AMT Mechanical Services Ltd

Old fashioned business values underpin success

  • AMT Mechanical 2

    Graeme Thorne
  • AMT Mechanical 1

    Marty Abercrombie

AMT Mechanical Services is a building services company operating within the commercial building sector, specialising in Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC). Owners and business partners Graeme Thorne and Marty Abercrombie established the company in 2007, a time when the country was heading into the recession.
“When we started the business, the market was very flat,” says Graeme. “But we were able to attract some very loyal clients who are still clients today, and who supported us during that difficult time. In fact, through that recession period, we managed to not only sustain ourselves but also achieved growth.”

Graeme has worked in the HVAC industry since 1986, experiencing the industry from “both sides of the fence”, as a contractor, a consulting engineer and as an air conditioning salesman, whilst Marty has 20 years’ experience in the air conditioning / refrigeration trade, with a background in service and commissioning of all types of building services plant.

When the pair set up AMT, they had a very clear set of goals and an action plan to get them there.

“Back in 2007, our five year plan included having grown the business enough to employ 18 staff. Five years later, we’d achieved that, and on the cusp of our sixth anniversary, we’ve exceeded our expectations,” says Graeme.

When asked what his formula to success is, Graeme’s answer is simple. “We have a very old fashioned approach to business. Get on with it, keep everyone happy and if something’s not right, stand by your work and fix it, no questions asked. It’s that attitude that builds trust and credibility.”

AMT has two of its own support companies under its Sydenham roof, which complement its core HVAC business: Top Shelf Sheetmetal, a light engineering company that prefabricates the metalwork needed; and Environmech Electrical and Controls, which takes care of all electrical work. “It’s our distinct advantage in the market,” says Graeme. “We have three essential industry disciplines under one roof.”

No story on a Christchurch business would be complete without mention of the earthquake and its effect on the company and its people. “Yes, we did lose some of our CBD service customers,” says Graeme. “But our building was still standing and we had other work going on and projects under development. We came through the earthquake relatively unscathed – it certainly impacted our business financially, but not to the extent that others experienced. We feel quite fortunate.”

Helping Graeme and Marty with their business plan and financial matters is Moore Stephens Markhams director Graeme Rhodes. “We’ve been with Graeme and the team at Moore Stephens Markhams right from the start. He’s a lovely guy and has been very helpful in growing our business. At all times we know our financial position, which gives us a realistic view of where we’re at.”

Graeme Rhodes continues to be a very important part of the AMT family of businesses. “He takes care of all our accounts, financial and tax planning across the three companies, and sees the big picture. It’s a good relationship built on trust.”

Published Autumn 2013.

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