Alice Cowdrey is a reporter for the Stratford Press.

Adan Larsen Builders rewarded for business success

Adan Larsen Builders owners Adan and Kelly Larsen received a highly commended trades excellence award during the 2017 TSB Taranaki Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards.A Stratford couple have been rewarded for their hard work and good business sense.
Adan Larsen Builders owners Adan and Kelly Larsen received a highly commended trades excellence award during the 2017 TSB Taranaki Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards.A Stratford couple have been rewarded for their hard work and good business sense.

Adan and Kelly Larsen's Juliet Street business, Adan Larsen Builders, has received a 2017 TSB Taranaki Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Highly Commended Trades Excellence Award.

Adan and Kelly are rapt with the award, which they say confirms the fact they are heading along the right path business-wise.

Judges were highly complimentary of the businesses approach, pointing out the couple's great relationship with employees and the fact the business is held in high regard among suppliers, customers and the wider community.

"This is exemplified by your relatively low staff turnover, given the industry sector, and the use of your business by one of your key suppliers to build its premises."

Judges looked every aspect of the business for the awards including financial performance, health and safety, planning, marketing , communication, planning and how the business fits into the community.

Parents to three boys - Ethan (10) Jacob (8) and Oliver (5) - the couple say the have worked long and tiring hours over the years to get ahead and realise their dream of owning a successful business.

They now employ five full-time builders - four fully qualified and one apprentice - and specialise in residential builds.

Born and bred in Stratford, Adan left school to work for Vickers Quarries, becoming interested in the building process after helping to build a big shed on the company's land. He did his apprenticeship through Brad Gibbons Builders before working for the company as a contractor.

Kelly's parents offered him the opportunity to build their home and the couple went out on their own to do that project before returning to Brad to complete another new home. Soon after, theydecided to set up their own business, as they owned land on Bird Road at the time and could base the business there.

It was a busy time, as they were grazing up to 200 dairy heifers and weaners and working long hours building during the day before tending to the farm in their spare times and at weekends.

The business continued to grow and put more demands on the couple who had started a family. They ended up selling off 32ha to the neighbours which lead to the purchase of the land on Juliet Street to build their workshop and office.

Kelly's skills have been helpful in the business because she is an accounting technician. She was employed by Staples Rodway while studying through WITT and is grateful for the company's help in supporting her learning over the years as well as the business.

Adan has a real passion for the trade and enjoys being part of the New Zealand Certified Builders Association and is currently the President for the Taranaki region.

"It's extremely interesting. I enjoy the variation - the outdoors and the physical nature of it. I enjoy the challenge - you have to think all of the time. Being able to stand back and look at what we have achieved is satisfying.

He also enjoys being able to use his building skills to enhance and develop the family's new property at Brookes Road where they now live. They lease out 28ha of the property and farm 12ha themselves, raising calves and giving their children a country upbringing where they can raise animals and play in the outdoors.

Adan says business has been buoyant this year and encourages clients to get in touch early, due to the fact that the diary is filling up for next year. Adan says goals for the future include continuing to focus on enhancing and refining the business and working to a high standard.

The couple also want to continue making the work environment a good one for staff who are an essential part of the businesses success.

"We want to give a big thank you to our staff - they are really neat guys and essential to the business.

"We thank them for the effort they put into the business and our clients. I also want to thank all of our clients for their support as well as our sub contractors and suppliers - we really enjoy working with them."

- Stratford Press

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