They are yet to celebrate the first birthday of their business, but business partners, David Adams and, Ruari Richardson of Observatory have taken the stationery supplies industry by storm. They boldly “guarantee” that they will slash any business’ stationery cost by more than a fraction and their confidence is is backed by a price comparison calculator on their website.
David and Ruari worked in the stationery supply industry for five years before they established their business, OfficeBox in August last year. They used the knowledge gained during those years to develop a unique business model aimed at giving them a competitive edge in business.
With a staff of 17, OfficeBox is still in its early growth stages, but already has an impressive online ordering system. The OfficeBox business model is a demonstration of the company’s potential for high impact – a factor which resulted in its selection as one of only five South African small businesses to participate in a unique Enterprise Development (ED) programme run by Sanlam in partnership with the Association of Savings and Investment South Africa (ASISA.)
After implementing suggested strategies from the ED programme, OfficeBox David and Ruari are looking to expand their business to spread its positive impact on the broader community. Their ultimate goal is to become the best e-commerce office supplies company in the country.
David says the Sanlam Enterprise Development programme taught him that OfficeBox’ unique offering meant that it was important to establish its core target market (SMEs with between 10 and 250 employees,) define its message and identify the manner in which to get it across.