Malcolm admits he might have an advantage when it comes to his business success. “I’ve been in the financial market almost 25 years in Australia and the US.”
He has worked with Deutsche Bank and J.P. Morgan. “It was pretty diverse. At one point I had about 60 people responsible for bringing the best equity ideas in to the US. The last 10 to 15 years was all about building businesses. “
That meant taking a business considered to be a low performer and turning it around. And this has been the key skill Malcolm has brought to his franchise.
After 10 years in New York with his wife and three children, the family returned to Sydney in 2013. “For me it was a bit of a reflection point; where do I want to be for the long term? I semi-retired and re-charged myself.” After a short stint with J.P. Morgan, Malcolm was ready for something different. “I need to be stimulated, challenged and outside my comfort zone. What motivated me? Thinking about how I can get the balance right between home and work.” Malcolm decided his next chapter would be about more autonomy and buying a local business would allow him to give back to the community. “I certainly wasn’t willing to sit back and play golf, I like to push myself and find a challenge. I like building things,” he says.
Malcolm looked at a few industries within his local area but decided that it was the Poolwerx franchise system that was most appealing.
He bought his first store in Killara in February 2018 and in partnership with another Franchise Partner, acquired an independent pool store and converted it to a Poolwerx. Post transaction, Malcolm has now acquired 80% of that business.
Today, Malcolm’s business includes the two stores (Poolwerx Killara and Poolwerx Turramurra), 10 service vehicles and 22 staff. His goal is to add another two stores to double the business in the next five years.
A new adventure
As his business continues to grow, Malcolm plans to be a dominant player in the local area.
“I could be quite unique as a multi-store business under one banner. Interaction, consistency and quick decision making are crucial… That’s one of the reason I was attracted [to the industry], it’s still fragmented. I knew Poolwerx was a leading brand, better presented.”
“I’m very fortunate, I’ve built a great team and I have the opportunity to spend time with my family. I have flexibility and I am more in control of my own destiny and time… Franchising allows you to get to a scale but it also enables you to not be there every day.”
“Franchising allows you to get to a scale but it also enables you to not be there every day.”