Riverina Pumps – 100% Aussie!

Coming from an agricultural family, the team at Riverina Pumps aims to pass on the benefit of their practical experience with products to customers

BUSINESS: Riverina Pumps
PRINCIPALS: Tom Maguire, Jack Maguire and Clayton Hamblin
LOCATION: Wagga Wagga, NSW

When the Maguire family from Wagga decided to diversify from farming, boiler making, mining and fire rehabilitation activities into the water pump business, you would have thought they were already busy enough without moving into what amounts to being an engineering retail business. They not only moved into that new area but started from scratch with a business that has clear philosophy, dedicated target customers and business plans based on Australian Pumps and their enormous success over the last decade.

“It’s the Aussie Pumps’ philosophy that inspired us to go into the retail business,” says Riverina Pumps’ Tom Maguire. “We lived through the toughest drought in living memory with the family farm and knew we had to diversify from just farming. We know that weather patterns are changing, and we can’t rely on governments to make the infrastructure changes to the landscape that would deliver water security,” says Maguire.

The company’s focus is to provide Southern Riverina, working from a Wagga base, with finest quality and value for money pumps and pressure cleaners in the business. “As Aussie Pumps grows, we intend to grow with them by developing this arm of distribution,” says Maguire. He joined in the business by his brother-in-law Clayton Hamblin and his brother, Jack Maguire. 

It was Jack who first discovered Aussie Pumps and took on a major contract with one of New South Wales’ leading gold mines that required maintenance equipment that included a 500 bar (7,300 psi) high pressure water blaster.  

“That machine, the Aussie Raptor, is a brutal beast,” says Jack. “The team at Aussie Pumps has built them like tanks and the performance of the machine is amazing. It does everything we wanted it to do and more,” he says.

FAMILY BUSINESS, FAMILY PHILOSOPHIES

Coming from an agricultural family, the Maguires have got a real advantage over the ‘shopkeeper mentality’ of many retail stores. They have used the product on farm, in mining and in general industries. Understand what works for the user and they are not just trying to sell a few pumps. Able to give the benefit of their practical experience in terms of advice, to make sure customers buy the right product, the first time.

“We’re amazed to find that some people in the power equipment business who sell pumps have no idea how to read a friction loss chart,” says Jack. “It’s what all farmers learn to do the first time they have to apply a pump for a job.  When you understand the fundamental physics of it, it’s so easy!” he says.

Having that hands-on experience means that Riverina Pumps can apply that knowledge, free of charge, to advising customers about how products can be applied and used. “In our world, equipment has to work, whether it’s a small fire-fighting pump or a massive hydroblaster that can blow rust off steelwork or clear blocked pipes in a mine or processing plant,” explains Jack. It was the Aussie Pumps principles of applying the right product to the job that made the impression on the Maguire men.

“One thing we realised immediately when we decided we might be in the game was that we needed to have the right partners. We found that in Aussie Pumps because they are so unlike the big corporation style companies in pressure cleaners or pumps. They don’t have to please their shareholders. They are just like us, a family business operating off a 2 ½ acre site in Northwest Sydney with a team of dedicated professionals. Their concern is the user of the product.”

WHY ‘ONLY AUSSIE PUMPS’?

“When we came up with the slogan for the company of ‘Only Aussie Pumps’, we wanted to send a signal to consumers that we offer a product which is known, proven and with the longest warranties in the industry. We aren’t going to offer a choice of cheap pumps to expensive pumps like we see many country dealers do.  We’ll offer the best, at a fair price, backed up by value, advice and service,” says Tom.

“If the product is right, the quality is right, the performance is fair dinkum and the warranty is extended, free of charge as a sign of confidence, you know you’re on a winner,” adds Jack. “What we like about Aussie is that they actually care about people who buy the product – when the warranty cards come into their store and they call up customers on a random basis, just to get feedback to understand what customers think. That really helps and is a clear indication of interest in the product and the customer,” admits Jack. “We didn’t just read about it in a magazine,” says said Tom, adding, “We experienced it when we bought the product.”

The Maguires have purchased and used Aussie’s Fire Chief pump, regarded as the best lightweight, portable fire pump in the world. The Fire Chief, used by NSW Fire & Rescue, National Parks and Wildlife, and a wide range of other government departments and local government bodies, is famous for its performance, reliability and quality of components.  Aussie only use Honda engines in their petrol drive pumps and they only use first world materials.  

The Maguire brothers also like the way the Aussie engineering team listens to suggestions for improvement, based on their use of the products and are really happy to get feedback, particularly when it comes to new and difficult applications, whether it’s using a pressure cleaner with accessories that simply get the job done faster and safer, or putting a high pressure steam cleaner, like the Aussie 4,000 psi Admiral, to maintain trucks or earthmoving gear. Riverina Pumps will be starting with a wide range of Aussie Pump products from small 1” pumps, all the way through to some of the big 4” pumps that make the farming chore of moving water from one dam to another easy.

STRONG SUPPORT SYSTEM

The Maguires know that as a Gold Distributor they will get access to co-operative advertising programs that widely promote their appointment and the products that they stock.

They’ll get training and plenty of information that they can use to help farmers, miners, local government, even abattoirs and saleyards. Before the Maguire brothers started, they did a survey of opposition products, in pressure cleaners and self priming fire pumps.

They found what appeared to be competitive products were often sold at extremely high retail prices that incorporate inflated fake margins for the manufacturer or the sales outlets. “You can always tell the fake prices by the way some of those manufacturers advertise direct prices that are often almost 50% of the stated retail price,” says Tom. “Customers aren’t stupid.  They know that if they can afford to give away 50% in a promo as an incentive to buy and still be making money tells you a little about how much the dealer is making for anybody who bought the product at list price,” says Tom.

“You’ll never find our office unattended, although we will be out looking at applications, going that extra mile to give customers the service and support they need.  We want to understand their problems and we want to play a part in fixing them,” he says. Some of the key products that they will be introducing are the new Aussie GMP 22kW high pressure semi trash pumps.  “That’s a semi trash pump that’ll handle solids in suspension but pump at close to 100 psi.  Nobody else produces a product like that but Aussie did their homework and they know that there’s application for many products like that,” explains Tom.  

Other products in the Aussie GMP range will include the new big 6” trash pump, that’ll move 4,500 litres per minute and is available in both cast iron impeller and 316 stainless steel option.

PERFECT PARTNERS

“We have some terrific distributors around the country as part of our Gold Distributor network,” says Aussie Pumps’ Managing Director Warwick Lorenz. “They have confidence in our product line because they know our priority is the people who use the product,” says Lorenz who calls the Maguires as “salt of the earth”, having saved the family farm during the worst drought in living history and having done so with hard work, dedication and an attitude that simply will not give up.

“That’s why we admire them so much. We know that they understand what customer service is and that solving people’s issues with the right solution, and the right product is everything,” sums up Lorenz.