By Claire Reilly

Victorian-based retailer E&S Trading is celebrating 50 years of doing business this month, with a number of consumer promotions on offer in-store and online, a big broadcast event at its Moorabbin showroom this weekend and a dedicated birthday party tomorrow night.

Speaking about the festivities, E&S Trading’s general manager, Greg Lake, said it was a great opportunity to drive people into the store and to remind customers about just how strong the retailer’s history was.

“The whole month of October is really our birthday sale month,” said Lake. “We’ve got signage in all the stores and we’re putting out twice the number of catalogues that we’d normally do this month. We’ve also got an incredible amount of advertising on radio and TV just to support the catalogue and the fact that it’s our 50th birthday.

“This Friday and Saturday we have 3AW doing a live broadcast out of our Moorrabin showroom. 3AW has been the top-ranking radio station in every timeslot for something like 10 years and these guys are big in the radio world.”

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The retailer is also using 3AW to spruik its ‘Win a $50,000 Kitchen’ promotion – including $15,000 worth of Smeg appliances and $35,000 worth of cabinetry – which will be announced at the in-store broadcast this weekend. In addition, E&S is using its Facebook and Twitter presence to promote its birthday, with Facebook followers given the opportunity to win weekly appliance giveaways.

According to Lake, the reaction from consumers has been very positive.

“The stores are a bit of a hive of activity at the minute. They’re all dressed for the birthday and our customers are enjoying the fact that they’re dealing with someone that’s been around for 50 years.

Lake also added that the company’s strong history was “vital” and that it was reassuring for customers who shop with the retailer, either in-store or on the E&S website.

“Bricks and mortar retail is obviously hard enough, and if you don’t have a history and don’t have a good reputation, then I think it would just be incredibly difficult to convince customers that you can be a trusted adviser to them.”

As a special treat for supplier partners and staff, E&S is also hosting a birthday bash as Melbourne’s Carousel restaurant tomorrow night, with hundreds of guests from the industry expected to come out and celebrate.

“We’ve got 395 guests coming which is made up of our staff, our suppliers, some of our customers and some members of the Sinclair family [E&S Trading was founded by Bob Sinclair]. It should be a hoot of a night. We are closing all of our stores early so that all of our staff can get there, which is probably a bit of an unusual thing for a retailer to do, but it just demonstrates how important it is for us to get our staff to these sort of things.”