Case studies

If you're thinking about growing your business across borders, find out how these businesses did it and how ANZ can help.   

Dominant

Like many small business owners, Christopher Short was flat out working in the business, but knew that the company lacked focus and direction. These were issues that he was keen to resolve. “This is common in small family-owned businesses,” he admits. “We had fantastic products and a strong commitment to research and development, but this wasn’t translating into significant growth.”

When the business started in 1958, they were a manufacturer of commercial-grade cleaning and sanitation products. Initially servicing the Adelaide area, they expanded into the rest of Australia over the next twenty-six years. In 1981, they added the Home Care division. “It was originally a multi-level marketing sales force,” Chris explains. “It reached great heights during the early 90s with consultants Australia-wide selling cleaning and personal care products directly to households.”

It was Chris himself who came up with Dominant’s next idea. “I’m a passionate coffee enthusiast,” he says. “I started thinking about how espresso machines are cleaned. After a little bit of research, it was obvious there was a huge gap in the market, especially in Australia where virtually no products were available specifically for this purpose.”

Cafetto® launched its first product, Espresso Clean® in 2004 and has now grown to be an internationally recognised brand for coffee machine cleaning products. So much so that Cafetto® is now the Official Cleaning Product Partner of the World Barista Championship as well as World Latte, World Brewer, World Coffee in Good Spirits, World Cup Tasters and World Roasting Championships.

Dominant attended the ANZ Business Growth Program earlier in the year. Along with the lack of focus, culture, strategic planning, and how Chris managed his own time were some of the issues addressed by the program. “We concluded I was spending too much time in the business, rather than working on the business,” he explains. “We’ve addressed these issues by implementing and rolling out a performance management process, rewarding high performing employees and ensuring a commitment to the company values.”

Dominant have also implemented a strategic review which identified infrastructure requirements including the need for employee changes and new key staff. “We have reviewed products and customers, go to market strategies and equipment needs to eliminate capacity constraints and drive the business towards manufacturing automation,” Chris says. “New staff are already making a significant positive impact on the business.  In the first 3 months of this financial year we have enjoyed record sales each month which has us well ahead of an already aggressive budget.”

Chris credits the ANZ Business Growth Program with helping them to understand there are two types of innovation to support growth. “There’s the fuzzy front end which is all about inventions and there is the speedy back end which is all about implementation and systems,” he says.  “We have a good balance, hence the changes we’re making with systems.”

With ANZ’s help, Dominant were able to identify all the issues holding them back, and assisted them with putting in place action plans to address the issues. “ANZ very much facilitated the process,” he says. “The performance and values matrix we learned about in the ANZ Business Growth Program has been an invaluable tool for us to support the changes we are making in culture and vision for the business.”

When it comes to their choice of ANZ as a business partner, Chris says they are incredibly supportive of him and his business. “If I had to start again, I would have done the ANZ Business Growth Program from the beginning,” he admits. “One of the key learnings was gaining an understanding the stages of growth, from start-up, initial growth and rapid growth, to continuous growth. Understanding the changes you have to make in order to be successful through these stages is invaluable.”

Dominant switched to ANZ in 2012, and Chris compliments them with being proactive in providing finance and business solutions that have helped them expand and grow. “To then be recommended for the ANZ Business Growth Program was a great honour,” he enthuses. “The bank is to be commended for such an initiative.  It shows they value customer relationships far more than just being a provider of finance.  They recognise that our success translates to their success.”

Hear more of what Christopher has to say about expanding his business into Asia here.

This article is designed to provide a summary and general overview of the subject matter covered for your information only. It is not intended to be nor should it be relied on as a substitute for professional legal and financial advice. You should seek your own independent legal and financial advice before acting or relying on any of the content contained in this article. ANZ makes no warranties or representations regarding the accuracy, currency or completeness of the content contained in this article. No liability is accepted by any member of the ANZ Group of companies for any error or omission, or any loss caused to any person relying on the information contained in this article, except where such liability cannot be excluded.

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Wings around the world

Every day at ANZ we meet with our customers. We listen to understand their hopes and dreams and how we can help make those a reality. David Horne, District Executive on the Sunshine Coast was talking to one of his customers, who mentioned his son Lachlan, was attempting to be the youngest ever person to fly around the world solo. After hearing the awe inspiring story, David was adamant that more people needed to hear this. To be inspired, to capture the essence of Lachlan’s message; “to help people set and achieve amazing goals.” What are you waiting for? This is Lachlan’s inspiring story…

A two year old Lachlan Smart sat with his mother at the airport, eating hot chips watching planes take off and land. Born in him that day was a passion for aviation that led him to attempt a world first – to become, at the age of 18, the youngest ever person to fly around the world solo. This will break the record currently held by American Matt Guthmiller, who did it aged 19 in July 2014. And when you consider that approximately 800 times more people have been into space than teenagers who have circumnavigated the globe, it really puts this feat into perspective.

Lachlan will take off from the east coast of Australia in June 2016 in a single engine aircraft. Over a ten week flight, Lachlan will circumnavigate the globe. But the real journey began with his first flying lesson.

“Dad bought me a flying lesson for my 14th birthday,” Lachlan recalls. “I was completely hooked from then on. I begged him for more, until the gaps between flights became shorter and I was flying every week.”

Lachlan gained his pilot’s license at the age of 16, which is the minimum age in Australia. He is qualified to fly all single engine aircraft, including the one that will take him on his epic adventure, a Cirrus SR22. “It’s my favourite type of aircraft to fly,” he reveals.

It seems amazing that a journey of this magnitude is being planned, considering Lachlan’s first solo flight was just over a year ago. “It was absolutely incredible,” he recalls. “My instructor got clearance from air traffic control, got out of the plane and said ‘you’re going for your first solo.’ I was absolutely stoked, having the aircraft under my control, completely on my own, knowing there was no instructor there to back me up.”

Lachlan’s love of being in complete command of an aircraft wasn’t the only thing responsible for sparking the idea to fly around the world solo. It was a combination of factors that led up to his decision to attempt the world record, a decision he made in October 2013. “Firstly I’ve always wanted to do something big, but I didn’t know what that would be,” he says. “Then there was my passion for aviation, but the third thing was that I had a message I wanted to share.”

Lachlan’s message is simple and very admirable. “I want to use the profile I’ll gain from this flight to send the message of setting and achieving big goals,” he reveals. “It’s aimed predominately at youth, but it’s really applicable to everyone, which is why I’m speaking at different events, not just at schools.

“A lot of people these days say ‘One day, I will…’ or ‘When I’m older, I want to…’ and honestly, there’s usually nothing holding them back from doing it now if they really want to. They need the motivation, and will to achieve, and I’m trying to help them find it. I want to help people set and achieve amazing goals.”

Lachlan’s aiming to inspire others, but he’s also got plans of his own when it comes to his future in aviation. He’s hoping that this flight will be a stepping stone on the path to becoming a pilot in the very real space race, with a company like Virgin Galactic. Lachlan’s ambition is to become a leader in space travel, and his message to others includes keeping your eye on future goals.

At this point, Lachlan’s feeling calm about the journey. There’s a lot of preparation to undertake, as well as fund-raising and media commitments. “I’m training for different conditions and circumstances,” he explains. “I’m studying for my instrument rating, and I’m undertaking some long range trips so I can get my head around what it’s going to be like to fly for a long time.”

Paramount among these preparations is safety. Lachlan and his family and team are taking no chances with his life. “We’ve got a lot of safety precautions in place,” he explains. “Well-prepared risk mitigation plans. There’s no point doing it if I’m going to endanger myself.”

Lachlan and his family are also working hard at fund-raising. “I’d love everyone who can to jump on board,” he says, when asked about potential sponsors. “One of the messages we’re getting out there is about communal success, which I’m relying on heavily. You need to look at those around you, to help you, and to help those around you as well. So if anyone would like to get in contact, just head to the Wings Around The World website.”

The flight itself will see Lachlan make 26 stops, in 20 countries across 5 continents, each of around three days. “I’m planning to leave in June as it is most suited for weather,” he explains. “I want it to be summer in the northern hemisphere when I am flying through the likes of Iceland and Canada as I need to avoid ice as much as possible.”

The longest flying segment will be the Hawaii to California leg, which could take up to 15 hours. “I will have a point of no return,” he reveals. “If the winds are not in my favour I’ll turn around at that point and return to Hawaii. I’m spending a week in London, because I’ve got family there and I’ll be getting the aircraft serviced.”

However Lachlan’s time in the air will be truly solitary. For the flight to be classified as solo, there won’t be anyone in the aircraft with him, and there will be no planes tailing him. He will be in contact with air traffic control at all times, but will only speak his team via satellite phone if it’s necessary, e.g. a diversion. He’ll have snacks such as muesli bars on board.

And what advice does Lachlan have for anyone who has a passion for something, and a desire to become a world-shaper like himself? “Just go for it,” he enthuses. “Remember though, if you’re going to be the first to do something, it won’t be easy. That’s why it’s a world record. Make sure you plan it thoroughly and put safety first. There’s no point in risking your own life just to get a record. That’s not at all what I’m doing. I’m sharing a message, and the world record’s going to help me do that. But this has two and a half years of planning behind it.”

The views and opinions expressed in this communication are those of the author and may not necessarily state or reflect those of ANZ.

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Carman’s Fine Foods, Cheltenham, VIC

Meet Carolyn Creswell, the woman who successfully turned a $1000 business into a food manufacturer, Carman’s, which now exports to over 32 countries.

From small beginnings, Carman’s Fine Foods, based in Cheltenham in Melbourne’s south-east, now exports its muesli bars, roasted bars, muesli, gourmet porridges, “rounds” (muesli bakes) and “Yummos” (wholegrain popcorn bars) to 32 countries. Meet the woman behind Carman’s success, Carolyn Creswell, who also made this year’s BRW Young Rich (just one of six women).

Tell us about your business?

Twenty one years ago, I was a babysitter working for a couple who wanted to sell their small muesli business. My partner and I could only scrape together $2000 – which the owners initially knocked back. I bought out my partner a year later – and since then Carmen’s emerged as one of Australia’s best known gourmet food brands.

What has propelled Carman’s growth?

As time’s progressed, we’ve realized that, for us, the growth opportunity was in Asia. Our biggest market is Singapore and we do a lot of stuff into Malaysia and Hong Kong. There are also amazing opportunities in China where we now sell into mainstream supermarket chains, predominantly with our muesli bars. China seems to be embracing the “Australian-ness” of the product.

What have been some of your challenges in taking Carman’s in Asia?

The need to have a number of different approaches to doing business in different Asian countries was a challenge.

Asia is not one country and there are idiosyncrasies and ways of doing things in certain areas.

There is definitely more of a sense of relationships and trust. It’s probably deeper than just pure trading. I’ve been in a meeting in Singapore where the CEO stood up and said ‘We’re going to double your sales in the next 12 months’. And everyone stood up and clapped. He walked out of the room.

I looked around and said ‘Well, hang on, where’s the strategy?’ and they said they didn’t need a strategy, they didn’t need to discuss how that was happening. He just issued this mandate and everyone had to make sure that that happened. Whereas I’d be like ‘Hang on, how are we going to execute that?’ There’s a lot more stuff, I feel, done over lunches and dinners and getting to know each other as people.

Where do you want to take Carman’s?

Our aim is to achieve 30 per cent of its turnover in export and I’ll continue to juggle trips around the world to keep building our business, in Asia in particular.

If we can get in early enough into some of these supermarket chains – there’s one in Asia that’s just placed their first order with us – there’s massive potential. We sell to places like the US that have big populations, but I think there’s this ability to get to scale quite quickly in China however it’s a little bit trickier to execute.

Carolyn Creswell and Carman’s are ANZ customers.

The views and opinions expressed in this communication are those of the author and may not necessarily state or reflect those of ANZ.

Read the full ANZ BlueNotes article.

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Australian Organic Meats, Elong Elong, NSW

See how this organic meats producer and supplier is supplying domestic and world markets.

Related products & services

To find out more about how ANZ products and services can help your business grow,contact your local Business Banker today.

  • 0:00 – Introduction to AOM with Julie and Matt O’Leary
  • 0:14 – International interest and growth capabilities for organic meats market
  • 0:42 – Introduction to role of ANZ in business empowerment
  • 0:56 – Explanation of the ANZ Export Link, and how it has assisted with AOM
  • 1:26 – Explanation of the services ANZ provides internationally to AOM

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Coates Signco, Alexandria, NSW

Find out how this business is rapidly expanding by providing cutting edge digital and LED signage.

Related products & services

To find out more about how ANZ products and services can help your business grow, contact your local Business Banker today.

  • 0:00 – Introduction to Coates Signco with Leo Coats and Henry Mowat
  • 0:27 – Difficulties associated with conducting business in China
  • 0:41 – Introduction to ANZ’s presence in China, and broader in Asia
  • 0:54 – Benefits of trading with RMB through ANZ
  • 1:15 – Synergistic benefits to Coates Signco of ANZ’s international presence
  • 1:22 – Business connections into Asia that ANZ provides
  • 1:45 – Testament to ANZ’s hands on care

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Haircare Australia, Hindmarsh, SA

See how this dynamic business provides innovative solutions and products to the hairdressing and beauty industries.

Related products & services

To find out more about how ANZ products and services can help your business grow, contact your local Business Banker today.

  • 0:00 – Introduction to Haircare Australia with Geoff and Garth Gauvin
  • 0:17 – International presence
  • 0:31 – Reasons for switching to ANZ
  • 0:39 – ANZ’s due diligence with Haircare Australia
  • 1:00 – Importance of Asian expansion to Haircare Australia
  • 1:14 – The ways ANZ has assisted Haircare Australia’s expansion into Asia
  • 1:40 – The importance of ANZ as a business partner

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Horan & Bird, Townsville, QLD

Learn about how electrical company was able to grow their business and be at the forefront of solar power technology.

Related products & services

To find out more about how ANZ products and services can help your business grow, contact your local Business Banker today.

  • 0:00 – Introduction to Horan & Bird with Scott Bird and john Horan
  • 0:27 – Importance of Asian trade for Horan and Bird
  • 0:36 – Ways ANZ has enabled Horan & Bird to conduct international business
  • 0:43 – Key benefits associated with banking with ANZ
  • 1:10 – Ways ANZ has made business easier and enhanced international business
  • 1:38 – Results ANZ has allowed Horan and Bird to achieve

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Ozsale Group, Brookvale, NSW

See how this online retailer has extended their shopping club to customers globally.

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To find out more about how ANZ products and services can help your business grow, contact your local Business Banker today.

  • 0:00 – Introduction to Ozsale with Drew Pearce and Carl Jackson
  • 0:28 – Importance of Asian expansion for Ozsale, and the opportunities presented
  • 0:52 – Services ANZ has provided to facilitate Asian expansion
  • 1:25 – Key benefits ANZ has provided for Ozsale

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PTW Achitects Group, Sydney, NSW

Discover how this internationally renowned architecture firm has cemented their reputation with high profile projects.

Related products & services

To find out more about how ANZ products and services can help your business grow, contact your local Business Banker today.

  • 0:00 – Introduction to PTW Architects Group with John Bilmon
  • 0:30 – Importance of Asian presence in attaining future business
  • 0:49 – importance of ANZ relationship in aiding PTW’s Asian expansion
  • 1:09 – Overview of ANZ’s presence in Asia
  • 1:47 – Outline of the ways ANZ has facilitated PTW’s expansion into Asia

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Cafetto, Adelaide, SA

Learn how Cafetto has become a world leader and innovator in the research and development, and manufacture, of specialist cleaners for all types of professional, home and office coffee machines.

Related products & services

To find out more about how ANZ products and services can help your business grow, contact your local Business Banker today.

  • 0:00 – Introduction to Cafetto Group with Chris and Julie Short
  • 0:28 – Importance of Asian presence in growing the Cafetto business
  • 0:39 – Benefits of banking with ANZ throughout growth
  • 1:13 – Ways ANZ has facilitated branching out to China
  • 1:52 – Growth prospects for Cafetto

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Origin PC

Origin PC has ascended in the competitive consumer gaming industry by focusing on providing customised high performance systems using the latest technology. Hear about the opportunities and challenges they faced while trying to break into Asian Markets.

Related products & services

To find out more about how ANZ products and services can help your business grow, contact your local Business Banker today.

  • 0:00 – Introduction to Origin PC with Aaron Jackson
  • 0:45 – Opportunities and Challenges of breaking into Asian Markets
  • 1:08 – Ways ANZ facilitated Origin to enter Asian markets
  • 1:26 – Benefits of banking with ANZ across Asia

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Adelaide Marble

From a humble backyard to an impressive showroom, Adelaide Marble has expanded its operations to become a wholesaler, distributor and retailer of kitchen bench tops, tiles and wooden floor boards.

Related products & services

To find out more about how ANZ products and services can help your business grow, contact your local Business Banker today.

  • 0:00 – Introduction to Adelaide Marble with John Miteloudis
  • 0:41 – Importance for Asian business connections for Adelaide Marble
  • 1:11 – Ways ANZ facilitated Adelaide Marble’s growth into Asia
  • 1:26 – Importance of ANZ’s connections for facilitating future business

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