An Old Fashioned Business Ethos……..That Should Never Go Out Of Fashion!
We entered the Queensland tool industry over 35 years ago, with TradeTools in its present form commencing business in Capalaba in 1987. But from 35 years ago until now, we have always followed the same simple business ethos, an ethos that has always worked very well for us & allowed our business to slowly but surely prosper. It's an old fashioned ethos that includes a refusal to borrow money, always ploughing almost all of our profits back into our business, buying all of our premises wherever we can, paying excellent staff genuine & dignified performance based wages, supporting our many suppliers to the very best of our abilities, servicing & warranting everything we sell, being the best tool company to be found anywhere in Australia &, most importantly, always making sure that we are constantly as fair & reasonable as we can possibly be to all of our many customers!! Of course, none of this is rocket science, but it is always a mystery to us why so many other businesses seem not to wish to follow these simple time honoured rules. That includes some notable competitors over the decades who have either shrunk, fizzled out, or gone spectacularly broke! In fact, very few of our competitors from when TradeTools first began are still in business, yet we seem to generally constantly get stronger as the years roll on & expect to hit the $100M annual turnover mark well before this current decade is over. I suppose that’s not half bad for a home grown Queensland tool company that started in the 1980’s with just $25K in the bank & which has never borrowed a cent! And that is the why we can continue to be so famously competitive as, now owning almost all of our many buildings, we hardly pay any rent, have no overdraft or borrowings whatsoever, in fact our only genuine major overhead is wages……no equipment is leased……no expensive franchise fees………& compared with most successful businesses…… this one really does run on the smell of an oily rag by comparison!Many tool industry 'experts' are often telling us that we could actually put many of our prices up & maybe make a lot more money? That is also often the catch cry from many of our competitors who regularly complain that they just cannot compete with our famously competitive TradeTools pricing structure. But, we are primarily here to service our fellow Queenslanders, tools are all that we really know, we always seem to make an acceptable profit [just!] & the tax man would only be hitting us even harder if we increased our overall pricing in order to make more money! And, as much as we all absolutely love our many illustrious leaders down in Canberra, we genuinely feel that they do quite well enough out of us folk here at TradeTools as it is! So, there you just about have it. We have 37 shareholders, a few of whom work alongside me in the background, but with most actually working in the stores themselves. This really is a genuine private Queensland company, owned & run by the very people who work in the business on a day by day basis. We consistently flout many of the established rules, one of which is that of having sons & daughters of long serving staff members working within the business, something many of those ‘experts’ deem as crazy [sometimes it feels as though those experts could be right though!]. Nor is there any real form of hierarchy here, everyone is treated with equal respect & it is a real shame that many other places of employment can’t seem to get that balance right also. Sure we have competitors, but most of them just try & copy what we do here at TradeTools. Many of these aren’t even ‘real tool stores’ by our measure as they can’t even manage to service or warranty the very products that they offer you? That to us is like buying a new car from a dealer that hasn’t any workshop facilities & has to send you elsewhere instead if something falls off……a crazy situation! Other competitors don’t have any real import program & rely instead upon national wholesalers for almost all of their product offering……another crazy situation to us as, all too often, too many middlemen are involved, the end result being that good customers [you!] end up paying far too much! This just hardly ever happens at TradeTools. I have seen commonly used 2 pin hole saw arbors that we sell in the 1000’s for $19.90 each, being sold at ‘famous’ hardware stores for $49.50…… for the exact same thing &, it appears, from the same factory! Of course, it’s the small stuff everyday that these big operators always seem to ‘get you’ on, even though they are consistently bombarding you with how supposedly ‘cheap’ they are. And that is why we consistently claim that ‘Our Everyday Prices Are What The Others Call A Sale’………..easily proven time & again & no idle boast by any means! I would really like to again thank all of our customers that helped make this Queensland enterprise that is TradeTools the quiet ongoing success that it is. We will always stay as a private business that will never be sold [what on earth would all of us here at TradeTools actually do otherwise?]. In fact, we’re here for as long as people need to buy genuine trade quality tools in our great state of Queensland!
Once again, many thanks for being one of our customers.
Greg FordFounder & Director