The Alice Springs Watershed was developed out of the iconic rural company - "Southern Cross Machinery". The business was sold to two previous managers, Mr. Simon Worssam and Mr. Trevor Filmer when Southern Cross Pumps and Irrigation began divesting itself of all of their sales outlets, in December 1996.
Through the acquisition of three other companies and a continuous expansion of its customer base, revenue has since increased some tenfold. Today, the company presents as a leading supplier of water-related products, outdoor equipment, and machinery in the Northern Territory.
In line with the Watershed's business philosophy of excellence in customer service, the business has constantly focused on developing its knowledge of products, technical solutions and emerging markets. Accordingly, in July 2007 the company undertook two strategic appointments of Mr. Jules Muir and Mr. David Franklin as co-directors. Their respective expertise in plumbing and pumps has ensured the expansion of the company's specialist knowledge base for its broad range of products, alongside its rapid business growth.
During 2010 the Watershed continued with its expansion across the Territory with the acquisition of the Katherine Watershed (formerly BC Machinery). The integration of this business offers the group significant synergistic benefits through enhanced economies of scale and scope. It also facilitates improved customer servicing through the company's expanded geographical presence.
Future plans for this region include the introduction of the ThinkWater product range, currently available at the Alice Watershed. This will address the need for a wide range of superior product options in pumps and irrigation that are currently not available in this area. During the course of 2011 the Katherine Watershed will relocate to a new purpose-built facility in Katherine. This will provide increased exposure to the Watershed's major brands and will facilitate excellent warehousing and distribution of products for our customers.
BC Machinery was established by Mr. Basil Hickey and wife, Mrs. Carol Hickey as BC Enterprises at the beginning of the 1970's as a hardware store with Makita Power Tools, Castrol Oils, Victa Mowers, and was re-selling Stihl and David Brown products and serving as a Coates Hire centre.
The business established itself as a seller to the agricultural industry and soon was appointed as a Stihl and David Brown dealership. In the mid 1970's it was appointed as the region's Kubota Dealer.
During the late seventies, the current branch manager of the Katherine Watershed, Mr. Philip Johnson joined the company in a sales capacity and has since been an instrumental part of its business growth. In 1982 BC Machinery was established and was appointed as a JOHN SHEARER and ENZED dealer. In the following year, Mr. Johnson took on a share of the business as it experienced rapid growth through the development of the Douglas Daly region's developing grain industry. This growth continued through the 1980's as Katherine experienced major growth with the redevelopment of the Tindal Airbase and again BC Machinery was well positioned for sales with Kubota Tractor's turf equipment and Howard product.
The current market has seen rapid expansion of tree cropping in the Katherine and Mataranka areas and BC Machinery has capitalised on Tractor, RTV and large slasher sales to this sector. The development of permanent watering points in the pastoral sector has also seen some rapid expansion of stationary engine sales in the Top End.
The recent demise of some corporate players in the tree cropping industry have dramatically decreased demand for Tractors and RTV's in 2009. However, accompanying the reduced growth in this sector has been the rise in irrigated crops in the area as other parts of the country face problems with the reliability of water.
The history of BC Machinery illustrates its well-established position in the local market with a reputation for service that matches the Watershed Group's dedication to customer satisfaction. The company and its highly committed personnel, under the leadership of Mr. Johnson make a fine addition to the Watershed Group and its ambitious goals for the Territory.