Archos Group distinguishes itself by offering integrated construction services in some of Australia’s most challenging terrain. EEM chats to Director of Finance and Administration Lauren Hollis to find out more about the business, and how equipment brokers Finlease are making their equipment finance easier than ever.
Based in Wyong, on the Central Coast of New South Wales, Archos Group has come a long way since starting out with a sole employee and a single excavator. Over the past 12 years, the business has grown and diversified, developing a reputation for comprehensive end-to-end project capabilities.
“We’re a construction company servicing the telecommunications and electrical sectors,” says Lauren Hollis, Director of Finance and Administration at Archos Group. “We’re specialists in remote work, taking on a lot of jobs with access issues.”
Another unique characteristic to the business is the ability to deliver projects with a diverse scope, from start to finish, from the civil works on the ground to the towers and rigging up above.
“Most other companies will either do civil or rigging, whereas we can do both,” Lauren says. “Our Director Ben Hollis a vast background in civil construction, while our Operations Manager Greg Saul comes from a telecommunications background. The two of them combine their skills to provide that end- to-end service for our customers.”
By the books
A chartered accountant by trade, Lauren started out helping out with the Archos Group’s books after hours. But the business quickly grew to the point where she was able to leave her accounting job and take on a full-time role.
“I’ve looked after Archos Group’s finance and admin full time for about eight years now,” the smiling Lauren says. “I also look after everything to do with our ISO accreditation, which is absolutely essential for many of the jobs we do.”
Lauren has also been part of Archos Group’s continued growth, hitting some significant milestones in recent years.
“The Archos Group internal capabilities have proven to be a key business strength and attractive to our targeted customers,” Lauren explained. “Archos prides itself on having long-term full-time employees who are predominately local.”
The business also celebrated a very creditable 32 per cent growth in revenue between the 2022 and 2023 financial years. Lauren doesn’t expect that growth to continue along that trajectory, however, with the team’s focus now shifting to streamlining operations to find a sustainable sweet spot.
Dollars and sense
Archos Group also maintains a large in- house fleet of plant and equipment, including multiple utes, four-wheel drive trucks, half a dozen excavators, and a telehandler. Lauren says prioritising owning over renting helps the business keep costs down on its projects.
“It allows us to be a bit more competitive, do things a little bit cheaper,” she says. “Because we own the equipment, we’re not having to pay hire costs all the time.
“When we bought our telehandler, we initially needed it for a three-month job. And we quickly figured out that the cost of hiring the same machine for that period would be more than
50 per cent the cost of purchasing it. So, we figured we’d just need to use it on one more project, and the thing would have paid for itself – and we’d have an asset at the end of it as well. It just made sense for us.”
Partnering with Finlease
Archos Group has been working with equipment finance brokers Finlease for about two years, and Lauren says the partnership has proven very fruitful.
“We were no longer completely happy with our previous long-term broker, so we shopped around a bit to compare some other deals,” she says. “That’s where we came across Finlease, and discovered that they were quite competitive.”
Lauren says Finlease broker Chris Burke also quickly proved he was all about getting things done efficiently.
“Our team tends to operate with a bit of an ‘everything needs to be done yesterday’ approach,” she says. “And Chris has been really good at getting deals sorted and closed very quickly. They’re based on the Central Coast as well, so it’s nice to support a local business and have somebody who you can talk to in person.”
“Usually when we’re buying a piece of machinery, it’s for a project that’s starting soon. Ben has typically scoped the machine out in advance, so we just reach out to Chris at Finlease and pass on either the contract of sale or put them in touch with the dealer. We simply communicate the purchase price, our desired deposit and terms and then they go away and find the best deal for us..
“They make it very easy, and I’d definitely recommend them.”
To find out how Finlease can help grow your business, check out: www.finlease.com.au