Annual Report & Annual Financial Statements


Dear Members,

The Apex Foundation Chairman, Stephen Bigarelli

The Apex Foundation Chairman,
Stephen Bigarelli

It does not seem like it was just a year ago that I was sitting here writing my summary of the year, yet it is and it is a good time to reflect on what has happened over the last 12 months.

As always the annual report is a great way of showcasing what we do and the impact we are having on the beneficiaries of our various trusts. So I encourage you all to read the following pages and hopefully gain a better insight into the work of the Apex Foundation.

The strength of the Apex Foundation is the Board and this year has seen this continue. But sadly, this year we have and will farewell three Board members who are moving on from their roles. Firstly, Matthew O’Donnell left the Board in July as he finished his term as National President of Apex Australia. I thank Matthew for his time on the Board and welcome Robert “Moses” Abraham as his replacement as the new National President of Apex.

Phillip Taylor, our Independent Director has chosen not to continue in his role after the AGM. Phil has been a fantastic asset to the Apex Foundation. He brought to the Board a wealth of legal knowledge and has helped steer us through an ever-changing legal and regulatory environment. But more importantly, Phil, who came to us with no real knowledge of Apex, has embraced the ideas of Apex and the work of the Foundation. Phil will be missed and I wish him well in his endeavours after Apex.

Phillip Pregnell, our current Deputy Chairman has also decided to stand down after the AGM. When Phil leaves us he will bring to an end a thirty-three-year career in Apex. Phil has done it all in Apex, including a term as National President. I first met Phil a very long time ago when I first joined the Apex Australia National Board, and have valued his friendship and support during his time on the Board and in the last few years as Deputy Chair. Phil had also been our Investment Director and managed our relationship with Macquarie Bank success-
fully over this time. Phil, thank you not only for your time on the Apex Foundation Board but also your contribution to Apex over the last 33 years. I hope you enjoy your life without Apex!

The last year has seen some significant changes at the Apex Foundation. The biggest has been our decision to change our investment managers from Macquarie Bank to Shaw and Partners. This was not an easy decision but was made with the best long-term interests of the Apex Foundation as the main driver. The Apex Foundation has had a long and successful relationship with Macquarie Bank, but more importantly with Lucinda Chan, our account manager at Macquarie. Macquarie Bank has served us well over the last years and on behalf of the Board I thank them for their advice and help, and more importantly their support for what we as a Foundation do.

Another change is that the Directors have commissioned a full re-writing of the Foundation’s Memorandum and Articles of Association. This revision of the Articles of Association, along with the revisions of its Memorandum of Association will be presented to the Foundation’s AGM on the 17th of November.

This year we embarked on a new approach in reaching out to all past Apexians. We invited past National Secretary and Apex tragic Keith Miller, to lead a project of reconnecting to all past Apexians. The results have been more than we could have hoped for. Keith has used his vast Apex knowledge, social media and good old hard work to now reconnect hundreds of ex-Apexians to Apex. We have transformed our quarterly newsletter to an e-Newsletter, which covers all things Apex, not just the Apex Foundation. I thank Keith and the marketing committee for what they have achieved. The wider Apex family is the long-term beneficiary of this work.

Our financial position is well documented in our financial statements, and it is pleasing to report that we now have reached the magical $10,000,000 mark with assets under management of $10,000,511. This year has seen our asset size grow by just under $1,000,000, which is a positive sign for all our beneficiaries, and a positive sign for the future of the Apex Foundation.

As in all years, the Apex Foundation does not do what it does without the hard work and dedication of our staff, Sapna Agarwal and Phil Higgerson, and I once again thank them for all they do.

Lastly, I must thank the Board for their ongoing work over the last year. In particular, Phil Pregnell who stepped up and chaired two meetings this year due to my absences for personal reasons. The Apex Foundation is what it is due to the hard work of this board and every past Board member.

On a personal note, my daughter turned 30 this year, and I reflected that Clare was born five days after I took on my first term as a club president! It made me realise that for over half my life, Apex has been a part of my life. I know that I have gained much more from Apex than Apex has from me and for that I am forever grateful.

As I finished last year’s report I will finish with the same words this year:

The Apex Foundation is a unique organisation and we should all be proud of what we have achieved and more importantly what we will achieve in the future!

Stephen Bigarelli
Chairman Apex Foundation