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We sat down with local businessman Stuart Malouf – Director of Ohana Early Learning to talk about his business growth and get his tips for business.

Ohana’s first venture started in South West Rocks back in October 2013.

“We had big visions to establish in Coffs Harbour and was able to use the SWR site as a small tester to learn from,” Stuart said.

“This was a very successful venture with us being 50% full from day 1 and then went to 100% occupancy within 3 months.”

The long drive ended up taking its toll, so Stuart made the decision to sell it 2 years later – which provided the capital for him to build new centres closer to home.

“Not only that, SWR helped us to learn and grow, and develop systems for future centres,” he said.

Stuart said he also had an alignment with Watsons Caravans which resulted in Ohana’s North Boambee centre being opened in April 2016.

“We were able to use our learnings from the SWR centre to develop this. We also purchased a block of land in Scarba Street which was opened just recently in January 2017.”

So what does the future hold for Stuart and the Ohana team?

“We have growth plans whereby we have a centre currently being built at South Grafton – we expect this to be operational by early 2018. We also have another centre currently in design phase for Emerald Beach which is sitting at Council now for approval,” he said.

Stuart’s advice for other local business people?

  • You must have a robust strategic plan – which is easily adapted, reflects your operations and the current market.
  • It’s important to work on your business, not just in it. You need to take a step back and detach yourself from the day to day operations. I spend a lot of time away from my Centres – looking at what our competitors are doing, what the market is doing, what Government is doing.
  • Consistency is key – I like to think that every parent can visit any one of our Centres and have the same look, feel and experience across the board.

Thank you Stuart!

For more information about Ohana Early Learning visit www.ohanaelc.com.au



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