Strong NZ Demand Drives simPRO Expansion To South Island

Image: simPRO Business Development Manager, James Agnew

More companies in New Zealand will be able to streamline their businesses and increase profits with global job management software group simPRO expanding its presence to the South Island to cater for increased demand.

simPRO first landed on New Zealand shores in 2010, setting up headquarters in Auckland. Since then the company has experienced gradual year-on-year growth, tripling their local team.

Their expansion has now brought their expertise to New Zealand’s Canterbury region, with newly-appointed Business Development Manager, James Agnew.

Prior to joining simPRO, James spent six years as a trade sales rep for a well known paint supplier. Having lived in Christchurch for the last 29 years, he has lived and breathed the rebuilding of the city and developed a deep understanding of the needs of the local trade services industry.

simPRO New Zealand General Manager Richard Pratley said the expansion was a reflection of the company’s confidence in the local economy and the continued strength of the construction and trade industries.

“We think the South Island will continue to grow from strength to strength within the contracting industry and see great opportunity to increase our presence and offerings in the trade services industry where most of that growth will come from.”

He said the new Christchurch office would allow the company to deliver consultation and implementation more efficiently to clients not only in the Canterbury region, but the entire South Island.

“This is a really exciting time for us; not just because of the success of our own business, but because of the implication this has for businesses all over New Zealand,” he said.

“SimPRO’s job management systems help improve efficiency in every facet of business operations, from service and installation, to asset maintenance and project management, simPRO is your complete end to end business management tool.”

“As simPRO is cloud-based, it can be used anywhere, anytime in real time to help improve streamlined business productivity and efficiency, giving businesses the potential to grow, meet and exceed their goals.” Mr Pratley said.

simPRO’s software has reach all over the globe, with product usage across New Zealand, as well as Australia, UK and US.

The company plans to use their expansion to reach out to more businesses within New Zealand’s trade industry, establishing partnerships to support operations and growth.

“This isn’t about selling a product and sending businesses on their way,” Mr Pratley said. “When businesses succeed, we all succeed, which is no truer for trade businesses whose services directly serve the community.”

simPRO has partnered with local trade associations such as Master Electricians, Master Plumbers and the New Zealand Security Association to provide exclusive offers to their members.

simPRO Software was established in 2002 when co-founder Stephen Bradshaw, an electrical contractor, began working on a solution for managing his growing trade services business with co-founder Vaughan McKillop.

The technology company is now a leading provider of job management software solutions to trade contractors performing service, project and maintenance work, serving 4,000 businesses and 100,000+ users worldwide.

Bringing The Ashes Down Under, One Booking at a Time

An England Ashes cricket tour to Australia is always one of the most highly anticipated sporting visits to this country.

The return of the English Men’s and Women’s cricket teams for their respective Ashes campaigns is the culmination of months of planning to ensure both series are a success on the field for players, spectators and for all stakeholders.

Planning commenced for the 2017-18 season some years in advance by Cricket Australia as the host nation with the England and Wales Cricket Board; and travel, transport and accommodation by sports and entertainment travel company Stage and Screen Travel Services.

With the England squads touring in Australia from October to February The Ashes series will ensure a highly attended summer of international cricket in Australia.

Tiziano Galipo, General Manager Stage and Screen Travel Services said, ”The Ashes is a long and complex tour to arrange and requires close cooperation between all parties involved.

“We started making bookings eight months ago as soon as the touring calendar was set and then look at fine tuning requirements as the tour unfolds.”

Stage and Screen are required to book over 8,800 hotel room nights across 12 different hotels with over 1,100 bags of luggage required to be transported.

Transport arrangements include booking 36 internal flights and 270 vans, cars and coaches to move the teams and support staff around the country.

Additionally, the teams will use over 37 dozen cricket balls for training on top of the match balls.

The five-match Magellan Ashes Test Series commenced on 23rd November 2017 in Brisbane and is followed by five Gillette One Day Internationals and a Twenty20 Trans-Tasman Tri-Series involving New Zealand.

The Commonwealth Bank Women’s Ashes Series has been played in Brisbane, Coffs Harbour, Canberra and North Sydney from 22nd October to 21st November 2017.

About Stage and Screen Travel Services

Stage and Screen is Australia’s leading entertainment and sports travel company, widely respected for its people, credibility and discretion. The company lives and breathe sports and entertainment. Its long-standing client relationships have provided expert insider knowledge. Matching its Travel Managers with its clients, Stage and Screen delivers extraordinary travel experiences for Sport | Music, Touring & Arts | TV & Production | Film | Creative Industries.



Daydream Island Commences Demolition Ahead of October 2018 Reopening

Daydream Island Resort and Spa in the Whitsundays has commenced its demolition program ahead of its long-awaited redevelopment with the cleaning out of damaged facilities as construction gears up to commence in November.

The redevelopment program is on track for an October 2018 soft opening after a $65 million redevelopment following damage caused in March by Cyclone Debbie.

Daydream’s Director of Sales and Marketing Jayson Heron said that bookings will be reopening for Daydream from 16th October 2017 for stays from October 2018 onwards.

“We are very pleased to be able to reopen bookings for the resort,” Mr Heron said.

“The interest level is high and we look forward to unveiling final details of the redevelopment in the near future.

“We’re proud to once again become a premier Queensland destination of choice for not only holiday makers but also for weddings and conferences.”

Daydream is opening up a sales and marketing office located at Chatswood in Sydney.

Enquiries for Daydream Island Resort and Spa bookings can be made on the toll-free number 1800 075 040.

Major works already announced will include redevelopment of the Arrivals pavilion, Reception, main Atrium area, Waterfalls restaurant, Lagoons bar, all room types and Mermaids Restaurant. Additionally, the Lovers Cove function area will be expanded and a new Asian-inspired restaurant will be built.

The resort’s conference facilities will also be significantly revamped and expanded.

Art For Angus – Childhood Cancer Support

An evening of awareness, art and auction, for a better quality of life for children with cancer

A cocktail fund-raising evening with impact will be held on Saturday 16th September, 2017 at the Queensland Art Gallery to raise funds for Angus Johns and other children like him, who are suffering with cancer.

Angus Johns is like any other 2-year-old boy; lively, boisterous and gorgeous – except unlike most, he has a rare form of brain cancer. Like other children who have been dealt with this unfair blow so early in life, he is struggling through treatments and living in and out of hospital, cared for by his mum, Jess. Angus’s family, want to help him by raising funds to provide the best possible care and chance for his recovery. All funds raised will be directed towards helping Angus receive the care he needs. A portion will be donated to Childhood Cancer Support – a family focused charity taking care of regional children and their families by providing a place to call home while their child undergoes life-saving cancer treatment.

“We wanted to create an evening to remember, so we’ve ensured that top quality is the order of the night. It’s been so heart-warming to see everyone donating their time, talents and products and prizes to ensure there’s a wide selection of entertainers and auction items on the evening,” event convenor John Archer said.

Here’s what you can expect:

  • The evening will be hosted by TV host Mike Goldman and 97.3FM radio host Bianca Dye.
  • The food will be plentiful and delicious of course as it’s prepared by GOMA’S award-winning executive chef, Josh Lopez (Brisbane Times Good Food Guide 2016 Chef of the Year).
  • Entertainment by a trio of top local performers: singer/songwriter Jackie Marshall, Phil Smith (Brisbane based Americana artist) and Hillsborough (country music with a twist).
  • With artworks being auctioned off on the night including a portrait by the acclaimed Charles Billich who has kindly donated a portrait; that can be of you, a member of your family, prized pet or equine high achiever. Charles is the official artist for the World Cup Polo in Sydney in October and will be attending with his wife, Christa.
  • A great selection of other items will be auctioned off by Peter Burgin (chief auctioneer for Place Real Estate). There’s something for everyone including exclusive restaurants, para-gliding, art prints, memorabilia and more.
  • Multi-award winning executive coach and International speaker Josie Thomson, will share her brave and inspiring stories as guest speaker
  • All of this at one of the most prestigious event venues in Brisbane: The Watermall at The Queensland Art Gallery.

To purchase tickets, please visit

More information can be found on Facebook #ArtForAngus or phone John Archer 0400 707597


Silver Chef Delivers Strong Second Half As FY17 Profit Tops $20 Million


  • Net profit after tax of $20.2 million – strong second half performance of $15.6 million and includes one-off write-off for fraud of $2.3 million
  • Consistent strong performance from the Hospitality business with the rental asset base# up 34% on 30 June 2016
  • Strong growth in the New Zealand and Canadian asset bases
  • Improved second half credit performance from GoGetta
  • GoGetta business continues to be refined with focus on improving return on capital through customer quality measures
  • Dividend payout ratio increased to 68.7% of full year earnings
  • Implementation of securitisation funding facility on target
  • Earnings outlook for FY18 in the range of $24 million to $26 million

Leading equipment financier Silver Chef Limited (“Silver Chef” ASX: SIV) has today reported net profit after tax of $20.2 million for the year ending 30 June 2017.

As expected, the Group delivered strong second half financial performance as a result of improvement in GoGetta rental yield, better average credit quality and
continued growth of the Hospitality business in international markets. These improvements set up the business for strong growth in future periods.

The full year result includes a significant one-off expense of $2.3M after income tax in respect of asset losses associated with the fraud event announced to the market on 17 November 2016. The small miss against the lower end of the earnings guidance range was a consequence of deliberate slowing of growth in the GoGetta rental asset base in the second half of FY17 and additional arrears provisioning which was determined as part of the year end accounts review process.

Part of that difference arose from the Company’s decision to book additional provisioning against an individual customer arrears position where our recovery prospects
deteriorated post year end.

The Board has declared a fully franked dividend of 25.1 cents per share. In conjunction with the first half dividend of 12.9 cents per share, total dividends for the financial year are 38.0 cents per share, maintaining the Company’s payout ratio at 68.7% of earnings per share.

Chief Executive Officer Damien Guivarra said: “FY17 has been a challenging year for the Group, with rapid growth in the GoGetta business creating new demands in the areas of credit control, arrears administration and asset management. The Company has made significant improvements in these areas over the course of the year and it is confident that they will deliver improved financial returns in the GoGetta business moving forward. Pleasingly, the Hospitality business performed strongly again during the year. The Canadian market remains an attractive opportunity that will support the Company’s ongoing growth.”

Hospitality – Australia and New Zealand

The Hospitality business in Australia and New Zealand performed well during the year, with growth in its rental asset base of 26% against the previous corresponding period. The coffee and franchise channels made strong financial contributions during the period.

The New Zealand business in particular contributed strongly, with 49% growth in its rental asset base against the previous corresponding period resulting in a significantly improved contribution to group earnings. The average credit quality of the Hospitality portfolio remains consistent with historical trends and reflects a relatively low level of annualised credit losses in the target range of 2.5% to 3.5% of revenue.

Hospitality – Canada

The Canadian Hospitality business achieved the strong origination and asset base growth targets planned for the year. The business delivered $18.6 million in originations for the year ended 30 June 2017, up 48% on the previous corresponding period. Canada ends the year with a rental asset base of $28.7 million at cost, up
81% on the cost base at 30 June 2016.

There are now 40 employees providing a strong platform for future growth. Due to the relative immaturity of the Canadian portfolio, it is difficult to make a firm prediction as
to the average credit quality of that growing portfolio, however early indications are that it will perform on a similar basis to that observed in Australia and New Zealand.


During the year, the Company improved its credit evaluation procedures, redesigned its approach to managing the recovery of outstanding arrears and commenced a project to review its processes for reconditioning and remarketing assets that are returned after the initial twelve-month rental period.

As predicted, the GoGetta brand delivered an improved financial result in the second half of FY17. Growth in the GoGetta rental asset base was moderated as a result of implementing tightened credit controls. Average credit quality has improved as indicated by the deceleration in the rate of arrears growth.

Critical to improving credit quality and halting arrears deterioration was the disaccreditation of non-performing partners (both finance brokers and equipment vendors) who were not aligned with the Group’s deal quality and customer credit standards.

While slowing in the GoGetta growth rate was a natural by-product of the Company’s tightening credit standards, this was further enhanced by management actions taken in response to the fraud event announced on 17 November 2016.

The Company previously advised that in the short term it expected bad debt and impairment charges recognised in the GoGetta business to be higher than historical group averages as management worked through contracts (primarily in the light commercial channel) which were written before significant tightening of credit policiesin March 2016.

After ongoing evaluation, the Company concluded that a number of sub categories of customers and asset classes in the broader light commercial channel were not performing in line with our credit quality criteria. The Company has discontinued lending into those channels with the exception of vehicles which are specifically designed for commercial purposes (such as vans and utilities).

The credit performance of the remaining classes in the light commercial channel are subject to ongoing review to ensure they are generating the appropriate returns and meet acceptable standards of credit performance moving forward.

Capital Management

The Company’s total assets at 30 June 2017 are $540.2 million, with net gearing at 65%. The Company extended its senior syndicated banking facility by $100 million to a total of $400 million of which there was $81 million of headroom at year end. This provides the Company with significant funding headroom as it transitions to a securitised funding model in FY18.

The Company is now in advanced stages of documentation and senior syndicate approval for the implementation of a $200 million securitisation warehouse facility. All parties are working toward execution of relevant documentation.

Successful performance of the securitisation structure will see a significant reduction to senior debt gearing levels during FY18 and a lower level of reliance on new equity to finance the Company’s growth targets over the coming years.

The facility permits funding of new originations of Silver Chef and GoGetta rental contracts, and will also be used to purchase the Company’s existing book of finance leases in the first instance, allowing a significant reduction to senior debt levels on first draw. Once implemented, the securitisation facility will enable the business to finance eligible contract originations to an initial maximum gearing of 80% on asset cost on a limited recourse basis.

Final pricing for the securitisation warehouse structure will be established closer to financial close on the transaction.

A share placement was made on 16 September 2016 to existing and new shareholders, that raised an additional $7.5 million of equity capital. An entitlement offer announced on 21 March 2017 raised a further $21 million of equity capital. Funds from these placements were used to fund growth in the Company’s rental asset base, and to maintain gearing at a conservative level as the Company transitions to securitisation funding.

The Company will continue to apply its historical approach to the management of the Company’s capital base, seeking to diversify its funding sources with a range of features and maturities to manage refinancing risk and interest rate risk. The delivery of the securitisation facility in FY18 is an important evolution of the Group’s capital management strategy. Appropriate senior secured facilities and other forms of debt and equity capital will be required to ensure continuity of funding for both domestic and international expansion.

People and Culture

Damien Guivarra transitioned to the role of Chief Executive Officer effective from 3 November 2016. On that date, Allan English, founder and former Executive Chairman, returned to the role of Non-Executive Chairman.

Mr Guivarra has played an integral role in the growth of the Company over the last ten years across a number of sales and operational management roles.

The Company remains committed to the ongoing development of its people, as part of its wider strategy as a certified B Corporation. Silver Chef is focused on running its business under a values driven framework with a genuine desire to make a wider contribution in the world. During FY17, we formalised strategies for
better supporting our staff and our customers, reducing our environmental impact and creating more meaningful engagement with wider community initiatives through the establishment of the Silver Chef Foundation.


The Company continues to develop a new application management system with a second major phase of improvements commencing during the year. The system will generate considerable efficiencies by reducing application processing times and allowing information to be imported directly from external equipment dealer and finance broker platforms. It will also allow for credit pre-approvals for certain customers to be provided instantly.


The Board has declared a fully franked dividend of 25.1 cents per share. The record date for the dividend will be 8 September 2017 and the payment date will be 2 October 2017. In conjunction with the first half dividend of 12.9 cents per share, total dividends for the financial year are 38.0 cents per share, making the Company’s
payout ratio 68.7% of earnings per share.


Management believes that the long-term outlook for domestic growth for both the Silver Chef and GoGetta brands remains positive. Expansion in Canada will continue and strong growth is forecast in its rental asset base again in FY18.

In the short term, improvement to yield and average credit quality in GoGetta will create a continued improvement to both return on capital and underlying accounting earnings.

The Company is conscious that there are ongoing challenges associated with managing the existing portfolio of GoGetta contracts. As previously noted, this portfolio is comprised of a mixture of credit qualities that improved significantly after March 2016. The portion of the Company’s asset base in the GoGetta business which is underperforming from a credit perspective is being actively managed with a view to contracts either being paid out or assets being returned and re-deployed as a matter of priority.

However, due to the volume of assets subject to this exercise, particularly in the light commercial channel, there is a significant cost burden associated with managing accelerated repossessions and redeployment of that capital. The financial impact of this activity is difficult to estimate, as it is dependent on the timing and
condition of assets which are returned.

While the company typically targets growth in the range of 10 to 20%, in light of the above, the forecast for FY18 is in the range of 5% to 15%. As such, the Company expects full year after tax earnings for FY18 in the range of $24 million to $26 million.

# Asset base includes rental assets at written down value and lease receivables at amortised cost

ENDS: Media enquiries to Ben Ready on 0415 743 838.

SME Travellers Remain The Winners Amid Airfare Fluctuations

SME business travellers will face incremental airfare increases in 2018 but the passenger experience will be better than ever according to the latest 4D FOCUS – Australian Aviation and Airfare Analysis.

The report, produced by Flight Centre Travel Group’s (FCTG) 4th Dimension Business Travel Consulting (4D) team, includes a statistical outlook for 2017 and year on year benchmarking of corporate and leisure airfares from 2014 to 2016.

Corporate Traveller General Manager Jess Anscombe said despite some forecast increases on the most popular domestic routes, the uptick in airfares would be offset by the increased quality of the passenger experience.

“Qantas and Virgin Australia have shifted from capacity battles to focus on shoring up their product.  Both are vying for customer loyalty by introducing innovative new features on the ground and in the air,” she said.

“Two of the most important recent airline innovations was Qantas’ launch of its SME focused Qantas Business Rewards program and Virgin Australia unveiling its new Economy X Class.”

Ms Anscombe said the continued investment of both carriers to boosting their fleets and facilities pointed to the underlying value for money proposition being delivered to business travellers.

The report also suggested a shift from the long-held belief that booking 14-21 days in advance delivers the best fares on the busiest routes. The introduction of Days of the Week fares in late 2016, which made certain fare types more expensive for travel on Thursdays and Fridays, being the clearest disruptor.

Ms Anscombe said the report also highlighted the continuing strong demand in key SME destinations of Sydney, Melbourne and Auckland with resulting cost increases for accommodation.

“Historically, airfares are still very competitive but using some professional expertise to match the market’s dynamic pricing is the best way to ensure you’re accessing the best airfares every time,” she said.

4D’s General Manager Felicity Burke said key international routes for SME travellers continued to show outstanding value.

“Flights between Sydney and Shanghai have dropped an astonishing 27 per cent in the last three years, the biggest fall of any major international route,” she said.

“Sydney and Los Angeles were the next best performing flights dropping 16 per cent in the same period.

“Other major destinations for SME travellers including Auckland, Singapore and Hong Kong all fell between three and nine per cent.”

Flight Centre Travel Group & Airbnb Host New Options for Corporate Travel

In an Australian and New Zealand first, Airbnb, the world’s leading community driven marketplace, has partnered with Flight Centre Travel Group’s (FCTG) corporate division to provide corporate customers with more options when travelling for business.

With five different corporate travel brands, FCTG corporate, offers the broadest range of travel management services for organisations across Australia and New Zealand. The new partnership with Airbnb means that FCTG’s corporate brands will now have an unrivalled pool of accommodation options to offer its corporate customers.

FCTG’s corporate brands, including FCM Travel Solutions, Corporate Traveller, Campus Travel and Stage and Screen, will have access to Airbnb for Business. The new accommodation offering will give FCTG’s corporate customers access to more than three million listings worldwide, which are available to be booked through the home-sharing platform.

Since its founding in 2008, Airbnb hosts have welcomed more than 180 million guest arrivals at Airbnb listings worldwide. Approximately 10 per cent of all travellers on Airbnb are business travellers, and in 2016, the number of business trips on Airbnb tripled.

Through this partnership, FCTG’s corporate travel brands will have access to Airbnb’s third party booking tool. Additionally the travel manager and the employee who is taking the trip, will be able to see trip details, make changes to the reservation, and message the Airbnb host with questions about the listing or neighbourhood.

Andrew Flannery, FCTG’s Executive General Manager of Corporate Travel, said today’s agreement would bolster the company’s award-winning corporate travel offering.

“Customers’ needs and preferences in the corporate travel sector are constantly evolving, and this agreement will deliver interesting new accommodation options that will appeal to sections of our customer base, particularly those who are looking to experience something a little different to a traditional hotel stay,” Mr Flannery said. “It will also benefit our corporate customers who are travelling to locations where there may currently be an under-supply of suitable hotel rooms.

“We are currently talking with a number of clients about the range of opportunities that Airbnb offers for travellers.”

David Holyoke, Global Director of Business Travel at Airbnb said, “We are thrilled to be working with FCTG’s corporate travel brands, in this sector of the travel industry, and look forward to helping Australian and New Zealand business travellers feel more at home while on the road.

“Airbnb for Business gives business travellers the ability to explore a city like a local, making it easy to travel for work without sacrificing the comforts of home.”

FCTG have run a trial with one of their clients over the last few months and they are already seeing a positive impact for their employees travelling for business using Airbnb, with employees included in the trial rating the experience 4.76 out of 5 stars and with an average daily rate of of $80AUD.

Airbnb listings will be available to Campus Travel and Stage and Screen in the coming weeks, and then progressively introduced soon after to FCM Travel Solutions and Corporate Traveller.

Fare Reductions, Better In-flight Services and Loyalty Rewards Keep Corporate Travellers Chipper

Corporates have rarely had it so good, with a recent airfare study indicating the price of corporate Economy Class tickets dropped on key international routes in 2016 and fell by as much as 7% on the top domestic routes, according to the latest 4D FOCUS – Australian Aviation and Airfare Analysis.

The report, which was produced by 4th Dimension, Flight Centre Travel Group’s (FCTG) business travel consulting division, includes a benchmarking study that compares the price of corporate and leisure airfares purchased in 2016 compared to airfares purchased in 2015 and 2014.

4D’s analysis of corporate and leisure tickets purchased through the FCTG’s staple of travel brands, demonstrates that Australian travellers continue to see excellent value from the price of their air tickets.

Compounding the positive news for travellers is the fact that Australian airlines are heavily focused on improving the whole travel experience – from take-off to touch-down as they vie for customer loyalty.

Since 2014, Qantas has upgraded 100 Airbus A330 and 737 aircraft with new interiors, opened new lounges around the country and the carrier is also on the verge of introducing free high-speed Wi-Fi in the domestic market.

John Simeone, Qantas’ Head of Business and Government Sales, said in the report, “This year, we’re entering a new era with the introduction of free high-speed Wi-Fi in the domestic market and the arrival of Qantas’ first Dreamliner, opening up breakthrough routes like Perth – London.”

Meanwhile in the Virgin Australia camp – the brand has started a three month trial of testing in-flight Wi-Fi on its Boeing 737-800 aircraft.

These are but a few of the perks travellers now enjoy when travelling for work or play.


FCTG Managing Director, Graham Turner, said it’s been positive to see 2016/17 airfares remain competitive.

“Airfares are still extremely affordable for domestic and international travel and I think despite some of the distractions we’re seeing globally – the corporate and leisure travel industry will continue to perform throughout the rest of 2017,” Mr Turner said.

Below is a takeout of some of the key findings in 4D’s report.

Domestic Travel – CORPORATE Economy Class airfare benchmarking

(Based on 2016 fare benchmarking against 2015 fares)

  • Domestic Economy Class price changes for tickets purchased through FCTG’s corporate travel brands ranged from -7% to a 4% increase on key routes
  • Business travellers flying the BNE – MEL and the BNE – PER routes have enjoyed the biggest savings with average purchase price of tickets on both routes falling by 7%
  • Corporates travelling on the CBR – SYD and the MEL – SYD routes struck out on any savings with the average purchase price of tickets increasing up to 4% from 2015 – 2016

Domestic Travel – LEISURE Economy Class airfare benchmarking

(Based on 2016 fare benchmarking against 2015 fares)

  • From 2015 to 2016 the average price of domestic Economy Class leisure fares purchased through FCTG’s leisure division fell by 6%
  • Economy Class price changes for leisure tickets purchased through FCTG’s retail brands ranged from -10% to a 1% increase
  • Big ticket savings for leisure travellers were highlighted on the BNE – SYD route with a 10% reduction on the average purchase price, while tickets purchased through FCTG by leisure travellers flying on the HBA – MEL and the BNE – PER routes dropped by 9%
  • It was only on the MEL – SYD route, where capacity is tightly controlled by airlines due to the high volume of traffic, where travellers didn’t see a price reduction but rather wore a 1% increase on the average price of purchased fares.

Felicity Burke, General Manager, 4th Dimension Business Travel Consulting, said the outcome of the latest research into corporate and leisure fare movement painted an extremely positive picture for companies and smaller businesses, as well as holiday travellers, that have been booking their travel through a travel management company or retail travel agency such as those that fell under FCTG.

“Not only are FCTG’s corporate customers purchasing extremely well-priced fares but they are also getting all the additional value that comes with booking through a travel company such as 24-hour global traveller support, access to experienced consultants that manage their company’s travel policy, travel spend and activity reporting capabilities as well as access to our online booking technology,” Mrs Burke said.

“And the really good news is that this experience is about to get even better for travellers with the likes of Virgin Australia and Qantas both acutely focused on enhancing the traveller experience to grow market share and increase loyalty, particularly in the corporate sector.”


Fare tracking conducted by 4D for first Quarter 2017 indicates a moderate increase of between 3% – 5% in domestic Economy Class fares across both the corporate and leisure buying groups.

Further to this, both the major Australian airlines introduced ‘Days of the Week’ fares late 2016, which has travellers on certain routes, with certain ticket types paying a higher price to fly on Thursday and Friday.

The data collected suggests a definitive shift away from the long-held beliefs of travel buyers – that booking 14-21 days in advance delivers the best deal on the busiest routes. With a likelihood of one in 10 tickets being changed by corporate travellers after a ticket is issued, 4th Dimension highlights that customers should consider the benefits of ‘flexible’ fares to avoid costly change fees. The report shows the average cost of change charged by the airlines is $165.

Internationally, the big changes in 2017 include:

  • Start of non-stop Qantas flights from Perth to London
  • Virgin Australia expanding to Hong Kong and Beijing
  • The opening of Qantas’ flagship international lounge due to open at London Heathrow
  • Qantas adding services to Beijing and Tokyo (Narita) and;
  • Virgin Australia reintroducing a Melbourne to Los Angeles service.


Strong demand for accommodation

4th Dimension research showed, that in the second half of 2016, there was strong demand for accommodation in Sydney, Melbourne and Auckland, as leisure and business travellers arrived in huge numbers for work, conferences and holidays. The upshot in demand fuelled accommodation rate rises in those cities, with hotel rates increasing two or three times more than what the traveller paid for flights. Looking ahead to the second half of 2017 and into 2018, room bookings in these metro hot spots are expected to continue, causing demand to outstrip supply in some cases during peak periods.


1Source: BITRE, Aviation Domestic Airline Ontime Performance 2016
2Source: CAPA Centre for Aviation
3Published fare year-on-year benchmarking fare change 2016. Source 4D analytics

Dealer Trade Signs Up Mitsubishi

Australia’s Dealer Trade Holdings Limited has signed a lucrative agreement with Mitsubishi Motors to auction their manufacturer-owned vehicles on the Dealer Trade listing platform.

Mitsubishi in Australia are now using Dealer Trade to auction their manufacturer-owned vehicles to their 190 plus franchisees in a move that will lower costs and streamline the distribution of their vehicles by creating an Australia-wide auction in a closed network.

Dealer Trade Chairman Wayne Myers said, “Since launching the Dealer Trade platform late last year we have already signed up more than 35% of the Australian motor dealer market.

“The Dealer Trade app has the benefit of making dealers more efficient in how they transact and minimise the reliance on auction houses.”

The Dealer Trade Australian-developed mobile app is transforming the way motor dealers source their used vehicles by allowing them to bid directly on other dealers’ wholesale stock as soon as it is listed.

Dealers are also able to list their trade-in, wholesale or surplus stock on the app to other dealers that are in need of that particular vehicle based on a set of preferences.

Dealer Trade Holdings is an unlisted public company headquartered in Brisbane and is building to a possible Australian Securities Exchange listing in late 2017 after completing its product expansion into the US and the UK.

Mr Myers said, “As our product portfolio expands, we are now the only company to have introduced a full suite of products providing a thorough history for a broad range of vehicles and watercraft.”

Dealer Trade set up in 2016 to offer a suite of vehicle information products in conjunction with Glass’s Guide to the Australian consumer.

CarRecord offers a complete car history product including values, written off vehicle register and Personal Property Securities Register (PPSR) or encumbrance status, and has proven to be better value than competitors at a cost of $19 compared to Veda-owned for $36.95 and RedBook powered at $29.

Dealer Trade Holdings Limited has now launched the following product suite being the only vehicle records company in Australia to offer a full range of products:

  •; and

Dealer Trade has also recently launched Vehicle Market ( for consumers and dealers in direct competition to and but for a seller listing fee of only $10. By using individual IP addresses for each listing, a vehicle can be searched for specifically with access available from their search engine without having to trawl through pages of results.

In February Dealer Trade signed a milestone agreement to supply vehicle history reports in the large US vehicle market through its subsidiary. The deal combines history reports with vehicle values from J.D. Power Valuation services.

Dealer Trade Holdings has forged agreements with motor industry data suppliers Dealer Solutions, Edge, CDS Online, Datamotive, EASY Cars, UBS and others allowing vehicles to be uploaded to its platforms in bulk.

For more information visit:

Gold Coast Turf Club To Be Renamed Aquis Park In 3 Year Partnership Deal With Aquis Australia

Major Naming Rights Deal Announced Making It the Largest In Club’s History

Gold Coast, Thursday 1 June:  Gold Coast Turf Club & Event Centre (GCTC) today announced a 3-year partnership deal with Aquis Australia that includes naming rights to the racecourse. Effective 1st of August 2017, the Turf Club will be renamed Aquis Park.

This is by far the biggest deal the Club has inked to date and in the coming months the partnership will unveil a number of specific activations to bring the brands closer to its Members, equine precinct, horse owners and trainers and the general public.

The financial arrangements underpinning the partnership are confidential.

“Aquis Park will be a first for the Racing Industry in Queensland and we are excited to enter this long-term partnership with Aquis, fast becoming an iconic brand in Australia,” Gold Coast Turf Club CEO Steve Lines said.

“The synergy between the Club and this premium brand represents tremendous opportunity for us to elevate the experience for all our stakeholders and further accelerate our future plans.” Mr Lines adds.

As part of the partnership, the Club will undergo a series of staged renovations and Aquis Park will feature signage atop A.D Hollindale Stand, at the track entrance, on the Winners Post and Stalls as well as throughout the venue and organisation.

A number of strategic marketing initiatives will also be rolled out to capture the full potential of the partnership.  One being, in line with the Racing Infrastructure submission to Racing Queensland, Aquis is excited about the potential of “Night Racing”.

Aquis Australia Chairman Tony Fung said the partnership would be a important plank in growing the Aquis brand in Australia and was a further demonstration of the company’s commitment to the Queensland racing and breeding industries and the broader Queensland community.

“This deal is not only a naming rights program, but it is designed to be a true partnership between two companies dedicated to providing world class racing,” he said. “The partnership is also an important part of our strategy to improve links between the local industry and Asia in both horses and real estate. This partnership will bridge the ocean between the two industries.”

Aquis Australia CEO Justin Fung said the company was looking forward to working with the Gold Coast Turf Club to progress a range of opportunities at Aquis Park.

“We see this as a genuine partnership with a range of opportunities to grow our respective businesses by leveraging the expertise and resources of each organisation,” he said. “We have been very impressed by the GCTC’s long term vision for their facility and look forward to the next few years.”

Over the last two years Aquis has built Queensland’s largest thoroughbred racing and breeding facility – Aquis Farm – at Canungra on the Gold Coast hinterland and recently acquired the long term management rights to Emirates Park in the Hunter Valley.
Gold Coast Turf Club Chairman Brett Cook said he was excited about the shared vision, commitment and enthusiasm of the new partnership.

“On behalf of myself and The Board of Directors we are excited with this agreement and this is great news for ourselves and our members,” he said. “We are looking forward to building a very strong partnership with Aquis Australia; the racing and non racing opportunities are on the table for both parties to explore with positive times ahead for all.”

Aquis Park Raceday on August 5 will be the official public launch.