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Small business survey reinforces key succession planning issues - Hartsuyker.



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Media Contact: Greg Pierce 02 66 52 62 33 0408 532 785 Email:greg.pierce@aph.gov.au Canberra: 62 77 4447

Luke Hartsuyker MP Federal Member for Cowper

MEDIA RELEASE

April 27, 2004

Small business survey reinforces key succession planning issues - Hartsuyker

Federal Member for Cowper, Luke Hartsuyker, says the results of a small business survey released by CPA Australia have confirmed many of the issues highlighted by the Page Research Centre.

Mr Hartsuyker, who is the chairperson of a small business working group at the Page Research Centre, welcomed the release of the CPA survey which highlighted concerns over the ability of small business owners to sell their business on retirement.

The CPA survey concluded that one in three small business people who intend to retire in the next five years believe it will be difficult to find a buyer for their business. This is despite half of all business people surveyed declaring that the sale of their business was the primary source of funding their retirement.

Mr Hartsuyker said the CPA Australia’s Business Policy Adviser, Judy Hartcher, was a member of the Page Research Centre’s small business working group which was identifying the key issues confronting the small business sector.

One April 7, 2004, the Centre hosted a forum in Coffs Harbour to discuss small business issues with key sector stakeholders and local business people.

“The CPA Australia survey confirms many of the issues which the Page Research Centre is focused on in relation to small business ands rural and regional Australia,” Mr Hartsuyker said.

“Current Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show 7.5 per cent of business exit each year. This has been confirmed by the CPA Australia survey which showed 40 per cent of small businesses will exit in the next five years.”

Mr Hartsuyker said the challenge of succession planning creates two major issues. The first is the capacity of small business owners to fund their retirement as a result of the sale of their businesses.

“The second is the capacity to replace those services in the market which is being exited following the retirement of an established small business person. This is of greatest concern where there is not growth in that market.”

Media Contact: Greg Pierce 02 66 52 62 33. Mobile 0408 532 785 Email: greg.pierce@aph.gov.au Canberra: 6277 4447

Mr Hartsuyker said the current Commonwealth government had worked hard to get the settings right for small business through providing a low interest rate, high growth environment.

“We have to encourage more young entrepreneurs into the small business sector and we must ensure that existing operators are educated in the options available to them so that they can maximise their return on retirement.”

Mr Hartsuyker said the current settings would be threatened by the small business platform being promoted by the Labor Party.

“Labor proposes to remove the flexibility of employment arrangements between small business and employees,” Mr Hartsuyker said.

“This will make more small businesses unviable, forcing many operators to exit the sector, costing thousand of jobs and compounding retirement issues,” Mr Hartsuyker said.

END