A CHANGE is on the horizon for the Minato family, but it is a challenge they are all looking forward to.
The family operates Griffith Tile Centre, Dollar Curtains and Blinds, and Eclipse The Essential Spa and is about to undergo a generational change.
Company directors Robert and Christine Minato are moving into semi-retirement and their children – Jason and Dean Minato, Tracy Ciampa and Olivia Gee – will lead the family trust that operates the businesses.
Griffith Tile Centre was established in 1975 by Robert and his father Angelo. Both being builders by trade they saw a niche in the market to open a shop specialising in tiles, adhesives and grouts.
Over the years the business has included many family members, with Robert’s siblings Jimmy, Pam and Dennis all working there.
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Tracy joined her parents in the business in 1994, and was later joined by Dean and then Jason, after completing his building trade. Today Dean and Jason run the business, with Robert on hand to help out.
Eclipse opened in 1999 after Olivia qualified as a beauty therapist.
Starting with just two people, the business grew and Tracy joined the ranks as manager. Now it has 13 staff, including a sister-in-law, Tamara Minato.
Dollar Curtains and Blinds was opened by the family in 2015, again after noticing a gap in the market.
Like the other family businesses, it has grown from strength to strength with brothers-in-law Rob Gee and Pat Ciampa running the business with interior designer Megan Hume.
Tracy said despite the generational change, it would be business as usual for the family, which is always looking for new ideas in their respective industries.
“The family has been a big part of the business growth and we feel very lucky to work alongside each other each and every day,” she said.
“There are not many businesses that have the parents, four children and three of the in-laws all working together.”
Robert will step back and semi-retire, taking the opportunity to enjoy doing what he loves - spending time with his 11 grandchildren and riding his bike.
“He has watched his children and in-laws grow the businesses over the years and is so happy they want to continue to work on the businesses,” Tracy said.
Succession planning has been painless thanks to one thing - communication.
“It is the key to a successful family business,” Tracy said.
“The best part is, being family, we are always upfront and honest so things never build up and we try to keep business at work.
“People laugh because even though we all work together we still have family dinners and every year all three businesses close for two weeks and we go on a family holiday together.”