Craig West is a strategic accountant who has over 20 years’ experience advising business owners. His background as a CPA in public practice, provided invaluable experience in the key issues of concern to business owners. Following 6 years of study to gain two masters degrees, Craig focused on Capital Gains Tax (CGT) for business sales advising on strategic management of tax issues. This experience formed a very strong view that business owners (and often their advisers) were unprepared and unaware of the steps required to prepare a business for exit.
Craig now acts as a strategic mentor for mid-market business owners and has written four critically acclaimed books on employee incentives, succession planning, asset protection and exit strategies. Craig has conducted numerous seminars and keynote presentations throughout Australia & internationally, including adviser education programs for the Institute of Chartered Accountants and CPA Australia.
Craig’s practice Succession Plus is the largest Business succession and exit planning firm in Australia, with offices in every state and provides advice and strategy for clients looking to prepare their business for a successful exit.
In March 2014, Craig was appointed Executive Chairman of the SME Association of Australia, Australia’s largest small business organisation and is also the host of SME Radio – a weekly program focused on strategic business issues. In October 2014, he was awarded the Exit Planner of the Year at the Exit Planning Institute Annual Conference in Texas USA as a result of his innovative development of an exit planning process to help business owners maximise business value and achieve a successful exit.
During 2015, Craig commenced Doctoral studies on the topic of using Employee Share Ownership plans ( ESOP”s ) as a Business Succession and Exit planning tool. Craig’s proprietary structure - a Peak Performance Trust - has won the Australia wide award for the Employee Share Ownership Plan of the year twice in four years.