loan was settled (saving $9,000 interest and 4 months off the loan)
4. Paying fortnightly instead of monthly… making 2 extra payments per annum, saving $86,000 and 4 years off the mortgage.
5. Expenses being paid by credit card (getting frequent flyer points for holidays) and your salary going to an offset account (reducing your loan balance when it comes to calculating your interest owed.) A direct debit facility was set up to pay their credit cards in full at the end of each month.
6. A budgeting exercise making Mike and Jenny aware on their day to day expenditure. A little “tightening of the belt” resulted in them being debt frree in 6 years!!

Mike and Jenny now have substantial equity in their home. “This has come in handy, and we are now focussing on building our wealth with a strong capital base.” Thanks Sandra and Myles!

Click  to see Liquidity's loan calculators

Sunday, August 12, 2012


Did you know that the $7,000 First Home Owners Grant for established properties ends on30 September 2012?

This means that not only will they not get any stamp duty concessions on their purchase of an established property, but they will no longer receive the cash component of the First Home Owners Grant either!

Give Sandra or Danny at Liquidity Finance a call on 02 9290 2777 to see how you can help your kids get into the property market before these changes take effect.
To find out more how we can help you, click here
Follow Liquidity Finance on twitter and facebook

Check Out August Spark

Would love your comments and feedback on how this can be improved.... what articles you want... have you got an article to write... This will be going to 235,000 people!!

Spark Magazine... Interested in Publishing an Article?

Would you like to publish an article, promote or market your product or service? Check out 

Sparkmag: Better Blogging: Interview with Aley Greenblo

Sparkmag: Better Blogging: Interview with Aley Greenblo: Want to get your business into the social medium but don’t know how to go about it successfully? Spark talks to blogging sensation Aley Greenblo

Thursday, August 09, 2012

Oz techs competing in Silicon valley!!

Tech Start up - are you maximising government incentives for you... you should be!!

Wednesday, August 08, 2012

The ultimate goal of a business leader!!

Inspiration from @jeff_haden

The ultimate goal and measurement of a “for profit business”  is “to make more money now and in the future!!” 
KPI's - increase company earnings, profits, dividends and share prices.
(in other words – earn more than you spend!!) 
(btw – this is easier said than done!!)
Ultimately - NoProfit/no cash/ no business!!
Is building a corporate culture, moving into new markets, crafting bold visions-- a driver of earnings or a luxury you get to focus on as long as the shareholders or board stays happy with the company's performance re  profits, dividends and share prices?
Once you achieve profit and positive cash flow, you can do what you love, give back to the community, etc
The desired outcome of a leader to make all stakeholders feel better. When this happens everything else follows!!
·         Employee
o    that's a little more training,
o   personal development,
o   work life balance,
o   better performers
o   feeling connected
o   develop into leaders,
o   feeling productive worthwhile
o   part of a team etc
·         Customers
o   Feel good about themselves
o   Feeling a sense of having value added through buying something
o   Solving a pain
o   Having a vitamin
·         Suppliers
o   Being paid
o   Feeling a sense of pride and self worth
o   Growing their businesses as yours does
·         Shareholders
o   Feeling proud to be associated
o   Bragging rights
o   Ability to get a great Return on Investment

4 Succesful Leadership Traits

  1. Passion and drive trump genetics and environment.
  2. Maintain focus 
  3. Share the glory
  4. Be Honest and gain trust -Avoid personal fouls

7 tips to become more charismatic

They say "you either got it, or you don't," but when it comes to charisma, if you don't have to have it — you can learn it. 

Charismatic leaders "cause followers to become highly committed to the leader's mission, to make significant personal sacrifices, and to perform above and beyond the call of duty," says Robert House, a Wharton School business professor. 

1. Look the part and make sure you project confidence

2. Be present  -Make people feel like they're the most intelligent, interesting, impressive and fascinating person in the room
3. Engage others by being present and interested

4. Combine your power with warmth to create a full, charismatic package
5. Develop the capacity to engage others - Kennedy was an excellent listener
6. Facial Expression needs to be congruent to what you say - be passionate and inspiring - show an inner sense of purpose - NOT!!
7. Prepare and Practice - Make time to warm-up before a big event - develop the  skill in articulating ideas, vision, and goals

Saturday, August 04, 2012

Entrepreneurs success comes down to 1 thing..... Decisionship

Creel Price
For the last ten years Creel has been developing a unique business theory that dramatically changes the way entrepreneurs look at their business. Based on the premise that entrepreneurship = decisionship which is the ability to make faster, better informed decisions without the angst. To train your entrepreneurial eye you first have to understand the core business principles and the six lenses to understand yourself and your business:
Perpetual Growth Principles = Recognising that to be successful every business requires a unique combination of time, knowledge, money and momentum. The scarcity of these elements causes eight negative forces or frictions that are countered by maximising positive forces (actuators), maximising stakeholder balance and minimising organisational mass.

Understanding your Business:
Prototype Lens – Will this decision refine and reinforce our Recipe for Success?
Progress Lens – Will this decision help us climb to he next Business Stage?
Plan Lens – Will this decision build our Vision by reinforcing our Goals and Priorities?
Understanding Yourself:
Philosophy Lens – Will this decision align with my Values and Beliefs?
Proficiency Lens – Will this decision play to (or enhance) my Strengths?
Passion Lens – Will this decision give me the Fulfilment and Freedom I‘m seeking?

Thursday, August 02, 2012

Ten Reasons Winners Keep Winning, Aside from Skill

Ten Reasons Winners Keep Winning, Aside from Skill (Harvard Business Review)

Whether the game involves competing every four years in the Olympics or every day in a business, winning brings advantages that make it easier to keep winning.
To understand sustainable success, I compared perpetual winners with long-term losers in professional and amateur sports and then matched the findings to business case studies for my book Confidence. The sports were a comprehensive mix including women's soccer, men's and women's college basketball, major league baseball, U.S. football, international cricket, and North American ice hockey.
I found that winners gain ten important advantages as a result of victory — and that smart leaders can cultivate and build on these advantages to make the next success possible.
1. Good mood. Clearly everyone feels good about winning, while emotions sag at failure. Emotions affect performance. Positive moods produce physical energy and the resilience to persist after setbacks. While losers use any excuse to stop, winners sometimes play on even while injured, lifted by a kind of winners' high. Moreover, psychologists find that moods are contagious. Winners' exhilaration is infectious. Losers' gloom can be toxic.

2. Attractive situation. Whether at children's soccer games or in the office, losers go home early. Winners stick around. My studies show that there is less absenteeism or tardiness in organizations known for their successes. There is also more solidarity, because people spend more time together feeling good about what they can accomplish. More time together brings more chances for information-sharing and mentoring.
3. Learning. Losers get defensive and don't want to hear about their many failings, so they avoid feedback. Winners are more likely to voluntarily discuss mistakes and accept negative feedback, because they are comfortable that they can win. Because they are confident about the possibility of winning, they see practicing as a route to a positive outcome, not as a punishment. For athletes, practice matters. Winning is often found in mastery of the details. As a former student found in studies of swimmers who did and didn't qualify for the Olympics, excellence consists of examining and improving many small processes and routines.
4. Freedom to focus. As every golfer and tennis player knows, you must keep your eye on the ball. Losers often punish themselves in their heads. Winners have fewer distractions. Golf pro Tiger Woods won nearly every championship until hit with personal problems of his own making, which was followed by loses on the golf course.
Alicia Coutts - freedom to focus 
5. Positive culture of mutual respect. For anyone who plays on a team, winning makes it easier to respect and listen to one another, because after all, if you win together, then the presumption is that everyone is a good player. Winners can maintain high aspirations and act generously toward others. Losers are more likely to blame others and disdain them as mediocre, creating a culture of finger-pointing and infighting.

6. Solid support system. Behind every high performance athlete or team is a cadre of coaches, friends, and fans that fuel motivation. Winning enlarges the circle of backers. Losing erodes support. For instance, the cheerleaders for one perpetually losing college football team used to leave the stadium at half-time. When even their cheerleaders feel they won't win, how can athletes gear up for the next try?

7. Better press. It's not just the buzz at time of victory that separates winners from losers, it's also the more favorable story about the past and future. Winning provides a halo that makes everything seem to glow. Losing causes observers and analysts to probe for reasons in a rewritten version of the past that makes continuing losses seem inevitable.
8. Invitations to the best parties. Really. Winners get invited to the White House, Buckingham Palace, key conferences or exhibitions. They gain access to networks and relationships that confer benefits that maintain winners' momentum, such as early information or better deals. Who invites the losers?

9. Self-determination. Winners have more control over their own destiny. "Why tamper with success?" we often say. Winners are left alone, getting a free pass on reviews.  Losers get attention of the negative kind. They are encumbered with "help" — special committees, audits, reviews, frequent visitors. Enough of that, and losers spend their time in meetings instead of practicing and improving performance.
10. Continuity. Lose too often, and heads roll. New coaches, new strategies — like HP's lurching between hardware and software or Yahoo's parade of exiting CEOs. High turnover consumes time and attention. More time spent getting people on board leaves little time to fully execute any particular game plan. It's hard to start winning again until the situation stabilizes. Winners have the luxury implementing long-term strategies and planning for orderly succession.
Winning streaks eventually end because winners can get over-confident, slipping into arrogance or complacency, or because the competition gets better. But leaders can build on the advantages of winners to encourage a positive spirit, disciplined focus, mutual respect, lots of practice on the details, and lasting support systems that can make successes and comebacks more likely.