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Message from the Chairman: 15 April 2016

April 18, 2016

The National Retail Association exists to be a strong voice for the retail sector in the media and with government and policy makers. We are not only Australia’s largest peak body for retailers, but also the most representative – with members across all aspects of the retail, fast food and personal services sectors.

We support you, our members, with training, legal advice and other professional services to help make your businesses as profitable as possible.

In recent years the NRA has had some major wins on behalf of the members. We have succeeded in our long-running campaign to close the unfair GST loophole that gives overseas retailers an advantage over local businesses. We’ve been able to eliminate a lot of red tape around product labelling. We’ve been vocal advocates for the tenancy rights of retail businesses. And our campaign for reasonable Sunday and public holiday penalty rates is ongoing.

Many of these important campaigns have been driven on behalf of the retail industry by the NRA’s Chief Executive Officer Trevor Evans.

You may have read or heard in the media that Trevor was selected on Thursday night to contest a seat at the upcoming Federal Election, and I can confirm that he has advised the NRA Board he is stepping down from his position.

Trevor’s absence will be a loss, not just for the Association but for the entire retail industry. However, we are very supportive of any candidate who will go to Canberra with a thorough understanding of the issues confronting retailers on a daily basis, and with a track record of speaking up to achieve real changes on those issues. So on behalf of the NRA Board, I wish Trevor every success in his political career.

At an operational level, the NRA’s Deputy Chairperson Ian Winterburn has today been appointed to fill Trevor’s position, effective immediately. Ian is a highly experienced retailer, having spent 27 years in a variety of senior roles in a large jewellery chain.

Ian has been a member of the NRA board for 10 years, and the Deputy Chair since 2012. He has been heavily involved in the organisation’s strategic planning over many years, and a sounding board and wise counsel for the CEO.

I have every confidence that the organisation will continue to build on Trevor’s achievements with Ian at the helm.

Elsewhere, the other senior and experienced personnel who support members every day with their enquiries about training, workplace relations, leasing or legal disputes will continue to be available to you as usual. And as always, all the services you need from your association are at the end of the phone, on 1800 RETAIL (738 245).

I look forward to working with you to continue to build on the NRA’s successes of recent years, and helping you however we can to grow your business, generate profit and create jobs.

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