March 27, 2014

The talk of the town: NAB business wrap

There’s been a lot for Aussie businesses to talk about recently, from shoes to defence contracts - Australian and global markets appear to be bursting with opportunities. Here's a selection of business insights to help you uncover the opportunities across all business sectors in 2014

From shoes to defence contracts, Australian and global markets appear to be bursting with interesting opportunities.  Locally the Grand Prix recently roared into Melbourne, showcasing the power of young talent, while Lend Lease contemplated a deal that could be one of its biggest funds management opportunities ever.

Tasmanians are loving life.

The Tasmanian devil is by no means an appropriate symbol for inhabitants of the Apple Isle. According to the latest NAB Quarterly Australian Wellbeing Index, Tasmania rated highest overall for wellbeing. Overall wellbeing improved most among males aged 18-29 and females aged 30-49, defacto couples, single person households and those not employed or not retired.  Read more.

Choo-sing to IPO

Shoe fetishists around the world woke to the news that Lebelux, the company that owns the famed Jimmy Choo shoe label, has had preliminary meetings with bankers about the possible sale of a stake in the luxury shoemaker via an initial public offering. Another sign that the global IPO market is picking up. Read more.

Aussie minnow bites global sharks

Port Macquarie marine contractor Birdon Group fought off global competitors and won a $US259 million contract to supply specialty naval craft to the US Army. Birdon Managing Director Jamie Bruce noted the contract win was a resounding global endorsement of the strength of Australian research and development capability – a wonderful reflection of the potential of Australia’s defence and manufacturing industries. Read more.

The 2014 Australian Grand Prix hosted youngest ever points scorer.

The Australian Grand Prix brought the streets of Melbourne to life recently, and while Australia’s Daniel Ricciardo was denied his first podium finish, another first was recorded, with Daniil Kvyat, who finished ninth, becoming the youngest ever F1 point-scorer. Kevin Magnussen finished third on debut and was the second youngest ever points scorer. The event was great reminder to Aussie businesses that the passion of youth can be a great asset. Read more.

A big week for Australia in Silicon Valley

Australian technology entrepreneur Ben Werther raised US$38 million in investment for his Silicon Valley firm, one of the largest cash injections received by an Australian running a tech start-up. Werther’s big data company, Platfora, builds software that enables companies to analyse data to improve business decisions. The deal demonstrates that there are opportunities for Australian technology ingenuity to be showcased offshore. Read more.

Lend Lease is scoping out a healthy opportunity.

The market was alight with rumours recently that Lend Lease is competing to buy Healthscope’s $1.25 billion property portfolio with a view to developing some of the company’s 28 hospital sites. Healthscope, one of Australia’s largest private hospital, pathology and medical centre operators, is being prepared for sale or IPO – it’s believed the group may split off the property business to reduce the size of the float. The potential deal is an interesting indicator that the Aussie M&A market is picking up. Read more.

The long arm of Aussie fund managers.

Australia based trading firm BestEx announced a tie-up with global trading firm Tora to give Australian fund managers access to better execution of equity trades beyond Australia and into global markets. The deal has the potential to ensure Aussie investors are getting the best value for money when it comes to execution. Read more.

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