Business maestro has magic touch

Rochelle de Kock

IF you are looking to open up a new business or if your company needs a facelift, Port Elizabeth businessman Graham Kock, the owner of Cementrix, is probably the man to call.

Established in 2010, Cementrix is a service-oriented company specialising in retail and hospitality consulting, design services and business makeovers.

Although he was qualified in hotel management, Kock worked in the hospitality and restaurant franchise industry for 14 years before deciding to branch out on his own.

About four years before he started Cementrix, he realised he had a lot more interest in building businesses from the ground, until the business was ready to open its doors.

At the time, he worked for a well-known restaurant franchise group and was responsible for opening new stores.

“I did all the designs, plans and project management of new stores and I knew I wanted to go out on my own and do this for other companies as well,” Kock said.

“In 2010, I finally resigned and started my business and it just took off.

“We had a few teething problems, like any new business, because we had to get our name out there and people had to realise I was working for myself now and could provide the services that they needed.”

His wife, Nicola, also decided to quit her job and join her husband as soon as the business took off. She heads the marketing and administration side of things.

The various services offered by Cementrix include expanding or developing new businesses – from the design and planning aspect, operations and hiring of staff – and they also repair and maintain buildings.

They were recently awarded the contract, along with another company, to refurbish the exterior of the Echo Edge luxury apartment building in St George’s Park.

In the nearly 2½ years that the company has been up and running, Kock has managed to secure a few big clients.

“We operate internationally out of offices in Port Elizabeth, with a regional office in Cape Town, and we hope to set up another regional office in Johannesburg by mid-2013.

“We currently have projects running in PE and Durban, and national and international projects under way in Ghana and Saudi Arabia.

“African developments are growing quite rapidly, with a large number of investments under way on the continent,” he said. Kock said there had been a lot of requests and enquiries from Lesotho, the Middle East and the Far East.

“Even though Cementrix was formed as the country and region headed into a recession of sorts, we have still managed to grow incredibly well year-on-year.

“I think it is due to the fact that we offer such a diverse range of services through a network of reliable companies and individuals,” he said.

“The most important factor, though, is that we have managed to grow at a rate where we have not exceeded our capabilities or resources and that all services on offer are equally important and well managed.”

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