Godfrey Cohen founded the Godfrey group in 1931 during a time when vacuum cleaners were only sold door-to-door. The young entrepreneur invested in 30 second-hand vacuum cleaners and convinced his father to provide him with some window space in the family’s furniture shop.
By chance, a young Hoover employee saw the vacuum cleaners in the window, and agreed to sell trade-in models to Godfrey, which not long after resulted in Godfrey opening his own store in the Prahran Market in Melbourne, where he then partnered with John Johnston to turn the small business into the brand it is known as today.
From an original investment of AU$50, the Godfrey’s Group has grown to 222 stores across Australia and New Zealand, with over 500 staff, making it the largest vacuum cleaner retailer in the world.
With traditional bricks and mortar businesses like Godfreys often comes a resistance to change, but Godfreys realised recently that an inability to adapt to new business models would result in the company potentially being forgotten.
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