An Australian Franchisee Case Study
Some would say two fathers and two sons working together is a recipe for disaster, but not so for the Walker and Rand families.
Phillip Walker and David Rand and their sons, Ben Walker and Grant Rand, have already shown they are a formidable combination when it comes to growing a business. And they are confident that their newly opened Hydraulink Service Centre in Clyde will enjoy the same success as the business they have run together for many years, Fluid Tech Hydraulics (FTH). FTH is a leading provider in the service, maintenance, repair, sales and design of Hydraulic fluid power products, and has been a Hydraulink Sydney customer for over 15 years.
Since opening the franchise, Ben has worked as the Manager and Director of the Hydraulink Service Centre and runs the day-to-day operations, while the other three partners continue to work out of the FTH workshop and offices in nearby Auburn. The products and service synergies between the two businesses are very strong. Both businesses and the customer group that they service will ultimately benefit from this new alliance.
Ben found the support he received from Hydraulink in establishing the franchise to be excellent. “The experience has been a real eye opener for me,” he says. “Setting up the franchise which included a fully equipped Trade Service centre shop and the mobile service vehicles has required a lot of work, and it wouldn’t have been possible without the help I have received from the Hydraulink head office team.”
As well as technical training in hydraulic hose and fittings, Hydraulink helped Ben locate the Wentworth Street property and negotiate the lease terms. The Hydraulink Head office team also worked with Ben on internal architectural development and shop fit-out as well as the external livery of the Service Centre.
All four franchisees are confident that it is this ongoing support, along with their collective decades of experience in the general hydraulics industry, which will ensure the growth of the Hydraulink Clyde Service Centre.
Grant Rand says, “Knowing the product and backing we receive as a customer, I can only imagine the support that is on hand to a franchise. The other major bonus is the Hydraulink NSW own base structure of Service operations and their knowledge of just how the industry works from a first-hand perspective.”
And the two fathers concur. Phillip says, “I’m confident that Hydraulink is committed to quality and reliability, while growing the company.” David adds, “We chose the Hydraulink franchise because we saw it as a good investment, and because it was a way to pass on experience and knowledge.”
Ben said the Hydraulink opportunity came at the perfect time for him personally, as it was time for a change of scenery, and he is certainly thinking long-term. “I would like to see us become the number one hose and fitting supplier in our territory within two years,” he says. Once we are through the early development of our territory we will add further mobile service units and introduce an extended product range and expand our customer support activities. “We are also looking to purchase other Hydraulink franchises and help create a strong network that cements Hydraulink’s position as the leading brand for hydraulic hose and fittings in the Sydney market.”