By James Wells
COFFS HARBOUR: One of Australia’s most respected Retravision stores has relocated to a larger superstore to maintain its position as one of the best performing stores in the country.
Coffs Harbour Retravision, which has relocated from a 350 square metres site to a 1,000 square metre superstore has also increased its staffing levels by 25 per cent.
According to store owner Garth Morrison, the reaction from the industry to the new store has been overwhelming.
“Our new store almost doubles the amount of floor space currently available, providing greater choice and convenience for local customers and allowing us to stock a greater range of products in all areas of our business. In particular, one of the biggest advantages our new store can offer is more items on display, which provides more room to touch and test the products," said Morrison.
“We have had an amazing reaction from sales managers and sales representatives who have been blown away by the store. We have spent a lot of money on a high quality fitout. We appointed Rowe Shopfitters, who do a lot of the work in Queensland with Retravision. Their experience was invaluable for the project and they have helped advise us about all of those areas where you sometimes cut corners and regret it later on.”
According to Morrison, the new store will provide local residents with the largest display of cookware on the North Coast. Residents can also enjoy a greater range of products with a particular focus on LCD and plasma screens, air conditioners and whitegoods.
Morrison said that the water rebate for energy efficient washing machines, which has been introduced by the New South Wales state government is a good thing, but he is not too upset that it does not apply to his area.
“I’m sure it would have been good to get a few more sales from the rebate. It is disappointing that it has been offered to the Sydney area and not the bush where our water supply has been critical. Our sales of front and top loaders are half-half as it is. It is hard to know whether the sales of front loading machines are driven at store level rather than through general knowledge. I really don’t think that a lot of people are that well informed. Now that the rebate has been introduced, people in Sydney are likely to go and find out more about water efficient machines.
“We have increased sales staff by 25 per cent which is significant, particularly in a country area with a fixed population. We saw no point in going to a bulky goods site where you hire 50 people and sack half of them three months later,” he said.
“We have always been fairly loyal to our staff and we have kept most guys on for the last 10 years since we have been in Coffs. We have recently secured a few extra guys with considerable retail experience and that is a very valuables part of what we do here. The knowledge of our sales people is something we have always been proud of – other competitors don’t have the focus with high turnover of staff.
Coffs Harbour Retravision began as an independent family business in 1955 in North Ryde, Sydney. Fifty years later Howard and his wife Sue still own and run the business with son Garth.
In 1964 Coffs Harbour Retravision became part of the Retravision Group, and in 1990 Howard relocated the business to Coffs Harbour.
This is the third relocation for Coffs Harbour Retravision, which is located at Mastracolas Road.