National bathroom retailer Highgrove Bathrooms opens landmark 50th store

The challenges the retail sector has had to face over the last decade are countless. This is especially true for retailers in the home improvement, renovation and construction sector.

From higher interest rates in the mid-2000s to facing slumps in construction; a GFC and tightening of the property market, to bushfires, floods, and a pandemic plus the recent price hikes right across the construction supply sector – the challenges have been many.

How has Highgrove Bathrooms become a success?

For Lindsay Sinclair, the founding father, and son James who has been leading their bathroom brand Highgrove Bathrooms since 2012, these challenges have meant adjustments to meet market climates, with the need to innovate and lots of product research and development to not only face these head-on but sail through these phases more or less unscathed.

Their bathroom retail business didn’t just survive during these tough times but thrived in spite of the changing retail arena. “Our ethos hasn’t changed over the years. It has always been our goal to offer our customers the best in design at an affordable price point, but in addition, we have always given back to those less fortunate in our local community,” James said.

This year, on the back of the drawn-out pandemic they have opened their 50th store – a flagship showroom in Rockhampton in Queensland. Despite the difficulties the retail sector has had to face over the past three years, staying strong says a lot about the way Lindsay and James have managed their generational transition and how they lead their team.

“I have always equated our success to listening to the market and what the customers want and finding the right people to partner with. Our business model is somewhat unique with the vast majority of our stores operating under a partnership arrangement operated by individuals passionate about the industry and their local communities,” James explained.

What is the growth rate of the company?

From the humble beginnings of a single store on the Gold Coast in 2002, equipped with a vision and only 45sqm of retail space, Lindsay set out. His son James joined eight years later and has driven much of the product innovation and outlet growth to make Highgrove Bathrooms what it is today. Clients and industry buyers can access the Highgrove Bathroom ranges across fifty locations around the country, served by a team of over 250 staff.

“We needed to be flexible as we are constantly re-engineering ourselves to keep up with an ever-evolving market. One of our main focuses has been on the use of interchangeable components, allowing every client to tailor a bathroom that is unique to them,” James says.

“Eight years ago, it was enough to offer a matt black range, 4 years ago, a range of products in pastels. Today the market is more discerning and fastidious. We have design and development teams to keep us relevant with newer trends,” James further commented.

What is the company’s impact on the community?

Brushed nickel tapware and accessories, concrete baths and basins, and a high-end range of timber vanities are all aesthetically stunning, but it is the ability to customise that makes this brand so unique. Their latest ranges Evoke, Crete and the ability to interchange elements really make Highgrove a unique player in the Australian bathroom design landscape.

When it comes to giving back, they have built relationships with the Smith Family and Rural Aid nationally. They also support those in need through devastating natural events such as the recent floods in Northern NSW and South East Qld and the Bushfires back in 2020.

In looking back over almost two decades of the Highgrove Bathroom brand, they have recorded YoY growth consistently, have carved out a niche in which they meet demand, and have stood strong while keeping prices low and a desire to back to their communities.

Clearly, a recipe that spells success not only for them but for their loyal following of DIYers, renovators, tradies, and new home builders. Design your unique bathroom look at any of their (now) fifty Highgrove Bathrooms stores nationally or online at their website.