Lallie and Andre Kruger bought Melkbosstrand’s only surf shop in October 2014 and moved it to new premises in the Birkenhead shopping centre two months later.
How did your business start?
Ever since we relocated from Joburg we were looking for our own business to run. A surf shop seemed like the perfect business for Melkbosstrand, so when we heard it was up for sale we bought it and took over the stock from the previous owner. It was then located in a shop just off 6th Avenue with not much passing traffic. So after just two months trading there we moved here.
Why did you choose this area to set up shop?
We chose Melkbosstrand for the lifestyle. It’s a lovely community, ideal for a family with young children. This is the only surf shop in a place that really is surf central.
How did you find your premises?
When we bought the business, Steers was renovating and using this space as storage. A friend of ours has a cafe here and put us in touch with the centre manager, so when the space became free we were first on the list.
Why are the premises ideally suited to your business?
With Pick n Pay as the anchor tenant in the centre there is always passing foot traffic. Business tends to be slower in winter and that passing trade makes all the difference.
Who are your neighbours?
There’s a Specsavers, a pet shop, an art gallery and deli, Steers next-door and, of course, Pick n Pay itself.
What are the shop rental/sales prices like in this area?
It depends on size. It is more per square meter than the previous premises, but the position makes it worth it. It’s reasonable.
What is your shop footprint?
A lot of people come to the door and just stand there browsing. But actual customers, 10 to 30 per day year round, going up to about 100 in summer.
Do you have any expansion plans?
Yes, I’d love to have three times the space, but there’s nothing else available in the centre right now.
Do you operate online as well?
We’re launching a website with an online shopping functionality this year.
What’s your most popular item?
Surf wax. Everyone needs it!
021 553 0387
Words: Kit Heathcock