August Cover – Rudy Ursem

Green Design Indoor Plant Hire

Turning points, firsts & opportunities
Who would have thought that the addition of indoor plants in a commercial environment could do more than just make the office more visually appealing?
One local business owner who understands this better than most is Rudy Ursem, Managing Director of Somersby based company, Green Design Indoor Plant Hire.
Rudy Ursem and his wife Robyn acquired Central Coast Indoor Plant Hire, an established business that had been operating for three years, in 1982 and has grown the business into an industry leader through a steadfast belief in and commitment to innovation, his people, and the delivery of quality service to customers and suppliers alike. Indeed, Rudy believes firmly that treating the business as a service provider rather than a horticultural industry and maintaining a commitment to lead rather than follow have been integral to the company’s success.
A keen gardener, he was drawn to an advertisement for a plant hire company, which was for sale on the Central Coast. With little money of their own, the Ursems managed to secure a loan. The couple initially ran the business from their home in Kincumber, producing a monthly turnover of just $3,500. Robyn looked after the office and the plants stored on their property, while Rudy serviced existing clients and canvassed for new work, including regular door knocking.
The hard work paid off and the business grew steadily. A significant turning point came when Rudy secured the company’s first client in Sydney in the late 1980s. From that point onwards, Rudy focused his attention on the much larger Sydney market and changed the name of the company to Green Design Indoor Plant Hire, opening a serviced office in Sydney while continuing to run the business from the Central Coast.
As the business grew the Ursems moved from their suburban property to an acreage in Kincumber. Today the company is located on a 5 acre property at Somersby, employs 35 Central Coast locals and produces a monthly turnover of about half a million dollars. While they service companies between Wollongong and Newcastle, by far their largest market is in Sydney (around 90%).

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