Gross & Co
Protecting your companyâ€™s greatest asset
Protecting your company’s greatest asset Editorial: Lauren Grey Production: Leslie Kemp Following on from the success of its high-quality range of catering uniforms, South African manufacturer of protective work-wear, Gross & Co is now looking to expand its market share within the mining industry. IndustrySA finds out more about the highly anticipated new clothing range.
More than just a piece of branded fabric, uniforms form an integral part of work culture across the globe; they are used to distinguish staff from customers, add a sense of belonging and create equality in the workplace. It is understandable therefore, that choosing the correct uniform is not only important, but essential, because it is often considered an extension of a company’s brand, and a way to unite its employees. With this in mind, there are also other factors that need to be considered when choosing the correct uniform; it needs to be hard-wearing, comfortable, easy to clean and protective for those working in the catering or hospitality industries, for example. Although this may seem like a daunting task for some,
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luckily there are companies that specialise in corporate uniforms, who understand the functions that a uniform needs to fulfil, and who do most of the hard work for you. Johannesburg-based Gross & Co is a clothing and textiles manufacturer specialising in protective work-wear for the catering industry. The company’s brand, Chef Works, is globally renowned and has roots dating back more than four decades within South Africa. Established in 1964 by Joseph Gross, the company began by addressing the market’s ever-increasing dependency on safety in the workplace with quality and image at the forefront. Today, with the help of his five sons situated on four continents, the company has clients across the globe, distributing to over 30 countries and listening to each
Gross & Co
individual requirement. The company’s “overall protection” promise also covers its range of protective garments for the industrial industries, hospitality industry and corporate clothing, as well as manufacturing medical scrubs.
INDUSTRY INNOVATION Gross & Co prides itself on recent innovations within the protective clothing industry, which has made work-wear for chefs more durable and comfortable to move about in. Previously, uniforms had been basic and made of uncomfortable fabrics designed only to protect the chef from hazards such as hot oil spills. However, understanding the needs of its customers who wanted a more comfortable and fashionable uniform,
Gross & Co designed a range using cotton and polycotton fabrics, with a cool-vent design, known as Chef Works. The Chef Works range provides aprons, hats, jackets and trousers, designed for chefs, kitchen staff and front of house staff within the catering business. The company’s innovative uniform range provides great value for money and can be customised with instock items or made completely from scratch. On top of manufacturing protective clothing, Gross & Co also has a luxury laundry service that it offers clients. The company charges per wash and the service is particularly popular in the food service industry, where employees require clean uniforms on a daily basis.
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Gross & Co NEW MARKETS Subsequent to the success of Chef Works, Gross & Co now hopes to penetrate the South African mining industry, by providing a unique range of protective work-wear in new, high-quality, stylish options. The company has been working on its mining range for the past three years, ensuring that each product is designed specifically for the needs of the industry. One of the products already available for order is a boiler suit, with knee and elbow pads sewn in. Typically, uniforms for the mining industry have a short lifespan due to the working environment, however Gross & Co have specifically designed this high-quality, durable product to be both safe and long-lasting. Aside from protecting clothing, the company also manufactures safety equipment, such as safety glasses, face shields and respirator masks to accompany the uniforms.
FUTURE EXPANSION Since launching the business in Johannesburg, with little to no national presence in the first few years of business, Gross & Co has grown into a worldwide organisation
but still manufacturers locally. The business not has 15 sales reps and 12 agents across South Africa, with 75 distributors in the country, as well as in Zambia, Namibia, Tanzania, the DRC, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Angola. Going forward, the company’s mission is to increase exposure of the brand and visibility of the product, which it hopes to do via its newly established franchise stores opening across the country. The company has two franchises stores in regional shopping centres at present, and are preparing to launch its third very soon.
“Gross & Co prides itself on recent innovations within the protective clothing industry, which has made work-wear for chefs more durable and comfortable to move about in”
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+27 11 624 3300 www.gross.co.za
(0)1603 618 000 firstname.lastname@example.org East Coast Promotions Ltd, Ferndale Business Centre, 1 Exeter Street. Norwich, Norfolk NR2 4QB