The nation’s capital played host to the Australian Shop & Office Fitting Industry’s major awards programs this weekend, and fittingly featured winners from all over Australia.


The ASOFIA 2018-2019 Interior Fitout Awards, are the highest honours of shopfitting and celebrate the wealth of talent within the industry that delivers innovation and creativity to retail, hospitality and office spaces everywhere.


As shopping centres move more into leisure and entertainment centres, retail design and aesthetics have continued to create spaces that invite us to stay awhile and enjoy not only the shopping but also the environment. The Awards, hosted by the Australian Shop & Office Fitting Industry Association (ASOFIA), recognise the outstanding contribution the industry is making, in changing the way we shop.


With 22 categories, entries were received from across the country, with the winners announced in conjunction with ASOFIA’s 22nd National Conference in Canberra.


Sponsored by Laminex, the Awards once again highlighted some incredible examples of beautiful design and craftsmanship – in restaurants, clubs, healthcare, commercial office spaces and more – all completed over the past 18 months.


Gerard Ryan, CEO of ASOFIA, has once again praised the outstanding level of works submitted for the Awards. “The standard of fitout continues to rise, and the level of design we are seeing is extraordinary. The fitout industry is rising to the many new challenges in retail, and showing the talent that exists within our membership,” Gerard said at the Awards ceremony.


The highly sought-after National Interior Fitout of the Year Award went to RYDE JOINERY, for their multi-million-dollar T4 Gaming fitout at Canterbury League Club. The stunning refurbishment features custom joinery, timbers, metal surfaces, stone and laminates to create a complex and beautiful space that is unique and luxurious.


“This is one of the most incredible fitouts, in every way. A thoroughly deserved win,” Gerard said.


And it wasn’t just the big dollar projects which were successful. Clever design and quality construction were the standout elements in the winner of the ‘Fitout up to $150k’ category.  INDETAIL JOINERY won this honour with their stylish fitout of Act of Wine in Victoria.


The Best Use of Laminex award was taken out by PRESTIGE JOINERY, for their impressive use of this adaptive product across kitchens, work hubs, a childcare fitout, reception areas, pods and more.


“Each year, the entries are more and more impressive. The industry is really taking on the changing face of retail and making it more creative, more professional and more exciting. The winners presented stand-out projects worthy of recognition – not only at our Awards, but across the industry,” Mr Ryan said.


One of the more unique categories, the Australian Made Award, celebrates all things Australian and recognises those companies that integrate Australian materials, promote Australian manufacturing and support local master tradespeople. This year the award was taken out by UNITA, for their Place Woolloongabba office fitout – a one-of-a kind boutique workspace tailored to work within one of the area’s oldest buildings, complimenting the history of the building and the innovative brand of the occupants.


At a state level, RYDE JOINERY took out the NSW award for their glamourous fitout of the Canterbury League Club Banyan Café while Victoria’s ONE68 won their state award for their extensive, custom re-build of the Ocean 12 nightclub. Tasmania’s award was taken away by VOS CONSTRUCTION & JOINERY for their beautifully finished project Eternal Women’s Health, and in Queensland, a high-end fitout of a Louis Vuitton retail space saw PROJECTS QUEENSLAND pick up the prize. Another fashion retail space was deemed the winner in Western Australia, where DIVERSE SHOPFITTERS were awarded the top spot for their Camilla and Marc design.


The ASOFIA 2018-2019 Design Awards had three Category Sponsors; Scentre Group for Best Design Retail, Hasbuilt Projects for Best Design Commercial and USG Boral for Best Design Professional Suites.


In the design awards, colour, scale, bold statements and clever planning were used to create spaces that became destinations in themselves.

The Best Design Hospitality award winner, COLLECTIVUS, took home the trophy for their blend of contemporary design with traditional Japanese detail in the custom-created dining space at Ichi Ban Sushi. The unique design features included custom wall graphics, signage and colour to enthuse diners and break away from the common sushi train style of eatery.


Best Design Commercial went to ELLIVO ARCHITECTS for their major refurbishment of the QLD Master Builders office. There were many facets of design to be considered, as well as heritage considerations and a client with more than a passing interest in quality construction and workmanship.


MEDIFIT DESIGN & CONSTRUCT were announced winners of the Best Design Professional Suites award for their work at Diverse Dental. The concept needed to be inviting, modern and appeal to kids as much as adults. The award-winning design did just that.


MASTERPLANNERS INTERIORS’s design for Pantryman WA, stood out as the winner for the Best Design Retail – Independent, with the modern industrial feel, hero lighting and custom shelving catching the judges’ eye.

Best Design Retail – National was won by ACRD for the Telstra Shop VIC which was a triumph that brought together the possibilities of the future with innovative products, interactive customer spaces and brand messaging. ACRD’s Telstra Future Retail Environment, the Glen, is the first store to roll out the new look.


It seems the future of shopfitting is also in good hands, with the 2019 ASOFIA / Thomas Brown Apprentice of the Year Awards again being a very tight race between the five state winners vying for the coveted national award. The standard of work produced by young workers is increasing every year, making the judging a particularly difficult task. Ultimately, the national award was won by LACHLAN FALSON, of RYDER SHOP AND OFFICE FITTING. With last year’s national winner also part of the RYDER team, these young men are proving that hard work and talent go a long way.


“These awards programs continue to shine a light on the tremendous standard of work our industry is producing, in the face of tighter budgets, bigger expectations and continuous technology demands. The future is very bright for ASOFIA members, and we once again congratulate all our winners!” Mr Ryan concluded.


GPT’s Melbourne Central is set to undergo its biggest transformation in almost 20 years as part of a quest to become a ‘temple of meaning’ for Melburnians and evolve into a globally-recognised place of cultural and social exchange that nurtures and inspires its users.

As of 2021, the centre will reinvent itself with the addition of an expansive open-air space offering a 2,000m2 public oasis atop the city, a series of unexpected experiential spaces, a surprising new large-scale art installation, exciting hawker stalls and much more.

An experiential space, it will be a haven for emerging retail and cultural concepts, a place for events, education and learning.

Coupled with the centre’s recently announced new 10-storey commercial office tower Frame, as well as its newly opened 1,800 square metre boutique food and drink retail hub ELLA, it marks the largest transformation of the site since its 2001 redevelopment following the departure of Japanese department store Daimaru.

And in a nod to the past, Melbourne Central’s owner The GPT Group has brought back the original architects, ARM Architecture, responsible for the dramatic makeover that reimagined it as the distinct collection of precincts and laneways it is now known for.

Its full designs will be unveiled in the coming months but the new look will involve the addition of two new retail levels that transition to the new timber office tower’s skylobby and surrounding rooftop.

Existing Drewery Place will be reactivated, becoming an additional entry for the commercial tower and featuring a small cafe; while the rooftop will face to the north, commanding plenty of light and views of the iconic Melbourne Central cone.

ARM Architecture Principal Ian McDougall said Melbourne Central was the first CBD site to explore such dramatically transformative changes to its offer in order to maximise its relevance.

“Melbourne Central is really reconceiving the notion of what retail is and exploring what else it can be and seeing its own rooftop as a valuable site for more than just financial exchange,” he said.


Melbourne Central’s redevelopment plans are currently being considered by Melbourne City Council for approval, with construction projected to commence in early 2020 with minimal impacts to trading.


Source: Shopping Centre News

In a significant milestone, the Australian Building and Construction Commission has exceeded $1 million in recovered wages for almost 1400 workers.

The ABCC has been responsible for ensuring building and construction workers are paid correctly since 2 December 2016 and continues to build its work in this area.

The ABCC has so far audited over 350 employers to ensure they are paying their workers correctly and has undertaken over 100 investigations into alleged underpayments.

Money recovered by the ABCC for workers includes:

 Over $115,000 back paid to seven Queensland bricklayers after their employer failed to comply with their enterprise agreement

 Over $57,000 back paid to five carpentry apprentices in NSW after their employer failed to pay the modern award

 $54,000 recovered for 10 formwork workers in NSW after their company failed to comply with its enterprise agreement

 $23,500 back paid to 67 labour hire workers in WA after their employer misclassified them under the modern award and did not pay the correct rates for overtime work

 $10,223 back paid to 10 scaffolding workers in NT after it was found their employer failed to pay overtime and their fares and travel allowance

 The ABCC has also commenced legal action against an employer in Victoria who is alleged to have failed to pay a labourer $22,000 and threatened to sack the worker when he asked about his pay.

ABCC Commissioner Stephen McBurney said these results were a timely reminder for employers to make sure they are paying their workers correctly.

“The $1 million milestone achieved this week demonstrates our commitment to ensuring we are fulfilling our statutory mandate as a full service regulator,” Mr McBurney said.

“Some of the problems we commonly identify include non-payment of allowances, failure to pay minimum wage rates, failure to keep proper records and confusion about the correct industrial instrument.

“We stand ready to assist any employer who is unsure of the legal obligations or any worker who believes they have not been paid what they are owed.”

Anyone with concerns about wages and entitlements in the building and construction industry can call our hotline on 1800 003 338 or complete our anonymous reporting form at

The Federal Circuit Court in Brisbane has found Forest Meiers Construction liable to pay $200,000 in compensation for taking adverse action and discriminating against a tiling subcontractor because they did not have an enterprise agreement with the CFMMEU.

The Court found that Forest Meiers and its Construction Manager William Munro, contravened the Fair Work Act by discriminating against the subcontractor.

On 24 February 2014, the tiling company submitted a quote to Forest Meiers for a project in Hamilton, with the tiling company becoming the preferred bidder on the project.

When Forest Meiers asked if the tiling company had an enterprise agreement with the CFMMEU, the company’s managing director said he already had a (non-union) enterprise agreement registered with the Fair Work Commission but was happy to pay the union rates for the purposes of the project.

The tiling company’s managing director then agreed to a Forest Meiers proposal to register a new company so it could sign up to a CFMMEU enterprise agreement.

During a meeting on 18 July 2014, Mr Munro told the tiling company’s managing director.

“The Union contacted me at around 5:00 yesterday. They threatened action on the site if we signed you up.”

Judge Jarrett found that notwithstanding the possibility of union disruption, Forest Meiers had a choice to make:

“I accept that Mr Munro believed that the CFMEU or the BLF would cause disruption and delay which in turn would cause financial disadvantage and reputational issues for Forest Meiers.”

“They were faced with the prospect of industrial action if they engaged C&K and if they did not, the next closest tenderer who had an EBA with the CFMEU was $300,000 more expensive than C&K.”

“I find, that the fact that C&K did not have an enterprise agreement with the CFMEU was a substantive and operative reason for Mr Munro’s decision not to accept C&K’s tender for the Tiling Works.”

“… Forest Meiers had a choice to make. Mr Munro… knew that if the CFMEU was applying pressure not to engage C&K because it had no agreement with that company, that pressure was illegitimate… Notwithstanding that, Mr Munro made a deliberate choice not to award the Tiling Works contract to C&K.”

The matter remains before the courts.



While most of us will be making plans for Friday night, some Australians will be wondering where they’ll sleep. More than 116,000 people experience homelessness every night, and 32% are children.

That’s not a reality ASOFIA CEO Gerard Ryan is comfortable with and that’s why on Thursday 20 June, Gerard will spend the longest and coldest night of the year sleeping on the concrete at White Bay Cruise Terminal in Sydney as part of the 2019 Vinnies CEO Sleepout.

This year Gerard is hoping to raise at least $15,000. Over the past 3 years with tremendous support from the industry along many of his friends, Gerard has been able to raise over $50,000 for this very worthy cause. Last year ASOFIA formed a team and together they raised over $45,000 in just one year.

All monies raised will go towards crisis accommodation options for families and individuals at risk of homelessness, case management and counselling, educational and living skills courses, health services and home packages for those people Vinnies helps transition to housing.

To reach Gerard’s fundraising goal, he needs your help. Donations are tax-deductible and can be processed online.

Having a safe place to call home should be the right of every Australian.

Help Gerard fight 👊🏽homelessness by donating at ➡️…/gerard-ryan/sydney

Melbourne developer Welsh Group has secured the purchase of an additional site in the rapidly growing Victorian suburb of Armstrong Creek in the Geelong region. The acquisition of 500-540 Surf Coast Highway completes the Welsh Group ownership of the major mixed-use Armstrong Creek Town Centre, resulting in over 40ha of landholdings for Welsh Group. Construction of the site is due to commence in the coming weeks.

The Welsh Group has a strong investment within the Geelong region through its residential homes division, Welsh Homes.

Andrew Welsh, Managing Director, said. “The Armstrong Creek Town Centre will be the first major commercial project in this region delivered by Welsh Group, and will include a range of retail, leisure and entertainment, residential and community facilities; bringing an array of services and employment opportunities to the growing community.”

Stage 1 of the development, which has now received Planning Approval, comprises of a Coles supermarket along with supporting specialty retail. Welsh Group has an additional permit pending approval for fast food and bulky goods along the Surf Coast Highway.







“Stage 1 will initially service approximately 58,000 people, and provide in excess of 1,100 ongoing jobs, with the suburb set to rapidly increase to over 110,000 residents by 2036,” Welsh said.

Stage 1 of the Town Centre is scheduled to open in 2020. Welsh Group have appointed Colliers International as exclusive leasing agents across the town centre and freestanding pad sites along the Surf Coast Highway, ensuring a seamless and suitably master planned offering that will benefit the wider region.

Colliers International’s Mike Crittenden and Adam Lester will manage the leasing campaign. “The initial off market campaign in securing the anchors has already generated significant local and national retail interest for the soon to be launched specialty tenancies”, Crittenden said.


Source: Shopping Centre News

Single Touch Payroll (STP) is an ATO compliance regulation that requires employers to send employee payroll information including salary, wages, PAYG withholding and superannuation to the Australian Tax Office (ATO) at the same time as their standard pay run.

This is a significant change, for small business in particular, that will require many employers to upgrade or replace their payroll system in order to meet their reporting obligations.

Last month, the Australian Government officially passed legislation to expand Single Touch payroll to all employers. This is being done in two phases:

  • Phase 1: Single Touch Payroll became mandatory on 1 July 2018 for all employers with 20 or more employees,
  • Phase 2: Single Touch Payroll will become mandatory for employers with 19 or less employees from 1 July 2019.


The ATO has announced special rules for STP micro employers (1-4 employees), to help them transition more easily into the new regime. Micro employers who engage a registered tax or BAS agent will be able to report quarterly for the first two years, rather than each time payroll is run.

Small employers can start reporting any time from the 1 July start date up to 30 September 2019. The ATO will also grant deferrals to any small employer who requests additional time to start reporting.

So how will it be different?

Previously, small businesses finalised their payroll records at the end of the financial year and produced a payment summary annual report for the ATO, outlining how much had been paid in salary or wages, the PAYG withheld, and any superannuation contributions they’d made along with a payment summary for each employee.

With Single Touch Payroll, the payment summary annual report and the payment summary will no longer exist. You will no longer need to send the ATO your annual report; simply advise them when you’ve made your last pay run of the financial year.

Similarly, you will no longer need to provide your employees with payment summaries. The STP will now be used by the ATO as the sole record of salary/wages, taxed and superannuation. Employees will be able to see their payment summary, which will now be called an ‘income statement’ by logging on to the myGov website.

When you start reporting

You will need to report your employees’ tax and super information, on or before each pay day, using your STP-enabled payroll software.

You will need to do a finalisation declaration at the end of the financial year. The information you report through STP will not be tax-ready for your employees or their registered tax agent until you make this declaration.

Superannuation will change as well. As an employer, you will now report your employees’ super liability information through STP. Super funds will then report to us once you have paid the super amount to your employees’ chosen fund.

It is your obligation as an employer to make sure employees know they will be reporting through STP. The ATO has issued a fact sheet for employees that you might want to share with your staff.

But I don’t use payroll software.

With many small businesses and other small employers not using commercial payroll software, the ATO has also advised they will not be required to purchase such software to report under STP. A list of software providers who have developed low and no-cost reporting solutions including simple payroll solutions, portals and mobile apps has been published at

There will be no penalties for mistakes, missed or late reports for the first year, and the ATO will allow exemptions from STP reporting for employers experiencing hardship, or in areas with intermittent or no internet connection.

How can I get ready for the change?

  • Make sure you can submit compliant reports every payday.
  • If you use online payroll software, it should be able to manage STP – check it can produce ATO-compliant reports?
  • If you use desktop payroll software, you’ll need to look around for a service that can upload your payroll reports, convert them into the ATO’s required format and submit them on your behalf.
  • If you use spreadsheets or pen and paper, you’ll need to engage a service that will convert the data into a compliant digital report format and submit it on your behalf.

For more information about STP on 13 28 61 or at

Once again, the ASOFIA QLD Division delivered a fantastic Golf Day on Friday, 22 March at the beautiful North Lakes Golf Course.

Partnering with Dynamic Closures, the QLD Division kicked off their annual Golf Day at 6:30am with the Hi Reach sponsored breakfast, followed by tee off at 7:45am.  There were some impressive shots on the day (and some fairly ordinary shots too!).  All our sponsored holes helped keep the players’ sugar loaded and the Asset Flooring drinks carts kept everyone hydrated.  Thanks also to Nexvia for the very popular Chevy Bar – which kept the 9th Hole cool on a very hot day!

Winners are Grinners and with thanks to Laminex, our winner on the day was the team from QPT Electrical, who took out the day, followed by Baker Packaging in 2nd place with Aligned Management taking home 3rd place.  Lucky last taking the Bradman in 2019 was Barrett Shopfitting.    Congratulations to all competition hole winners on the day as well.

Ronald McDonald House was the other big winner, as our chosen Charity of the day, our very generous members raised over $7,000 for this wonderful charity through raffles and lucky draw prizes.  Our partnering sponsor, Dynamic Closures, provided two amazing prizes on the day.  The first was through a fun competition on their hole.  Their “Guess the number of lollies in the jar” competition saw Bob Ellis from Masta Plasta Southside take home a fantastic Intercontinental Holiday package worth over $1,000.  The second was through Dynamic Closures’ Lucky Draw.  The awesome prize of a corporate box for 8 at the upcoming Broncos v Roosters game at Suncorp was won by Johnathan Bryant from Platinum Joinery Interiors.  As Johnathan was unable to attend the game, he generously donated the prize to Ronald McDonald House to be auctioned on the day.  The team from Rob Ryan Shopfitting made the final bid and will now enjoy the corporate box!  Lastly, Paul Rojas from Rostron Carlyle Rojas, went home a happy man, winning the auction for both the Lolly Jar and the 4.5l of Absolute Vodka.

Our events would not be possible, nor would they be so successful, without the support of our sponsors.  A special thanks goes to our Golf Day sponsors; Dynamic Closures, Laminex, Nexvia, Hi Reach, Asset Flooring, Benga Designs, HVG Decorative Building Products, Mirage Doors, Nobul, Professional Certification Group, QPT Electrical, Trade Glass, Your Resourcing, Surteco Aust. Armstrong Ceilings, Rostron Carlyle Rojas, Construction People, Baker Packaging and Lakes Hyundai – who got to keep their car as no one scored that elusive hole in one.

As always, we need to thank our National Partners for their continued support; AMP Capital, Dynamic Closures, Lincoln Sentry, Polytec, Austaron Surfaces, Pytha Partners, USG Boral, Cabinet Makers Insurance, KRGS and Tradies Accountant.

Be sure to come along to our other events throughout 2019; the ASOFIA Expo in May, Annual Breakfast event in July, Trade Night in August plus more on the QLD calendar!

Thank you to Nexvia for supplying this fun video!

Our young WA President, Gennaro Rapinese – who has successfully fought off Leukaemia once before in 2015 – has relapsed and is now in for the fight of his life yet again.

If you are interested in donating blood, Gennaro’s wife Joanne has set up a RED25 collective group named “Gs Army”(no apostrophe) … so we can all work together and tally our group donations.

Please first:

1. Ensure you review ALL eligibility criteria. Complete the eligibility quiz here:

2. Review travel exclusions based on each country here:

3. Contact the Australian Red Cross at or by phone at 13 14 95 to complete your enrolment (for new donors) and schedule an appointment. If booking online you’ll need to set up an online login first. Please be sure to click Join RED25 then search for “Gs Army”. The clinics’ opening times are available in the comments for your reference.

Joanne also encourages you to consider enrolling on the International Bone Marrow Donor Registry. Enrolling is really easy – if you nominate to do so BEFORE your blood donation, an additional 20-30ml is taken for the registry. More info here:

Even if you do not meet the criteria for blood donation you still may be eligible to go on the IBMDR. Please review the eligibility criteria here:

Once your sample is collected it takes approximately 3-4 weeks to have your details available for searching on the registry. Most importantly, this is an International registry so you must be willing to donate to anyone who is a match.

The collection process for bone marrow retrieval is a lot simpler these days. Here’s a quick
reference regarding the collection process

The SA Division hosted a President’s Breakfast at the Stables of Victoria Park in Rose Park on Wednesday 13th February.

Damien Brand, SA Division President, gave a very warm welcome and introduced SA’s new Divisional Secretary Janine Kitson before discussing collaboration as a key to building successful relationships with Government, Developers and Shopping Centres.

ASOFIA’s National Membership Manager Martine Poulain introduced herself to members and explained the expansion of her role from the North East region to now encompassing the Southern and Western Divisions. Martine will be working closely with Janine to build relationships with members in South Australia.

National President Chris Hookham gave an overview of the recent activities and achievements of ASOFIA nationally and acknowledged that whilst SA was the smallest division of ASOFIA, it is also the trendsetter being the first Division to employ a secretary – prompting other Division’s to follow suit.

Chris announced the location for the upcoming 23rd National Conference being in Canberra on the 25th – 28th October and encouraged all members to attend. He also discussed the challenges facing the shopfitting industry, including the lack of skilled workers and apprentices and the role ASOFIA plays in the industry, liaising with Government, TAFE and Developers alike to address this issue and ensure the growth of the shopfitting industry.