The rapidly changing face of business in the 21st Century requires everybody to think outside the box when starting out or planning an expansion.
Brothers Jeff and Brad Swaffer (pictured) did just that when plotting the growth of their company Peak Airconditioning, Refrigeration and Electrical on Ingham Rd in the Townsville suburb of Garbutt.
Originally from northern New South Wales, the brothers completed their trades in Cairns before Brad moved to Townsville as a refrigeration specialist in 2003.
Jeff followed soon after.
Fast forward to 2016 and their business now employs 38 staff and numbers among its clients James Cook University, the Mater Hospital, Willows Shopping Centre and Reef HQ.
But the ambitious duo were not content to rest on their laurels and in January opened Snowy’s Coffee Shop adjacent to a refurbished showroom.
The total refurbishment of their property cost more than $1 million, offering a modern showroom and extensive storage for stock.
But the savvy brothers looked beyond the obvious after doing their homework.
“We wanted to maximise our revenue stream and take advantage of the passing traffic on Ingham Rd,” Brad said.
“There was nothing in the immediate area that offered barista-style coffee so we came up with the coffee shop idea.”
The pair don’t do things by half and advertised Australia-wide to employ a top-class barista to head up the new venture.
Enter Sydney-based, Austrian-born barista Manny Bloch.
“Manny was wanting to come to Townsville anyway and when he saw the ad applied for the job,” Brad said.
“He has worked as a barista in Europe and is also a qualified chef so we helped him with his relocation costs.”
Trading for only six weeks, the coffee is already paying its way and Manny has quickly developed a following.
“He even brought his own style of coffee beans up with him which aren’t available anywhere else in Townsville,” Brad said.
Buoyed by the early success, Brad and Jeff are confident the coffee shop will be even more successful when their food preparation licence is approved in coming weeks.
The shop is named after their late grandfather, who served with the army in 1942 at the Garbutt air base (now RAAF Base Townsville).