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BGL recognised as Victorian State Winner of the 2023 Australian Achiever Awards

By BGL Update, In the MediaNo Comments

BGL is proud to be recognised as Victorian State Winner of the 2023 Australian Achiever Award with a sensational score of 98.80% for customer satisfaction.

The award included special recognition of Ron Lesh, Daniel Tramontana, Adriana Cavallo, Damien Gunatillake, Luca Ranellone and Peter Di Stefano for their remarkable customer service.

“This is a fantastic achievement and recognition of the BGL Team. I am incredibly proud!” said Ron Lesh, BGL’s Managing Director. “This is the 18th Australian Achiever Award won by BGL and proves, again and again, our commitment to providing remarkable experiences and sensational customer service to our clients”.

Australian Achiever Awards are an independent award system based on assessments from the business customers. The award system focuses on eight criteria: Time-related Service, Addressing Client Needs, Care and Attention, Value, Attitude, Communication, Overall Perception and Referral. The judging process for 2023’s Australian Achiever Awards for Australia’s Information & Communications Technology Services category was completed on 5 May 2023.

“I am very proud that BGL achieved an impressive customer satisfaction score of 98.80% as well as being named the Victorian State Winner” added Lesh. “As a business, our goal is to provide exceptional service that distinguishes us from others and excites our clients and to be acknowledged for our efforts, most importantly by our clients, is truly wonderful”.

“Congratulations must go to the entire BGL Team on this well-deserved recognition and it was great to see Daniel, Adriana, Damien, Luca, and Peter mentioned in the award presentation. A huge thanks also to all our clients and partners for your continued support. We would not win these awards without all of you!” added Lesh.

The recognition was accompanied by glowing testimonials from our clients, exemplifying BGL’s remarkable customer service. 

“The BGL Corporate Solutions team are super friendly and helpful. There is nothing that is too much trouble for them. They are happy to answer any of my questions, even if the answers are obvious. The dealings I have with them feel more like a personal relationship rather than us being a customer. They are the best business that I deal with. I describe Ron, Daniel, Adriana & Damien as my fabulous four.”

“BGL Corporate Solutions are easy to deal with. They understand our needs and what we are looking for. Their program that we use is user-friendly. And they are always happy to help us.”

“They offer us day-to-day support. My business development manager handles my queries. I can call Peter directly; we have open lines of communication. He is efficient in following up and calls back straight away. They are constantly working on their software development and making sure we use the software to optimal effect. And they are always finding solutions for us. When they come to Sydney, they touch base with us in person. I enjoy their automated customer service, as they reply within twenty-four hours.”

QAR needs to consider specialisation of SMSF advice

By In the Media, Industry, SMSF AdviserNo Comments

Written by Keeli Cambourne
Published by SMSF Adviser on 19 May 2023
Click here to read on the SMSF Adviser website

As the debate continues to rage around the Quality of Advice Review, an SMSF industry expert has suggested the Government needs to consider the speciality aspect involved in sector.

In the latest SMSF Adviser podcast, Aaron Dunn, CEO of Smarter SMSF, said the current proposals from the Government go against the reason the reforms were put in place in the first place.

“We’ve heard some views from the SMSF Association that suggested that this idea of an experience-only pathway kind of goes against why those reforms were put in place in the first place in terms of increasing professional standards and education for advisors,” he said.

“I guess from the SMSF point of view, it has been, for a long time, trying to acknowledge the fact that when you think about those that can advise in the SMSF space, there’s a level of specialisation that occurs.

“And then we’re seeing the FAAA advocating for a long-time for the recognition of experienced advisors, and the fact we’ve seen a huge attrition in the industry.”

Mr Dunn said he understands the Government is trying to find a balance but, in terms of what the SMSF Association said in its submission, it also needs to ensure, that it recognises there are pockets of the industry that have a level of specialisation.

“It’s the old analogy where you’ve got general practitioners, and then you have surgeons,” he said.

“It’s about finding the right level of experience, and then finding the right levels of specialties into those areas, because you don’t want a general practitioner advising on speciality surgical techniques.

“SMSFs are unique and have their own complexities so you want to ensure that you’re engaging with those that are suitably qualified to be able to provide that advice.

“It is a juggling act that the government is trying to balance here and I certainly don’t envy them, because you’re they’re going to have competing demands on both sides of the equation.”

Meanwhile, in a recent webinar, DBA Lawyers senior Associate Shaun Backhaus commented that while the QAR report didn’t address any matters specific to the SMSF sector, it did consider changes to the advice that could be provided by (APRA)-regulated funds.

“The report suggested the trustees of APRA-regulated funds be allowed to provide personal advice to members and charge them for it,” he said.

“However, the proposal is that the trustees of large super funds would be able to provide personal advice to members taking into account their wider circumstances, including the spouse’s circumstances and presumably what spouses are owning, and so on.

“As such, is it going to be possible to put a balance into one of these large funds and then get advice that takes into account your SMSF benefits as well?

“The SMSF is part of your wider personal advice needs and the fund would not be able to give proper personal advice without taking into account someone’s SMSF as well.”

BGL integrates with Compare n Save – a hassle-free loan comparison solution

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

BGL is proud to announce the launch of its integration with loan comparison service provider, Compare n Save.

“We are excited to add Compare n Save to the BGL Ecosystem,” said Ron Lesh, BGL’s Managing Director. “This integration will provide BGL’s Simple Fund 360 and Simple Invest 360 clients with a hassle-free and simple loan comparison solution that will add value to their customer service offering.”

Compare n Save is a fintech platform with an ownership stake in TAG Finance and Loans, a traditional mortgage broking fulfilment business. “We are extremely proud of the BGL partnership. It is a glowing endorsement of our fintech and fulfilment capabilities and further strengthens our relationship with BGL”, said Sal Cinque, Director of Compare n Save and CEO of TAG Finance and Loans.

Brad Wilkinson, Head of Ecosystem at BGL, said: “The BGL and Compare n Save integration will help advisors, accountants, and other BGL clients compare hundreds of loans from more than 30 of Australia’s top banks and other lenders for home, investment and SMSFs. It will also help clients easily structure debt for property purchases and conduct regular loan reviews to lower interest costs for their clients. Loans are fulfilled via an experienced broker network with access to over 500 brokers nationally.”

BGL clients can access the Compare n Save app within their Simple Fund 360 and Simple Invest 360 Property Console screen or via the BGL Ecosystem.

BGL’s free and open API is used extensively across the industry. Over 350 data feed and integration partners in the BGL Ecosystem deliver a holistic experience to our clients.

So, will AI be the end of the world (or at least the accounting profession)?

By In the Media, Industry, TechnologyNo Comments

Written by David Smith 
Published by Smithink on 5 May 2023
Click here to read on the Smithink website

So, will AI be the end of the world (or at least the accounting profession)?

You’d have to be a hermit without an internet connection to have missed all the noise being made about ChatGPT and other AI bots. In some people’s minds, they are harbingers of the end of the world.

They are certainly interesting. It is that interest that has seen the fastest take-up of a technology in history although, I suspect, being free and interesting has something to do with that. It seems to me there are lots of people playing with it to determine the impact on how they may operate in the future.

In some people’s minds, they could signal the end of search engines. Having consumed 30% of the internet means they can interpret the web in a far more intelligent fashion and interact with the user to enhance the information delivered.

So at a simple level, you can interact with it, ask questions, and get it to do something. In a more sophisticated fashion, you can feed it some data and get it to analyse it.

Some accountants have gotten excited about its ability to code transactions or analyse financial results. However, we already have some pretty sophisticated tools to do these things and from what I have seen the analysis that the current version of the AI bots come up with are pretty basic. However, it will only improve as more and more sophisticated models with bigger datasets are rolled out.

It might be in advisory where it will initially deliver some advantages. Posing questions about a particular issue (such as a tax issue) could be interesting. In a way, it provides another set of eyes looking at a problem. At no cost, you might find some ideas that may enable you to improve the advice that you would give a client.

Would I rely upon it? No. You need to treat what is served up to you the same as you would treat research delivered to you by a junior staff member. It may contain some helpful elements but it is likely to contain errors.

We are already seeing the IT providers starting to add AI functionality to their applications. This is perhaps where we will see some substantial efficiency gains delivered. Automating responses to client queries might be one example. Automating basic tasks inside the firm is another.

Another area of some substantial gains might be in auditing – looking for anomalies in transactions for example or perhaps assessing risk.

At the simplest level, it may help with the written word. Writing blogs for example. Below is a blog that ChatGPT wrote for me from the question “Sophisticated ideas to run an accounting firm”. It’s interesting but the ideas aren’t that sophisticated in my opinion, but they’re also not dumb.

Everyone should at least fire it up and have a play. Try different things. There will be uses found that no one has even thought of yet.

Think of it as your personal cyborg who can help enhance your performance. I am firmly of the view that this technology will not replace accountants but it will definitely enhance them.

CHATGPT’s sophisticated ideas to run an accounting firm (unedited)

Running an accounting firm requires more than just crunching numbers and filing taxes. To truly stand out in a crowded marketplace, you need to have sophisticated ideas and strategies that set you apart from the competition. Here are some sophisticated ideas to run an accounting firm:

  1. Emphasise value over price: Many accounting firms compete on price, which can be a race to the bottom. Instead, focus on the value you provide to clients. Highlight your expertise, your personalised service, and the ways you can help clients save money and grow their businesses. By emphasising value, you can attract clients who are willing to pay a premium for your services.
  2. Leverage technology: Technology is transforming the accounting industry, and firms that don’t embrace it risk falling behind. Consider using cloud-based accounting software that allows clients to access their financial information from anywhere, or incorporating artificial intelligence and machine learning into your processes. By using technology to streamline your operations and provide better service, you can gain a competitive edge.
  3. Offer specialised services: While many accounting firms offer a broad range of services, consider specialising in a particular niche. For example, you could focus on serving a specific industry, such as healthcare or real estate, or offer specialised services like forensic accounting or business valuation. By becoming an expert in a particular area, you can attract clients who are looking for specialised knowledge and expertise.
  4. Develop a strong brand: Your brand is more than just a logo or a tagline – it’s the way you present your firm to the world. Invest in developing a strong brand that reflects your values, your expertise, and your unique selling proposition. Consider hiring a branding agency to help you develop a cohesive visual identity and messaging strategy.
  5. Focus on client relationships: At the end of the day, accounting is a people business. Focus on building strong relationships with your clients by providing personalised service, being responsive to their needs, and going above and beyond to help them achieve their goals. By building a loyal client base, you can create a steady stream of referrals and repeat business.
  6. Invest in your team: Your team is the backbone of your firm, so it’s important to invest in their professional development and wellbeing. Provide opportunities for training and education, offer competitive compensation and benefits, and create a positive work culture that fosters collaboration and innovation.

In conclusion, running an accounting firm requires more than just technical expertise – it requires a strategic approach to business. By emphasising value over price, leveraging technology, offering specialised services, developing a strong brand, focusing on client relationships, and investing in your team, you can create a successful and sustainable accounting firm that stands out in a crowded marketplace.

BGL’s CAS 360 Singapore turns one!

By BGL Update, CAS 360No Comments

BGL is proud to celebrate the 1st anniversary of its company secretarial software solution, CAS 360 Singapore.

The milestone comes just a week after BGL surpassed 800,000 companies managed by its CAS 360 software across Australia, New Zealand and Singapore. 

“I’m incredibly proud of the BGL Team and what they have achieved over the past 12 months,” said Ron Lesh, BGL’s Managing Director. The success of CAS 360 Singapore is a testament to their hard work and dedication. I also want to thank our clients for providing valuable feedback and helping drive the development of CAS 360 Singapore, which today supports over 120 firms, managing over 14,000 companies. A truly fantastic achievement by all.” 

Launched in late April 2022, CAS 360 Singapore is a complete company secretarial software solution and a huge time-saver for accounting firms and corporate service providers. With its powerful automation, CAS 360 provides workflows for managing common changes for companies and Annual Returns, saving clients time and increasing their productivity. In addition, CAS 360 was Singapore’s first cloud-based company secretarial software to integrate with the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA)’s Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) to provide seamless electronic Annual Return and updates of share information filing. 

Warren Renden, Head of CAS 360 at BGL, said: “The CAS 360 Team has delivered well beyond our greatest expectations, releasing an impressive 8 software updates in just 12 months, adding a range of new features including automated document reminders, support for foreign branch companies, Singapore company name change documents, a dedicated AML / CDD compliance workflow and much more. However, these features are just the tip of the iceberg. CAS 360 boasts an extensive feature set that continues to grow with new, client-focused features and enhancements now released every 2 weeks.”

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

For more information, please visit 

Simple Fund 360 Subscription Fee Increase – 1 July 2023

By BGL Update, Simple Fund 360No Comments

BGL will increase the base subscription fee for Simple Fund 360 Professional Edition on 1 July 2023. 

It has been 2 years since BGL last increased its Simple Fund 360 Professional Edition software subscription fees, and a lot has happened in that time.

Over the past 2 years, the Simple Fund 360 Team has released software updates every 3 weeks with hundreds of new features, enhancements and compliance changes. Some of the new features include:

The time has therefore come to increase the Simple Fund 360 Professional Edition software subscription fees.

From 1 July 2023, the base subscription fee for Simple Fund 360 Professional Edition will increase from $110.00 per fund per annum plus GST to $120.00 per fund per annum plus GST.

There is no change in subscription fees for the Simple Fund 360 Bank Data or Share Data Pack services.

Clients will have the opportunity “Lock in current subscription pricing” by paying their Simple Fund 360 Professional Edition software subscription fees annually in advance at the current base subscription rate before 30 June 2023. BGL will provide details of how to take advantage of this opportunity soon.

If you have questions regarding your BGL software subscription, please reply to this email or call your Account Manager on 1300 654 401.