The PRWIRE Press Releases http:// 2014-10-24T01:51:38Z Noventus Launches New Website 2014-10-24T01:51:38Z noventus-launches-new-website Melbourne (24 October, 2014) – Candidates interested in defence and telecommunications related employment opportunities will find relevant and useful information on the newly re-launched Noventus website.  Clients, such as government and large systems integrators, interested in knowing more about Noventus, a fast growing Australian engineering and technology consultancy, will also find a visit to the website beneficial.  The website is the result of a professional collaboration between Noventus and the award winning marketing agency Voodoo Creative and takes into account several of the most requested features including case studies of recently completed defence and telecommunications projects.   The Noventus Managing Director Keith Armstrong said: " The new website showcases a number of recently completed projects with leading defence-aerospace firms such as Lockheed Martin Australia (NYSE: LMT) with the support of key suppliers such as Boeing Defence Australia (NYSE: BA).  Voodoo Creative invested considerable time and effort to ensure an informative and enjoyable user experience and the result is impressive. The website will integrate with the Noventus CRM system (Bullhorn), to provide seamless access to accurate, timely and relevant company data. This is another milestone in our strategy to automate our business.” Additional updates and new features can be expected in the future.  Noventus welcomes new and old website visitors alike to take a look at the new features available, and to submit feedback for the next round of updates. Interested parties can view the website at http://www.noventus.com.au. About Noventus Noventus is a diversified Engineering, Logistics and Project Management company specialising in customised advisory services for government and large multi-national systems integrators across the full system life cycle.  Noventus teams are currently deployed in all Australian major capital cities and regional hubs.  The company provides acquisition and sustainment solutions for complex requirements by applying multi-disciplinary project management, engineering, test and evaluation, logistics, security, and ICT professional services. Usb Wall Socket Amazing New Charging Format 2014-10-24T00:08:44Z usb-wall-socket-amazing-new-charging-format Among the first to support this initiative, launched by the GSMAssociation, are the 3 Group, AT&T, HTC, KTF, LG, MobilkomAustria, Motorola, Nokia, NTT Docomo, Orange and Qualcomm. Rogers Wireless, Samsung, Softbank Mobile, Sony Ericsson, Telecom Italia, Telefónica, Telenor, Telstra, T-Mobile, Vodafone, Apple, NEC, RIM and TI are also in this group. The group has set an ambitious target that by 2012 a universal charging solution (UCS) will be widely available in the market worldwide and will use Micro-USB as the common universal charging interface. The group agreed that by the 1st January 2012, the majority of all new mobile phone models available will support a universal charging connector and the majority of chargers shipped will meet the high efficiency targets set out by the OMTP (Open Mobile Terminal Platform), the industry body who developed the technical requirements behind UCS. After implementation, the plan is projected to bring down production of replacement chargers by as much as 51,000 tons annually. This will eliminate 13.6 million to 21.8 million tons of greenhouse gases emitted during manufacture. Mobile Phones wont ship with chargers after this implementation as the Manufacturers assume you have one already. HTC is the first manufacturer to announce it wont include a wall charger with their new phone. Direct Capital Wins NZVCA Deal of the Year Award 2014-10-23T18:50:59Z direct-capital-wins-nzvca-deal-of-the-year-award The 2014 New Zealand Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (NZVCA) Deal of the Year Award has gone to Direct Capital for its investment in Scales Corporation. The NZVCA Deal of the Year Award recognises outstanding performance in the private equity industry and was announced at the NZVCA 2014 annual conference in Queenstown today (23 October). NZVCA Executive Director Colin McKinnon says: `The Direct Capital investment in Scales Corporation is an example of innovation, growth, and excellent returns on investment that benefit investors, who are generally local and international superannuation and pension fund members.’ Entries were judged on return to investors and the company's financial performance. The company's contribution to the economy, employment, innovation, consistency and industry competitiveness was also taken into account. Mr McKinnon adds: ‘The winner of our 2014 award is an example of the purpose and aim of private equity: to partner with companies to provide the capital to grow and create value and long-term sustainability through aligning the interests of owners and management. This ultimately delivers improved productivity, creates jobs and contributes to the national economy.’ Scales is a large, diverse and growing agribusiness group. The company is exposed to the key primary industry sectors in New Zealand across its three operating divisions: Horticulture, Storage & Logistics and Food Ingredients. Scales was founded in 1897 as a shipping business by George Herbert Scales. Today it employs more than 450 staff New Zealand wide. In June 2011 the Direct Capital IV Fund together with co-investors NZ Super Fund and ACC and others, acquired a 79% shareholding in Scales Corporation from the Statutory Manager of South Canterbury Finance in a competitive tender process. In conjunction with its investment, Direct Capital’s Mark Hutton and Tony Batterton joined the Scales board.  Jon Mayson was elected to the Board as Chairman, having previously been the CEO of the Port of Tauranga and Chairman of New Zealand Trade and Enterprise among other roles.  Andy Boland, who had joined Scales in 2007 after a 20 year career in banking, became Managing Director. Direct Capital Director Tony Batterton notes: ‘In the first three years of Direct Capital’s majority ownership, the company invested around $50m of capital in re-developing orchards to Asian preferred apple varieties, to enhance and expand various storage and manufacturing plants and to complete a number of other significant growth initiatives.  Scales more than doubled profit before tax during this period and achieved a significant reduction in the level of debt enabling the company to recommence dividend distributions from 2013.’ In July 2014 Scales completed its listing on NZX, with Direct Capital selling down to a post-IPO shareholding of 20%. Scales also raised $30m of new capital in the IPO. Direct Capital retains one board directorship position. ENDS Contact: Colin McKinnon, Executive Director, New Zealand Private Equity & Venture Capital Association, New Zealand +64 27 640 6406 Ross George Recognised as Champion of Private Business Growth 2014-10-23T18:43:06Z ross-george-recognised-as-champion-of-private-business-growth The New Zealand Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (NZVCA) Leadership Tribute was awarded today (23 October) to Ross George, managing director of Direct Capital, for his outstanding leadership commitment to the New Zealand private equity industry. The Tribute was announced at the NZVCA Annual Conference dinner in Queenstown.  NZVCA Executive Director Colin McKinnon says: `Ross George is highly respected by his peers for his strength and persistence as an exemplar of professionalism and protagonist for private equity markets in New Zealand. His humility and unqualified conviction have helped shape the New Zealand industry over two decades.’ The NZVCA award recognises Ross George for his sustained leadership role as an industry champion of the private equity and venture capital industry for the benefit of investors and entrepreneurs in New Zealand. He has been in the private equity industry since 1985. He founded Direct Capital in 1994 following his return from Hong Kong, where he had been a director and shareholder of local Hong Kong based private equity firm. Since its establishment Direct Capital has raised more than $800m and invested in 68 private companies to fund growth, acquisition and succession initiatives. Its current active funds, Direct Capital III and Direct Capital IV have invested in 19 portfolio companies that have aggregate annual revenues of $1.5 billion and employ more than 5,000 staff. The NZVCA Leadership Tribute recognises impactful and sustainable leadership that has made a significant contribution to lifting the professional standards and enhancing the reputation of the industry. ENDS Contact: Colin McKinnon, Executive Director, New Zealand Private Equity & Venture Capital Association, New Zealand +64 27 640 6406 Qanda Technology signs Peer-to-Peer vehicle rental deal with McMillan Shakespeare Group 2014-10-23T04:55:51Z qanda-technology-signs-peer-to-peer-vehicle-rental-deal-with-mcmillan-shakespeare-group SYDNEY, October 23, 2014: Qanda Technology Ltd (ASX: QNA) today announced that its DriveMyCar Rentals business has signed an agreement with Interleasing (Australia) Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of McMillan Shakespeare Limited(ASX: MMS), for Interleasing vehicles to be rented through the DriveMyCar Rentals peer-to-peer marketplace.    The deal will see late model ex-lease vehicles owned by Interleasing rented to private drivers via DriveMyCar Rentals, allowing Interleasing to extend the income generating life of their vehicles and benefit from a secondary revenue stream.    Interleasing (Australia) is one of Australia’s most successful vehicle leasing and fleet management specialists with more than 25 years industry experience.   DriveMyCar Rentals, Australia’s leading peer-to-peer car rental marketplace, makes it possible for vehicle owners to rent them securely to other drivers and  manages the marketing of the vehicles, credit and ID checks and processes payments. Prices are typically 20% - 50% cheaper than traditional car rental companies.   Qanda Technology CEO, Chris Noone said the addition of the Interleasing vehicles will enable DriveMyCar Rentals to rapidly increase its revenue and market coverage as demand for vehicles already exceeds current supply.   “DriveMyCar Rentals pioneered the rental of vehicles between private individuals and this is deal proves that peer-to-peer marketplaces can also deliver benefits to companies with under-utilised assets.”   “Interleasing manages fleets of vehicles throughout Australia and has both the scale and geographic footprint to serve DriveMyCar Rentals growing demand from renters across Australia,” Mr Noone said.   “DriveMyCar Rentals has been able to provide a solution to Interleasing that increases the financial returns from vehicles that would otherwise be sold before their income generating potential was maximised,” he said   Abe Tomas, Managing Director of Interleasing, said working with Qanda Technology and their peer-to-peer marketplace DriveMyCar Rentals would provide immediate benefits.    “Collaborative Consumption and increasing the utilisation of assets results in better outcomes for all parties and DriveMyCar is a leader in this space in Australia,” Mr Tomas said.    “DriveMyCar’s platform, system and processes will enable Interleasing to fully maximise the value of these vehicles,” he said.   Media Contact:   Chris Noone CEO, Qanda Technology Ph: 0410 550 485 chris.noone@qandatechnology.com Asia’s leading pool & spa event begins search for presenters 2014-10-23T00:48:37Z asia-s-leading-pool-amp-spa-event-begins-search-for-presenters The education program at Piscine SPLASH! Asia is a major feature of the event. The seminars held alongside the exhibition will address key issues in the pool industry, marketing opportunities and new technologies. Held every two years, Piscine SPLASH! Asia 2015 will bring together more than 1500 attendees to visit the trade show and hear from local and international speakers. Previous sessions have included clear water chemistry, landscaping, hydraulics, green technology & solar power, chlorination and chemical use, as well as business centred topics like social media, human resources and sales techniques. The deadline for paper submissions is Friday 28th November. For guidelines and further information visit www.piscinesplashasia.com/the-show/submit-a-presentation.   Piscine SPLASH! Asia May 20 – 21 2015 Marina Bay Sands, Singaporewww.piscinesplashasia.com For more information contact: Melanie Robertson Marketing Manager, Interpoint Events Phone: 1300 789 845 (within Australia) +61 2 8586 6103 (International) Email: melanie@intermedia.com.au About Piscine SPLASH! Asia Piscine SPLASH! Asia is the result of the association of two reputed pool and spa show organizers sharing the same strategy: offering the international pool and spa industry the opportunity to develop export markets and building strong connections with international big players and buyers. Piscine Global (international leader show with 1000 brands gathered every two years) and SPLASH! (award winning trade show in Australia and New Zealand for pool and spa professionals) have merged their respective expertise in order to provide the Asian market with the most important show for the professional pool and spa market. Respectively started in 1991 and 1998, Piscine and SPLASH! Share a true international knowledge of the pool and spa industry and the same criteria for quality events. Any questions, contact the Piscine SPLASH! Asia teams: GL Events Exhibitions International +33 (0)4 78 176 291 elodie.baudoin@gl-events.com Interpoint Events Singapore 800 616 3169 Australia 1300 789 845 info@piscinesplashasia.com Shipping Containers Help Combat Child Poverty & Neglect in Myanmar 2014-10-22T21:49:38Z shipping-containers-help-combat-child-poverty-amp-neglect-in-myanmar Brisbane, QLD, Australia - 23 October, 2014 Brisbane based community charity organisation MyKids aims to send three or more shipping containers full of health, school and office supplies to help support youth in need in Myanmar every year. They are able to do this with the continued help and support of Brisbane based shipping container company - Gateway Container Sales and Hire. Myanmar, formerly known as Burma, is located to the west of Thailand. It has over 32 percent of its population living under the poverty line, with high levels of infant mortality and mothers dying during childbirth. Organisations such as MyKids help through providing much needed medical supplies as well as educating locals to understand the basics of nutrition, sanitation and home remedies.   "It was great to see one of our containers painted so creatively and being used for such a worthy cause. As a family owned business, Gateway is happy to lend a hand to local organisations helping other communities," said Roy Finnegan, Gateway Container Sales & Hire. Goods such as children’s clothing, school books, crutches and wheelchairs are in short supply and are desperately needed by the charity along with monetary donations. These are used in a variety of programmes such as: The Andrews Youth Development Centre: This centre houses over 100 children between the ages of 3 and 17 at any one time.  These children come from some of the most impoverished communities in the area and many have little or no families. MyKids child sponsorship project is based here and is run in collaboration with Global Development Group under AusAid. The Health and Medical Project: Runs seminars that educates and equips locals with the information they need to keep their families healthy and safe. Through a partnership with One Health Organisation over half a million dollars of nutritional supplements have been distributed to those in need.                            Kids in Homes: In collaboration with the Global Development Group, this project aims to keep children in their family homes. Families are educated about health, farming and parenting through local schools. About the MyKids Australia Inc.: MyKids is an incorporated society run by volunteers who have visited poverty stricken Myanmar and who are committed to improving the skills and health of children. MyKids is non denominational and works with churches across the Brisbane region to fundraise for the everyday needs of these children. Donations of products or cash are always appreciated and will be sent to Myanmar via shipping container. For more information phone (0421) 786 849 or  visit their website: http://www.myanmarkids.org/. About Gateway Container Sales & Hire: With over 20 years in the business, Gateway Container Sales & Hire is a leader in the industry, providing high quality, competitively priced new and second hand shipping containers Australia wide. For more information phone (07) 3348 6463 or visit their website: http://www.gatewaycontainersales.com.au/ Grand Opening of Park Lane Jewellery Melbourne, Victoria 2014-10-22T13:26:14Z grand-opening-of-park-lane-jewellery-melbourne-victoria Schaumburg, IL USA- October 22, 2014 – Pioneer in the direct sales industry for 59 years, Park Lane Jewellery, has officially launched the newest franchise in Victoria beginning October 22nd, 2014.  With Victoria experiencing stagnant growth and growing unemployment, Park Lane will be committed to offering all of Australia the opportunity to own a home-based enterprise backed by a well-established, debt-free company.  Tracey Wilson and Rebbeca Billman will be among the first Park Lane Jewellery (Subsidiary of Park Lane Jewelry US) Franchise Owners/Operators of Australia, operating in Melbourne, Victoria. Both have a long history of success within direct sales and business. Tracey has been recognized nationally and worldwide as a top direct sales leader, building and mentoring multi-million dollar businesses both as a field leader and corporate executive. Tracey’s passion and energy drove her to relocate from Queensland to Victoria to open the new franchise. Rebbeca was “born in direct sales” as the daughter of successful Direct Sales franchise owners. With 17 years of Executive Management and Operations experience, Rebbeca provides the stability and expertise as head of operations. “We very are excited to have Tracey & Rebbeca as franchise owners in Victoria,” said Park Lane’s Vice President of International Field Sales Tom Judson. “Taking all that the World’s leader in Direct Sales jewellery offers, and partnering it with such exceptional leaders creates the most amazing opportunity in Australia, and now in Melbourne and all of Victoria.” Park Lane Jewelry, based in Schaumburg, Illinois, USA is a second-generation family-owned-and-operated company.  Park Lane was founded in Chicago, in 1955, by Shirley and Arthur LeVin.  Through their efforts, the company is today recognized as the leading fashion jewellery direct sales company, known especially for its generous representative, hostess, and customer programmes which include guaranteed products, no-product buy-in at startup, and high-quality fashion jewellery.  Park Lane offers the perfect solution to mothers who wish to spend time with their children yet want the opportunity to generate income for their families.  It also can be a great part-time endeavor for anyone wishing to supplement income, start their own business, or create financial independence.  If you are looking to create your own work schedule, earn trips, jewellery and prizes, then explore the opportunities available at Park Lane Jewellery. To find out more about earning free jewellery by hosting a Park Lane fashion jewellery get-together, or to learn about the new opportunities in Park Lane, Australia, contact at 0408 572 243.  Visit the Park Lane website at www.raszamataz.parklanejewellery.com.au to see what all of the excitement is all about. Epson Sponsors AFC Asian Cup Australia 2015 and launches Free Ticket Promotion 2014-10-22T01:37:54Z epson-sponsors-afc-asian-cup-australia-2015-and-launches-free-ticket-promotion Epson has launched its AFC Asian Cup Ticket Promotion as part of the company’s sponsorship of the event. The promotion entitles anyone who purchases a selected Epson WorkForce multifunction inkjet printer from an Australian Epson reseller or from the Epson Australia website between 1 October 2014 and 30 November 2014 to claim free category 1 or 2 tickets to the AFC Asian Cup Australia 2015.   From its humble beginnings in 1956, the AFC Asian Cup has grown into the continent’s biggest soccer event bringing together Asia’s top national teams every four years. The 2015 competition promises to be a global phenomenon with Asia's 16 top nations primed to participate in Australia in January 2015. The tournament’s qualifying nations include regional soccer powerhouses Australia, Japan and Korea Republic alongside Iran, Korea DPR, Kuwait, Oman, Uzbekistan, UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, China PR, Iraq, Palestine and Qatar.   When buying a printer there are also further tickets that can be claimed if an additional set of four Genuine Epson DURABrite Ultra ink cartridges are purchased along with the printer in one transaction:   ELIGIBLE PRINTER MODEL       PRINTER                       PRINTER & ADDITIONAL TICKETS                        INK TICKETS            Epson WorkForce WF-2650            1 Ticket                        2 Tickets Epson WorkForce WF-2660            1 Ticket                        2 Tickets                         Epson WorkForce WF-3620            1 Ticket                        2 Tickets              Epson WorkForce WF-3640            1 Ticket                        2 Tickets              Epson WorkForce Pro WF-4630      2 Tickets                      3 Tickets Epson WorkForce Pro WF-4640      2 Tickets                      3 Tickets              Epson WorkForce WF-7610             2 Tickets                      3 Tickets              Epson WorkForce WF-7620             2 Tickets                      3 Tickets              The AFC ASIAN CUP kicks off at 8pm on 9 January 2015 with Australia vs. Kuwait at Melbourne Rectangular Stadium.   For more information on the Epson AFC Asian Cup Ticket Promotion go to: https://www.clubepson.com.au/competitions/data/2014_800433/promotion.asp Perth's Custom Screens and Security Products Announces New Range of Security Doors Now Available 2014-10-21T07:28:20Z perth-s-custom-screens-and-security-products-announces-new-range-of-security-doors-now-available October 20, 2014 There's few things as important to many homeowners in Western Australia, as the security of their homes. This can be looked after in a great many ways, but one addition that many consider a very important feature to include in a home is a high quality security door. Perth's Custom Screens, a company very well known and regarded for providing sales and professional installation of security doors and windows, security screen doors, security screen for windows, aluminum windows, roller shutters and much more, were recently happy to announce they have greatly expanded the range of security doors they carry to better meet customer's needs.  “It's very important to us to help improve residential security in our communities,” commented a spokesperson from Custom Screens.  “We can custom build and fit all sorts of security doors whether you need them for your home main door or back doors, window grills and gates in your commercial property in Western Australia. No job is too big or small!” The company is now offering a number of different style security doors, to help provide for customers exactly what best suits their wants and needs.  The categories of security doors, which each feature at least several different options include:  Stainless Steel Security Doors, made of Marine grade 316 stainless-steel, these Invisi-Gard products look elegant, offer great visibility and extreme security;  Aluminum Mesh Security Doors, specially designed for the Australian market, these Alu-Gard doors contain a honeycomb style sheet and steel frame; Aluminum Grille Screen Doors, which offer both powerful protection and an affordable price tag; Timber Lock Screen Doors,  providing a Colonial appearance that can be customized to meet a customer's requirements, while offering maximum security; and Decorative Security Screen Doors, made of 100% recycled die cast metal that can be powder colored to meet most color needs and designed with absolute security in mind. Customers have responded to Custom Screens products and services in Perth with enthusiasm. David M., from Perth, recently said, “We've had some problems in our neighborhood so I thought it was time to get a more dependable door at our home.  I'm very happy with the quality and price of our new Timber Lock screen door and the service from Custom Screens was brilliant. They answered all my questions and concerns and made the whole process a pleasure. Five stars.” Custom Screens and Security Products are located at 67 Mc Donald Crescent, Bassendean WA 6054 Phone: (08) 9279 7444, Fax: (08) 9279 7455. The company is happy to discuss projects and offer transparent estimates, with an eye always towards affordability.   Tax gripes head Top 10 list of barriers to SME business growth 2014-10-21T04:11:20Z tax-gripes-head-top-10-list-of-barriers-to-sme-business-growth High taxes and having to deal with multiple taxes topped the list of business growth-inhibitors in a survey of 1,200 Australian SMEs, with 62 percent of respondents citing these issues as a barrier to growth. The survey also found SME owners have significant issues with credit, with 61 percent saying credit conditions are a barrier to growing their businesses. The Scottish Pacific SME Growth Index highlights the views of SMEs from each state and from a diverse range of industries, with annual turnover of $1-20 million. Scottish Pacific CEO, Mr Peter Langham, said while an encouraging majority (62.8 percent) of SMEs surveyed were predicting growth over the next six months, business owners felt strongly about obstacles put in their way. "Credit issues were two of the top three obstacles cited by business owners. Credit conditions placed on them by lenders, and access to funding, are making it more difficult than it should be for SMEs to achieve their business goals," Mr Langham said. Highlighting the constraints on small business, 77 percent of the SMEs forecasting revenue growth said they were required to use personal assets as collateral for business growth. "There are plenty of lending propositions available in the marketplace, that don’t require real estate security. The challenge is raising awareness levels so more SMEs know they don't have to put their house on the line to fund their business," Mr Langham said. "The fact that more than three-quarters of the business owners surveyed were doing so, indicates that many SMEs are not aware of how to access funds outside of the banking system," he said. Scottish Pacific is a leading independent provider in the Australian debtor finance industry, which funds more than 4,500 SMEs with combined annual revenues of $65 billion. The debtor finance industry is growing, but Mr Langham said there is work to be done. "It's obvious that as an industry we need to work harder to let business owners know that debtor finance provides a viable option to help them grow, without putting the family home in the mix," he said.  The Index, executed for Scottish Pacific by research firm East & Partners, found: SME businesses continue to have issues with credit. Six out of ten say conditions of credit are a barrier to growth, while five out ten cite the availability of credit. 26 percent also nominate the lack of friendly private equity funding as a barrier. The actual cost of credit is not a major factor. Only 8.3 percent say this is a barrier to growth. Government related barriers figure prominently. Six out of ten businesses say high taxes restrict their growth, while just under four out of ten cite “red tape/regulatory change/imposts”. Another 28.1 percent blame Government policies for being business unfriendly. Cash flow issues were a growth barrier for 35.4 percent of SMEs. Only 10.4 percent cited the quality of available talent as a barrier to growth.About Scottish Pacific Scottish Pacific Debtor Finance Pty Ltd provides working capital solutions to SMEs with annual turnover of almost $5 billion, offering the broadest range of trade and debtor finance solutions in Australasia. Established in 1988, Scottish Pacific has full operations centres in Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane, Auckland and China. Scottish Pacific was awarded the 2014 Best Cash Flow Lender by broker publication The Adviser, as voted by brokers, in their inaugural Non-Bank Lending Awards. About the Scottish Pacific SME Growth Index The biannual Index, initiated in September 2014, will help benchmark SME growth in Australia and highlight issues of concern to the SME business community. For the inaugural Index, East & Partners interviewed 1,257 SME businesses with annual revenues of between A$1-20 million in late July/early August 2014. 82 percent of respondees were SME business owners, CEOs or CFOs. The next Index will be released in March 2015. About debtor finance Debtor finance is a line of credit secured against accounts receivable. Also known as invoice finance, factoring, cashflow finance and invoice discounting, it provides access to working capital that would otherwise be tied up in receivables for 30 to 60 days or more. Debtor finance is ideal for growing businesses, providing the capital required to fund growth. It can also be used in start up and re-financing stages, particularly as an option to free up real estate property from the security mix. Other common situations are merger/acquisition and MBO, where the receivables of the target company can be financed to raise a percentage of the purchase price. www.debtorfinance.com.au Follow Scottish Pacific on Twitter - @ScottishPacific Follow Scottish Pacific on LinkedIn - Scottish Pacific Debtor Finance Copy of the complete Scottish Pacific SME Growth Index available on request. Granny Flats - No longer just for grannies 2014-10-20T23:15:58Z granny-flats-no-longer-just-for-grannies-1 From a humble shack for grandma to spend her last years to a micro home that accommodates singles, couples and families, the granny flat has come a long way and council papers show the trend. Recent development applications on council websites show an increase in the amount of people opting to construct granny flats at their homes. For some, it remains an extra room for extended family members to accommodate. However as rental prices surge, so do investment opportunities and the granny flat has become a way for residents to guarantee a fixed weekly income. Barjinder Pal from LJ Hooker Seven hills said granny flats are in high demand. “We have leased three granny flats in the last week and they go for around $360-$380 per week,” Mr Pal said. In 2009, the state government introduced the Affordable Rental Housing State Environmental Planning Policy which allows granny flats, that meet regulations, to be approved faster and in turn house more local families. Although the regulation ensures a quick approval, the certification process can take months before the actual structure is even built and then it’s a matter of forking out over $100,000 for the flat to be constructed. Nevertheless landlords still see the benefits. “One common question when we sell a home is, will we be able to build a granny flat in the backyard?” Mr Pal said. “People want to live in a granny flat because they are brand new.” Granny flats can be constructed in accordance with the owner’s requirements.  Ranging from an ordinary cladded room to an ultra modern three bedroom brick mini home. George Elias from Inhouse Granny Flats in Castle hill said he has seen sales surge over the last few years.“Sales are very strong, we went from signingaround 10 contracts a year to the sameamount each month,” Mr Elias said. NEWS: Karidis chooses Jobpac to drive performance and growth 2014-10-20T20:30:00Z news-karidis-chooses-jobpac-to-drive-performance-and-growth Sydney, Australia, October 21, 2014 - Jobpac International Systems (Jobpac), the leader in construction software solutions for the Australian construction and civil engineering sector, announced today that Karidis Corporation has chosen Jobpac construction software to achieve its strategic vision of delivering project performance and efficiency. Karidis Corporation is one of the largest property development companies in South Australia, involved in all facets of residential and commercial development, including retirement villages and car parks. With the company’s growth in Retirement Villages and Serviced Apartments, it required a software solution that would support its need for increased performance reporting, document control and cost management. Previously operating on a combination system that consisted of multiple different software systems to manage its accounting, projects, estimating and business intelligence. “Karidis has recently expanded its attention to more commercial work, particularly retirement villages, and multi-level serviced apartment complexes so we wanted a solution that provided us with the type of performance reporting, forecasting and cost management this type of work demands,” said Peter Karidis, Executive. “Jobpac was our preferred choice as it met our strict guidelines for document control and business intelligence. It offered a user-friendly, structured solution that will grow as we grow, and it is supported by an experienced team with comprehensive industry knowledge, and a loyal customer base.” Ian Desbrow, Chief Executive Officer of Jobpac says, “Jobpac is sincere in its commitment to the construction industry and the success of our customers, always striving to improve and customise our solution to the client’s needs.” “We’re excited to support Karidis in its current expansion with our attentive client service, strong and flexible platform to support multiple business areas and our best-in-class construction management solution.” Jobpac specialises in providing integrated market-leading construction management software tailored to the Australian construction industry. Its modular design ensures the flexibility and scalability needed as a company's business grows. For more information, visit www.jobpac.com.au   -- ENDS -- About Jobpac Jobpac International Systems Pty Ltd (JIS) develops, services and supports integrated accounting and project management software for the construction industry to give customers better control and visibility of project costs and profitability. Jobpac construction management software is feature-rich and based on deep industry knowledge. Suited to all types of construction companies – medium to large – from civil to commercial and industrial, subcontract to maintenance works, the Jobpac web-based platform is easy to install and use. JIS is the region’s leading construction software solution. In 2013 Jobpac was used to help manage and control more than AU$86 billion of works.About Karidis Corporation The Karidis Corporation Ltd is one of the largest and most dynamic property development companies in South Australia, building a reputation for its visionary economic planning with its team of highly skilled and competent staff—all committed to the success of the company and its projects and drawing on a wealth of 50 years’ experience in all facets of property development. The Corporation’s core business has always been in developing carefully selected landmark sites and converting them into spectacular office buildings, retail shopping complexes, hotels and towers, car parking stations, retirement villages or residential developments. www.karidis.com.auContact: Shuba Paheerathan Progressiva M: 0438 606 424 E: shuba@progressiva.com.au   A new look Rydges with Free WI-FI? WI not! 2014-10-20T04:07:48Z a-new-look-rydges-with-free-wi-fi-wi-not Australasian hospitality and entertainment heavyweight Amalgamated Holdings Limited (AHL) has cemented its reputation as an industry leader in the hotel guest experience with a refreshed look, feel and service offering through Rydges.  Known for being the hotel operators that consistently seek ways to add more for less, the current revitalisation of their high value Rydges brand concept heralds the introduction of a wide range of additions to the mass-market accommodation offering. The brief for the Rydges revitalisation was to offer genuine service, unique offerings, world-class facilities and top-shelf amenities all at surprisingly affordable prices.  The result is a multi-faceted overhaul of the guest experience, which is expected to strike a chord with the brand’s predominantly leisure and corporate guests. Guests to the new look Rydges properties will enjoy: -   Free WI-FI for all guests - whether visiting overnight or just for a coffee. -   A new ‘Rise Breakfast’ concept, which takes a nod from nutritionist recommendations around a healthful breakfast being the most important meal of the day.  While still buffet-style in nature, the Rise Breakfast includes freshly-squeezed juice shots, made to order smoothies & juice blends, super healthy cereals and fresh fruit as well as a great range of hot options including eggs cooked to individual preference. -   In trademark AHL style, even the mini-bar has undergone a quirky designer overhaul with Rydges branded sweets, nibbles & potato crisps plus fun games & add-ons add to the offering. -   An expanded wine list showcasing a broader range of Australian and international varietals will cater to more discerning taste buds. -   Stylish new uniforms with a relaxed yet ultimately professional vibe. -   A refreshed Rydges website that includes a blog with location specific information.  This enables guests to keep their finger on not only the Rydges pulse, but also what’s on in the local area that might be of interest. David Seargeant, Group Managing Director of AHL said, ‘The Rydges brand served our iconic Australasian hotel chain well for many years, but as we embarked on a project to expand the hotel offering, we felt the brand needed refreshing also to suitably reflect the significantly improved guest experience.’ Underpinning the expanded offering is a refreshed new brand, modern and inspired logo, colour palette and Rydges.com website. The upgraded website sees a refreshed design with a booking engine including very handy flexible-date search feature which allows the guest to search for the lowest room prices of the month and plan their trip around the most competitive rates. Revitalised website content has also been introduced and leaves no questions unanswered when it comes to finding out everything you need to know about each property without having to pick up the phone. No strangers to taking the lead with their hotel brands, AHL who also operate the multi-award winning hip QT Hotels & Resorts and new urban, industrial and art-inspired Atura Hotels guests to their properties complimentary WI-FI. “AHL is committed to staying in touch with its guests and offering them an overall hotel experience which is world-class whether it is at a Rydges, QT or an Atura property,” said David Seargeant added. “Through offering a complete hotel experience with Free WI-FI, our guest can be assured of a stay which is genuine value.” Become a Priority Guest Rewards member, and to start receiving these and other benefits today at all AHL hotels and resorts - www.priorityguestrewards.com.au - ENDS - About Rydges Hotels & Resorts: Rydges Hotels & Resorts operates quality city, suburban and resort style hotels in key destinations across Australia and New Zealand, and London in the United Kingdom. The group accommodates over one million guests each year across a range of market segments including corporate, conference, government, leisure, inbound and domestic groups and international travellers. Delivering exceptional service is a priority for the Rydges group with a genuine passion to accommodate guests and exceed their expectations. Rydges Hotels & Resorts participates in the free to join Priority Guest Rewards Program. This popular hotel club offers guests the ability to earn free room nights, 10% discount on our best flexible rates and leisure packages, food & drinks benefits, and reward points at over 45 hotels and resorts across 4 brands in key destinations across Australia, New Zealand and London, UK. www.rydges.com.au  About QT Hotels & Resorts: QT Gold Coast, QT Port Douglas, QT Falls Creek and QT Sydney each adopt a unique personality and positioning. Their design, features and facilities is a reflection of each town or city, ensuring integrated, locally-focused service and ambience. QT Hotels and Resorts deliver an eclectic design experience teamed with bold entertainment offerings and unsurpassable service for corporate and leisure travellers. www.qthotels.com.au About Atura Hotels: Urban. Industrial. Art Inspired. Atura Hotels are where modern business and leisure travelers escape the predictable to embrace a new style of travel. This fresh take on the mid-market travel experience fuses dynamic spaces, hip styling and the latest technology at surprisingly affordable prices ensuring guests feel connected and energised.  Expect free Wi Fi and a host of other benefits each time you stay.  Engagement with surrounding communities and active support of the local music & art scene are fundamental to the Atura brand philosophy. Over the next few years, Atura Hotels will be launched across Australia in select CBD locations, business park precincts and regional hub.  The first to open was Atura Blacktown in October 2013 and in July 2014 the property won Mid-Range Hotel Accommodation of the Year at the TAA (NSW) Awards for Excellence.  Atura Dandenong is scheduled to open in September 2014 and Atura Albury will open in late December 2014. Atura Hotels participates in the free to join Priority Guest Rewards Program. This popular hotel club offers guests the ability to earn free room nights, 10% discount on our best flexible rates and leisure packages, food & drinks benefits, and reward points at over 45 hotels and resorts across 4 brands in key destinations across Australia, New Zealand and London, UK. www.aturahotels.com.au Workers, businesses and economy to benefit from NSW Government workplace health initiative 2014-10-20T03:29:58Z workers-businesses-and-economy-to-benefit-from-nsw-government-workplace-health-initiative Industry and business leaders gathered in Sydney last week for a special briefing on Get Healthy at Work, a free NSW Government service offering businesses all the tools, resources and support they need to address lifestyle-related risk factors for chronic disease in the workplace.  Hosted by WorkCover NSW in partnership with NSW Health, the business community heard how the innovative new service would improve the health of workers, enhance the competitiveness of NSW businesses and deliver long-term benefits to the State’s economy.  In his opening address, Safety, Return to Work and Support CEO, Vivek Bhatia said the NSW Government had put healthy workplaces on the agenda of every small, medium and large business in the State.  Building upon much of the work both WorkCover NSW and NSW Health do in the community, Mr Bhatia said the new workplace health service helps deliver on a number of NSW Government commitments. “NSW is committed to reducing the burden of chronic disease and reducing smoking rates, overweight and obesity rates and total risk drinking. In doing so, it is hoped these changes will drive economic growth and increase the competitiveness of doing business in NSW,” he said.  “Get Healthy at Work is a $12 million investment by the NSW Government that is geared towards achieving these important goals.” Get Healthy at Work will improve the health of working adults by making it easy for businesses to develop and implement a customised workplace health program that focusses on healthy eating, healthy weight, physical activity, active travel, smoking and harmful alcohol consumption.  An important component of the program is a free, confidential and voluntary health check available for workers at participating businesses. Completed either online or with a trained health professional at the workplace, the health check helps individual workers understand their risk of developing heart disease and type 2 diabetes and offers lifestyle advice and referrals as required.  WorkCover NSW General Manager, Peter Dunphy said four industries - transport, construction, manufacturing, and primary production - had been identified as a priority for the new service, and encouraged all businesses to participate. “These four industries were highlighted as their workers are most at risk of chronic disease, the main cause of death and disability in Australia. But we want all businesses – regardless of size or industry – to benefit from this significant investment in preventive health,” Mr Dunphy said.  “Get Healthy at Work represents a significant opportunity for NSW workplaces to enhance their health, safety and performance. All they have to do is register at gethealthyatwork.com.au.” Sixteen companies including TNT Australia, Woolworths, James Hardie, Nestle, and Australian Financial Services participated in a pilot of the program ahead of its official launch in July 2014. Speaking at the event, TNT Australia outlined a number of changes the company had made at its Enfield worksite as a result of Get Healthy at Work. These changes included: •Overhauling its canteen menu boards to offer healthier options •Placement of ‘traffic light’ stickers in each truck to remind drivers of healthy eating choices •Partnerships with local associations, gyms and health insurers to offer better deals for employees •Creation of a smoke-free environment “Feedback from staff indicates they are healthier, they tend to be happier and more are making informed food and lifestyle choices,” TNT General Manager – Workplace Risk Chris Zichy-Woinarski said. Employee engagement was another benefit the business attributed to the enhanced focus on health.  “The minute you start to take a sincere interest in your people, in turn they take a more sincere interest and investment in the company,” Mr Zichy-Woinarski said. Workplace health programs can deliver additional business benefits including improved morale, productivity, staff attraction and retention and corporate image. Businesses could also expect to see reductions in absenteeism as well as workplace injuries and claims. Businesses can learn more about the service and register to participate at www.gethealthyatwork.com.au  Media enquiries: WorkCover NSW Media Unit: 02 4321 5474 or 0413 186 799