How it started
Andrew Gurney was struggling to find hardware for a home renovation that wasn’t generic or plain when he realised there was a gap in the Australian market for trendy finishes.
After seeing styles of handles and other home accessories that were prominent in Europe but not yet in Australia, Gurney spent 12 months researching suppliers and testing designs before launching his e-commerce site HardwareBox.
Revenue for HardwareBox has grown from $563,000 in the 2018-19 financial year to $2 million in 2020-21.
Gurney recalls planning for “very modest growth” in his first year of trade, which the business achieved with flying colours.
“We consistently outpaced these targets. Whilst that was great to surpass your expectations, it meant being on the back foot in terms of having the right systems in place,” he said.
Gurney has since become more ambitious when setting growth targets, which he says helps ensure the right people, systems and processes are in place to support the business when it reaches those goals.
Where to next?
Going forward, Gurney plans on expanding the product range, currently focused on door handles and hinges, to include lighting and kitchen and bathroom fixtures.
At the same time, Gurney wants to expand sales in the UK, having already taken small steps by offering 5% of his range abroad to test the reception.
As for exit plans, the founder has no concrete plans to exit the business until annual revenue reaches $5 million.
“Taking it from $5 million to $50 million requires a different skill set, larger team and the role of managing director is very different at this size,” he said.