Case Study

Matthews Contracting and CJD Equipment

Successful business owners say the secret to their success is ‘digging deep’ –truer words have never been said in the case of the Matthews family, who have been running Matthews Contracting in Ingleside in Sydney’s Northern Beaches since 1994. Kane, Jason and Troy

Specialising in demolition, excavation, asbestos removal and civil works across the greater Sydney region, family members Stephen Matthews (Director) and his three sons Kane, Jason and Troy have built the business to tackle projects like the M2 and Mona Vale Road Upgrade, along with multi- basement projects with shoring and anchors.

However, they still stay true to their roots and offer services at the smaller end of the scale, including demolition of backyard sheds and backyard excavations with a 1.8-tonne machine. Land clearing, detailed excavation and internal strip-outs (for potential residential work to shops and city offices) also fall into the scope of the company.

I live just over the hill from their Ingleside operation so I’ve been watching the progress of the Matthews Volvo excavators on the Mona Vale Road project for some time now, with a nod of approval every time I drive past. I didn’t personally know the family but had several connections to Kane through common friends, so when we had the chance to visit Kane and his dad Stephen, I grabbed the opportunity. We agreed to meet at a residential site at the top of Elanora where sandstone excavation was under way on an impressive site that looked down over the back of Narrabeen Lakes.

A Full Range Of Modern Solutions

After meeting and greeting the lads it was time to see what made the team at Matthews Contracting tick. Stephen shared, “Being able to offer our clients a broad selection of high performance machines and attachments, including rock saws, which keep the noise down on residential sites, keeps them happy. We have a full range of modern solutions for their every need, along with our highly experienced and trained operators to perform the work, with the reliability and safety they expect. Our ability to deliver civil, domestic and commercial work sets us aside from our competition, along with our dedicated and highly skilled operators who operate on our updated and extremely well-maintained machines. With our augers for piering, grinders, screening buckets, pulverisers  and many more attachments, we can tackle any project.”

The Dynamics Of A Well-Run Family Business

I like seeing the dynamics of a well-run family business and the unique roles family members take on to work to their own strengths, as well as the business’ strengths. Kane has taken on the role of quoting and overseeing the management of jobs and clients from his grandfather, while Jason and Troy are operating anything from excavators to driving trucks and the general day-to-day running of the business.

Matthews Contracting has had a strong relationship with CJD Equipment and Volvo for many years and has grown from a single 30 tonne excavator seven years ago to a fleet of 14, 23, 30 and 37 tonne Volvo machines. When I asked Kane about this long-term relationship, he shared, “Our relationship with Steve Wilson (NSW Regional Sales Manager) is a great balance of being informative on new products and keeping us up to speed with technologies and education, while also being efficient, approachable and friendly. This relationship and the obvious strengths of the Volvo product – price, fuel efficiencies and driver comfort (a great seat and excellent controls) – have combined over the years to see us grow together with CJD Equipment. In particular, the Volvo ECR305C has a great lifting load and we have only on very rare occasions had any mechanical problems, which have always been taken care of with utmost importance. We generally run between 10-14 jobs at any given time, which our Volvo fleet will be spread across, so the importance of good communication with CJD Equipment is imperative.”

Success With CJD Equipment And Volvo

Steve Wilson has an impressive history spanning 17.5 years with CJD Equipment and has been working with Matthews Contracting since 2014. When scratching the surface on this relationship, Steve shed some light on both his and CJD Equipment’s history with Matthews Contracting. “Over the last six years I’ve worked quite a bit with Stephen to fulfil their needs and requirements, but in recent times I’ve had a lot more interaction and dealings with Kane and Jason. It’s great to see a family work well together and see the next generation step up in the business. Over the last few years Matthews Contracting has purchased a fair number of machines from us including an EC300D, two ECR145Cs, four ECR235Cs and two ECR305Cs. After meeting Stephen about eight years ago it took a couple of years of stopping in to discuss the strengths of the Volvo excavator in combination with CJD Equipment’s level of aftersales support and service, and since having that first opportunity we have both gone from strength to strength.”

The Matthews family are a great Australian example of good old-fashioned family values and hard work paying dividends. With Stephen Matthews and his father being builders on the Northern Beaches, then making the change over to earthworks and excavations 27 years ago, the family business has now reached a level where their name is renowned in the earthmoving industry. It has been an absolute pleasure to catch up with Matthews Contracting on site here on the Beaches.

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