Magazine article Business Credit

Letters to the Editor

Magazine article Business Credit

Letters to the Editor

Article excerpt

Hello from Australia! I write this on a quiet November Sunday afternoon in Camden, a township of 25,000 about 45 miles southwest of Sydney (the Year 2000 Olympic City). The weather here is a fabulous 85 degrees, although over the next two months average daytime temperature will hover around 95 to as high as 110. Now that you have the weather report, let me do some serious selling.

From my visit to Chicago in May I know many of you are interested in developments in credit in Australia and our Australian Institute of Credit Management (AICM) activities. The most predominant form of business in Australia is a Proprietary Limited Company. Just under 1 million such businesses are registered with our Australian Securities Commission. The Proprietary Limited Company has been on the Australian business landscape for many decades, so it was some surprise to hear that the USA has only in the last few years introduced this form of business ownership. Protection of debts through Directors Guarantees is a well established principle in Australia on businesses with minimal invested owner equity.

Technology held center stage in your 100th Congress Exhibitors Area, and it is in this area that many Australian corporations lag behind your progress and that utilized in Europe and the United Kingdom. The future in credit in Australia is exciting and challenging as many labor intensive processes are serviced by more efficient and ever lower cost technology. Advancements in technology, communications and changing business laws are very much at the center of credit education in Australia.

The AICM has just over 4,000 members in six states and two Territories. New South Wales, of which Sydney is the capital city, has just over 1,200 members The AICM is dedicated to the development of the credit career professional, and in January 1997 we introduce our CCE program, much along the lines of your local product. Each Australian state has a division operation made up of an elected council of 7 to 15 volunteers who annually elect a president, who subsequently assigns responsibilities to the Council members. There are a total of four full-time staff across Australia, although the breadth of member services does not anywhere near rival the member services in the USA. Much of our success relies on volunteer assistance and the dedication of our small full-time team. Every two years, we conduct a National Conference, with each state convening a state conference in alternate years. In 1997, we intend to finalize uniform national short terms credit education courses, although the major education forum for credit education is via a four-year Associate Diploma Course offered through the Department of Technical and Further Education. Even this course is being launched in 1997 at a national level, evidencing that much is taking place on the Australian credit scene as the profile of credit executives is raised to greater importance in modern business practice.

We hold a Young Credit Professionals Award program annually, regular seminars and monthly meetings in most states to keep our members informed and in touch. Our bi-monthly Credit Management in Australia magazine is a showpiece of our activities and carries many informative articles of real use for those engaged in credit and finance activities.

Our key activity is our National Conference, which was convened in 1996 at Surfers Paradise on the Gold Coast in sunny Queensland. In 1998, this event will take place in October in Hobart, Tasmania, where the program and the lure of touring world heritage wilderness areas will attract over 500 attendees. …

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