Mr Ben

Mr Ben, as he is affectionately known, recently celebrated his 84th birthday with a gathering at the company’s premises in Steeledale. Floors was honoured to be invited and took the opportunity to find out more about the company and its founder. 

From couches to carpets 

 In the late seventies, Ben von Heynitz made a move from selling furniture to selling carpets. Originally trading as Ben’s Discount Carpets in New Doornfontein, this was the start of the heritage brand, Carpet Brokers.  

Never say no 

The carpet wholesaler is founded on Mr Ben’s philosophy of never saying no. It has fostered strong relationships with the market by being solutions driven and helping customers find what they need, even if isn’t a stocked item. 

His family tells stories of Mr Ben leaving home at 6am every morning and only returning at 7pm at night, of working weekends if a customer needed something urgently. “I was fortunate enough to meet the right people at the right time, who helped to grow the business. It’s been a good time, I have really enjoyed what I did,” he smiles. 

Mr Ben

Ben von Heynitz with his sons, Michael, Bernard and Alex.

It’s this dedication and customer-focussed approach that defines Mr Ben and Carpet Brokers. 

Family business 

Meeting the team at Carpet Brokers, one is struck by the family feel. Some staff members recently celebrated 40 years of long service with the company. Sitting in the boardroom with Mr Ben, his sons, Bernard, Alex and Michael, and the chief executive officer (CEO), Brian Peterson, it is clear that this is important to them. “I want to maintain that family feel, to always look after our customers,” Peterson confirms. 

Heritage brand 

Mr Ben’s ethos of service is a key element in the business. One that works, given that it has customers who have been buying from the company for over 20 years. Peterson explains: “Our goal is to always be customer-focussed, giving them a good experience by being helpful. Even if it’s not a carpet, we’ll help find it for them. This part of our business is still the same.” 

Mr Ben agrees: “If a homeowner phones and asks for a carpet, we refer him to our retail partner in that area, with a recommendation. We support our customers and they support us. We are loyal to them.” 

Keep it simple 

Mr Ben was known to always be on the road, visiting customers as much as possible. The arrival of the first mobile phone was wonderful for him, making it easier to be in contact with customers. These fundamentals of making sure that customers get helped when they call, supporting them and treating them fairly, are still in place today. 

Milestones 

The purchase of the premises, a 1930s factory previously owned by furniture manufacturer, Gomma-Gomma, stands out for Mr Ben as a highlight. “The day we opened here was a good day,” says Mr Ben. “It gave us the freedom to do what we wanted to do.” 

The location offers easy access and its centralised location allows for the most cost-effective and quicker distribution. Two extra floors have been added to the premises, which will be training rooms for customers and showroom space for products. 

Mr Ben’s goal to introduce their own carpet range was realised, and the company has also included vinyls and artificial turf to its offering. Skirtings and related accessories are also available. 

“The good part is that we are moving on. We are not stopping, we are still growing,” says Mr Ben. “This is the most important part for me, that Carpet Brokers carries on.” 

Mr Ben 

Founded in April 1979, the heritage brand, Carpet Brokers, recently celebrated the 84th birthday of its founder, Ben von Heynitz. 

 

For more information, contact Carpet Brokers: 

Tel: +27 11 613 7311 

Email: info.jhb@carpetbrokers.co.za /  info.cpt@carpetbrokers.co.za 

Website: https://www.carpetbrokers.co.za/ 

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