With Covid-19 still keeping boarders closed, both in Australia and overseas, it’s difficult to hold big events such as trade fairs with so many restrictions in place.
For Artiwood, this provided a great opportunity to make the move and find a new space for the company and its staff.
“Until now, retailers could only see our products at trade shows,” says Andrew McGregor, managing director, customer service, sales and marketing.
“However, with so many events being cancelled by the pandemic, a permanent showroom has become more important than ever.
“On a whim, in early June we decided to look at spaces coming up for lease. We were surprised to find some impressive properties on the market. With recession looming, landlords were also happy to negotiate.”
They ultimately found the perfect office space literally a block from Artiwood’s existing location.
“It offers ample visitor’s parking, a more efficient layout and exceptional staff facilities. Staff now has access to a gym and heated pool in a leafy, green neighbourhood filled with popular cafes. We think our new location will be a huge recruitment drawcard,” he adds.
Some might say looking for new premises during a pandemic is crazy, however, McGregor says the Covid-era has made the location incredibly easy.
“Every contractor wanted our business and went the extra mile to secure it. The builder who managed our fit out agreed to several variations at no cost and we secured furniture, fittings and technology at a discount.
“We’ve ultimately ended up with a better office, at a lower price, than our previous location. Of course, like any renovation, things took longer than planned and we encountered a few hiccups along the way.”
The new office space is still a work in progress and the showroom zone is yet to be installed. However, once it is done, retailers will be able to view the bulk of Artiwood’s catalogue all year-round.
“Like all toy companies we’re now in the midst of our seasonal Christmas surge. As a result, it’ll take a few months to pull the showroom together.”
The new space, which is scheduled for a late November opening, is also conveniently located on the main route between the airport and central Sydney. This means interstate visitors can drop by on their way to or from the airport throughout the year.
Despite the pandemic, 2020 has been an incredible year for Artiwood. It has relocated its office, secured a product of the year award, appointed a new national key account manager and added three new brands to its portfolio. Sales have also been steady as house-bound parents desperately try to keep their children entertained.
“As we head into 2021, we’re cautiously optimistic that sales will remain strong. We’re also pivoting to include more educational products in our mix. Expect to see more from HEADU, our new educational brand.
“We’ll also be rolling out a new on-trend pastel range from Bigjigs, an expanded range of wooden toys from Tildo and new bamboo nursery toys from Kinderfeets. We’ll have samples on display in our new showroom from February onwards,” adds McGregor.