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Andrew Howard's entire life is based on
the philosophy that when it comes to
helping others, there shouldn't be any
In 2005, Andrew rode his bike 260km in a
bid to raise awareness for the Fred Hollows
Foundation, his motivation sparked only by
the will to serve.
To further attest to Andrew's selfless life, one
needs only to look to his family-owned custom
packaging business, Pack & Send.
"I don't think our product is sending freight so
much as providing solutions for people with
problems," he said.
Andrew's Ballarat franchise is one of more
than 100 stores nationwide.
Just as with each of the others, his store does
much more than simply pack and send.
"Sure we want to make a living out of this but
for us, the ultimate success is being able to
contribute to the local community as a local
business," he said.
When Andrew and his wife Deb Watson were
considering what type of business to start up,
they went through a vigorous process. As they
listed the options, they eliminated those that
wouldn't allow them to provide the standard
of service they were committed to.
Earlier on, they thought of starting up a bike
shop, with Andrew being the keen bike rider
that he is. But time and time again, Pack &
Send would make its way to the forefront of
"We were really caught by the Pack & Send
'no limits' approach to customer service and
some of the values the company stands for,"
"As we dug deeper, all of those things really
stood out for us and really appealed to us."
In 2008, the husband and wife duo established
the Ballarat franchise with the sole intention
of providing high quality service to the people
of the region. And so, the possibilities were
Pack & Send Ballarat has couriered some
of the most versatile, valuable, awkward
and bizarre products both domestically and
internationally. Many of the products would
not be handled by other freight companies
because of their size, value or fragility.
One of Pack & Send's ongoing projects
includes sending containers of insulin to
developing countries like Zimbabwe and Haiti,
an act that proves how the business functions
through contributing to humanity.
At one stage, the Ballarat franchise was
asked to courier a vessel of ashes to Europe,
an experience that Andrew described as
It took three days for the vessel to arrive,
and that's when it was apt for Mr Howard to
breathe a sigh of relief.
"It underlined the no limits philosophy of Pack
& Send," Andrew said.
"At the same time, it was quite nerve-wracking
and therefore very satisfying that we had a
From sending a set of keys to South Africa to
transporting a collection of Chinese cameras
to China and even a trailer filled with tools to
New Zealand, this local business will do all it
can to make its customers happy.
Andrew said the Howitt St business owed
much of its success to the valued contribution
of its business co-ordinator Dolf Boin.
"For us, we're focused on local people running
a local business and that's more important to
us rather than the national profile," Andrew
"I think we get much more value out of
providing a good service for people in that
sense, rather than just a piece of freight
moving from one place to another.
"We not only live it, we live in it."
Story: Dellaram Jamali
Pictures: Andrew Kelly
What, where, when: The first Pack
& Send store opened in Parramatta,
New South Wales, in August 1993.
The company is based around the
"no limits" philosophy.
Number of franchises: With over
100 franchises around Australia, this
company has also expanded to New
Zealand and the United Kingdom.
Worth: The company is estimated to
be worth $30 million to $35 million.
PACK & SEND
ACCORDING to the Franchise Council of
Australia, franchising is one of the fastest
growing sectors of the Australian economy.
Enterprise spoke to six Ballarat
franchisees to find out more about the art
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