Gorillas with Braces, Stabilisers

Gorilla Ladders are turning heads thanks to innovations like bottom-rung Braces and stile Stabilisers – and retailers in search of category freshness are “beating their chests” with delight…AHJGorilla03May05

Gorilla Ladders, launched at Melbourne Zoo in March, is a welcome new player on the national ladder scene.

With a range of about 30 SKUs across clearly defined Domestic, Contractor and Industrial segments, the ranges are bold, high-quality and neatly attuned to modern consumer tastes. So if you think your current ladder displays are a little “tame”, it might be time to introduce some Gorillas into your store!

Gorilla Ladders is wholly owned by Hartman Pacific, a subsidiary of the family-owned Miberlan Industrial Company based in Taiwan. Miberlan produces about five million ladders per year for global distribution, which makes it an ideal parent/manufacturer for Gorilla.

According to Ben McGeehan, Gorilla’s Product Analyst, all ladders in the Gorilla range have been designed in Australia to satisfy rigorous Australian Standards.

While the brand is new, the company has already had several years’ experience in the local market as a provider of thousands of generic-brand ladders. This local experience has allowed the company to form strong relationships with local distribution networks and clients, paving the way for Gorilla Ladders to make an instant entry into high-profile stores. Resellers already include Bunnings and Mitre 10 outlets and scores of major independents. Prices are more than competitive, offering favourable margins to resellers.

Re-inventing the Ladder
Ladders have been around since Noah climbed into the Ark, so the market should be thrilled to see Gorilla’s numerous world-first design innovations. One of the most fascinating accessories (in most models above 1.8m) is the Stabiliser Mount, invented by Queenslander Dr Mel Stewart. Stabilisers are affixed to each stile, providing lateral/sideways stability to keep ladders firmly upright at a 90° angle.

Resin Braces are non-conductive – because no one likes a shockAHJGorilla01May05

“I had a close shave five or six years ago when I nearly fell off a ladder, and I thought to myself, ‘This is a common problem’,” Dr Stewart says. “The solution was to create lateral adjustable stabilisers [international patent pending] with telescopic, rectangular-profile arms.” Additional minute adjustments can be made with a special foot attachment, providing millimetre-perfect stability on all kinds of surfaces.

“We have a very busy clinic here and last month I could have sold 100 ladders to interested patients. One 70-year-old lady carried a paint and brush to the top of a stabilised ladder and said she felt completely safe.”

Braces are another Gorilla innovation. Ben McGeehan says the braces, which are made from non-conductive resin and attached under the lower step, offer increased isolation from electrical shocks and greatly enhance lower-stile strength and rigidity.

Gorillas on Display

The ladder Stabiliser helps prevent lateral ladder movement

Exciting and funky merchandising assistance is available to retailers. Ben says an interlocking display system serves to highlight ladders in stores, complete with mirror-reversed packaging artwork and stands that provide 25% improvements in space efficiency.

“And don’t forget the Gorilla Mobile, which is a 7×5 tandem trailer that holds the entire product range,” says Ben. “We’ll be able to offer give-aways for promotional store events and help create a fun day for our dealers. Retailers are welcome to contact us for details.”

For more information visitwww.gorillaladders.com.au.

By John Power