Marine icon making a fresh start
Businesses will pay for privacy law
BUSINESSES face an expensive technology headache after changes to national privacy laws passed the Senate last month, Southport Chamber of Commerce president Laird Marshall says.
The Privacy Amendment (Notifiable Data Breaches) Bill, to come into force in February next year, requires business with revenues of more than $3 million to puts plans in for possible data breaches.
Failure to comply could lead to fines of up to $1.8 million for organisations and $360,000 for individuals. Those that take pre-emptive or remedial action may be exempt from the notification requirements.
Mr Marshall, who is also managing director of Accountable List Brokers, said businesses with outdated systems would have to dedicate significant money and time to take steps to comply the new laws.
“Organisations with a turnover higher than $3 million, as well as some small businesses, private health service providers, and many government agencies will be required to address data breaches.”
Mr Marshall said businesses suspecting their data had been breached would need to directly contact all individuals at risk, or communicate the breach via other media to a wider audience. THE new owners of Southport’s Nitro Marine are hoping to chart a new course for the struggling business, which has been a fixture of the Gold Coast boating scene for nearly four decades.
Mark Saveall took over the running of Nitro Marine, established in 1980, one month ago with the financial backing of a Gold Coast investor.
The business sells and services boats from its 1200 sqm Smith St premises.
Nitro was named engine maker Mercury Marine’s dealer of the year for 2007, when it was owned by Michael and Therese Wright, but business has since declined.
Mr Saveall, who spent 10 years working for Harvey Norman and more recently at McGrath Estate Agents, described himself as a “passionate fisherman” who jumped at the opportunity to manage Nitro when it came to the market.
“It seemed like an awesome opportunity to turn a flagging business around,” he said.
“This used to be the No.1 Mercury dealer in Australia. It certainly is not No.1 at the moment but we intend to get there again if we have our way.”
Mr Saveall visited the busi- ness as a “secret shopper” prior to the purchase and immediately identified a number of areas that could be improved.
“The first thing we did was bring in stock. They weren’t carrying any stock. If someone wanted to buy an outboard motor, they want to pick it up straight away and that was not happening.”
Mr Saveall said the product mix in the showroom did not cater to the Gold Coast market.
“Eighty-two per cent of boats sold are for the fishing market here on the Gold Coast,” he said.
“When we started here only 10 per cent of the stock was related to the fishing industry. The rest was tailored to the jetskiing and leisure boat markets. It was the wrong mix.”
Fixing that included becoming the exclusive dealer for Currumbin-based aluminium boat manufacturer Makocraft.
Mr Saveall said Makocraft, run by the Stessl family, has carved out a solid reputation for producing quality tinnies.
“We think these boats will be our biggest seller. They are between $20,000 and $25,000 depending on the motor used and it suits families. It is easy to drive because it is like steering a car. It is an all-rounder.”
He said they recently tested a Makocraft boat fitted with a 60-horsepower Mercury engine on the Broadwater.
“We got up to 55km/h. It performed exactly the way we wanted it to.”
In addition to Makocraft, Nitro stocks six other brands at its Southport showroom, Tracker, Pioneer, Crownline, Tournament, Polycraft and Mako.
Mr Saveall said it was important the business had boats suited to mid-market and upmarket buyers.
“We try to cater for everything for a $5000 tinnie to a $200,000 offshore fishing boat.”
He said the business previously lost money on sales and made up for it through servicing and spare parts.
“We’re going to change the business so our sales keep the doors open and what we make out of servicing and spare parts is our profit margin.”
Mark Saveall has taken over boat dealership and service centre Nitro Marine, which has been on the Coast since 1980.