For over 20 years, Tempo has been a leading service provider for products in a range of categories across three core divisions – home appliances, audio visual and FMCG – which are sold around the world. 

Tempo was co-founded by three brothers – Nicholas, Andrew and Harry Stergiotis – who each bring more than 25 years of experience in the wholesale and retail industry. They have all worked in all areas of the business including sales, product development and operations, and are each responsible for one division but oversee the entire organisation.

Tempo co-founder, Nick Stergiotis sat down with Appliance Retailer to share insights into the business and how it continues to evolve and expand both locally and globally.

“Tempo expanded overseas more than 15 years ago; we took the decision to expand into overseas markets as we saw an opportunity to grow with our existing partners.

“We set up offices in the UK and the US and since then, we’ve grown our business in those markets with sales offices now in Hamburg, Germany and Miami, Florida, to facilitate supply to retailers in Europe, the UK and the US.

“A significant part of our revenue now comes from those markets and it’s growing quickly. Over the coming months, we’re putting a lot of focus on the US and UK markets as we see huge opportunities there. In the next 12-24 months we will be spending more time in these markets looking to grow with our expanding retail network.

“Having said that, we’ve got a lot in the pipeline in Australia as well, as it remains our core business. When it comes to working with new brands, our approach is contingent on the product category as they each have their own unique challenges. However, the product needs to be complementary to what we’re already doing and align with evolving market trends.”

Stergiotis believes the strength of Tempo comes from having three core business units – home appliances, audio visual and FMCG – and being able to add to them at a low cost due to existing business infrastructure.

“For example, because we have a solid foundation and low-cost structure, it is relatively simple for us to find adjacencies that suit our business, and that of our partners.

“Looking ahead, there’s two key priorities. The first is focusing on our core business in Australia because we never want to lose sight of what’s worked and what’s been good to us. The second is a return on investment on the acquisitions and new brands we’re working with.”

Reflecting on the last 18 months, there has been a focus on scaling the business, finding cost efficiencies, and investing for future growth.

“For example, we’ve just moved into a new building in North Sydney and we’ve leased a larger warehouse facility in Melbourne.

“Our Melbourne operations is a complete in-house facility responsible for internal logistics, service, spare parts, and fit for use testing. We took the decision to move these in-house so we can offer more cost effective and efficient business operations to our partners.

“We’ve continued to invest in IT infrastructure, for example we’re about to implement a new ERP, which is a multi-million-dollar investment that’s been in development for the past two years. It will create greater efficiencies, including enhanced transparency for ordering and shipping, by merging and centralising siloed software.”

Tempo is also focused on AI and what it can deliver to the business. “It’s fast moving and everyone’s talking about it right now. All departments from finance and compliance to graphic design are looking at what AI can bring to the table to streamline processes.”

From a sustainability point of view, Tempo is constantly reviewing ways to limit the amount of packaging for products without compromising on quality or transport.

“We’re in discussions with several leading environmental and social responsibility organisations about how Tempo can partner with them to be at the forefront when it comes to sustainability because it’s the right thing to do, and what our customers and our retail partners demand. If we’re not working on it, we’re going to be left behind.”