George Brown, Gebro Contracting Pty Ltd

Pilbara WA | September 2018

What is your business? How long has the business been operating?
The business is Gebro contracting which started in September 2016. We mainly contract for Main Roads WA. I left Main Roads to start this business and become a contractor for them. We’ve since picked up additional work from local shires, Rio Tinto, FMG and Karratha Shire.

At the moment Main Roads is still our main client and we’re so busy with them that I haven’t really had the chance to go out elsewhere but we’ve picked up a few new contracts which will come through in November. We’re pretty stable where we’re at.

What were you doing before you made contact with Many Rivers? What was your previous work experience?
I was a supervisor at Main Roads. I started there as a trainee and was there for nine years.

Why did you want to go into business?
I saw an opportunity for myself. I lot of the maintenance stuff back then wasn’t getting done at a quality level and I thought I could do it much better than the current sub-contractors. I saw it as a challenge as well, something different and a new horizon. I thought it would be good experience as well.

What services did you receive from Many Rivers? How did it help?
I regularly touch base with Ariel and let him know how I’m going. He checks my cashflow now and then and he always has the door open for me. If I’m unsure of anything I just give him a call and have a chat or arrange a meeting with him. He always lets me know what opportunities there are in terms of government grants and funding and he keeps me in the loop of things as well, things happening around town.

What did you find the most useful about the assistance from Many Rivers?
Probably the help he’s given me around tendering and getting some figures together. There was a gardening contract which we’ve been awarded that he assisted me in and another labour hire contract that I won as well.

Do you have any current employees? If so, how many employees? Are they full time or part-time?
I’ve got 5 at the moment. They’re all casual. There will be permanent starter in November for the contract that’s coming up as well.

What has been the biggest challenge to date?
Tendering. All tenders aren’t the same. They’re all different and from different industries so that’s been a challenge.

What has been the biggest success to date?
Winning the contracts.

Do you feel like the opportunities for you have grown?
Definitely. Looking at our track record and what we’ve done, I think the opportunities have definitely grown. The clients look at what you’ve done and if you’ve done it well, you’ll be successful in other tenders and gaining other work. If you put in good quality work the doors usually open up for the next time.

They’ve grown for me as a business owner as well, in my experience and being able to create local employment.

What do you hope to achieve in the future?
Hopefully to be a lot more involved in construction. Having my own plant and equipment to be more involved and take on the bigger construction tenders.

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