National Family Business Day on Tuesday, September 19, recognises the great contribution family businesses make to the Australian economy, community and culture. Family businesses account for approximately 70 per cent of all businesses in Australia and employ about 50 per cent of our workforce.
Herrmann Tiles is an example of such a business.
Willi Herrmann arrived in Australia with his family from Germany in 1964 and started work as a tiler, with his wife Ilse working as a tiler with him during the 70s.
At the time all suppliers of materials and tiles were based in the city, so Willi started to keep stock at his Cranebrook residence. By the late 60s he had other tilers and builders buying from him and the business developed with a retail outlet in the Penrith Mall, although in the mid 80s the decision was made to keep the whole retail/trade complex in Cranebrook.
Willi died in 2003 and the business is now run by Willi’s son Peter and daughter Barbel. Ilse is still involved.
Peter said the business now comprises a wide range of tiles from all over the world, as well as laying materials, grouts, waterproofing, fittings and tools. He said the wealth of knowledge developed over many years in the industry is what sets his family business apart.
Herrmann Tiles gives back by sponsoring the Panthers and Penrith Basketball, supporting the school arts programs, and has assisted the Nepean Men’s Shed and Luke Priddis Foundation.