Aesthetically appealing and practical, Lauxes Grates provides elegant water drainage solutions for indoor and outdoor applications. Trusted by clients the world over, we take a more in-depth look at the man behind it all, Tim Dawson, as he is recognised in the CEO of the Year Awards 2022.
Established in 2010, Lauxes Grates (trading under Lauxes Products) is one of Australia and New Zealand’s most exclusive designers and manufacturers of versatile indoor and outdoor drainage solutions.
With more than 20 years’ worth of combined trade experience, the firm’s knowledgeable and highly skilled developers have created unique, innovative, and aesthetic products to meet market specifications.
Lauxes Grates was initially developed with more than 1,000 product lines, however by later focusing on just one product, it allowed the company thrive. The Australian business has come a long way from its original 24 distributors when the decision was made to focus on linear grates. Today, as an industry leader, the firm is always on to the next best thing. With its head office located on the Gold Coast, and warehouses in Western Australia and Victoria, expansion is inevitable. Now with 50 employees, and availability through more than 2,000 wholesalers (and growing daily) across seven different countries, the company’s in-depth product knowledge has kept it well ahead of the competition over the years.
Capably steering the firm at the helm is Chief Executive Officer, Tim Dawson, who created Lauxes Grates with an idea, a plan, and a determined mindset. Seeing a gap in the market and an increase in home development projects, Tim designed the award-winning range of linear drainage. Almost 13 years later, several re-thinks and major decisions taken, and along with his ever-growing and dedicated team, he’s finally riding the waves of success.
“We’ve become a popular builder’s choice for durability, functionality, and affordability,” explains Tim, who was born and bred on the Gold Coast. “I know what it’s like to be using material that’s not up to scratch. Over the years, I’ve often worked with products knowing that the person who made it has never used it. That’s one of many things that makes us different.”
With a demonstrated history of working in the electrical and sanitary manufacturing industry, Tim is skilled in sales, business development, marketing strategy, business strategy, and leadership, gleaned from his time spent in high-end roles and has developed a strong business development focus in building company cultures and principles.
Whilst Tim may be the genius behind the firm and its innovative grates, he is also an inspiring leader who always encourages his employees to be the very best they can be. He enjoys family time on weekends with his wife and three children, and also loves to personally challenge himself at hardcore physical events such as True Grit or Tough Mudder.
But Tim is also a big believer in his people and that behind every ‘grate’ company, there is a dedicated team helping to fly its flag. Through Lauxes Grates, he genuinely values the staff he has.
“The product has been the vehicle of our success, but the best part of our business is the team,” he elaborates. “It is, without doubt, our best creation. It’s a fun and inspiring company to learn and grow in. That’s what it’s all about to me. I genuinely enjoy being a leader – not being a boss just telling people what to do but really leading.”
With a strong focus centred on the firm’s core values, Tim ensures that everyone is singing from the same hymn sheet to meet customer expectations each and every time.
Constantly looking ahead, anticipating and responding to change quickly, and challenging the status quo, Tim describes his team as problem solvers who are able to be adaptive to change and think outside of the box.
“We encourage and value informed initiative-taking,” he goes on to say. “We are action takers and see issues and problems as opportunities to improve. We feel empowered by empowering others. The thrill and excitement of growing as a company is infectious, creating a fervent team culture within an inspirational environment.”
And 2022 has been a year of successes for Tim and the team, including its attendance at several incredible expos such as the Sydney Build and Design Show, which widened the firm’s circle of influence substantially. The Lauxes family also grew by 18 people over the year, making the total nearly 50 strong.
“It feels like only yesterday I had a team of five,” Tim laughs. “As always, I’m so proud to surround myself with these people every day, the people that keep my vision alive and make it all possible.”
Furthermore, 2022 was a year of many firsts too, including the firm’s first magazine features, plus the launch of its gold grates, a release that Tim never anticipated would be as big as it was and the demand of which has surpassed all of his wildest expectations.
It was, however, not without its challenges, and as a determined and pragmatic leader, Tim took a proactive approach. “There were multiple challenges and times we had to pivot,” he tells us. “But sticking to our core values, we have worked tirelessly to make things happen and improve in the areas that encountered some problems.”
He continues, “My business success is a result of all the mistakes I made. In former businesses when I was younger, I didn’t appreciate people the way I do now. I kept a lot of secrets and it didn’t serve me well. I was broken when I went bankrupt. Without that bankruptcy experience behind me, I wouldn’t be here.
“All I can say is ‘wow’. Another year done and dusted. It’s safe to say 2022 was wild, challenging and rewarding for the Lauxes Grates team and myself!”
As a leader in the industry, Lauxes Grates has received a plethora of awards over the past few years. These include ProTrade United awards for categories such as Team Leadership, Student Engagement, and Business of the Year, as well as the annual Gold Coast Business Excellence Award in 2020 for Retail, Wholesale & Distribution, and many more. Plus, Tim has been named amongst the Top 100 Young Entrepreneurs of Australia for three years running in 2019, 2020, and 2021.
The most recent accolade to add to the trophy shelf and further uphold Tim’s reputation as a ‘grate’ leader comes in the form of CEO of the Year, 2022 – Queensland, Australia, as recognised in CEO Monthly’s CEO of the Year Awards.
Understandably delighted to receive this much-coveted title, Tim now has big plans for the future. With relationships already established in Europe and the US, the global expansion is in full swing. Having recently opened a new Global Headquarters in Ashmore, just five minutes down the road from the Australian headquarters in Molendinar, Tim and the team are gearing up to take this company to the next level, continue building their global empire, and taking the world by storm, one grate at a time!
“As the business grows, so do our amazing professional and personal networks,” he enthuses. “I appreciate every message, every connect, and every call or email – Lauxes wouldn’t look the same without the incredible amount of support behind us!”
For business enquiries, contact Tim Dawson from Lauxes Grates on their website – www.lauxesgrates.com.au