G&J East getting set for the future

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East, West, North – and all of South Australia. G&J East is making new changes to help it serve all points of the compass

South Australian multi-franchise dealer G&J East Kadina blends stability built over nearly a century of history with an eye on the future.

Having existed as a family-owned business in the state’s Yorke Peninsula, north-west of Adelaide, for more than 90 years, G&J East Kadina knows a thing or two about serving the surrounding agricultural community.

Far from resting on its laurels though, the business officially became recognised as a Claas Harvest Centre within the past two years and is also under- taking a major renovation of its premises to ensure it will continue thriving well into the future.

G&J East Kadina dealer principal Colin Adams

Dealer-principal Colin Adams, who has worked with the business for 37 years, says while the business serves a wide geographical range – including all of South Australia through its Claas Harvest Centre role – it remains a strong local business with loyal staff.

"Our core business is reaping, like headers, obviously tractors, air seeders, boom sprayers, spreaders and full service and parts departments, with 16 dedicated service staff in the workshop," Adams says.

"It’s still a family-owned business – Matthew East is the owner and director of the business and he still resides in Kadina.

"It’s not state-owned, it’s still a local family business and Matthew’s son, Alex, lives in Kadina as well and is working here too.

"It’s a very stable agricultural business in a good, reliable farming area on the Yorke Peninsula. We look after our staff and the staff stay on.

"We have one staff member who has been here for 46 years, two at 37 years, including myself, one at 34 years, a couple of mechanics at 26 and 25 years and a trade assistant at 26 years – so there are a number of staff members that are all in that timeframe of working here."

G&J East Kadina is situated in a strong broadacre farming area, with popular crops among local farmers including wheat, barley, canola and lentils.

The business stocks many popular machinery manufacturers, including the likes of Fendt, Gleaner and Massey Ferguson under the Agco banner, Claas and Amazone under the Landpower banner, Simplicity and Morris air seeders, Nitro and Hardi sprayers, Deutz-Fahr tractors and a number of smaller brands.

"We’re a multi-franchise business, which has held us in good stead through good times and bad," Adams says.

"Even through poor seasons over the years, we haven’t just been a supplier of one brand and we have other avenues to sell and service.

"Two years ago, we ventured into the Claas Harvest Centre side of it, which then gave us tractors, mowers and balers, which we hadn’t been doing through Claas, we had only really focused on the Lexion combines."

Another way in which G&J East Kadina ensures its diversity and adaptability is through strong servicing and parts departments.

Adams highlights the wide geographical areas the business’ mechanics have covered in recent weeks alone, in areas as far apart as Kangaroo Island, Naracoorte and Loxton.

To ensure the business ticks over to its century and beyond as a thriving dealership, a major upgrade of its premises is currently taking place.

"We’re going through renovations to really move into the next 20 or 30 years," Adams says.

"We’ve been situated in the same position now for about 39 years and now we’re having our first major upgrade of what was pretty much an agricultural shed.

"It’s the first major reno in the time we’ve been out here and there are another eight new offices being built.

"In a perfect world without COVID-19 we would have already been finished, but we’re hoping to be completed this year.

"There are a number of stages we’re doing though so it’s an ongoing project, but we’re excited about the finished product coming up."

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