Craig Sanford shares his thoughts on maintaining great work culture

As part of the Dynamic Business “Let’s Talk” series, Sierra Legal Founder and Director Craig Sanford shares his thoughts on maintaining great work culture in a period of business growth -

Sierra Legal maintains a true “team” philosophy as part of our culture which promotes greater cohesion, efficiency and overall wellness within the team, which in turn assists us in providing clients with exceptional legal advice and service.

Arreis Automation - how could it benefit your business?

Are you a business that:

  • has contracts for multiple types of arrangements?

  • sometimes discovers mistakes (or hangovers from previous deals) in your contracts?

  • requires efficiency when preparing contracts?

  • enters into commercial transactions without contracts - because you don’t have time to properly document the arrangement?

  • can’t justify the cost of having a lawyer assist you with all of your contracts?

If the answer to any of the above questions is YES, then Arreis Automation could be of benefit to you. 

Sierra Legal’s new division (Arreis Automation) assists businesses to develop their own template documents, and then builds and hosts bespoke web apps for those businesses – enabling businesses to quickly and easily generate their own contracts and other documents themselves from an online platform.

To find out how Arreis Automation can benefit your business and to see a demo, please visit - Otherwise follow us on LinkedIn to stay up-to-date on legal developments.

M&A activity report

Some interesting data from Merrill Corporation on the Australian M&A market for the first half of 2019, including:

  • Outbound deal values from Australia exceeded combined inbound and domestic deal values.

  • For inbound M&A deals, the top 3 buyer geographies were Canada, Japan and Hong Kong.

  • For outbound M&A deals, the top 3 target geographies were USA, the UK and the Czech Republic.

  • The key sectors for both inbound and outbound deals have been the energy, services and industrials sectors.

You can sign-up to get the full report via this link:,6HT44,PJRLP5,PS5R7,1

If you have any questions on, or need any legal assistance with a merger and acquisition please get in touch with one of the specialists at Sierra Legal.

ACCC undertaking review into customer loyalty schemes

Customer loyalty schemes is one of the ACCC’s focus areas for 2019.  The ACCC has undertaken a review of customer loyalty schemes in Australia, released a draft report on its findings and proposed recommendations, and is inviting comments on the draft report by 3 October 2019.  Issues raised in the draft report include clear communication of terms and conditions, unfair contract terms, privacy and use of consumer data.  Watch this space for further updates!

Arreis Automation + Marketing Melodies

We’re delighted to have Dean Cherny and Marketing Melodies on board and thanks for the great review!

“Arreis Automation used their amazing software and coding skills to automate our template supply contract.  Now, whenever my team needs to produce a supply contract for a new customer, we just open up the link that Arreis has created for Marketing Melodies (complete with our branding!), answer the 30 or so tailored questions that appear at the link, click "submit", and then the completed Word document is automatically emailed to us from the Arreis Automation system ready to go!  This whole process takes us less than 10 minutes, and a high quality document that is correctly worded and formatted is produced every time without any need to involve our lawyers … a massive time and cost saving for us.  Thank you Arreis Automation!!!”

(Dean Cherny, Founder and CEO, Marketing Melodies)


Sierra Legal’s new Arreis Automation system has arrived!

It represents a new and exciting business arm for us, which draws on and complements our growing legal business. If you have a type of contract, letter or other document that you regularly use in your business, Arreis Automation could be for you.

The key benefits and features of Arreis Automation include:

  • Documents are generated quickly and efficiently, saving you time and money.

  • Designed for use with customised documents, including where complex decision trees, conditional logic and human input would normally be required.

  • Automatic completion of mathematical calculations within your documents.

  • The ability for multiple documents (or packages of documents) to be created simultaneously using the same data.

  • Improved quality control by reducing the risk of human error associated with incorrect data entry, using the wrong base document or unintended “hang overs” from the last time a base document was used.

  • Documents are generated in standard Microsoft Word (docx) format, allowing for easy editing and subsequent negotiation.

  • The existing document formatting and style used in your business can be consistently applied to the documents as they are created.

Get in touch with one of the Sierra Legal team if you have any questions on Arreis Automation.

Watch this space!

Over the last 10 years, one of Sierra Legal’s core service offerings has been helping clients with the development of bespoke template documents for their businesses, including contracts, company secretarial documents, engagement letters and a broad range of other legal documents.

After a couple of years of intense research, development and testing, we are excited to announce that we are close to extending this service to include the coding and hosting of bespoke web apps for our clients. This will enable our clients to automatically generate their own contracts and other documents themselves from Sierra Legal’s online software platform. An official launch and announcement is coming soon.

Watch this space!!

Follow us on LinkedIn or Facebook to stay up-to-date on the launch of this exciting product.

ASX Update to Guidance Note 9 - Disclosure of Corporate Governance Practices

ASX has recently published an updated version of ASX Listing Rules Guidance Note 9 Disclosure of Corporate Governance Practices (Guidance Note 9).  The updates to Guidance Note 9 are due to be released on 1 January 2020, which is the same date that the fourth edition of the Corporate Governance Principles and Recommendations (Principles and Recommendations) comes into effect.

Guidance Note 9 provides new and updated guidance on:

  • disclosure of corporate governance policies, including the requirement (in conjunction with the Principles and Recommendations) for a listed entity to have and disclose (in full) a diversity policy, code of conduct, whistleblower policy, anti-bribery and corruption policy, and continuous disclosure policy; and

  • the ASX Corporate Governance Council’s recommendations on:

    • diversity;

    • the process to verify integrity of periodic corporate reports;

    • investor and analyst presentations;

    • environmental and social risks; and

    • policy on hedging equity incentive schemes.

The updated Guidance Note 9 can be accessed by the link: and the Principles and Recommendations can be accessed by the link:  

Please get in touch with one of the Sierra Legal team if you need any assistance with:

  • compliance with the new Principles and Recommendations;

  • preparing any new, or reviewing any existing policies to ensure compliance with the new Principles and Recommendations; or

  • any other corporate governance matters during the up-coming reporting season, including the preparation of notice of meetings.

Consumer Data Right - Update

The Treasury Laws Amendment (Consumer Data Right) Act 2019, which implements new laws relating to rights associated to consumer data, became law in Australia on 13 August 2019. The new regime is intended to, among other things, give individuals a right to efficiently and conveniently access specified data about them held by businesses and service providers in various sectors.

Top 5 legal tips when buying a business

Thanks to our friends at eBroker for the opportunity to share our top legal tips when buying a business. Stay tuned for our top legal tips when selling a business.

If you need any legal advice on either selling or buying a business, please get in touch with one of the Sierra Legal team (

The article is available on the website of eBroker -

Earnout protection mechanisms for business sale agreements

In a post a couple of weeks ago (click here), I gave 5 tips for sellers of businesses in relation to earnouts. As most of you will know, an earnout is the right of a seller to receive additional compensation in the future if the business that was sold achieves certain financial goals after completion of the sale (e.g. earnings over a specified threshold level).

In this week’s post, I suggest some specific earnout protection mechanisms that sellers could try to include in business sale agreements that contain earnout provisions.

Sierra Legal on video with VANA - the Victorian Association for Newsagents

It was lights, camera and action for Craig Sanford at VANA, as he was interviewed by VANA’s General Manager, Brendan Tohill, in a recent "video newsletter" - see below for a snippet of the action! VANA is an important client of Sierra Legal, and we are also promoted by VANA as a preferred supplier of legal services for newsagency businesses that are members of the Association.

View here

5 important things to remember for earnouts when selling your business

Author: Craig Sanford, Director

When it comes time to sell your business, a large part of the negotiations will often be around the terms of an "earnout" - that is, the right of the seller to receive additional compensation in the future if the business achieves certain financial goals after completion of the sale (e.g. earnings over a specified threshold level). Based on my experience over the last 26 years buying and selling businesses, here are a few tips for sellers in relation to earnouts.

Acquisition of Allstates Vehicle Logistics

Sierra Legal would like to congratulate the purchaser of Allstates Vehicle Logistics Pty Ltd (also known as "Spiral Logistics"), on its recent acquisition of the company.  Allstates is a leading Australian logistics company for specialised freight, and focuses on providing transport services to the steel industry in Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland.  Sierra Legal advised the purchaser on legal aspects of the acquisition, including due diligence, negotiation of the legal documents and completing the transaction.  We look forward to following the progress of Allstates under its new management team as it drives forward with some exciting plans to enhance its service offering and further develop and grow the business throughout Australia.