Heat’s on for booming energy-saving business in Melbourne, Victoria
Moving 40 kilometres to connect to the National Broadband Network pays off for energy-saving business
In a last-ditch attempt to save their floundering enterprise, a Victorian couple moved 40 kilometres to connect to the National Broadband Network. The gamble has more than paid off.
Lyn and Maurice Beinat live in Gisborne – 55 kilometres north of Melbourne. For a decade they ran their business ecoMaster from a nearby industrial estate. But when they decided to move their marketing strategy online, their internet speeds couldn’t keep up.
“Gisborne’s population has grown over the years and we were all sharing limited bandwidth. The internet was getting slower and slower. Sometimes, I could barely send an invoice,” Lyn said.
EcoMaster is an award-winning company that assesses and retrofits buildings to make them energy efficient and cost effective. Lyn says if a household follows all their suggestions, it can not only make it warmer, but also reduce its energy bill to zero; something that heat-seeking Melbournians are especially keen to do in winter.
Lyn and Maurice realised the only way they could market their service and products was to educate people about the importance of proper insulation and ventilation.
They began making short YouTube clips giving energy-saving tips.
Consumers loved them. But trying to upload the videos in Gisborne was a nightmare.
“On some days, a two-minute video would take 13 hours to upload overnight, only to find the next morning that the connection had failed and we had to start all over again,” Lyn said. “We were at choke point.”
After a particularly frustrating day she said to husband: “If we stay here we’ll go broke.”
That’s when they began to investigate office and factory space connected to the NBN. They discovered that Tullamarine near Melbourne’s international airport had a business hub hooked up to the network.
In November 2014, ecoMaster was among the first to lease a building in the Tullamarine commercial court and shortly after getting the keys to the front door, their chosen ISP had connected them to a service over the NBN.
“It has completely revolutionised our business,” Lyn said. “We’re now wildly productive.”
“In Gisborne it would sometimes take all night to upload a 5 minute video; now we can do it in two minutes. The NBN is an incredible tool.”*
Thanks to their new online marketing strategy, requests for ecoMaster’s building assessments are up 300 percent and they’re enjoying their most profitable month ever.
“Our business now has a level of confidence it didn’t have before. In Gisborne, we were battling to get things done that should have been simple,” Lyn said.
The company is also aiming to save money by ditching their 4G phones in exchange for VOIP or voice over internet provider.
They’ve halved their monthly fuel bills too; Tullamarine is close to major highways, making it faster and easier to get their products to customers.
According to Lyn: “The NBN is the most amazing thing any government can do for this country.”
* NBN Co is very happy with ecoMaster’s experience with the NBN. Of course, end user experiences may vary. Your experience including the speeds actually achieved over the NBN depends on the technology over which services are delivered to your premises and some factors outside our control like your equipment quality, software, broadband plans and how your service provider designs its network.
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