Why set up Independent Cabinet Makers (ICM Geelong)?
In a nutshell, ICM Geelong was established to protect our cabinetmaking industry.
To encourage people to use a local cabinetmaker so we can maintain our share of the market.
ICM Geelong was born out of a round-table discussion. That was three years ago. It has since morphed into more than just a marketing campaign to promote Geelong’s cabinetmaking industry as President Scott Smith explains to Mitchell Dye, Mitchells Front Page radio show.
This is an extract from the interview. Click here to listen to the full interview.
Mitch: What are the challenges faced by cabinetmakers in Geelong?
Scott: “We refer to them as ‘catalogue’ kitchens. Kitchens purchased from these big department stores. People go into these stores and order their kitchens from there and what happens is they get made elsewhere. No one in Geelong benefits from it, ” says Scott.
“The whole idea of ICM Geelong was to form some quality members, backed up by sponsors to promote cabinetmaking in the Geelong, Bellarine and Surf Coast area.
We are doing this not only for now but in the future where we want to see some good quality cabinetmakers out there, running good businesses and employing people in Geelong.
We want to keep the industry thriving now and into the future.
I really think there will be a trade shortage in the industry (and other trades) in the future if we don’t look after it now.
Right now Geelong is booming , but we are looking ahead to the next 10, 15 – 20 years. That is what ICM Geelong is all about.”
Mitch: Where are cabinetmakers used?
Scott: “Cabinetmakers are very versatile and do so much more than kitchens and bathrooms. Robes, laundries, furniture, anything really!
With our industry all our members tend to have niche markets. That’s what is great about the industry. We cater for bespoke pieces requested by interior designers through to project builders , commerical fit outs and also home renovators.
Within the ICM Geelong system, we refer work to each other. Some jobs suit some cabinetmakers more than others. Every business is kept healthy and strong.”
Mitch: Why should young people get into the trade?
Scott: “I joined the trade 32 years ago and I still love it. It is a very satisfying trade to be in.
It’s very challenging, and there’s always new materials eg. reconsititured stone and new hardware on the market all the time.
The kitchen, bathroom and even the laundry is becoming a major part of our home. It’s satisfying to be able to make your own cabinetry !
You also meet some great people along the way, including all of ICM Geelong’s sponsors who are terrific to do business with.
It’s a very viable career path and we ICM Geelong will keep working with The Gordon to encourage young people into cabinetmaking apprenticeships.”
Mitch: Tell us about your recent Trade Night.
Scott:“E & S trading were amazing hosts at our annual trade night.
Shaynna Blaze was a delight andgave us insight into the latest trends.
Lots of interior designers, and it was great to network with people in the industry.”
Mitch: What is something we should look out for in terms of kitchen trends?
- New matt laminates. Scratch resistant. Finger print proof.
- Thin, very modern bench tops
- Stainless is making a big come back according to Shaynna!
We are stretching the boundaries when it comes to design.