Events » Business Essentials - Melbourne

Business Essentials Workshop

SPA's Business Essentials workshop returns to Melbourne in 2017 on June 28 at Docklands Studios.

SPA Business Essentials is presented in association with AFTRS and covers the commercial framework in which producers must operate. The course is designed to provide you with the essential information to start, develop, and grow a film and television business.

The workshop includes the following modules 

Legal Business Essentials

  • Copyright and Purchasing rights for program exploitation.
  • Chain of Title
  • Fair Use
  • Rights covered by industry agreements
  • Music rights
  • Value of intellectual property
  • Rights negotiation
  • Production contracts, financing contracts
  • Distribution and licensing agreements
  • Location agreements and product clearances
  • Cast & Crew agreements

Accounting Business Essentials

  • Legal structure of business
  • Legal structure of production
  • Tax structures
  • Tax Incentives and Concessions
  • Business Planning
  • Finance & Cash Flow issues of projects 

Project Financial Management Business Essentials 

  • Budget management
  • Cost Reports
  • Completion bonds
  • Production Investment Agreements
  • Tax Offset borrowing
  • Payroll tax
  • Cashflow
  • Fringes
  • Accounting systems



Wednesday 28th June 2017

TIME: 8.30am to 5.30pm
VENUE: Docklands Studios, 476 Docklands Drive, Docklands VIC
INCLUDES: Afternoon Tea


SPA Members: $200.00  |  Guild & Early Bird Discount (10%): $225.00  |  Full Price: $250


To receive the SPA members special discount, select ENROL on the AFTRS booking page, and choose SPA member registrant type.

Presented by Screen Producers Australia and the Australian Film Television and Radio School.


For lawyers attending the Business Essentials Workshop:
Seminars and other CPD activities are not accredited by The Law Society of New South Wales. Under the CPD Rules, if SPA’s Business Essentials Workshop is relevant to your immediate or long term needs in relation to your professional development and practice of the law, then you should claim one “unit” for each hour of attendance, refreshment breaks not included.


Jenny Lalor has been working in legal and business affairs in film and television for more years than she cares to admit.  Whilst living in London between 1990 and 2000, she worked for the BBC, Carlton Television and Tiger Aspect Productions (including on Billy Elliot and The Animated Mr. Bean).  Returning to Melbourne in late 2000, she has worked on a variety of film and television projects, including Jindabyne, Rise of the Eco Warriors, Crawlspace, Get Ace, RocKwiz, Wilfred, 52 Tuesdays, The Space Between.  She now has her own practice specializing in entertainment law and provides executive producing services on a range of projects, including The Space Between, Rise of the Eco Warriors, the indigenous animation series Little J & Big Cuz,  and the pre-school animation series “DirtGirlWorld”, winner of the 2013 Digital Program: Children and Young People International Emmy.  She was a Television Councillor on the Screen Producers Association of Australia for over five years, and is currently on the board of Open Channel. Her practice was the winner of the 2013 SPA Services and Facilities Business of the Year Award, and she was named as one of the most influential people in Australian television (The Age and SMH 28 September 2015).

Maria Armenio is a Business Development Manager with Media Super, the industry super fund for print, media, entertainment and arts professionals. She has more than 10 years’ experience in the industry superannuation sector, including roles in audit and compliance, joining Media Super in 2016 after working at Cbus and LUCRF. Maria is a true believer in the profit-to-member superannuation model and the philosophy of ensuring dignity in retirement.

Neil leads the tax team at BlueRock and is a Chartered Tax Adviser with over 15 years’ experience.

Neil advises on all aspects of Australian taxation law with a focus of building tailored solutions for high-net-wealth families, senior executives, professionals and privately owned businesses. Neil’s particular expertise is structuring and re-structuring for asset protection, tax efficiency, succession planning and advising clients acquiring or divesting assets.

Neil’s has a particular interest in the management of cross border taxation matters and the property, information technology and film production industries.

Neil is a frequent presenter with The Australian Tax Institute and has lectured the Chartered Tax Adviser Education Program.

An Associate Director in the Accounting Division of Blue Rock Australia Pty Ltd, Christina has many years’ experience advising small to medium family sized businesses in a range of areas including taxation and general business advice.  Having an array of clients in the Production Industry, Christina has helped her clients through all facets of the business, whether it be the initial set up, looking after the compliance and taxation, and offering on – going strategic advice.  Along with her colleague Neil Bryden, Christina presented at the Melbourne SPA Business Essentials Day in 2016 and is pleased to be invited back in 2017.

Kathryn Slowik joined the Moneypenny team in 1998, training as an assistant accountant on many productions of all sizes, from docos to studio features such as Moulin Rouge. Kathryn has since been the production accountant on numerous Australian Features/Docos and Television series which have included official co-productions with Israel/China and the UK. Kathryn manages Moneypennys offset division, facilitating over 90 successful applications to date. Kathryn has specialised in the producer offset and post production for the last few years and is now also involved in external training programs. 

Sue began work in the film industry over 20 years ago as a Production Accountant across feature, television and documentary productions. She joined Screen Australia as Project Manager in 2009 and oversaw the budgets for all production investment applications and monitored them to completion. Recently Sue moved to the Producer Offset and Co-Production Unit as an Assessment Manager and now assesses both provisional and final certificate applications.

A former partner of Victorian production company Media World Pictures, Ross’ diverse range of producing credits include the internationally acclaimed mini-series, The Circuit, the comedy feature Stone Bros., the documentary feature Anthem, and children’s animation series Dogstar.

Before joining Media World, Ross managed the funding programs at ScreenWest, and played a key role in the redesign of the organisation’s industry support schemes.

While he has a background in documentary production, Ross originally trained as a director at the Australian Film Television and Radio School, and has directed short films and series drama for television. He also taught screen performance at the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts and has been nominated for Australian Film Institute Awards for scriptwriting, directing and producing.

Ross has headed up Screen Industry Programs since 2014.