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Thursday, January 26, 2012


hile the lunar calendar dubs 2012 as the Year of the Dragon, it could easily also become the Year of the Kangaroo, given the good financial news coming out of Australia. Despite a population of little more than 22 million, Down Under is thriving, having dodged the worst of the global financial downturn and capitalising on emerging economies need for raw materials. The traditional Australian phrase, Shell be right, has never seemed so right. Things got off to a flying start early this month, when the Australian dollar posted a record high against the euro and touched a one-month peak against the US dollar up to 102.9 US cents as positive manufacturing data from China boosted investor sentiment. Australia is now set for an A$112 billion (HK$895.9 billion) infrastructure boom as the nation builds more ports and railways to feed China and Indias seemingly unquenchable appetite for coal and iron ore. Plans include building port terminals with capacity of almost 1.5 billion metric tonnes a year within the next decade, and laying as much as 3,700 kilometres of rail track. One of the main sites is Abbot Point, a small coal port between a salt marsh and the lagoon of the Great Barrier Reef. Queenslands state government plans to enlarge capacity from 15 million metric tonnes to a massive 385 million tonnes under a construction plan


Thriving amid the turmoil

Country dodges worst of the global financial downturn and capitalises on emerging economies need for raw materials, writes Ed Peters
ahead, this would more than double output from a region that already accounts for about 40 per cent of the iron ore shipped by sea each year. To cope with demand, Port Hedland, the biggest harbour in the region, plans to add 390 million tonnes of annual capacity by 2016, compared with the 199 million metric tonnes of cargo it exported in the year ended June. All this and more contribute to a rosy outlook for Australia. Its percapita GDP is higher than that of Britain, Germany, and France in terms of purchasing power. Australia was ranked second in the United Nations 2011 Human Development Index and grabbed sixth place in The Economist worldwide quality-of-life index 2005. While some European countries are being downgraded, Australias sovereign credit rating is AAA, higher than the United States, and Australias four largest banks are judged to be among the safest in the world. Australia has the highest ratio of assets to population of any country in the world, while the countrys government debt to GDP is the lowest among Organisation for Economic Co-operation Development countries. The Australian government aims to run surpluses from 2012/13. There is another point to make about the role Australia plays in the world, with particular emphasis to Hong Kong and the mainland. Australia remains a popular education destination for students from Hong Kong and around the world. There are more than 7,000 Hong Kong students enrolled in Australia and more than 14,000 students are estimated to be enrolled in Australian programmes offered in Hong Kong. Education is a two-way street. Students studying in Australia help to form the basis of the strong trade and investment, cultural and people-to-people ties between Hong Kong and Australia. More than 110,000 Hongkongers have studied in Australia, benefiting from the excellence and quality of its higher education sector, including in scientific, medical and other areas of research. Through schemes such as the Australia Awards, Australia offers scholarships for postgraduate research projects and continuing professional development programmes. These help to develop educational, research and professional links between individuals, organisations and communities which benefit everyone.

Australia remains a popular education destination for students from Hong Kong
which will get under way in 2014. Once completed, the new Abbot Point would outstrip last years volumes at Chinas Qinhuangdao port, the worlds biggest dry-bulk harbour, by about 40 per cent. On the coast further north, in the Pilbara iron ore-producing region, BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto Group are spearheading plans to increase ore exports by 538 million tonnes over the next five years. If they go

Australia is a beacon of hope while the economies in many countries give cause for concern. Photo: Brisbane Marketing

Incredible year for wine

Keith Chan
Australia has seen a substantial growth in the luxury end of bottled red wine exports to the mainland and Hong Kong in the past year, fine wines that would retail above HK$150 a bottle. With extraordinary growth over the past decade, the mainland is now the fourth largest export market for Australian wines and the largest for fine wines. It also recorded the highest average value among the major markets. During the year ended September 2011, Australian fine wine exports to the mainland increased 62 per cent to 3 million litres, or about 4 million bottles. Fine wine exports to Hong Kong to support the countrys wine sector which set up a Hong Kong office in January 2001. It has been an incredible year for Australian wine in Hong Kong and [mainland] China, she says. The two markets together represent 30 per cent of Australian exports of higher priced, fine wines. We have also seen a positive trend in increased dollar-per-litre pricing. This also reflects our commitment to the Australia-Hong Kong Memorandum of Understanding on Wine-related Business signed in April 2009. As a result, Australian wine industry representatives have intensified the promotion of wine tourism and culture, and engaged in a transfer of Australias wine industry knowledge.

Australian wines are making inroads into China. Photo: Dragan Radocaj
rose 25 per cent to more than 1.4 million litres over the same period, making it Australias fourth largest export market for fine wines. The trend is a vote of confidence in Australias wine producers, says Lucy Anderson, Asia director of Wine Australia, a government organisation

I would like to extend my warm greetings and best wishes to the people of Hong Kong and especially to those 80,000 Australians who reside here. In Australia, people will choose to celebrate Australia Day in many different ways. Because it is summer, that is likely to involve one of our great pastimes spending time outdoors. Here, we will focus on what is one of our most significant international relationships. This year marks the 40th anniversary of Australia establishing a diplomatic mission in Hong Kong and we had a trade mission here for more than 20 years before that. We remain close partners, due not only to connections at an official level, but because of strong commercial and deep personal connections. The presence of a sizeable and active Australian community in Hong Kong is a key element. The Australian Chinese Association in Hong Kong will celebrate its 20th anniversary during 2012. This year also marks the 25th anniversary of the Australian Chamber of Commerce, find an Australian or an Australian university graduate in almost every aspect of Hong Kong daily life. Many people in Hong Kong have some connection with Australia. Nearly 90,000 people from Hong Kong live in Australia and tens of thousands of Hong Kong students have made their way to Australia to study or visit as a working holidaymaker. Australia is also a popular holiday destination for Hong Kong residents, and more than 100,000 Australians visit Hong Kong each year. Australians in Hong Kong will continue to play their role in contributing to the success of this dynamic city. I am sure Hong Kong people and businesses will continue their active and welcome engagement with Australia. As Australia Day coincides with the start of Lunar New Year, let me wish all of you a happy and successful Year of the Dragon. Paul Tighe Australian Consul General to Hong Kong

and the Australian Association of Hong Kong has a 58-year history. We are fortunate to have the Australian International School, and an extended family of alumni and professional organisations, such as CPA Australia, Australian Doctors and Dentists, Engineers Australia, and the Australian Institute of Building. It is likely you will

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Trade ourishes
griculture, mining and energy, manufacturing, services, and investment pretty much whatever the field theres some sort of business connection between Australia and China. Garment factories in Shenzhen and beyond snap up Australiangrown cotton and wool. Iron ore and coal plucked from deep within the earth Down Under are shipped north to China. The same goes for aluminium, copper, nickel and pig iron. Australian education services enjoy an excellent reputation on the mainland. And Australian interests in China cover manufacturing, property and business services. In short, when it comes to trade between the two nations, theres a lot going on. Recent figures paint a bigger picture. Chinas GDP of US$5.878 trillion translates into US$4,382 per capita among a population of more than 1.3 billion, and is growing at roughly 10 per cent a year. Trade with Australia was valued at US$105.306 billion in 2010. Strengthening and deepening this relationship is high on the list of priorities for both countries, and Beijing and Canberra are committed to sustaining the impressive trade and investment performance achieved in the past two decades. In that time, China has become Australias largest two-way trading partner and is key to Australias future economic prosperity. Back in April 2005, Australia and China agreed to commence negotiations on a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) following consideration of a joint FTA Feasibility Study which concluded that there would be significant economic benefits for both countries. The negotiations cover an array of issues, including agricultural tariffs and quotas, manufactured goods, services, temporary entry of people and foreign investment. The principal item is removing or reducing tariff and non-tariff barriers affecting bilateral trade in goods, which could, in particular, reduce transaction costs and improve efficiency. Also under

Country is open for business

Keith Chan Australia is working flat out to attract more visitors to the country, with memories receding by the day of national carrier Qantas grounding of its entire fleet in late October following an industrial dispute with unions. The fleet was grounded from October 29 to 31, but flights resumed after intervention by Fair Work Australia. In December, Qantas and the unions agreed terms and conditions that would allow the airline to operate with certainty at least until the end of 2014. Australian tourism is open for business and we need to ensure whatever existing damage to our industry can now be minimised, says Andrew McEvoy, managing director of Tourism Australia. The open for business message is communicated widely through all the industrys external channels. Tourism generates about A$250 million (HK$1.999 billion) a day in visitor spending for Australias economy. In the year which ended on September 2011, total visitors to Australia increased 1 per cent to more than 5 million. Arrivals from China surged 20.1 per cent to 490,000, overtaking those from the United States as the third largest visitor market, after New Zealand and Britain. Visitors from China spent A$2.8 billion in Australia, compared with A$1.7 billion for Britain, A$1.6 billion for New Zealand, and A$1.1 billion for the US. To tap further into the mainland market, Tourism Australia released a China 2020 Strategy Plan early last year with the aim to achieve tourism expenditure of A$7 billion to A$9 billion from about 860,000 Chinese visitors by the year 2020. Australia will increase its direct marketing efforts in China, including doubling the marketing budget for China in 2011/12. The campaigns will be targeted at affluent Chinese couples in major cities who have an independent travel mindset and want to explore and experience local culture. Active in 13 mainland cities, Tourism Australia will help the industry deliver targeted products and experiences, and work with governments and industry to address quality issues. It will address problems that visitor expectations have not been met, particularly group travel and shopping, the availability of Putonghua-speaking guides and relevant products for Chinese visitors. It will partner with government and industry, including Chinese and Australian airlines and other carriers, states and territories, to provide a healthier aviation environment.

Beijing and Canberra strive to build on the impressive strides they have made in the past two decades, writes Ed Peters

The mainland has developed an insatiable need for Australias raw materials such as iron ore and coal. Photo: Thinkstock consideration are regulatory barriers which restrict services removing them would support improved trade flows across goods and services of interest to both economies. Thirdly, establishing measures to encourage more foreign investment between Australia and China would provide a firm foundation for the future economic relationship. Australian and Chinese negotiators last met for the 17th round of talks in Beijing late last year. On market access for goods, both sides continued the process of taking stock of their respective offers and requests and exchanging information on the status of respective priorities and sensitivities. Constructive discussions were held and some progress was made on trade in goods, sanitary and phytosanitary issues, customs procedures, technical barriers to trade, and rules of origin. Diplomats report that further progress was made on developing the services and investment chapters. There was a useful exchange on both sides requests in services and investment market access. In the legal and other issues, negotiators agreed a number of elements on a dispute settlement chapter and on transparency. Progress was made in refining intellectual property and negotiators discussed priority issues on electronic commerce. Australia reiterated its interest in including provisions on government procurement. The next meeting is due to be held later this year. In the meantime, trade continues to flourish.

A joint FTA Feasibility Study concluded there would be significant economic benefits for both countries

Tourists enjoy the wonders of Sydneys beautiful harbour. Photo: Anson Smart

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challenge for every industry, but once we do, we make sure we keep them happy, den Hollander says. In turn, they are able to enthuse, inspire and engage great students who have brilliant ideas. With the mainlands vehicle sales dominating the global market, Deakin is also keen on expanding relevant joint research activities through the SinoAustralia Initiative for Automotive Materials and Technologies (iAMT). A research consortium between Deakin and Hefei University of Technology (HFUT) in advanced automotive materials and technologies, iAMT was opened in 2010 in Hefei. It engages Australian components companies and mainland motor manufacturers in addressing key issues such as emission control and efficiency improvement of vehicles, light metals and green manufacturing. Deakin also shares its vehicle expertise with leading steel producer Wuhan Iron and Steel (Group) Corporation (WISCO), which has invested in a joint Centre for Automotive Steel Research and Innovation at Deakin Waurn Ponds. The centre focuses on advanced steels and metal forming processes needed to secure the future of car manufacturing, drawing from WISCOs technical development knowhow and Deakins research expertise at ITRI. What can a small player such as Australia do with a big player such as China? We have the capacity-building skills and experience of being closely involved in industries such as car manufacturing, health and environment, den Hollander says. Working with such key Chinese partners will hopefully create impact in reducing both Chinas and Australias carbon emissions and increasing the environmental sustainability of the wider region. Deakin also has notable partnerships with Wuhan Textile University, Beijing University of Technology, Guangdong University of Foreign Studies, Capital Medical University and Dalian Polytechnic University. Under the Deakin Graduate School of Business, the university runs the China Study Program, which offers students a valuable opportunity to learn how business operates on the mainland and to build strong business networks. Deakins initiatives overseas such as the China Study Program enable students to look over the border and appreciate a different culture, a different discipline, den Hollander says. It lets them ask, What is our world view now knowing what we know?, and gives them the capacity to be more innovative with new perspectives. The university aims to further expand its international student mobility destinations in China, and seeks collaboration with institutions in more provinces and in the mainlands secondtier cities. Our vision in China is to explore more meaningful science and by meaningful, we mean that it contributes to the economy through a genuine exchange of ideas between China and Australia, den Hollander says. We want to be an institution that embodies excellence in a modern environment and complement our mutually respected differences to do something that will be useful to the wider community. Looking ahead, Deakin plans to move away from a purely student recruitment-based focus, and develop deeper two-way relationships with academic institutions throughout the region. It will also pursue growth in other emerging markets in Asia such as the Philippines. The university will likewise continue building its areas of expertise and pushing more initiatives that will have long-lasting impact on the university, the communities it serves and AsiaPacific in general. Among these are its materials, health and environment, marine aquatic science and other sciences, most of which relate to advancing environmental causes. Environmental sustainability and water and food security are the new issues that our region will confront, den Hollander says. What are we doing to make our communities survive sustainably? This is where universities have a role to play to make sure that we are informed of each others views; that we actually do meaningful things that help the people in the communities that we serve. Demonstrating such thrust is Deakins social rebuilding programme in Indonesias Aceh province, which was struck by a devastating tsunami in 2004. Learning that the catastrophe left the provinces teaching community crippled as more than 3,000 teachers died in the tragedy, the university collaborated with the Aceh province government to train a new generation of educators. Under the programme, it provided Acehnese scholarships for the Deakin master of education course. Deakin is a leader in teacher education, and we are pleased to contribute world-class work to our region in the time of need, den Hollander says. We exist to serve our communities, which pertain to Melbourne, to Geelong, to Victoria, and indeed, with an informed world view, to the whole of Asia.

Pursuing an informed world view with Deakin

Reports by Jacinta Plucinski and Anna Mori

ibrant, dynamic and multicultural, Deakin University embodies not only Australias thriving economic landscape but the increasing global consciousness of society at large. The first university in regional Victoria, Deakin is distinguished for its proactive approach and contemporary education methods. Committed to contributing to its surroundings, Deakin is deeply involved in rural and regional communities. It aspires to be a catalyst for positive change for the individuals and the communities it serves and to be recognised as Australias most progressive university. Deakin realises that it is important for students to understand the world and their place in it, says vice-chancellor and president professor Jane den Hollander. An informed world view this is what we want our students to experience and be equipped with as they move on to contribute to their own communities. Since its establishment in 1974, the university has grown to become among the countrys largest universities with a student population of more than 36,000. From its first campus in Waurn Ponds in the Geelong area, the university has branched out to three additional sites in Warrnambool in Southwest Victoria, Burwood in Melbourne and at the Geelong Waterfront. Such diverse locations allow students to choose among metropolitan, regional and rural study environments. These learning-conducive surroundings are complemented by outstanding and stateof-the-art facilities, including the Deakin Motion.Lab at the Melbourne Burwood campus and the new-generation library learning spaces at Geelong Waurn Ponds campus. Deakin offers more than 550 courses and a range of combined degree options developed to adapt to the changing trends in the Australian and international labour markets. These revolve around 15 main areas of study: architecture and built environment, arts, business and management, business information systems, education and teaching, engineering, environment, health and community services, information technology, law, medicine, nursing, psychology, science and sport. Postgraduate programmes are also offered in more than 40 areas. A research-driven institution, the

university has made a name for itself in the global academe not only for its many timely and solutions-based studies but also for its collaborative initiatives made across industries and countries. Encompassing the most cutting-edge and socially relevant areas of study, Deakin hosts 11 strategic research centres and two research institutes. It recorded its highest level of research grants awarded last year by the National Health and Medical Research Council and Australian Research Council.

Strengthening ties in China, Asia

Complementing Deakins research capabilities are the universitys strong relationships beyond its Australian campuses. The university has enduring partnerships with about 30 institutions and organisations in China, Indonesia, Thailand and Malaysia. Apart from stimulating academic and research collaboration, the partnerships enable student and staff exchange and other interactive and cultural immersion programmes. More than 7,700 international students are enrolled at Deakin, about 5,500 of whom come from Asia. Chinese students make up the largest group, representing nearly half of the international population. The university also has the most partnerships in China, where it works with more than 35 organisations. We look to China in a very particular way, seeing the region especially important for areas such as business, arts, education and health, den Hollander says. Asia is the new centre of ideas and wealth in the world and China is the dominant economy within the region. Deakin opened an office in Beijing in 2008, creating a bridge not only to partner universities but also professional and industry bodies and government agencies on the mainland. Its local presence is aimed to further develop institutional relationships and provide the university relevant market intelligence. Most of the collaborations between Deakin and its partners revolve around issues and challenges that are similarly faced by Australia and China. These include finding solutions to environmental problems resulting from extensive industrial and mining activities in both regions. Focusing on this particular area, Deakin launched a joint research project that studies the impact of such activities on key environmental issues such as water shortages and soil contaminations. Led by Deakin professor Kong Lingxue, the research is done with scientists from the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences. It is expected to yield engineering solutions and biological remediation that will benefit industries in the two countries.

Industry-relevant research that makes a difference

Research is at the core of Deakin. This is evidenced by the universitys roster of world-renowned and highly respected researchers who are behind its distinctive and broad-based array of highquality discovery, applied and commercial studies. A vital part of fulfilling Deakins commitment to making a difference through its research initiatives is establishing long-term partnerships with industry, business and government sectors. The university was awarded the prestigious Australian University of the Year twice for its innovative use of technology in education and its partnerships with industry. Among Deakins enduring relationships are those with the Geelong Manufacturing Council (GMC) and the Victorian government. In November last year, Deakin and GMC launched the Industry Innovation Program, in which the Victorian government invested more than HK$6.38 million. The programme is aimed at connecting local manufacturing businesses with the research facilities at the Geelong Technology Precinct of Deakin Waurn Ponds. It is expected to help manufacturers with limited research and development resources have access to Deakins facilities. These include the Institute for Technology Research and Innovation (ITRI), School of Engineering and Australian Future Fibres Research and Innovation Centre (AFFRIC), which are among the universitys most dynamic divisions. Much of the communitys excitement surrounds the continuing construction of AFFRIC, a new collaborative research facility funded by the federal government with more than HK$293.67 million. AFFRIC research will concentrate on developing innovative and functional materials, including nanomaterials, smart fibrous materials, green natural fibres and

Professor Jane den Hollander, vice-chancellor and president carbon fibre. It is expected to have an impact on applications relevant in aerospace, alternative energy, automotive and textiles industries. The university is also actively involved in the thriving local vehicle industry, and plays a key role in developing sustainable technologies. It collaborated with vehicle parts supplier Futuris and the Co-operative Research Centre for Advanced Automotive Technology last year to create lightweight seats that can reduce a cars fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions. Much of our research work reflects and complements the developments in the new manufacturing economy, den Hollander says. Deakins expertise in automotive technologies, for instance, is helping pave the way for energy conservation and sustainability. Deakins active pursuit of environmental issues and solutions does not go unnoticed in the national and international communities. The university received national attention last year when Deakin professor Maria Forsyth was awarded the Australian Laureate Fellowship for her research into more reliable ways to capture renewable energy. Exploring solutions to storing power generated from renewable energy sources such as solar, wind and wave energy, the research is focused on costeffective and abundant materials to produce longer-lasting batteries. This research, according to den Hollander, is an example of Deakins growing reputation as a world-class research institution whose research genuinely makes a difference to the wider communities serviced by the university. To ensure that its students are also consistently motivated to pursue innovation and creative thinking, Deakin begins with attracting the best faculty and mentors. It also shows support to research students by providing them opportunities to work with partner collaborators nationally and internationally, present their research findings at international conferences, and to use world-class facilities within Australia and overseas. Getting the best people is a great

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Vix transforms the way people move

Bibby provides SMEs with an important gateway to the world

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) play an important role in building a healthy and diverse economy. As the worlds largest independent provider of debtor finance, Bibby Financial Services empowers SMEs and start-up businesses to maximise their potential as sustainable players in local and global economies. We understand that small businesses need reliable partners who can support their growth, says Ian Watson, Bibby Financial Services Asia-Pacific CEO. We do not necessarily look at a companys balance sheet to decide whether we will work with them. We look more at the quality of the assets they are able to give us and the quality of the management team. Bibby Financial Services is part of Britain-based Bibby Line Group, which has been delivering world-class shipping, marine, logistics, offshore, retailing and financial services for more than 200 years. The companys commitment as a customer-focused organisation and its flexibility have fuelled its rise to the top. We have very short decision lines enabling us to be more responsive to our clients, Watson says. With 14 locations worldwide, Bibby Financial Services leverages its wide geographical network to help businesses

ransport solutions provider Vix Technologys vision goes beyond moving people from points A to B. It is about transforming peoples everyday lives through seamless communication and efficient transport. Transforming means making public transport easier and more efficient, helping commuters get where they need to, when they need to and however they need to, says Vix CEO Steve Gallagher. Designing, supplying and operating automated fare-collection (AFC) systems for the transit industry, Vix delivers a comprehensive line of turnkey solutions. This ranges from smartcards to ticket processors, card processors and readers, platform and ticket validators, vending machines and bus computers. Supporting public and private transport operators from concept to maintenance, the company also delivers design and engineering, platform and application development, product lifecycle management and manufacturing management services. Vix has developed some of the worlds most sophisticated mobility solutions over the past 25 years. It has deployed about 200,000 custom electronic devices across six continents and has more than 80 million smartcards in circulation, used in 1.8 billion financial transactions annually.

Among the companys biggest projects is the development of the Octopus system in Hong Kong in 1997, which was the worlds first integrated smartcard ticketing system. It also built and operates Beijings largest transport clearing house for Metro Lines and rolled out the original EZ-Link smartcard system in Singapore. Continuously investing in research and development, Vix acquired Australian Securities Exchange-listed technology company ERG in 2009. Aiming to deliver enhanced offerings through highly integrated, efficient and cost-effective solutions, it also acquired intelligent transportation systems (ITS) and realtime passenger information (RPI) specialist ACIS in 2010. Vix Technology, Vix ERG and Vix ACIS were integrated under the single brand Vix in October last year. The integration makes up the companys transit and mobility business unit encompassing AFC, transit clearing house, ITS and RPI. Vix complements its core competency in mobility solutions through other business areas that focus on product engineering, payments and telecommunications. We are now building a complete offering and service capability by acquiring targeted entities to continue going beyond fare collection, Gallagher says. We are leveraging this synergy among our business units to provide completely integrated services for mobility and connectivity. With in-house mechanical, electronic, software and component engineers, industrial designers, drafts people and manufacturing specialists, Vix develops reliable, feature-rich and cost-effective products tailored to customers specifications. It also partners with contract manufacturers

Steve Gallagher, CEO

such as Hong Kong-listed Suga, which manufactures products in Shenzhen, to help Vix maintain competitiveness in the global market. Under its payments unit, Vix offers a wide range of point-of-sale (POS) devices for attended, unattended and mobile environments. These are built using the latest technology based on a single development platform. A key player in electronic payments in 35 countries since 1988 through subsidiary Intellect, Vix enables integrated services such as low-value retail payments. This has been exemplified in the companys successful rollout of the Octopus and EZ-Link smartcards that can be used not only for public transport but also other POS transactions. Completing Vixs pillars is its telecommunications segment, which offers voice and data services for household and business applications using internet protocol telephony, mobile voice and data, digital subscriber line, fibre and wireless data technologies. Vixs edge over competitors is its depth of application expertise, the credibility to act as our customers consultant to help them understand what they need, Gallagher says. We also have the flexibility to work with various partners, set up localised operations and source locally and still provide the advantages of an international company that has the experience of working around the world. The companys aggressive development strategy is fuelled by a growing market, particularly in the AsiaPacific, where rapid urbanisation is prompting government and private transport operators to seek efficient solutions. Taking its successful experience in Hong Kong, Beijing and Singapore, Vix eyes more projects on the mainland and other emerging markets, including Vietnam, Thailand and the Philippines, where it works with engineering partner Singapore Technologies. Asia is our highest-growing region and will be the biggest part of our future, Gallagher says. We are looking for a balanced win-win partnership approach with customers to help them deliver their business goals, bring people to use public transport and make it easy and safe to use and convenient to pay for.

As an independent company, Bibby Financial Services can be a reliable provider to those businesses that often cannot easily get funding support from their bankers
Ian Watson Asia-Pacific CEO, Bibby Financial Services

Ian Watson, Asia-Pacific CEO, Bibby Financial Services

establish a global footprint. To date, it supports almost 6,000 SMEs worldwide. We provide local solutions in local markets. When we go to a new market, our standard approach is to find a local management team that already knows and understands the financing needs of SMEs in that region, Watson says. Bibby Financial Services office in Australia, established in 2002, is the most successful branch outside Britain. The Australia office provides support to the newly established offices in India and

Hong Kong, both ideal locations for the company given the large number of SMEs in these regions. There are about 350,000 SMEs in Hong Kong and many are exporters to the United States, Europe and other Asian countries. We have a strong presence in these markets and we can finance SMEs providing open credit sales without the need for cumbersome documentation or additional collateral, Watson says. As an independent company, Bibby Financial Services can

be a reliable provider to those businesses that often cannot easily get funding support from their bankers. Bibby Financial Services envisions establishing its presence in other markets across Asia-Pacific. It seeks to position itself as an integrated provider that can serve as a reliable alternative to banks when it comes to financing SMEs. We are an independent company with a wide reach around the world, and we can support companies with a global outlook, Watson says.

B&R provides safe enclosures for oil and gas

The liquid, vapour and gas in oil refineries, liquefied natural gas (LNG) plants and chemical processing plants are highly flammable. In these hazardous areas where safety is a priority, B&R Enclosures ensures the security of electrical equipment and prevents costly downtime through its total enclosure solutions. The family-run business has been operating for 56 years, serving the mining, telecommunications and information technology industries with its durable electrical enclosures, local control stations, marshalling enclosures, switchboards building systems, racks and cabinets. In a strategic move to service the growing oil and gas and LNG markets, the company established B&R Ex Systems in 2009 to specialise in total enclosure solutions for these hazardous areas. Targeting international growth, B&R opened a manufacturing facility in Suzhou last year, which it plans to build to full fabrication for stainless steel products. We will ensure that the quality, delivery and reliability of the products are in place before we go to a broader market within Asia, says B&R managing director Ken Bridges. The companys long-term plan is to increase its supply chain partners on the mainland and steadily expand in Suzhou to fully assemble products that can be shipped to Australia, Asia and the Middle East. B&Rs systems and products are ISO-certified and qualified under the International Electrotechnical Commission System standards relating to equipment for use in explosive atmospheres (IECEx). Clients rely on B&R because it offers guaranteed high quality, technical value-added expertise and a total system solution. As the biggest single racking equipment provider to Telstra and the National Broadband Network in Australia, B&R handles complete system configuration, logistics and engineering solutions. B&R has the technical capability to assemble electrical, telecommunication and electronic control systems within IECEx-certified enclosures. Although our core business is enclosures and cabinets, it is more important that we give our customers a complete system solution, Bridges says. We will continue to do this particularly for the oil and gas market.

Ken Bridges, managing director

We will ensure that the quality, delivery and reliability of the products are in place before we go to a broader market within Asia
Ken Bridges Managing director, B&R Enclosures

Anthony Scott (left), general manager, international sales and marketing, and Peter McDonald, CEO

Gale fabrics and shades protect people, assets

The benefits of heat reduction, ultraviolet (UV) protection and energy cost savings are rolled into one endproduct with advanced polymer fabrics. Gale Pacific, the Australian enterprise that pioneered shade-cloth knitting technology in the 1970s, made sun protective fabrics a household name worldwide with its retail brand Coolaroo. It plans to make its Synthesis range of advanced polymer fabrics the standard for exterior shading and asset protection in agriculture, construction and mining in Asia. With products tested in Australias harsh climate, Gale easily makes the case for its technology. Shade sails and awnings made of Gale knitted shadecloth reduce heat by up to 30 per cent in outdoor areas such as playgrounds, courtyards, sporting facilities and car parks. Its broad range of knitted and coated polymer fabrics, made of UV-stabilised polyethylene and polypropylene, are engineered for heavy-duty industrial and commercial uses, providing weather protection and energy cost savings with their heat reduction properties. In agriculture, Gale fabrics protect against weather extremes, including sun, hail and wind, and provide improved growing conditions and crop yields. We are committed to sustainability. Most of our polymer-based fabrics are fully recyclable, says Peter McDonald, Gales CEO. Many of our products are guaranteed to last for more than 10 years. This quality assurance is hard to match in the industry. Hefty investments in research and development and continuing collaboration on practical needs drive Gales innovations. Its products are designed to withstand either intense heat, such as in the Middle East, or the European chill. The right combination of polymers and coating ensures stability under sustained UV exposure. Welded edges provide durability with tear and flex cracking resistance. Equipped with two of the worlds most technologically advanced coating and knitting manufacturing plants, Gale customises fabrics for vast industry needs. With manufacturing facilities in Beilun, China since 2005, Gale will scale up in Asia with more distribution channels. It is eyeing industry-specific partners to expand in the region.

We are committed to sustainability. Most of our polymer-based fabrics are fully recyclable
Peter McDonald CEO, Gale Pacific

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TFS nds new uses for sandalwood

rom its wood to its oils, sandalwood is a highly-valued commodity used in a variety of applications. High demand for sandalwood over the years has led to overharvesting, threatening the supply and demand equilibrium of the many industries involved in the trade of its by-products. Striving to be the worlds leading sustainable sandalwood supplier, TFS implements best practices in climate, community and biodiversity to deliver long-term benefits to investors, the company and the environment. TFS manages its plantations on behalf of retail and institutional investors. TFS has established about 5,000 hectares of Indian sandalwood (Santalum Album). Sandalwood is widely used in fragrance, incense, herbal medicine, worship and carving products. It is challenging to grow the plant due to its parasitic nature and 14- to 15-year growth cycle. It takes a specialist such as TFS to successfully nurture sandalwood and overcome high-entry barriers. Australian Securities Exchange-listed TFS is the first company to grow Indian sandalwood commercially in Australia. It planted its first Indian sandalwood seedlings a year after its establishment in 1998. When TFS first started planting Indian sandalwood, the survival rate of trees was 30 to 40 per cent. TFS now boasts a 90 per cent survival rate. TFS plantation is considered among the most sustainable in the world. Ensuring species preservation and a continuous supply cycle, TFS planted more than 600,000 sandalwood seedlings last year. It has taken time to get everything right, from soil preparation to the amount of water needed. Forestry investors have cited our forestry project as probably one of the best worldwide because of the difficulty, says Quentin Megson, chief financial officer at TFS. We have a niche, a specific intellectual property on how to grow sandalwood. It is very difficult to replicate on a commercial scale.

Through its subsidiary, distiller Mount Romance, TFS buys Australian sandalwood (Santalum Spicatum) that is indigenous to Western Australia. Mount Romance incorporates sandalwood oil in cosmetics, aromatherapy fragrance and therapeutic products. The company is the leading producer of Australian sandalwood and sandalwood beauty products. Mount Romance distils oil from the heartwood, the oil-bearing part of sandalwood, through a steam distillation process. The extracted oil is an important base component for fragrances because it slows down the evaporation of the perfume compounds, making scents last longer on the body. Sandalwood is a natural alternative to petroleum products sometimes used in perfume formulations. Top perfume houses such as Chanel and Bulgari use sandalwood in their fragrances. TFS also works with cosmetics companies such as Este Lauder and LOral. While waiting for the harvest slated for 2013, clients are assured of a stable supply as TFS signs forward-supply agreements. As the repopulation of Indian sandalwood requires collective action, the company has developed the TFS Sandalwood project to reach out to investors wanting to join the initiative and to grow their own sandalwood. TFS Indian Sandalwood forestry project offers stable investments in an alternative asset class with potential for excellent returns. TFS settled a transaction in 2010 with an AAA-rated United States investor that is a global forestry investment leader.

Aside from its Kununurra plantation, TFS has settled two other land acquisitions in Dalbeg, northern Queensland to support its institutional plantation investment programme. Aligned with its vision to be a vertically-integrated producer of sandalwood products, TFS explores partnership opportunities, particularly in China and India, to maximise sandalwoods commercial potential and to develop new applications for its wood and oils. The pharmaceutical market is an area for new applications. TFS has an agreement with ViroXis to supply up to three tonnes of Indian sandalwood oil annually for the development of its botanical drug, albuterpenoids. The ViroXis agreement marks TFS first commercial-scale contract within the pharmaceutical industry. TFS also seeks to explore sandalwoods applications in Asia, where sandalwood had been an important part in the traditional medicine and religious segments. Strongly driven to discover new uses for sandalwood, TFS is confident that it can provide the Asian market with a sustainable supply for its current and future sandalwood demand.

Frank Wilson, CEO

Embelton minimises noise to improve quality of life

Rapid urbanisation in Asia comes at a hefty price: densely populated and noisy buildings that reduce the quality of life. Aiming to create more quiet and pleasant environments, Embelton provides engineering solutions that result in superior work and living spaces. There is a growing demand to minimise noise and movement in habitable structures. Our core purpose is to enhance the comfort, safety and appearance of structural surroundings, says managing director James Embelton. As a family-controlled building materials supplier with 87 years of experience, Embelton provides noise and vibration-isolation solutions and timber floorings. Embelton is a comprehensive provider involved in the design, manufacture and installation supervision of its products. Through noise and vibration isolation, Embelton minimises structure-borne noise in industrial, commercial and residential buildings. Its extensive portfolio includes customised air, spring and rubber mounts and mass dampers to isolate noise at the source, preventing its transmission through the surrounding structure. The company has been instrumental in reducing noise and vibration in critical preventing noise from entering the complex. The company sees its work on the MRC paving the way for future growth on the mainland where there are plans to build 50 concert halls in the next 10 years. Embelton values close relationships with distribution agents and consultants. Its Hong Kong distributor, acoustics specialist NAP Acoustics, banks on Embeltons expertise to address the growing noise and vibration-isolation concerns of clients. Embelton works with NAP Acoustics on many prestigious projects in China. Key projects are related to the Mass Transit Railway in Hong Kong, which is generating a lot of business due to its continuous expansion. To enhance technical support to clients and streamline service delivery, Embelton plans to open its own office in Hong Kong to work with NAP Acoustics. The company has other distributors in the region, catering to the increasing demand for better control of the structure-borne noise that is an unwanted feature of growing urbanisation. To meet rising demands for higher quality of life, noise and movement must be minimised. One way to accomplish that is to work with us, Embelton says.

James Embelton, managing director Australian projects. Its portfolio includes iconic landmarks such as the Melbourne Recital Centre (MRC), one of the worlds leading venues for chamber music, the ABC studios in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane, and hospitals throughout Australia. Embelton also installed a floating floor system at the Melbourne Central shopping centre complex. In the MRC, Embelton used high load capacity springs to float the auditorium,

QDS extends defence services expertise to Asia-Pacific region

A vital link in upholding Australias aircraft defence capabilities, Qantas Defence Services (QDS) delivers comprehensive support to the Australian Defence Force and other air forces in Asia-Pacific. Established as a Qantas Airways subsidiary in 1999, QDS is backed by the airlines extensive resources and has grown into one of the countrys largest defence services companies. QDS has the unique skills set to provide maintenance, repair, overhaul (MRO) and line operations as subcontracted by various defence aircraft owners, says Scott Harris, head of QDS. Such a model is being increasingly adopted in Asia-Pacific, where we are seeking a bigger presence. The company is equipped to service the Lockheed C-130H Hercules and P-3 Orion, Boeing B737-700IGW and Bombardier Challenger CL604 Special Purpose Aircraft, Sikorsky S-70A-9 Black Hawk, BAE Hawk 127 and Airbus KC-30A Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT). Services cover scheduled and unscheduled MRO and all levels of integrated logistics support. These include engineering, maintenance, modification, repair, in-service monitoring, planning, purchasing, training and supply from components to activities that support the long-term sustainment of QDS platforms locally and globally, says Bob Paden, ISO national manager. It delivers intelligent sustainment value for each QDS client by improving supportability of platforms, promoting customer process improvement, demonstrating agility and reducing overhead and cost of services. QDS is looking to apply the ISO structure to more platforms and provide the same backbone to other organisations. Our vision is to leverage and strengthen our relationships in Asia and roll out the ISO package of services to regional air forces integrated with local industry, Paden says. QDS maintains close relationships with main Asia-Pacific industry players such as Hong Kong Aircraft Engineering and Singapores ST Aviation Services. It is active in New Zealand, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea and Singapore, and is seeking to work with local air forces in other key locations, including Thailand, Vietnam and the mainland. We welcome air forces in Asia that are trying to run new and sustainable platforms, Harris says. We can raise their efficiency and let them gain the most out of their platform meaning flying more hours with better training, accuracy and fuel economy.

Scott Harris, head of Qantas Defence Services avionics, engines and entire aircraft fleets. These are managed under QDS C-130H Weapons Systems, Special Purpose Aircraft, KC-30A TLS and Propulsion Systems business units. The company also has a dedicated business development team that focuses on the Asia-Pacific, whose top priority is expanding existing business relationships and using the QDS Integrated Sustainment Organisation (ISO) in the region. ISO is the backbone of the business, providing shared service

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Two Eights brings worlds nest wines to Asia region

nspired by love and passion for wine, premium wine producer Two Eights (Australia) puts the emphasis on quality. Balancing traditional winemaking methods with modern technology, it produces wine in small batches, each truly handcrafted from grape sorting at harvest to fermentation and bottling. Apart from growing its own grape varieties in the Barossa Valley, Coonawarra and Geelong, Two Eights collaborates with other winemakers

through its Handpicked Wines brand, which is known for premium signature regional wines. Two Eights is in the business to provide high-quality products that our consumers can appreciate and love, says managing director William Dong. We want to produce wines that are well-recognised by customers around the world and it all comes down to quality. Headquartered in Australia, the company has offices in Hong Kong, Malaysia, Thailand, Taiwan, the

Philippines, India, Japan and on the mainland. Asia, particularly China, has driven Two Eights business in the past seven years, and is expected to further fuel sales as Chinese consumers continue to demand for high quality. Our position in Asia is very strong, Dong says. We are growing the most desirable varieties in our own vineyards, buying premium grapes and working with the best winemakers to bring the finest wines to Asia and the rest of the world all under one roof. Handpicked Wines ranks among the top five wine brands on the mainland and No 1 among imported wines in many provinces. It has earned numerous awards, including the Blue Gold Award at Sydney International Wine Competition 2010, Gold Award at Perth Royal Wine Show 2011 and Gold Awards at Boutique Wine Awards 2011. Internationally, Handpicked Wines also won Gold Awards at the Citadelles du Vin, Hong Kong International Wine Challenge and International Wine & Spirits Competition in 2011. It was voted Best Wine Brand in the Chinese Restaurant Industry and among Top 10 Meritorious Wine Brands of the 60th Anniversary of the Peoples Republic of China. With 15 wine varieties from Italy, Chile, New Zealand and Australia, Two Eights plans to add 25 more varieties to its portfolio in the next two years. It will also expand its selection from Australia and explore products from Argentina, France, Spain, the United States and other premium winegrowing regions. We are pushing to have a portfolio that everybody can enjoy, Dong says. We welcome partnerships worldwide but are willing to wait for the right opportunities to come because as with our wines, quality comes first. We seek partners that understand the business, have the passion and possess the drive like we do.

William Dong, managing director

Bytecraft delivers reliable local technical service

Technical service response time is critical in ensuring business continuity. Bytecraft Systems fulfils its promise of promptly addressing customer concerns to avoid service disruptions and revenue losses. A subsidiary of the Tatts Group, Bytecraft delivers end-to-end technical support services to the gaming, wagering, lottery, retail, information technology and banking industries. The company provides hardware repair and support services for customer-facing electromechanical equipment and back-end servers. Bytecrafts swift and dependable service has made it the leading technical support provider to IBM Australias global technology services division. Consistently delivering on contracted service level agreements sets us apart from competitors who are unable to provide consistency of service, says Kevin Szekely, Bytecrafts CEO. Given Bytecrafts solid track record of service excellence, IBM is encouraging the company to expand its business to Southeast Asia. Bytecraft is discussing with IBMs assistants, Bytecrafts 1,500 technicians and agents around Australia can promptly respond to service calls. With more Asian brands selling products to Australia, local technical support, warranty or distribution agency services are needed for seamless transitions. Bytecraft can provide reliable local service, reducing freight costs and time delays. To compete effectively in importing electronic products into Australia, you need consistent hardware warranty and post-warranty support arrangements. Aside from identifying and resolving technical issues, Bytecraft also provides solutions to enhance customer satisfaction of imported electronic products in Australia, Szekely says. As a one-stop shop for onsite and workshop technical support needs, Bytecraft also supplies spare parts. The company seeks to enhance its strong relationships with equipment manufacturers on the mainland and in Southeast Asia by building partnerships with both new and existing suppliers of electronic equipment to Australia.

Kevin Szekely, CEO

Hong Kong office its ability to provide a service delivery platform for IBMs Asian clients. The company efficiently oversees all service-based activities through its proprietary software, BSuite. This web-based, real-time and online service management system directs all service calls to a central database. Receiving the data on personal digital

RBK Nutraceuticals cultivates premium brands

Quality at every step of the supply chain is critical in bringing premium products to the market. Constantly improving its manufacturing processes to incorporate new technologies, RBK Nutraceuticals delivers high-quality supplements that offer maximum health benefits to customers. RBK introduced its first health supplement under the Mothernest brand in 1997. This was distributed in prestigious department stores in South Korea including Lotte, Hyundai and Samsung Plaza. As Mothernest gained success with Asian tourists through sales on Korean Air and Asiana Airlines flights, RBK expanded its product line, introducing True Blue, Kiwi Harvest and Blue Gum. Blue Gum is exclusively distributed in Duty Free shops globally, including Hong Kong, Singapore, Vietnam, Indonesia and North America. The companys meticulous attention to quality has established it as a premium brand in health supplements. We offer what the the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administrations (TGA) standards, among the worlds strictest in manufacturing health supplements. Leveraging its packaging and manufacturing prowess, RBK has obtained a TGA licence for the new state-of-the-art packaging facility from which it offers contract packing for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs). In addition to managing TGA issues and restrictions, the modest size of the operation allows the company to handle unique requests and package items which require special detail. RBK can also draw upon its success with the most discerning international customers to assist businesses looking to sell brands in new markets. Our attention to detail sets us apart from other companies offering OEM services, Mumford says. We can offer our customers their own brand with the same service, the same quality and the same assistance that weve provided to RBKs brands.

David Mumford, sales and marketing director

market needs but with high-quality and high-potency capsules, says David Mumford, RBK sales and marketing director. We do not sacrifice quality to lower prices or market inferior products. Every RBK product complies with

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Selkirk inspires Asian design, brick by brick

s Asias high-end architects, builders, developers and designers become more discerning with their choice of suppliers, the Build with Selkirk promise makes the company a solid choice. Recognised among Australias pioneers, Selkirk is the countrys largest privately owned brick manufacturer and No 4 in the wider bricks, pavers and masonry business. Operating in the residential and commercial building construction space, it has also been recognised with an export award for its reach into Hong Kong. Five generations in the past 128 years have fuelled the companys passion for innovation. Selkirk pioneered the continuous kiln in 1905 and enabled brick manufacturing with the introduction of butane gas-fired tunnel kilns in 1962 a world first.

Our exposure to export markets is an important source of information for development

Anthony Stone Managing director, Selkirk Group

The company has stayed ahead of the industry in automation and design, delivering premium quality, consistency and diversity of style through sustainable production methods. It is developing a low-energy brick and new methods for harnessing waste stream from other industries to meet increasing environmental standards. Our innovations deliver unique

architectural styles, premium quality and an imaginative range of aesthetics via textures, formats and colours. Whether our clients are in Hong Kong, the mainland, Japan or in Australia, they have products that inspire design and are built to last, says managing director Anthony Stone. Selkirks products are highly visible throughout Asia, spanning Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong, Macau, Singapore and Thailand. Its pavers line Hong Kong International Airport, among many other prestigious commercial and residential projects. In Hong Kong, it works with established distributing partners, Link Firm and Tristar Building Materials. Our exposure to export markets is an important source of information for development. By understanding the needs of our Asian customers, we can proactively develop value-added solutions

for the building industry in the region. We also want to add value through responsible corporate citizenship and support the communities and environments in which we work, Stone says. Selkirks products ensure style and prestige while adding value through versatility and low maintenance. Moreover, the physical properties of Selkirks primary products bricks and cladding deliver immense environmental benefits and energy savings by reducing total heating and cooling energy requirements by up to 25 per cent. To sustain growth in Asia, Selkirk is keen on niche partnership opportunities on the mainland and Southeast Asia. It welcomes logistically positioned Asian companies as potential partners to fulfil the demand from high-end architects and builders in the region.

Anthony Stone, managing director

The Buchan Group shapes public spaces with authenticity and vision
Anchored on its 120-year legacy in architectural design, The Buchan Group has shaped public spaces to convey the culture of a locality and the vision of its clients. The Buchan Group has successfully gone global and contributed to Australias clout as a top exporter of expertise. Experienced in mixed-use developments and stand-alone retail, hospitality, residential, commercial and institutional projects, The Buchan Group operates in Australia, Britain, the Middle East and throughout Asia. Its expertise ranges from architectural design to estate master-planning, interior design and graphics, and 3D visualisation services. Retail landmarks such as Melbournes Chadstone Shopping Centre, Westfield London and Westfield Stratford City attest to the groups professionalism and passion, and its advocacy for sustainable design. West Mall, Chadstones latest stage with 12 global retail brands as anchor tenants, was Australias first 5-Star, Green Star-rated retail project. The Buchan Groups key design elements a high performance skylight, sealed external shopfronts and insulated faades translate to 3,200 tonnes fewer carbon-dioxide emissions annually. Involved in Chadstones development since 1982, The Buchan Group helped establish the property as Australias most successful shopping centre. The Westfield Group also relied on The Buchan Groups expertise in developing the Westfield London Shopping Centre, the largest in-town retail destination in Europe, and Westfield Stratford City. Stratford, the gateway to the London 2012 Olympic Park, marks the revival of a key London borough. It also features groundbreaking technology harnessing foot traffic to generate electricity. Active on the mainland since 2002, The Buchan Groups portfolio includes the Raffles City Shopping Centre, Tianjin Modern and the upcoming Qingdao Loashan Town Centre. The Buchan Group has been working with retail giant Tesco for the rollout of outlets in Asia. As a global practice, we are committed to our clients growth and to the communities that we are designing for. We have taken this leap in China, says Bruce Shaw, The Buchan Group managing director.

As a global practice, we are committed to our clients growth and to the communities that we are designing for. We have taken this leap in China
Bruce Shaw Managing director, The Buchan Group

Academies Australasia offers students quality education

Australia has attracted international students seeking top-quality education for many years. Despite the global financial crisis and the strong Australian currency, parents from many countries in Asia continue to send their children to Australia. Listed on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX), Academies Australasia is Australias longest-listed education group. Apart from having to meet the well-regarded and carefully supervised standards of the international education market, Academies Australasias publiclisted status means that its colleges must also comply with the strict financial and reporting regulations of the ASX. With an Australian heritage of more than 103 years, Academies Australasia operates in New South Wales, Victoria, and also in Singapore. There are nine separately licensed Academies Australasia colleges. Over the years, students from 105 countries have studied at Academies Australasia colleges. Academies Australasia colleges offer students a wide range of recognised courses at different levels certificates, diplomas, advanced diplomas and bachelor and master degrees. Its courses cover areas such as general English, English for academic purposes, International English Language Testing System preparation, years 11 and 12, accounting and financial services, business administration, community services, management, hospitality, information technology, marketing, telecommunications, tour accrediting higher education institution. It offers university-level qualifications with affordable prices and superior quality teaching. Located in the heart of the Melbourne central business district, it offers easy access to students. As a partner provider of the University of Ballarat, a regional government university, AMI Education offers courses from the business school, including bachelor degrees in business, management and commerce and master degrees in business administration, professional accounting and commerce. AMI Education will also be offering the bachelor of tourism and hospitality management degree and the information technology bachelor degree from the University of Ballarat this year. It will also offer a bachelor of information technology (computer games) to enable students interested in this aspect of computing to develop their skills and expertise. AMI Education is renowned for quality education. An AMI Education student, Zeng Xiaoyi from the mainland, was awarded the Ros Fyffe Award from the University of Ballarat for achieving the best performance of a first year student in 2010. She was the best among all the first year students in the university and its partner institutions. Academies Australasia College in Singapore offers a range of Australian programmes and provides an attractive destination for students from Asia who are looking for Australian-standard qualifications.

Christopher Campbell, chairman and managing director

Academies Australasia colleges offer students a wide range of recognised courses at different levels certificates, diplomas, advanced diplomas and bachelor and master degrees
guiding and travel and tourism. AMI Education, Academies Australasias college in Victoria, is a non-self-

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Deakin equips professionals with global insurance industry acumen

Michael Cohen, course director, insurance and risk management programme, Deakin Graduate School of Business

taying competitive in a rapidly evolving marketplace requires a solid understanding of industry dynamics within any sector. Deakin University enables this by providing courses that offer flexible options for busy professionals seeking leadership roles in international markets. Renowned for its quality business research and strong industry links, Deakin moulds professionals towards global practice in accounting, economics and finance, business administration, management and marketing, information systems and law. Deakins Graduate School of Business provides career advancement options to insurance and riskmanagement practitioners through a tie-up with the Australian and New

Zealand Institute of Insurance and Finance (ANZIIF). The insurance industry is truly an international business, says Michael Cohen, course director of Deakins insurance and risk management programme, and senior lecturer at the Deakin Graduate School of Business. Its scope is very broad, with reinsurance, property and casualty, life insurance coverage and risk-management concerns. Very few people are fortunate enough to work in all of those areas, so the course provides a broad perspective on insurance, the industry setting and what happens in each field. Deakin is among the few universities worldwide with a dedicated focus on insurance and risk management, an expertise culled from three decades of experience in running MBA programmes.

Delivered via distance learning, the postgraduate course leads to professional accreditation with the Australian Securities Investment Commission and ANZIIF on general insurance, insurance broking, life insurance and financial planning. It takes one year of full-time course work to acquire the masters degree. Part-time options are widely available for working students. The course helps develop underwriting and claims management skills required at an insurance firm. For those seeking career advancement in insurance broking, it leads to acumen in developing new insurance products according to evolving market needs or offering tailor-fit insurance packages. Professional studies on insurance and risk management also help managers on the customer side to pick the best insurance coverage for their organisations. Any reasonably sized company or government department has a riskmanagement function and requires large amounts of insurance, Cohen says. Its very important for these organisations to have people who understand the insurance industry and what theyre buying so that they will get the right

product at the right price. Otherwise, theyre going to be taking advice from people who are selling to them, and that might not always be the best outcome. With its holistic instruction on the insurance industry, the course is attracting a growing number of international students. Seventy students are enrolled in the programme, about half of whom are based overseas. Deakin promotes open discourse through an electronic feedback mechanism. Initiated by insightful questions surrounding current events and issues on business and finance, the online student forums promote discussion, enhancing knowledge and cultural exchange within the course. An important component informing Deakins instruction is its long-standing ties with the business community. Its programmes are governed by an advisory committee that includes industry representatives who help tailor the curriculum according to changing trends. With its ANZIIF ties, Deakin has succeeded in creating a knowledge loop in the insurance industry that helps inform policymaking, not only in Australia and New Zealand, but in the entire

Asia-Pacific region. Its areas of research expertise include the economics of ageing, Australias retirement scheme and the importance of consumer protection and market efficiencies in stabilising the insurance industry. Deakin is keen on participating in the growth of Asias insurance industry, especially as Hong Kong is in the process of transforming its regulatory regime. Hong Kong has the highest concentration of insurance players in the region. With the booming mainland market, Hong Kong plays a strategic role in revitalising the insurance industry on a global scale. Being part of Asia-Pacific, we would like to grow with the industry in the region, Cohen says. I expect there to be a lot of growth within the region in the insurance industry and I think that will bring new problems and challenges. We would like to be there, conducting the research and the education to inform the development of the industry. With Deakins in-depth knowledge of mature insurance markets such as Australias, the university is well-positioned to help Hong Kongs new insurance regulator study policy frameworks that stabilise insurance markets, he says.

Alan Oppenheim, managing director

Jane Oppenheim, scientific director

Dermatologically approved, Ego cares for Asian skin

Being one of the most trusted skincare companies in a country with harsh weather and the highest skin cancer rate worldwide is testament to Ego Pharmaceuticals expertise. Egos extensive knowledge behind the science of skincare enables the company to formulate the best skin therapies for its Australian client base and increasingly its international and Asian customers. A family-owned company founded in 1953 by chemist Gerald Oppenheim and his wife Rae, a nurse, Ego has developed more than 100 skincare products to remedy a variety of conditions including dermatitis, eczema and rashes. Egos outstanding business ethics guarantees exceptional product quality. Aside from following Therapeutic Goods Administration regulations, Ego regularly expands and upgrades its facilities to ensure compliance with legislated and best-inclass manufacturing principles. Its newest expansion project, worth HK$29.9 million, is slated for completion in two years. Focus on quality is embedded in everything we do. The Ego spirit embodies value and service for each client and every market we serve, says managing director Alan Oppenheim. Research and development is central in market-leading, dermatologically recommended products such as Egos Sunsense sunscreen range and Egocort and DermAid hydrocortisone ranges. Its QV moisturising and gentle cleansing range is Egos most popular brand internationally, especially in Asia. The fragrance-free formulation of QV is ideal for Asian skin types, which tend to be oily and irritable. Ego has gained valuable insights into local market needs through its partnerships with distributors in the region, particularly with its more than 25-year relationship with family-owned Hong Kong company Lision Hong. The distributorship model gave Ego a stable platform to establish subsidiaries in Singapore and Malaysia. Our success in Singapore has been a result of our commitment to collaborate with local dermatologists and customers, Oppenheim says. We want to use this model to expand in Asia, and to serve our new customer base in Malaysia.

Xylems solutions protect precious water resources

Water is undoubtedly a valuable resource. Global water technology company Xylem advocates efficient water and wastewater transport and usage to protect water resources. The HK$24.9-billion company addresses the full water cycle through its products and services that are essential in collecting, distributing and using water. Built upon ITT Corporations well-known water, fluid, flow control and analytics brands, such as Lowara, Goulds Water Technology, Bell and Gossett, Flygt and WTW, Xylem was launched as a standalone water-centric company in November last year. Xylem derives its name from the plant tissue that transports water throughout the plant. Combining the companys engineering efficiency with the most natural water transportation process, Xylems solutions enable the transport, treatment, testing and efficient use of water for customers in Asia-Pacific. Helping address the continuing drought in Australia, Xylem aids vegetable grower Piscioneri Brothers in re-circulating about 500 to 1,500 litres of water per minute with its vertical multistage pumps and water recycling systems. Xylem water-treatment products in Sydney Airport treat and recycle storm water run-off for nonpotable use such as cooling towers, washing vehicles and landscape irrigation. This saves the airport about 350 million litres of fresh water annually. Xylems water, wastewater pumps, and heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems are also used in large-scale construction sites on the mainland. These include the Three Gorges Dam and the South-North water diversion projects, Shanghai and Suzhous subway systems and Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport. Aiming to become the most-trusted technologically advanced partner in the water space, the entire Xylem group contributes to generate innovations and holistic solutions in line with the companys value-based product development process. We collaborate to achieve our vision of becoming a state-of-the-art water company with strong technologies to help water scarcity worldwide, says Eddie Tan, AsiaPacific general manager for residential and commercial water division. Xylem serves the HK$233-billion segment of the global water equipment and services market through a direct sales force and independent channel partners. We focus on developing businesses through distributors and original equipment manufacturers, Tan says. We are open to partnerships to spread our initiatives.

We collaborate to achieve our vision of becoming a stateof-the-art water company with strong technologies to help water scarcity worldwide
Eddie Tan Asia-Pacific general manager for residential and commercial water division, Xylem

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OTEN empowers students with innovative approach

Greg Lan, CEO

Affordable, reliable Aspen medicines coming to Asia

In a span of 11 years, Aspen Pharmacare Australia has become one of Australias leading pharmaceutical companies, developing a reputation for reliable, regulated and affordable medicines. Aspen-marketed brands account for one out of seven prescriptions written in the country. Aspen acquired Sigma Pharmaceuticals last year, strengthening its manufacturing capabilities and networks. The acquisition is expected to accelerate Aspens growth in Australia and its expansion into Asia-Pacific. Aspens first subsidiary in the region, Aspen Philippines, will begin operations this year. It represents the companys initial step to replicate its success in Asia. We want to bring to Asia affordable prescriptions with the Aspen stamp of quality, says deputy CEO Trevor Ziman. It is a thrill to change someones life through our medicines this is the passion that drives us. Aspens growth has been guided by its relationships and contrarian approach across all facets of the business. The companys sales representatives have an average age of 65 years old, each bringing 30 to 40 years of experience and understanding of clients needs and products. Aspens more than 800 products combine proprietary and licensed drugs, ranging from over-the-counter to prescription dermatology, cardiovascular, neurology and oncology medications. Choosing to collaborate rather than compete with larger multinational corporations, Aspen offers an alternative by which companies can capitalise on quality products that receive limited resources and marketing spending. Aspens back-to-back licensee partnerships include major industry players such as Novartis, Merck, Eli Lilly and GlaxoSmithKline. In addition to pursuing the Philippines, Aspen plans to deepen its footprint in other Asian markets. It eyes Thailand, Taiwan, Malaysia, the mainland and Japan as key destinations in the next three years. Our goal is to reach more doctors and provide high-quality, regulated, reliable and affordable medicines, Ziman says. We also want to bring partners the business acumen, market knowledge and financial backing that we have as a solutions-driven brand builder.

he Open Training and Education Network (OTEN) challenges the notion of colleges as standardised institutions. By taking a personalised approach to education with its distance and online learning programmes, OTEN empowers students to take control of their education, studying whenever and wherever they want. With more than a century of experience, OTEN is the distance and online delivery unit of TAFE New South Wales Western Sydney Institute, the 2010 Australian Large Training Provider of the Year. OTEN provides vocational programmes to students in Australia and around the world. We offer personalised learning experiences. We work on developing different ways to engage students in

their learning process and helping businesses improve their bottom line, says Susan Hartigan, institute director. OTEN incorporates new technologies and social media websites in its learning modules and in the numerous nationally recognised qualifications it offers. It has built a robust technological system to support the personalisation of education for its 60,000 students. Designed for individuals who want to explore new careers and build their skills, OTEN provides extensive support to ensure students receive the best education to help them achieve their goals. OTEN has close ties with industry and the community, giving students the advantage of learning skill sets in line with industry demands. The directors of education at OTEN serve as business

line managers, liaising with professionals to track industry trends and provide solutions for business growth. Aside from providing vocational courses, OTEN provides workforce development solutions. OTEN has developed environmental and sustainability health checks to help companies determine areas that need strengthening. For instance, OTEN designed customised training materials for the Singapore operations of Japanese lens company Hoya, to familiarise staff and clients about optical technology. OTEN is also a proponent of training teachers to raise educational levels. In an effort to build up the qualifications of teachers in Asia, OTEN sends seasoned faculty members to train and update other teachers on the latest

developments in vocational education and e-learning. In the region, OTEN has completed teacher training programmes with Ningbo Foreign Affairs School, YMCA of Hong Kong Christian College and INTI International University in Malaysia. OTEN also seeks to improve accounting, tourism and logistics skills on the mainland to meet growing demand in these industries. Educational leadership is a specific skill set. It is something you need to nurture and nourish, Hartigan says. What we have developed at Western Sydney Institute, including OTEN, is a model for change around leadership that works.
Susan Hartigan, institute director

Legend poised as Asia-Pacics engineering solutions partner

Living up to its name, Legend epitomises an Australian success story that began as a humble vision and flourished into a platinum-awarded industry leader. Positioning itself as the supplier of choice for the electrical, power, information technology and semiconductor industries, the engineering solutions group forays deeper into Asia-Pacifics growing markets. Established 26 years ago through its founding division, Legend Performance Technology, the company initially focused on manufacturing memory modules. Through a series of acquisitions, it diversified into four other divisions with multiple brands, namely: Cabac Electrical, Hendon Semiconductors, Cabac Power and MSS Fibre Systems. Integrating each divisions strengths, Legend expanded to the design, engineering, manufacturing, sales and distribution of electrical, electronic, power, data, medical and telecommunication products. It ventured overseas in the 1990s, establishing its presence in New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, Thailand and South Africa. Legends expertise in technical engineering enables us to see where we could apply our capabilities in particular market opportunities and address these gaps through innovation, says CEO Bradley Dowe. Our solutions combine value-added features, competitive prices, fast delivery and dedicated support. The companys ability to see such opportunities is exemplified by its more than 21,000 products, each engineered and developed to suit particular industries, applications and customers. Legend aims to focus on the power, rail and engineering construction areas in Australia and the rest of Asia-Pacific. It also plans to continue exporting to China and the United States, which are the two key destinations that have fuelled Legends businesses over the past decade. We have strengthened our engineering support offices in China, recognising the region as a manufacturing superpower, Dowe says. Having been successful in China from both the supplier and customer points of view, we see significant opportunities to serve local manufacturers, particularly in the consumer electrical and electronics range. With successful partnerships with mainland manufacturers in place, the Australian Securities Exchange-listed company also looks forward to satisfying the increasing domestic demand and taking part in product development activities in the region. Apart from having an electronic components support hub on the mainland, Legend develops products in Singapore, from which it also supports operations in Indonesia and Malaysia. Asia-Pacific is becoming the worlds dominant economic geography and Australia is well-placed at its doorstep, Dowe says. We envision doubling our business in the next three to four years as we expand organically and inorganically and sustain profitable growth for our customers and investors.

Bradley Dowe, CEO

Global Gift Sourcing links companies to mainland

Navigating the mainland to source superior quality products requires certain know-how. Awarded 2011 Importer of the Year by the Hong Kong Australian Business Association, Global Gift Sourcing (GGS) is equipped to help businesses in Australia and worldwide procure and manufacture customised solutions. Founded in Australia 13 years ago, GGS works with more than 1,000 factories throughout the mainland. Its wide range of products includes apparel, homeware, stationery, toys, ceramics and electronics. Shanghai-based Denbri and Ningbo-based Shindak are part of the companys trusted partner network. Were looking to build long-term and strong relationships with suppliers on the ground there, says operations manager Aaron Williams. GGS partners adhere to strict quality control standards, including BS 6001. While carefully monitoring every step of the production process to maintain ethical and environmental standards, GGS provides customers quick turnaround and punctual delivery. We stand by our strong position on ethical solutions in product manufacturing, says managing director Keiran Tanner. We promote sustainable practices and growth and seek that out for our partnerships throughout Asia. GGS demonstrated these standards on the Bounty project for Australian Consolidated Press. GGS replaced 500,000 plastic Bounty bags, used for distributing sample products to expectant and new mothers throughout Australia, with eco-friendly bags manufactured in China. Each bag was printed, then individually hand-painted to ensure quality control. This shows Chinese expertise and innovation at the forefront, Tanner says. The company also assists Australian charities with products for their fundraising efforts. GGS-supplied concepts have raised more than HK$157 million for various not-for-profit organisations throughout Asia-Pacific. GGS will open a Hong Kong office this year to add to its nine offices across the mainland. With offices in Sydney, the Gold Coast, Toronto and London, GGS serves clients in Australia, New Zealand, Britain, Malaysia, Taiwan, Vietnam, Canada, the Philippines and Thailand. It will also establish offices in Malaysia and the Philippines and increase its client base in North America and Europe.
Keiran Tanner, managing director

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GridSense optimises power networks for supply continuity

he wide adaptation of new lifestyle technologies that demand consistent electricity supply is challenging utility companies worldwide. Through innovative network monitoring solutions, GridSense is shaping the future of modern power systems and helping utility majors effectively manage their assets and outputs. We have focused on developing and commercialising customised monitoring solutions for electric utilities for the last 30 years, says Lindon Shiao, CEO and director. We are collaborating proactively with utility companies, helping them optimise existing infrastructure. GridSenses comprehensive platform of monitoring systems addresses all critical points along the electricity delivery system. Its revolutionary TransformerIQ has made waves in the industry. We have broken the price barrier by developing efficient, highvalue systems to address small

Albright & Wilson innovates with chemical products

Renowned as innovators of chemistry, world-class surfactants and phosphate company Albright & Wilson constantly challenges itself to develop new chemical applications for the food and beverage, personal care, household and industrial segments. We are a reliable name that is respected in various industries, says Anthony Girgis, managing director and CEO. We have an excellent supply chain and all our processes are automated and quality-certified. As a solid provider of high-quality chemical solutions in Australia for more than 70 years, Albright & Wilson offers customers its supply chain expertise anchored on quick product delivery and reliable service with strong support and commitment to sustainability. Food processing companies rely on Albright & Wilsons phosphates to improve the quality and performance of their products. Manufacturers of household and personal care products use the companys phosphates and surfactants to achieve the specific properties they desire in their end-products. Albright & Wilson works closely with clients to customise formulation solutions according to their budget and quality requirements. Demonstrating its commitment to the environment, the company has been working to bring down its energy and water usage and wastes in its facilities for the past seven years. We are also transforming the way we pack and transport our products so that we are able to offer them to our customers with the lowest carbon footprint, Girgis says. Albright & Wilson also has a returnable closed loop circuit that is unique in the industry. This means it delivers and collects containers so that its customers need not worry about cleaning or disposal, thus further assisting in creating a more sustainable environment. Represented by agents in South Korea, Hong Kong and Thailand, Albright & Wilson exports 10 per cent of its products to Asia. To drive its growth in the region, the company seeks to foster relationships with agents, suppliers and customers that can boost its product development, particularly in the construction chemical and food phosphates segments.

We have broken the price barrier by developing efficient, high-value systems to address small transformers at the distribution level
Lindon Shiao CEO and director, GridSense

transformers at the distribution level, Shiao says. TransformerIQ enables utilities to respond to real-time data and proactively curtail current loads, preventing network capacity overload. GridSense is also evolving the TransformerIQ system for the oil and gas industry to specifically address water

fracturing. We have opportunities to diversify from our traditional customer base. Oil and gas companies are proactive in adapting this type of technology. Many regulators and environmentalists want to impose accountability on companies to ensure they are properly tracking water supply, Shiao says. Another innovation is GridSenses LineIQ system, which provides accurate line fault detection and identification remotely or on-site. The mainland is an important market for GridSense. As a manufacturing hub, it requires massive power supply and its utility companies are looking for technologies to increase capacity and delivery. The company is working with Beijing-based firm New Standards to introduce its solutions on the mainland and to develop relationships with future clients. GridSense is also fuelling its future growth by inviting partnerships and collaborations to facilitate greater knowledge and technology exchange.

Lindon Shiao, CEO and director

Figtrees adaptable software shapes insurance industry

Claims management in a global economy calls for a scalable technological platform robust enough to support the complexities of multifaceted business operations, but flexible enough to comply with the regulations of different federal jurisdictions. Figtree Systems strikes the perfect balance with its highlycustomisable software solutions that enable companies to diminish risks and reduce claims severity through enhanced claims management functionality. Figtrees claims, policy administration, risk and fleet management software brings a whole new level of efficiency to companies engaged in industries which call for high levels of accountability. Configuring its software to accommodate multicurrency and multilingual transactions, Figtree provides unparalleled operational support to its multinational clientele. Our aim is to develop applications for our consultants worldwide, to enable them to deploy solutions that are highly customised and configurable, says Ricky Au, Figtree Systems vice-president. Our strategy is to develop products locally that can be employed and installed internationally. Figtrees robust general insurance solutions have been well adopted by the industry. Through close collaboration with clients and insurance industry professionals, Figtree has developed incident and claims management software applications that can be easily integrated to existing enterprise systems. Addressing all lines of insurance, Figtrees general insurance software provides greater control and visibility to the claims management lifecycle which result in reduced administration expenses. The software also serves as a solid auditing facility for continual data integrity. More than 300 organisations in Australasia and Europe have installed Figtrees systems. Global insurance and risk leaders, third party administrators and specialised insurers attest to the reliability and functionality of Figtree software. Through its parent company, Japan-based NTT Data, Figtree is able to offer the same applications to new markets in Asia. With our solutions, we aim to boost the global competitiveness of our clients, Au says. We can export our solution anywhere in the world and this will pave the way for a new era in risk management.

Ricky Au, vice-president

Anthony Girgis, managing director and CEO

Cyndan goes global with eco-friendly chemicals

Chemicals need not harm the environment or their user. Cyndan Chemicals has proven this by delivering environment-friendly chemical solutions across multiple industries. Committed to providing safe and economical solutions that deliver outstanding results, Cyndan has developed groundbreaking products for industrial cleaning and maintenance, automotive and transport, specialty nano-coatings, agriculture and consumer applications. We go on-site to listen to our customers and identify solutions for problems theyre experiencing in their business. If we dont have it, we have the research and development capability to deliver the solutions and that is the key we customise for particular problems, says Michael Snounou, Cyndan director. The company has developed energyefficient solutions such as heatreflective or insulation paints and glass coatings for industrial facilities. Aside from creating non-stick applications, which provide 90 per cent savings on There is substantial work to be done around carbon mitigation. With our environmentally friendly solutions, we have had an impact on worker safety and making industrial practices more energy-efficient, Snounou says. Embarking on an aggressive global strategy under Snounous leadership in 2009, Cyndan established distribution channels in the United States, the Middle East and Asia. Having expanded its manufacturing capabilities with a start-up facility in Dalian, Cyndan looks towards building local sales and marketing partnerships. With its goal to be a world-leading provider of environmental solutions, it also welcomes technology and manufacturing partnerships with other chemical companies. Cyndan has always been different because we cover a tremendous range of sectors. We have the relationships in China and would be interested in collaborations with other companies to grow our market share into different industries, Snounou says.

Michael Snounou, director

cleaning time, Cyndan produces coatings that reduce internal temperature by six to 10 degrees. Its expertise in eco-friendly formulations has increasingly attracted Asian partnerships in products such as safety degreasers and biodegradable cleaning fluids.

Harrison Manufacturing eyes growth with Asian partners

Aiming to sustain growth and encourage expansion, Harrison Manufacturing Company (HMC) is pursuing lasting partnerships with Asian suppliers and distributors to improve the companys global reach. Established in 1949, HMC has pioneered technical advances in its niche industry and has set a precedent for successful relations between Australian and Asian companies. A member of the Harrison Group, HMC develops and manufactures specialty lubricant and grease products. Cutting-edge technology, flexibility and intensive product testing enable HMC to provide complete solutions to major companies in the vehicle, industrial, mining and agricultural sectors in Australia, Asia and other countries. About 20 to 25 per cent of HMCs total production goes into export. HMC sets itself apart from competition by providing extensive technical support to complement its product offering. As a privately held company, HMC has made pivotal changes in its organisation in line with its five-year plan to improve operational excellence and increase its skills base. We are working very hard to be knowledge leaders in our area, says CEO Anthony Bell. Everything that we do is under the ISO 9001 quality standards. Under this umbrella, we include all the environment, health and safety systems so that we, internally, and our customers, externally, know that the systems are continually being monitored and kept in check. HMCs passion for innovation, deep technical knowledge and industry leadership make the high-value supplier a valuable partner to Asian counterparts. The company seeks to strengthen its business through strategic partnerships with other lubricant manufacturers and suppliers in the region. Relationships are still important in business. For a company that has been around for as long as we have been, we place a lot of importance on relationships, Bell says. HMC is looking to work in partnership, and do new and exciting things.

Anthony Bell, CEO

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Moly Mines secures bright future with diversication into iron ore
he mainlands continuing urbanisation ensures steady iron ore demand this year. Moly Mines is on track for this robust market with its diversification into iron ore production and the backing of its major shareholder, the Sichuan-based Hanlong Group. With its fully permitted and engineered molybdenum prospect in the Pilbara region, Moly Mines is potentially a valuable asset in the global metals market. Investors are closely watching developments on Moly Mines Spinifex Ridge Molybdenum/Copper Project. Listed on the Australian Securities Exchange and the Toronto

Derek Fisher, CEO and managing director

Stock Exchange, Moly Mines has acquired HK$3.8 billion in debt financing from the China Development Bank for the molybdenum prospect. It is awaiting improvement in global molybdenum prices before proceeding with additional financing required to firm up construction. Meanwhile, the company has turned to iron ore production. In addition to molybdenum, the Spinifex Ridge prospect holds an estimated 7.3 million tonnes of 59 per cent-grade iron ore. Moly Mines started mining the resource in late 2010 and made its first export shipment in December 2010. The companys iron ore

We will build this company into a significant iron ore player over the next five years
Derek Fisher CEO and managing director, Moly Mines

production continues to exceed expectations, with total exports for last year estimated at one million tonnes and earnings rising strongly throughout the year.

The Australian government has forecast the countrys overall earnings from iron ore exports to exceed HK$500 billion this fiscal year. This is based on steady growth in world iron ore trade mainly due to the mainlands heavy importation and rising steel consumption in developed economies. The mainland is Australias biggest market for iron ore. Moly Mines is well-positioned for this robust trade given its strong relations with the Hanlong Group. Recognising Moly Mines technical expertise and management ability early on, Australia-based Hanlong Mining Investment became Moly Mines majority shareholder in 2010. Derek Fisher, Moly Mines CEO and

managing director, aims to work collaboratively with Hanlong, leveraging his 40 years of experience and Moly Mines networks to contribute to the organisations growth in the industry. We have also developed synergies in engineering and sourcing opportunities with Hanlong, he says. Moly Mines is eyeing more opportunities in the booming iron ore trade, while preparing its core molybdenum asset for a long-term play. It is also looking into other ferroalloy assets such as tungsten, chromium and manganese. We will build this company into a significant iron ore player over the next five years, Fisher says.

MPS brings Australian resources to investors

Australias steady resources sector and well-developed capital markets present a multitude of exciting opportunities for Chinese players and their global ambitions. The growth in the global steel industry with China at its head has had a strong impact on Australian resources, but the demand for other raw materials such as metals and petroleum is also prominent. Australias gas and liquids production is rising through new liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects using offshore conventional gas and onshore coal seam gas, and potentially through the developing shale gas and oil prospects that long-term investors are pursuing. This new supply chain for LNG could add as much as HK$1.9 trillion in forecast export revenues for Australias resources sector by 2015. As a boutique resource-focused investment firm specialising in emerging mining, resources and energy companies, Martin Place Securities (MPS) is well-positioned to advise Chinese investors on Australian market opportunities. Its proficiency in research and investment advisory and knowledge of global capital markets give the company a much-needed edge in linking investors with Australian resource companies. We have been at the forefront of financing exploration and development activities and also infrastructure and associated peripheral services, says Barry Dawes, managing director of Martin Place Securities. Dawes founded MPS in 2000, combining his background as a geologist with more than 30 years experience in the resources investment sector. He has held senior executive roles at blue-chip firms BT Australia, Deutsche Bank and Macquarie Bank. Having completed more than 300 transactions, MPS can use its expertise in the field to guide Chinese investors in finding the right opportunities in Australia. It enjoys a first mover advantage on broad fronts of the Australian resources sector. Dawes believes the surging internal demand on the mainland from its own mines makes Chinese mining companies an attractive investment opportunity for Australian investors. MPS has raised more than HK$4.6 billion for companies over the past 10 years and can assist companies with raising capital through the Australian market. We can guide Chinese companies with their listing on the Australian stock market, ensuring that Australian corporate governance standards apply, Dawes says.

Alex Zanda seating solutions bring wellness and comfort

A total commitment to product innovation leads to cross-cutting industry solutions. UES International has accomplished this with seating solutions that will take the maritime and health-care industries to the next level. UES has deep roots in the transportation industry, with component manufacturing and assembly expertise going back to 1890-era coaches. To mark its 2004 centennial, UES extended its manufacturing network throughout Asia and acquired Sydney-based Tecnoseat Australia to venture into opportunities in hi-tech seating. Tecnoseat was reorganised in 2008 as UES Seating Solutions, one of the companys most promising divisions. The groundbreaking technology of UES Seating is centred on comfort, aesthetics, durability, usability and lightness. Scientific pressure measurements have demonstrated that UES seats can effectively distribute body weight and relieve pressure points. Originally designed for maritime use, UES seating systems are made of lightweight aluminium frames and non-toxic fabric. UES Seating covers a wide range of indoor and outdoor seating requirements. Weve taken the technology from a marine and transport focus towards overall wellness applications, says Alex Morcos, UES managing director. In the marine industry, seating is one area that is crucial in addressing the vessel weight issue. Extending the benefits of modular and ergonomic design, our Alex Zanda seating range assists in pain management, which is increasingly becoming relevant in health-care industries. Specifically designed for long periods of sitting, the Salveo Wellness range and the new Alex Zanda range are ideal for hospitals and aged-care facilities in an almost unlimited range of environments. These have been endorsed by the Chiropractors Association of Australia to promote proper sitting posture and reduce the risk of developing back problems. The whole methodology of freshness of ideas, of looking at something in a different way, is what were about. With our wide range of products and proactive mindset, we provide our customers costefficient solutions that keep them one step ahead of the competition, Morcos says.

Barry Dawes, managing director

Alex Morcos, managing director

AMC is top mining rms preferred consultancy

Completing more than 5,100 assignments in more than 100 countries, AMC Consultants is one of the industrys preferred consultancies for mining operation and evaluation. Generating 90 per cent of its revenues from repeat business, AMC has worked with the worlds top mining companies such as BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto, Anglo American, Xstrata and Newcrest. AMC designs new mines or improves existing mines for its clients. Its primary focus is to achieve optimum output and return on investment. AMCs expert engineering services encompass the entire mine operation cycle from exploration, mine design and planning to decommissioning. AMC also provides evaluation and valuation of proposed projects, existing assets, potential mergers or acquisitions and strategic alternatives by assessing values, risks, feasibility, productivity, profitability and sustainability considerations. Through its studies, AMC assists clients to make informed decisions by providing a thorough and independent appraisal of options and outcomes. Keeping a comprehensive record of each project experience in different countries enables AMC to build up its knowledge base and provide intelligent advice to its clients. Our major strength is that we can support our engineering with actual data, says Paul Harper, CEO and principal mining engineer at AMC. We understand the business of mining and know how to approach it in a strategic manner. Since miners are engaged in one of the worlds most hazardous occupations, AMC strongly advocates safe mining procedures and processes. The consultancy helps bring value to its clients by structuring their operations
Paul Harper, CEO and principal mining engineer

through best practices in order to reduce, if not eliminate, accidents occurring in mine sites. To intensify its focus on Asia and establish a larger presence in the market, AMC has reinvigorated its corporate consultancy group. I would like to see our presence triple in Asia in the next five years, Harper says.

MICROMINE supports HKEx listing of mining and exploration firms

The Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing (HKEx) has become an attractive venue for companies in the mining sector to draw Asian and international capital. MICROMINE supports mining and exploration companies with the compliance requirements of HKEx and is an integral partner in the migration of resource companies to new markets. With more than 12,000 clients in more than 90 countries, MICROMINE has been trusted by Australias mining giants for its intuitive software solutions for more than 25 years. The homegrown Australian mining expert was awarded the Microsoft Gold Partner certification last year as an independent software vendor. Through Micromine Consulting Services (MCS), the company offers exploration management and design and resource and reserve estimation according to international standards. These include the HKEx Chapter 18 securities listing requirement for mineral companies, Canadas National Instrument 43-101 guidelines and the standards set by Australias Joint Ore experience in markets such as China and Mongolia, where it is the only foreign company accredited to complete local feasibility studies. In addition to international studies, MCS completes local studies, assisting project advancement of exploration to mining licence approval and feasibility completion. Staffed by globally experienced geologists, mining engineers and metallurgists, MCS supplies its solutions for projects across all commodities. For the HKEx, MCS produces technical reports in partnership with valuation companies and is recognised as a technical adviser entitled to submit competent person reports. With increasing demand for its resource evaluation expertise from mining businesses planning listings or acquisitions, MCS looks to form win-win alliances with service providers including brokers, valuation companies, investors and law firms. We are committed to Hong Kong for the long term and looking to meet the growing demand for our services, says general manager Dean OKeefe.

Graeme Tuder, founder and managing director

Reserves Committee (JORC). Offering 24-hour support in local languages across its 20 offices, MCS leverages its global network and extensive

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Innovative Honan supports businesses globally and locally

s bilateral trade between Australia and Asia grows, companies need a partner with strong local roots and an extensive global reach to facilitate their smooth entry into a new market. That partner is Honan Insurance Group. Honan is one of Australias largest independent brokerage firms specialising in property and casualty insurance, financial services and international business.

Sea Transport offers pioneering and cost-effective ship solutions

Stuart Ballantyne is first and foremost a seaman. Combining his experience and passion for ships and the sea with astute business acumen, Ballantyne has grown Sea Transport Solutions into a leading marine design and consulting player that specialises in state-of-the-art and sustainable vessel design. Sea Transports technological breakthroughs have raised vessel standards while minimising their environmental footprint, in turn delivering profitability and economic advantages to its clients. It is this novel approach that has won the company six international awards including the Australian Exporter of the Year in 2008. We test and optimise vessels to deliver savings for our clients, says Ballantyne, the companys founder and managing director. We dont just preach the word but we practise it. Sea Transport caters to a diverse customer range, from pleasure vessels to military vessels for the Royal Australian Navy, Indian Navy and Royal Thai Navy. It has also designed the worlds largest 150-metre roll-on/roll-off (Ro-ro) passenger catamaran. Sister company Sea Transport Logistics develops customised commercial vessels for the mining industry. Its patented bulk transshipment

Our clients understand that dealing with Honan means dealing with people who can help them make informed decisions. This is how we earn trust, says CEO Damien Honan. Backed by a network of partners in 66 countries as a member of the Worldwide Broker Network, Honan supports Australian companies in their international growth. This is illustrated by how Honan successfully provided an Australian information technology client the same level and quality of coverage

across its operations in 19 countries. Through a specially developed global internet platform, Honan delivered localised insurance solutions while saving costs. Leveraging its expertise, Honan also helps foreign companies establish their business in Australia. Honan assisted large Singapore-based companies with a risk survey, recommendations and insurance compliance for their entry to Australia. Through its passion for the technical side of insurance, Honan can assist international businesses to develop holistic risk management programmes for their Australian operations. Honan established its presence in Singapore in 2010 to ensure comprehensive client support in partnership with its Australian counterparts. This strategic presence provides a conduit for Asia-Pacific businesses looking to expand their global facilities. The Singapore office serves as a venue for us to share our knowledge to help enrich the dynamic and rapidlyevolving insurance market there, Honan says. It will also teach us how Asian companies operate and this puts us in a better position to help them operate successfully in Australia for the long term.

We can eliminate sovereign risk by putting a transshipper into any country and allow customers to have four export facilities for the cost of one
Stuart Ballantyne Founder and managing director, Sea Transport Solutions

Stuart Ballantyne, founder and managing director

solution, the floating harbour transshipper (FHT), is the only system that allows transshipment using feeder vessels in very small and shallow harbours. This is an advantage for mining companies that no longer need to construct costly deep-water ports ashore for cargo loading and unloading. Offering four different sizes of FHTs up to 240,000 deadweight tonnage for varying cargoes and rougher sea conditions, the FHT also prevents rainfall from affecting

the transportable moisture limit of the cargo. The FHTs provide a safe dock without grab spillage or dust, making it a convincing operational and environmental solution. The FHTs are also suitable for containers and Ro-ro cargo as they are able to carry a wide range of bulk commodities. With Sea Transports FHTs, clients achieve faster transfer rates with reduced port charges. The burgeoning maritime industry on

the mainland is leading to growth in vessel leasing, shipbuilding, design and chartering. Sea Transport looks towards exploring partnerships with Chinese companies that are able to match the opportunities this growth offers in transshipment. We can eliminate sovereign risk by putting a transshipper into any country and allow customers to have four export facilities for the cost of one, Ballantyne says. Our solutions can adapt it to a number of commodities. I have brought the company from nothing and with the right partnership, I know we would really take off.

Success in Asia brewing for Di Bella

From selecting the right coffee beans to providing excellent service, Di Bella Coffee has brought the ultimate coffee experience to consumers throughout Australia for the past 10 years. Di Bella is bringing the same experience to the mainland through the Shanghai operations it set up in 2010, inspiring an understanding and appreciation of coffee from crop to cup. Enjoying a cup of Di Bella coffee is the chance to take five minutes out of a busy day and just relax, says Tom Armstrong, director of Di Bella Coffee Trading Shanghai. This is becoming more important in an increasingly hectic life. As the company expands, quality and education remain at the heart of ensuring a consistent Di Bella coffee experience. Di Bella assures quality through an intricate understanding and development of the science of coffee, from selecting and blending the right beans to roasting, processing and serving. The latest innovation, TORQ, is a coffee concentrate made only from coffee and filtered water. A natural instant coffee with no chemicals or added preservatives, TORQ can also be enjoyed cold during the summer months. With a 12-month shelf life, Di Bella sees it as perfect for hotels, where coffee is freely available. Di Bella supplies its premium blend to 10 to 15 select Chinese businesses, cafes and distributors and forecasts rapid growth in demand. The company places much importance in finding and training partners who are as passionate about coffee as it is. Di Bella is in talks with Pudong University about developing a course on coffee. It is pursuing similar discussions with potential partners in Sanya, Hainan, and in India and Indonesia. As interest and awareness in the region grow, Di Bella plans to increase its distributor network and replicate its Brisbane roast house in Shanghai to service the Asia market.

Our clients understand that dealing with Honan means dealing with people who can help them make informed decisions. This is how we earn trust
Damien Honan, CEO
Damien Honan CEO, Honan Insurance Group

Phillip Di Bella, founder and managing director

Byron pursues Asias pre-hospital care market

Byron Group is a global supplier of vehicles and equipment to the health, aerospace, emergency response and management industries. Targeting Asias growing health-care market, Byron envisions participating in the regions development through its advanced solutions. We aim to have a much bigger presence in Asia and bring the same expertise we have in Australia, says chief commercial officer Leigh OBrien. Our goal is to work with local companies to develop the ambulance and pre-hospital care markets. Out of Byron Aviation, which was founded in 1963 as an aircraft furnishing and equipment expert, grew five other specialised and complementary businesses. Byron GSE provides lightweight equipment and vehicles for the aviation industry. DHS Emergency customises pre-hospital, emergency and rescue equipment and solutions, while Emergency Rescue Management integrates state-of-the-art software and hardware technologies into data needs of our clients, OBrien says. Byron stays ahead of competitors because we are technologically proactive, have a centre of excellence in design and are backed by a solid, supportive group. Demonstrating its global reach, Byron builds ambulances for every state in Australia and exports to Qatar, Dubai, Malaysia, China and other key destinations. It extends manufacturing activities outside its four plants in Australia with four factories on the mainland, one in Dubai and an upcoming plant in Kuala Lumpur. The company also collaborates with three specialised suppliers on the mainland, and welcomes additional highquality manufacturing partners with strong engineering backgrounds. We continuously refine our products and we maintain close supply and technology partnerships, OBrien says. We also look forward to transferring our technologies to our Malaysian, Chinese and other potential partners and building mutually beneficial relationships.

Leigh OBrien, chief commercial officer management and control systems. Accessible Transit Specialists focuses on wheelchair and mobility solutions, and Emergency Transport Technology is Australias leading ambulance and emergency vehicle manufacturer. We design products around the

Right partnerships guarantee success for Cutting Edges

Making and supplying quality products for the earthmoving industry is second nature to Cutting Edges Equipment Parts, which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2010. From humble beginnings in the 1960s, Cutting Edges has grown to become the largest privately owned supplier of ground and engaging tools and heavy duty equipment parts for the mining, transport and construction industries in Australia and Asia-Pacific. Our strong relationship with our suppliers and business partners is critical to our success, says CEO and owner Richard Andrews. Ethics is very important to us. When we look for partners whether suppliers, distributors or agents we look for companies with similar philosophies regarding customer service, product quality, value and drive to succeed by being proactive and innovative and by standing by our products. The company works with long-term partners to develop products and share expertise in their respective fields. Such strong partnerships enable Cutting Edges to offer more than 20,000 products to suit equipment from players such as Caterpillar and Komatsu, along with its own products cut downtime and improve safety by simplifying teeth replacement on draglines, shovels and hydraulic excavators. The company recognises the customers needs to reduce costs, increase productivity and develop high-quality and long-lasting products. We work with our customers as their partner and not just as their supplier, says strategy and business development director Faye Duncan. We advise our dealers on new growth opportunities. We listen to their customers needs and assist them by supplying them with the right products. Cutting Edges accomplishes this by partnering with the right suppliers and by developing or improving products for the customer. We strongly believe that by helping our customers grow, we too will grow, Duncan says. Cutting Edges is strengthening its position on the mainland and the rest of Asia by pursuing serious and long-term partnerships. Partners can count on our loyalty and in turn we are looking for quality, consistency and value, Duncan says. We want to build longterm partnerships based on mutual benefit to serve our growing markets.

Richard Andrews, CEO and owner

manufactured in Australia. It has offices and warehouses in every state and a national distribution network covering Australia. Developing about 20 new products annually, Cutting Edges also incorporates modifications on about 50 existing ones to enhance productivity and reduce operational costs. The company has developed products such as the patented Dynaclamp, Dynashroud, Dynalock and R-Lock hammerless pinning systems, which

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RBS Morgans opens doors for successful investing in Australia

BS Morgans is in a league of its own in finding opportunities for high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs) and institutional investors. The company combines the strengths of Australias most experienced stockbroking professionals and the global reach of the Royal Bank of Scotland. RBS Morgans is a joint venture between Morgan Stockbroking, one of Australias largest independent equities trading firms, and the Australian unit of Edinburgh-based RBS Group. The merger created Australias largest full-service retail stockbroking and wealth management network. With more than 60 branches throughout Australia and 500 advisers on board, RBS Morgans has more than HK$200 billion worth of funds under advisory. Its corporate advisory services range from mergers and acquisitions, equity raisings, divestitures, privatisations to restructurings, strategic reviews, spin-offs and takeover defence. With a solid reputation and track record of more than 20 years for successfully bringing new companies to market and building long-term relationships, RBS Morgans has been the No 1 small and mid-cap corporate finance house in Australia since 2007. RBS Morgans is licensed to trade at the Australia Securities Exchange, Bendigo Stock Exchange and the National Stock Exchange of Australia. Through the RBS global network, it has ready access to financial markets in Europe, the Americas and Asia. We have unequalled, unrivalled distribution capacity in Australia, says

Tim Crommelin, executive chairman Tim Crommelin, RBS Morgans executive chairman. We are in every capital city across Australia the only brokering house with that kind of reach. So when it comes to transactions needing a broadbased distribution, we are No 1. The firm has played lead roles in Australias historic privatisations. In the three-stage divestment of Telstra, the countrys telecommunications giant, RBS Morgans served as the retail lead manager for the T3 offer. Completed in 2006, the T3 offer raised an equivalent of HK$118.6 billion for the federal

Brian Sheahan, managing director government. It was the second-largest share sale in Australias history, wherein more than one million retail investors participated. RBS Morgans distinguished itself anew in November 2010 as part of the team that listed QR National, Australias largest rail freight operator. The initial public offering (IPO) raised HK$31.4 billion for the Queensland government. It was significant not only as the largest IPO since Telstra but also for shoring up confidence in stock market investing after the global financial crisis. Not surprisingly, QR National won accolades in 2010 including Insto Magazines equity deal of the year and FinanceAsias best IPO award for the listing. Australias resource, energy and associated sectors of engineering, mining services and infrastructure remain attractive to investors, says Brian Sheahan, RBS Morgans managing director. There is strong interest among Asian investors in Australias resource areas, whether its a coal deposit, gas well or ports, he says. The countrys coal and iron ore

producers are expected to continue performing well this year given the sustained demand for steel. Thus, the countrys resources sector could potentially deliver the long-term capital growth Asian HNWIs and institutional investors are looking for. Agriculture, tourism and industrial assets such as construction and engineering firms are also attractive investment areas. RBS Morgans, together with RBS, provide the most extensive research in Australia, covering 300 companies in Australia alone. RBS and RBS Morgans were voted the joint No 1 research house in the 2010 Starmine poll. The firms combine the multidisciplinary expertise of 64 analysts. RBS Morgans periodic bulletins are directly distributed to advisory teams spread across the country and are available to more than 300,000 institutional and retail clients. As a matchmaker between investors and small and medium-sized companies, RBS Morgans is keen on arranging private placements and market transactions for Asian HNWIs and institutional investors. With its direct access to all of Australias fund managers and in-depth equities research, RBS Morgans is well-positioned to open the right doors for successful investing. We are always on the lookout for opportunities to put our clients on top of their game, Sheahan says. We have a track record of establishing long-term relationships wherein our role is to help businesses flow and grow. Asian investors eyeing Australia for long-term capital growth can certainly rely on us to do the same for them.

Uhde Shedden leverages its group strength

While Australia is respected internationally for its safety standards and quality, its strong dollar and high labour costs make the country an expensive option for engineering contracting services. Circumventing these challenges, Uhde Shedden (Australia)s position within Uhde Asia-Pacific, and under parent company ThyssenKrupp, enables it to offer clients the assurance of Australian-standard engineering safety and expertise. This advantage combines cost efficiencies and talent accessible through the larger group. The company provides turnkey solutions for delivering plants and completing projects. Its fine-tuned methodology is designed to improve capital efficiency and sustainability, while minimising the assets lifecycle costs. Working across three core competencies technology, contracting and implementation Uhde Shedden (Australia) specialises in the process and resource industries, including oil and gas, refining, petrochemical and chemical, resources and minerals, alternative energy and clean coal. It also acts as a technology centre for oil and gas, supporting the groups operations. Uhde Shedden (Australia) has led 70 per cent of all of Australias clean fuels projects. Through its sister company, Uhde Engineering Consulting (Shanghai), it can procure safe and standardcompliant static equipment reducing total project costs for clients by as much as 5 per cent. As clients move beyond Australian shores, Uhde Shedden has followed noteworthy projects. These include an engineering, procurement and construction management project at the TRUenergy Iona gas processing facility in Victoria, front-end engineering design projects in Iraq and on the mainland for Shenhua Ningxia Coal Groups coal-tochemical production complex. In the future, the company is targeting more gas- and chemical-related projects, while seeking to further enhance and leverage its position. We will continue growing our company, responding to challenges and developing the synergies among our technologies, says business development general manager Alan Easton. By levering our global expertise and uncompromising stance on safety, we are confidently approaching projects in Asia and aim to be the partner of choice for the regions mega plant ambitions. Ron van der Schalk, managing director

Industrea empowers Chinas scaling mines

As the largest coal producer in the world, the mainland has taken historic strides to improve the safety, sustainability, productivity gain and mechanisation of its mines. Supporting these measures is Australian Securities Exchange-listed Industrea. Developing and delivering intellectual property-rich mining products and services, Industrea supplies innovations that increase the productivity and safety of the operations of global mining majors. Industrea has a solid track record in Australia the safest mining jurisdiction in the world and a 100 per cent market share in the in-seam methane gas drainage market. It serves giants BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto, Anglo American and Xstrata. The companys success at home has made it a major go-to player for the coal mining industry on the mainland, also its fastest-growing market. Industrea supplies the mainlands largest underground coal miners with critical equipment and technologies designed for the high-gas coal market. Its proprietary in-seam methane gas drainage technology allows the likes of Shenhua Energy Group to effectively drain the dangerous methane gas from mines, rendering them safe for coal harvesting. As 95 per cent of the mainlands coal comes from high-gas undergrounds, this technology has proven critical to the operational gains and improved safety results of its customers. Also dominant on the mainland, Industreas flame and explosion-proof vehicles allow safe movement of people and mining equipment to and from the coalface. Industrea designed and delivered to Shenhua Energy last year the largest pieces of automated equipment to ever tread underground anywhere in the world. The 130-tonne Longwall Shearer Carrier and the 80-tonne Longwall Roof Support Carrier demonstrate our commitment to innovating for China, and to building critical partnerships with customers helping achieve new heights of performance, says Robin Levison, Industreas managing director and CEO. Industrea plans to reveal more of its groundbreaking new technologies at the China Beijing International Coal Mining Trade Show in October this year.

The 130-tonne Longwall Shearer Carrier and the 80-tonne Longwall Roof Support Carrier demonstrate our commitment to innovating for China
Robin Levison Managing director and CEO, Industrea

Robin Levison, managing director and CEO

PDCs iConstruct takes 3D modelling to new heights

Fast-paced industrialising nations are spurring demand for technologies to keep up with the increasing volume of construction projects. Engineering design, detailing and 3D building information modelling (BIM) expert PDC Consultants understands these challenges and provides solid solutions that transform design concepts into state-of-the-art infrastructure. PDCs integrated design engineering solutions encompass structural, mechanical, piping and electrical visualisation, and deliver schedule, cost, environmental and safety benefits to clients, says managing director Martyn Weir. PDC is deeply rooted in Australian culture, construction, codes, costs and risks involved. Our intimate knowledge and expertise are how we add value to projects. Operating for 40 years, PDC has an experienced and loyal workforce that brings diverse industry knowledge across a range of projects. Specialising in the mining, oil and gas, power, processing and industrial sectors, PDC is trusted by major players such as BHP Billiton, Chevron, Woodside, Rio Tinto and FMG. By working closely with clients such as Karara Mining, PDC further enhances iConstruct, its proprietary BIM software, to ensure it is the most advanced of its kind. Responding to industry trends, iConstruct mitigates risks that arise with increased modularisation and overseas manufacturing through accurate design verification. iConstruct allows clients to accurately manipulate data, providing complete visualisation of a process plant so that potential issues are identified in the 3D environment prior to construction, Weir says. PDC targets more projects in Australia, North America, Europe and emerging markets such as Africa and Asia. Headquartered in Perth, PDC has operating centres in Brisbane and the Philippines. It works closely with Australian and overseas subcontractors which share its commitment to quality, including Wuhan Dunxin Steel Structure Design on the mainland. We welcome strategic partnerships with high-level contractors and engineers where we can help to deliver project lifecycle solutions for clients globally, Weir says.

PDC is deeply rooted in Australian culture, construction, codes, costs and risks involved
Martyn Weir Managing director, PDC Consultants

Martyn Weir, managing director

S14 Thursday, January 26, 2012


sias profound and shifting economic landscape, coupled with a rising affluent middle class in the region, have fuelled the demand for increasingly complex and globalised retail banking solutions in Australia. Retail banking has become a global business driven by local cultures, as consumers demand seamless service and products that reflect their transnational lifestyles and needs. Backed by a strong currency and robust financial sector, Australia is home to one of the worlds wealthiest populations and an attractive option for regional investors who seek to diversify their portfolio or invest in property. As Australias role in the regions economy continues to grow, the banking needs of Australians and Asians with interests in Australia require increasingly enhanced mobility, security, products and services, and customer experience. Consistent with Citibanks global approach, Citibank Australia embarked on a new strategy two years ago to be Australias leading global bank. We are focused on a core group of customers we think we can serve better than anyone else, says Roy Gori, CEO of Citibank Australias retail operations. Citibank leverages 30 years experience in Australian retail banking. Its mandate is to become the bank of choice for the growing number of globally minded and affluent Australians. Customers do not care whether they are in Australia, Hong Kong or Singapore,

Sponsored section in co-operation with Discovery Reports

Citibank Australia delivers seamless global banking

Roy Gori, CEO of retail operations, Citibank Australia

Jonathan Larsen, Asia-Pacific head of consumer banking in Hong Kong

they simply want their banking needs met, Gori says. Our strength is our globality and we believe we are wellequipped to best meet their needs. Our ambition is to ensure that we offer the best products and services to our customers and in so doing help enhance their lives. Citibanks new products include Citibank Plus. The first of its kind, the Citibank Plus account is a completely feefree transaction account. Relaunched in October last year, Citibank Plus charges no fees on transactions performed overseas, no monthly account-keeping fees, hidden service fees or requirements for a minimum monthly deposit. The account also allows unlimited free withdrawals at more than 3,000 local automated teller machines (ATMs) in Australia. It comes with dining rewards and other privileges such as receiving a complimentary bottle of wine for customers dining at any of Citibanks partner restaurants. We see a lot of migration into Australia from other Asian markets, and we find that this is a big opportunity for us. Asian clients want a familiar face when they come to Australia, Gori says. Knowing the Citibank brand in their own markets, Citibank provides a familiar brand that gives clients the confidence to carry out their banking transactions. I think we are in a prime position to help them meet their financial needs and to help them transition into this marketplace, he says. Citibank Plus account holders from Asia, for instance, can use the banking relationship and credit history they have built in their home countries when they come to Australia. With Citibank branches in different countries working synergistically, the bank is able to bring a seamless banking experience to its customers even when they travel. When I talk to many expats who travel, they often feel very frustrated with the fact that they have built a credit history in Hong Kong only to find that when they get to Singapore they have to start from ground zero and their good credit history is disregarded, Gori says. That is why we are bringing all information about our customers to bear so we can provide them a seamless experience. We want to treat our customers without any of the geographical borders and take our relationships and our understanding of them across countries. It involves co-ordination on our part to facilitate but I think this is a big strength for us. Citibank Australia caters to a significant base of offshore clientele, which comprises approximately 25 per cent of the banks Citigold customers. Based in places such as Singapore, Taiwan, Hong Kong and the mainland, these clients have certain banking needs in Australia. In many cases, they have purchased prime properties in the country either for investment or retirement. They want to have a diversified portfolio and have the best of all worlds, Gori says of the global consumers.

absolutely critical that we open branches in the right locations so our customers feel that they have good access. The new branches in Australia are enabled with the latest technology to ensure customers are served with greater speed, security and convenience, leveraging the smart banking concept that Citibank first introduced in its branches in Tokyo. Based around digital banking that puts the customer in the drivers seat, it is a simpler, faster and more intuitive banking experience. Smart branch banking includes innovations such as an interactive media wall featuring information and financial data, touchscreen devices and touch-panel desks that allow customers to review their account information with a branch staff. Alongside its branch rollout, Citibank Australia has also increased the number of Citibank-branded ATMs. From only nine Citibank-branded ATMs in 2009, Citibank has 170 ATMs in key places in Australia.

200 years of serving clients

Citibank marks its 200th anniversary this year. Established in New York in 1812 with only 11 employees, Citibank now employs more than 260,000 people in more than 160 countries. Citibanks presence in Asia-Pacific mirrors the banks rich global heritage as it also commemorates its 110 years in the region this year. Its long years of providing banking services to Asia-Pacific dates back to 1902 when Citibank started operations in the Philippines, Singapore, Hong Kong and the mainland. In Asia, more than 50,000 employees across 19 countries and territories are delivering Citibanks global banking services to the regions growing, and increasingly mobile, customer base.

Our strength is our globality and we believe we are well-equipped to best meet their needs. Our ambition is to ensure that we offer the best products and services to our customers and in so doing help enhance their lives
Roy Gori, CEO, retail operations, Citibank Australia

State-of-the-art internet and mobile banking

According to an Asian Banker Research and Diebold white paper published in 2010, more than 90 per cent of all transactions in developed markets are now done via non-branch channels. Anticipating changing trends in consumer banking habits, Citibank is pouring significant investment into its internet and mobile platforms as another critical component to its global strategy. Citibank Australia has been a pilot country for new online and mobile banking functionality destined for rollout across other Citibank country sites. Citibanks award-winning internet portal provides customers a global view of multiple accounts held in many different countries. The banks customers can securely and easily log onto the Citibank Online site to view their accounts held in Australia, the mainland, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand, the United Arab Emirates, the United States and India. Customers are able to transfer money in real time to 27 countries through the Citibank portal. This capability is a big part of our value proposition. You do not have this capability in a local bank; you have to deal with multiple banks in multiple locations. With Citibank, you have that comfort and its all conducted for you in real time, Gori says. Citibank is also bringing its online services to its mobile banking platform to provide greater accessibility to customers. In recognition of the banks internet innovations, Global Finance magazine named Citibank as Australias best internet bank. Winning the two categories for Best Consumer Internet Bank and Best Corporate and Institutional Bank, Citibank was cited based on its strengths in attracting and servicing online customers, success in getting clients to use web offerings, growth of online customers, breadth of product offerings, evidence of tangible benefits gained from internet initiatives, and website design and functionality. Another crucial pillar to the banks strategy is the expansion and enhancement of its walk-in branch experience and increasing the distribution points of its ATMs. Investing heavily in branch expansion since 2010, Citibank has opened four new branches in Camberwell in Victoria, Joondalup in Western Australia and Pitt Street and Town Hall in New South Wales. Citibank Australia aims to have 25 branches by the middle of the year. We are going to continue to expand our branch footprint, Gori says. It is

It is this global presence made accessible with digital banking that distinguishes Citibank from other banks, says Jonathan Larsen, Asia-Pacific head of consumer banking in Hong Kong. This is especially important because many of our clients in Hong Kong have financial interests in Australia and other countries. Consumer banking is a key business for Citibank in Asia-Pacific, where it has more than 700 branches including 100 smart banking branches. With 32 million customer accounts and 18 million cards in force, the bank offers free funds transfers to Citibank accounts and free cash withdrawals at any Citibank ATM worldwide. Managing HK$1.3 trillion in client assets, Citibank is consistently ranked as the best consumer bank in Asia-Pacific. We are looking to build on this success in the future, Larsen says. The affluent segment is another important focus for Citibank in AsiaPacific. Citibank serves more than 600,000 of the regions most affluent consumers through Citigold Private Client and Citigold banking services. About 30 per cent of its affluent clients have banking needs outside of their home countries. Citibank conducted an Emerging Affluent survey of 8,000 people last year based in Hong Kong, Singapore, India, Indonesia, Taiwan and South Korea, and gathered valuable insights on one of the fastest-growing sectors in the financial services industry. The survey revealed that the emerging affluent expect greater convenience from their bank, increasingly adopt new technologies, seek the best digital banking services and demand proactive, high-quality financial advice. Emerging affluent clients are aspirational and want a banking partner that suits their lifestyles based on digital banking with the ability to bank when, where and how they want to, Larsen says, echoing the views of Australian colleague Gori. We have adapted our services to provide our customers with greater global access, offered strong advisory expertise, made available sophisticated products adapted from our private bank, and strengthened our delivery technology and planning tools, Larsen says. These measures, along with the strong synergies between Citibank Australia and Citibank offices in AsiaPacific including Hong Kong and Singapore, solidify Citibanks position as a true global bank equipped to meet the needs of global customers. Our vision is consistent, Gori says. Our goal is to be the bank of choice for the affluent and the globally minded consumers. In line with that, we want to grow our business substantially through the products and services that we have today and also the evolving products and platforms that we are creating and delivering.