Gary West

Corporate Advisor

Public Practice

For the period from March 1983 to December 2015 (over 32 years), Gary worked continuously for the leading professional services practices, Peat Marwick Mitchell & Co / KPMG / WHK / Crowe Horwath.
 

Gary’s roles during this time include:

1983: Audit & Advisory, Melbourne CBD office

1984 - 1989: Accounting and Tax services, Albury regional office

1990: Management Consulting and Specialist Superannuation Advisory, Melbourne CBD office

1991 - 2015: Accounting and Business Advisory, Albury regional office 
 

Gary retired from Public practice on 31 December 2015, after 32 years of continuous service to the one practice, to pursue other commercial and corporate interests.

 

Key milestones include:

  • March 1983 - commenced as Graduate

  • January 1988 - promoted to Manager

  • July 1991 - admitted to Partnership 

 

Key leadership roles within the practice include:

  • Head of training and people development - 10 years

  • Member of the Practice executive group - 15 years

  • Deputy Managing Partner - 10 years

  • Acting Managing Partner (due to colleague illness) - 6 months

  • Head of Wealth services function including Property, Financial Planning, Superannuation and Risk insurance - 5 years

  • Team leader – Business services team - 24 years 

  • Head of marketing function - 15 years 

  • National head of Property syndication services 

 

Where the Albury practice was initially a small tax, accounting and audit focussed business, it has evolved into a diverse and extensive service offering, including financial planning, risk insurance, specialist tax, specialist superannuation, property syndication and business advisory skill sets.

Industry Expertise

Business advisory

Gary has expertise and operational strengths in the following areas of industry activity:
 

Property & real estate

  • Real estate - commercial and residential

  • Building and construction - commercial and residential

  • Investment & development  

 

Transport and Logistics/distribution
Bus public routes, bus tours, general freight, logging, line haul heavy haulage, passenger airline, ice cream, hair products, seafood and crash supplies

 

Manufacturing
Engineering, steel fabrication, glass, joinery, dairy systems, farm gates, vertical carousels, silos, trays, storage systems, farm implements and laser services 


During his professional working life, Gary has operated as an advisory partner to a large privately owned client base by the provision of the following services:

  • Strategy and future direction

  • Board structures and input/participation 

  • Strong governance and transparent decision making processes 

  • Agreed organisational values, skills & behaviours 

  • People development 

  • Funding and capital management planning

  • Stakeholder reporting 

  • Financial reporting information reporting and review against KPI/Budgets 

  • Exit strategies, and 

  • Wealth accumulation plans

 

Property

Gary was the Responsible Manager for the CHPSL property syndication business and operated that function across all Crowe Horwath offices Australia wide.
 

As at 30 June 2015, the CHPSL business line comprised:

  • 26 current commercial property syndicates

  • 7 syndicates completed and funds returned to investors, and

  • $181,971,271 investment funds under management 

 

The CHPSL business line offers commercial property investments focused on securing long leased assets and portfolios.  This is achieved by a holistic approach to commercial investment.  The objective is to achieve superior investment outcomes by managing the quality, standard and returns from the assets.
 

As head of Property Services, Australia wide, Gary was responsible for the security of asset returns, the risk of which was mitigated by:

  • a risk management framework utilising ISO31000:2009, whereby strong processes and reviews identify potential risk

  • a robust Corporate Governance review and approval process via the CHPSL Board and Findex Group Board, ensures that the property investments offered to clients were consistently of a high standard

  • Sound investment management strategies

  • Extensive due diligence was undertaken on all property transactions, and

  • Strong tenant focussed asset management principals


In addition to his CHPSL responsibilities, Gary has also developed a significant private commercial property portfolio, as part of his West Family Office focus. 

 

Ancillary practice businesses

Gary was also responsible for the management of ancillary and related practice businesses, that operated under independent brands from the core accounting practice, as follows:

 

MP Personnel

Following a decision by the Partners to acquire MP Personnel, Gary was responsible for the alignment of the business to the existing functions of the practice.  
 

As well as providing recruitment, outsourcing and HR support to practice clients, Gary lead the initiative for the organisation to become a Registered Training Organisation, whereby MP provided accredited and non-accredited training to assist individuals find work or to develop the skills to advance their work prospects.
 

Importantly, the RTO component of the MP Personnel business, remains the cornerstone of its operations to this day.

 

CASE

With the introduction of the Goods and Services tax in 2000, it was apparent that the Practice needed to provide an enhanced software technology platform to assist the book keeping and accounting functions required by the new tax.
 

Gary lead the formation of the Computer Accounting Software Experts (CASE) business unit in 1999 as a prelude to the introduction of the GST and then drove the expansion of the services across the practice, as the demand for a greater range of software products was required by clients.
 

The need for a fully integrated accounting system, including Point of sale and Payroll, with support, training, processes and systems for both small to large businesses, provided the nucleus of the CASE business. 
 

By the early 2000’s, Gary was overseeing CASE specialist service delivery across a variety of software products including:

  • MYOB

  • MYOB Retail Manager POS

  • Quicken and Quickbooks

  • Sage

  • Attaché

  • Arrow
     

Compass Marketing & Business Direction

The practice decided to formalise a marketing support function within the practice and an appropriate service professional was engaged.
 

To ensure that the service delivery to the practice was cost effective, Gary introduced an external service line available to both the professional advisors and to the clients, Compass Marketing.  With a proportion of their total time providing services to clients on a fee for service basis, the ‘profit’ generated from Marketing consulting would defer the effective service cost of providing an enhanced internal marketing service.
 

The practice was one of the earlier adopters of a professional internal marketing function and it remains a key support function of the practice.  Gary remained a long-time collaborator and supporter of the Marketing function with the business. 

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