Client Story: Adelaide Hills Lawns & Gardens (AHLG)

Adelaide Hills Lawns & Gardens (AHLG) is a premium garden and landscaping company offering residential and commercial maintenance, landscaping construction, and specialised turf and irrigation services. Led by Directors Jarrad Tait and Luke Timmins, the business has experienced huge growth in only a few short years and now has a team of 60 employees.

History Of The Business

AHLG was originally founded in 2013 by Jarrad Tait, who wanted to challenge the way an average lawn and garden maintenance company operated by offering a more personal, streamlined, and high-end service. In 2015, Jarrad joined with Luke Timmins to form an official partnership, and with the two as co-owners, the business has flourished.

Since their founding, they’ve not only grown in staff and customer numbers, but have moved to a new commercial premise in Totness, been awarded a top 10 spot in SA’s Fast Mover program, received a MLSA Maintenance Award, and received recognition for one of their team winning Trainee of the Year.  Co-owner Luke also won Business SA’s Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 2021.

Their attractive company culture has received positive attention from job applicants, too. “They’ve become a destination for employment,” says Oreon Partner Tom Carr.  Last month they were extremely proud to have earned a Great Place to Work Certification.

Challenges Along The Way

The company’s rapid growth has been exciting, but it has also created challenges such as managing cash flow, learning how to attract and retain a quickly growing team, and how to best use technology to handle the data requirements necessary to manage the business.

Luke says that they’ve had to learn a great deal over the years, prioritising both physical and mental health to operate at a high level, as well as hire people who fit their company culture.

“We’ve been really fortunate to find and hire good people,” notes Jarrad. “It’s been very important for us to emphasise accountability and be super clear from the start about our values and what we stand for.”

“My advice to other new business owners is to work on becoming a leader, not a manager, and put your people first,” he adds.

Oreon’s Role In The Journey

AHLG has worked with Oreon since 2017. Tom and Senior Manager, John O’Brien have assisted with everything from business restructuring advice to strategy and forecasting, tax planning, business purchases and small acquisitions and setting up board meetings.

“In the beginning, we implemented quarterly meetings to manage financial performance against forecast results and discuss upcoming projects like business purchases, space required for growth, staffing and resourcing cash flow,” says Tom.

From those meetings, Tom’s team identified a need to restructure from a partnership of trusts to a company where they have been able to utilise CGT rollovers to avoid any unnecessary tax costs. The original structure had caused a few difficulties with potential funders, and that together with rising profits created a need for a direct trading company approach.

“The business has heavy equipment needs, so they regularly need to source funding,” John explains. “These guys have done a really great job of monitoring their financial performance, which has been essential. They’ve utilised a lot of cloud technology themselves, leaning on us for advice along the way.”

“Oreon has good people who understand and appreciate the way we approach business,” says Luke. “They’re willing to educate, not just tell, and they’re able to look at the long-term big picture.”

Future Of The Business

“We still have lots of scope for growth and improvement,” says Luke. Given their growth to date, there’s no doubt there’s a lot more to come from this innovative company.

 To learn more, visit the Adelaide Hills Lawns & Gardens website.