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February 2022

Important update on BGL REGTECH 2022 – Brisbane

By BGL UpdateNo Comments

Due to the ongoing weather emergency in Queensland and the inability to access the Convention Centre, we need to cancel BGL REGTECH 2022 - Brisbane.

All registered attendees, sponsors and partners have been emailed with further information.

Our team is here to help answer any questions you may have, so please do not hesitate to email us at [email protected] for more information.

We appreciate your understanding during this time and thank you for your continued support.

Stay safe.

Regards, The BGL Team

BGL celebrates CAS 360’s 5th anniversary

By BGL Update, CAS 360No Comments

BGL celebrates CAS 360's 5th anniversary

BGL is proud to celebrate the 5th anniversary of its cloud-based ASIC corporate compliance and trust management software solution, CAS 360.

“I’m incredibly proud of the team and their achievements over the past 5 years” said Ron Lesh, BGL’s Managing Director. “When we launched CAS 360 on 22 February 2017, our product team consisted of 7 members: Warren Renden, Andy Tam, Mark Flynn, Adam Polat, Dubi Laviati, Jeremy Hofsteede and Olly Weinmann. And in just 21 weeks, the team added over 600 clients and 100,000 companies to the platform. It’s been full steam ahead since then.”

“Today, the CAS 360 product team has grown to 23 members supporting 2,600+ clients, 640,000+ companies and 100,000+ trusts across Australia, New Zealand and Singapore” continued Lesh.

CAS 360 has revolutionised the way ASIC corporate compliance work is managed in Australia with its streamlined Annual Review process, including automated tracking, downloads, database comparison review and delivery of the annual statement pack to clients. Plus, daily automated smart alerts help users easily manage Annual Review dates, document deadlines and company debt.

In the past 5 years, CAS 360 clients have added 2.2m contacts, prepared 5.4m document packs, sent 2.1m emails and processed 230k dividends. Quite an incredible achievement!

“The future is bright for CAS 360” added Lesh. “We have big plans for 2022 including the official release of CAS 360 Singapore (currently in beta), the release of CAS 360 Hong Kong, the start of work on CAS 360 United Kingdom and further development in Australia and New Zealand. Certainly, watch this space!”

Watch CAS 360 DemoCheck out the TOP 50 CAS 360 features

BGL celebrates Daniel Tramontana’s 25 years

By BGL Update, CultureNo Comments

BGL is proud to congratulate Daniel Tramontana, our Chief Operations Officer, who recently celebrated 25 at BGL.

“It’s not something that happens often these days” said Ron Lesh, BGL’s Managing Director. “Daniel joined BGL on 10 February 1997 in the support team. I would never have thought he would still be with us after 25 years”.

1997 was a big year at BGL. Not only did Daniel join the team, but BGL released Simple Fund, Simple Invest and Simple ledger. Previously, our only software product was the Corporate Affairs System (CAS). Daniel added a new area of competency to our support and training teams as he brought with him a Bachelor of Computer Science & Accounting.

Through his time at BGL, Daniel obtained a Master in Business Administration and a Six Sigma Black Belt qualification.

Daniel’s contribution to BGL has been enormous. From support to client and team training, to helping BGL grow from a business of 10 people to a business of 180 people – he has had his hand in every pie and BGL would not be where it is today without him.

“My BGL journey has been extraordinary” noted Daniel Tramontana. “Our success is directly attributed to the incredibly loyal and committed team of people. To be able to serve and work alongside such talented people has been an honour and a privilege that I do not take for granted. It is with great anticipation that I am able to take the next step and continue to drive and grow the business.”

“I would personally like to thank Daniel” added Lesh. “His contribution over the 25 years has been incredible and I am so privileged to have worked with someone of his calibre for such a long period of time”

CX Faux Pas – a letter from a friend

By Bec Loves CX, Homepage, IndustryNo Comments

Do you know that friend in your life who’s honest and will tell you when your shirt is horrible and to never wear it again? Or that you have lunch in your teeth and making a fool of yourself? Well, I’m that friend and I’ve written you a letter.

Dear New Friend, 

I have met many people in the past that have tried to engrain CX through their business. I’ve seen some succeed and some commit a total faux pas. I care about you and I’m here to help you avoid being the latter.

Customer Service and CX Confusion: Customer service and client experience are not the same.

  • Zendesk defines customer service as “the act of supporting and advocating for customers in their discovery, use, optimization, and troubleshooting of a product or service.”
  • Whereas their definition for customer experience is “Customer experience (CX) is everything related to a business that affects a customer’s perception and feelings about it.”

Although not the same, it is important to note that they are very much integrated. To succeed in the CX space, you should always strive to provide optimal customer service but that only scratches the surface of CX – Don’t be fooled! Avoid thinking CX has been implemented successfully if you’ve only mastered customer service. 

CX Responsibility: Who is responsible for CX is not up for debate.

You can’t simply give everyone in the company full responsibility for implementing CX and hope it grows organically, it won’t. However, you also can’t give one employee soul responsibility for CX because it is a culture you need to nurture. Culture doesn’t come from one person; everyone needs to be on the same bus and heading in the same direction! It’s a terrifying concept trying to think of how to get everyone on the same page, I know, but once you get momentum there’s no stopping you.

Depending on the size of your business, would recommend appointing someone (or a team) into CX role(s). It’s their responsibility to drive CX strategy and continuous improvement. In addition to this, it’s every single employee’s responsibility to take that strategy and bring it to life. One in, all in and if not, maybe they caught the wrong bus?

Technology: CX isn’t just about having the latest technology.

As an example, BGL implemented Zendesk in 2018 as our core technical support platform and yes, it’s one of the greatest pieces of technology in the support space but it’s not the only reason BGL has one of the best support offerings in our industry. 

Here’s only some of what sets us apart in Technical Support:

  • The Zendesk platform
  • An amazing, knowledgeable, and hungry Support Team
  • Strong backing from leadership and other BGL Teams
  • A Documentation Team that creates invaluable content
  • An Admin Team that acts as your first point of contact
  • Product Teams that push industry-leading software
  • Detailed workflows and processes to set the standard
  • KPI’s and data-driven decisions
  • Culture! 

My point is, it’s great that BGL has Zendesk and it makes CX easier to implement, but we wouldn’t be successful without all the moving parts.

Touchpoints: CX is not just one touchpoint in one part of the company – It's every touchpoint!

Often people make the mistake of thinking CX is most important in their Support Teams or Account Management Teams however, the fact is that it is every single touchpoint your clients have with your business (directly or indirectly).

It’s the greeting they receive at reception, it’s the website look and feel, it’s the webinar you run, it’s even down to the way some random person talks about your business in a forum. EV-ER-Y THING!

Please don’t make the mistake of thinking it matters more in any one space throughout the business! 

 

My friend, I hope that I have guided you in the right direction and in some way helped you to avoid being the person with lunch in their teeth. My final piece of advice, for now, is to not overwhelm yourself with the big picture. Zoom in, break it down bit by bit and adopt this as a lifestyle change. You’ve got this, I know you do.

So, how will you approach CX and avoid the faux pas?

Love, 

Your CX BFF

BGL releases portfolio consolidation with AVA Systems

By BGL Update, Simple Fund 360, Simple Invest 360No Comments

BGL is proud to announce Simple Fund 360 and Simple Invest 360 are now integrated with advisory and reporting software solution, AVA Systems.

“It’s great to add AVA Systems to the BGL Ecosystem” said Ron Lesh, BGL’s Managing Director. “The integration between Simple Fund 360, Simple Invest 360 and AVA Systems provides consolidated portfolio reporting for fund, trust, company and individual portfolios giving our clients and their clients a holistic portfolio view.”

Andrew Quinn, CEO and Founder of AVA Systems, said: “We’re thrilled with this partnership and to be able to offer BGL clients AVAs grouped reporting tool straight from their platform. Personally, I have been in the corporate advisory and insolvency sector for over a decade and saw the niche for accountants needing software to become more hands for their clients. Coupled with AVAs family grouped reporting ability and AVAs integration with BGL, AVA can now allow accountants to advise on how their clients are doing swiftly and efficiently. Superannuation, investments and businesses all tied into one.”

Apart from integrating with the BGL product suite through Simple Fund 360 and Simple Invest 360, AVA also allows clients to consolidate Xero ledgers with more integrations coming in the near future. “This is a real win-win for our clients” added Lesh.

BGL currently has over 350 partners in our Ecosystem and it is great to be able to add AVA Systems to the list.

For more information about this seamless and intelligent integration, visit: http://ava-systems.com/trynow 

Cryptocurrency War Blog

How fighting against cryptocurrency is an unwinnable war

By BGL Update, TechnologyNo Comments

Despite the best efforts of financial regulators and threatened centralised institutions, the war on cryptocurrency seems to be unwinnable.

While cryptocurrencies may have come off the boil recently, there have been a few key events that have presented themselves that would imply they are not going to disappear completely from public view – and definitely not from investor portfolios.

Is it all a Ponzi scheme? Is it enabling criminal activity? Despite the best efforts of financial regulators and threatened centralised institutions, the war on cryptocurrency seems to be unwinnable.

In November 2021 the RBA’s head of payments, Tony Richards, was quoted in an AFR article with the usual concerns raised by institutions that are threatened by the decentralised finance movement. These were shots fired in a war against the perceived evil empire of cryptocurrency.

I too was a non-believer, silently snickering in early 2018 as Bitcoin lost almost half of its value. Since then I started small, and in more recent times there have been some key events that have made me double down on what I believe is a real area of opportunity.

Three stories that may change your mind about cryptocurrency

The CEO of Bitcoin

It must have been during a ‘snap reopening’ we had in Victoria in 2021, around August, when my daughter came home from school and told me that her friend’s mum was the CEO of Bitcoin. Wow, I thought, while Nakamoto Satoshi’s true identity is still up for debate, let’s have a look on Linkedin.

As tends to happen with news from the playground, there was some truth and some over-simplification. It turned out that the parent was a Financial Controller of a publicly listed payment and compliance company that specialised in digital assets.

Why was this significant to me? This was significant because this person had a family, a mortgage, bills to pay, and their livelihood was dependent on digital assets (cryptocurrencies) being the real deal.

Senator Jane Hume tells it how it is

During her address to the Australian Financial Review Super & Wealth Summit (Nov21), Jane Hume was direct and very clear about people who were either ignoring or trying to kill off innovation in decentralised finance – just don’t:

“Don’t be the person who thought the iPhone would never take off because people would prefer to have their music and telephone on separate devices. Don’t be the person who was still doing their financial models by hand in 2001, rather than using Excel.
Don’t be the person in 1995 who said the internet was just a place for geeks and criminals and would never become mainstream.
And don’t be the person who argued that email was a passing fad.”

~ Senator Jane HumeMinister for Women’s Economic Security, Minister for Superannuation, Financial Services and the Digital Economy.

This showed to me that at least some government officials get it and are willing to stand up for what they see as an inevitable area of innovation.

The great rotation

In December 2021 a New York Times article provided evidence of a rotation that was taking place in Silicon Valley. No longer were the prestigious roles at big tech companies such as Google, Amazon and Apple exciting or rewarding enough for the tech workforce.

The entrepreneurial spirit is real, and these visionaries were moving on to where they saw the biggest area of opportunity: blockchain technology:

“There is a giant sucking sound coming from crypto,” said Sridhar Ramaswamy, chief executive of search engine start-up Neeva and a former Google executive, who competes with crypto companies for talent. “It feels a bit like the 1990s and the birth of the internet all over again. It’s that early, that chaotic and that much full of opportunity.”

The keyword being ‘chaotic’ – with many aspects of the new world of decentralised finance (DeFi) and cryptocurrency resembling the wild west where anything goes and with great opportunity also comes great (calculated) risk.

Despite the risks, the percentage of Australians that own some form of cryptocurrency continues to increase and the industry itself locally is expanding.

Ultimately everyone needs to come to their own conclusions. Personally, I hope that we can consider the possibilities of what is new, and not just be scared by it due to it threatening ‘how things have always been done’ – after all, who among us would want to admit that we thought email was just a fad?

Celebrating 25 years of service

By BGL Update, CultureNo Comments

Today marks 25 years of service at BGL Corporate Solutions. That equates to 53% of my life being involved with a business, team and community that I love. Stop trying to guess how old I was when started. Ron Lesh says 15! I will take that.

As an individual, I am truly humbled and grateful to be able to be involved in and to serve in an organisation that is truly a remarkable success story.

From the greatest of moments to the darkest of times, central to all of this is people. And today it is the very people who have helped define me, believed in me, mentored me and stood by me that I want to celebrate.

The people that I have come to know, love and serve are the greatest part of the story.

BGL Corporate Solutions team, I thank and admire each and everyone one of you. Your relentless commitment to each other, our products, clients and community is amazing. You are the reason we are where we are today.

Matthew Crofts, Adriana Cavallo, Warren Renden, Jeevan Tokhi, Anthony Costa, S. Adrian Muscan , Ashley Avileli, James Luo + Dubi Laviati (so many more I could add) your friendship and support allows me to do what I do.

To the many great clients, prospects, partners and Ecosystem members that I have come to know and crossed paths with, it is an honor working with you and being of service to you. Your belief and support of BGL Corporate Solutions is an important part of who we are today. I applaud you.

One of the greatest joys has been, some of the friendships that have evolved. Friends that will be for life. You know who you are. Your constant check-ins, chats and trust are something I dearly value. Thank you!

Danni Tramontana my wife + friend, you are my rock.

Ron Lesh. I am grateful for your belief, loyalty, support, encouragement and friendship. You are an incredible #leader. You have been and continue to be an important figure and influence. You have helped define me, making me a better person and servant of the people. You have also positioned me for an exciting future that I look forward to stepping into knowing that I have had the best example and mentor.

And now, let’s bring on another 25 years! Yes, well past 65 years of age but with CAS 360 (Australia), Simple Fund 360 + Simple Invest 360, I will have most of my compliance matters automated so I can spend time doing that which I love and that is working at BGL Corporate Solutions.

Check out our video!

We had a lot of fun making this video and hope it makes you smile! Enjoy!

BGL adds the Trust Tax Return to Simple Invest 360!

By BGL Update, Simple Invest 360No Comments

BGL is proud to announce the release of the 2021 Trust Income Tax Return in its investment portfolio software solution, Simple Invest 360.

“This is an industry first” said Ron Lesh, BGL’s Managing Director. “No other investment platform in Australia automatically prepares income tax returns. This is a fantastic achievement by the BGL product teams and I am incredibly proud of them”

The Trust Tax Return will be released in two parts to provide BGL Simple Invest 360 clients with the opportunity to provide feedback on the functionality of the initial features in Part 1 – the paper trust income tax return, while our team works hard to release Part 2 – Electronic lodgement.

“This release includes the 2021 Trust Income Tax Return populated from the Simple Invest 360 tax calculation engine, associated schedules including the CGT Schedule, Losses Schedule, Rental Schedule, Distribution Schedules and much more” added Lesh.

“Part 2 of the release will provide clients with the ability to electronically lodge the 2021 Trust Tax Return from within Simple Invest 360. This will be the same functionality as is provided for the SMSF Annual Return in Simple Fund 360” noted Lesh.

Simple Invest 360 was launched in June 2021 to automate the tedious process of CGT record-keeping and financial reporting no matter what the tax structure – trusts, companies, partnerships or individuals. Simple Invest 360 is fully integrated with CAS 360 and Simple Fund 360 as well as providing integrated accounting workpapers, digital signing, over 350 data feeds, registry integration and BGL SmartDocs – our industry leading paper to data solution.