Business focus helps artistic talent prosper

FIVE years after starting her business in the back shed of her home, designer Anna Chandler is operating from a factory in O’Connor and employing 20 staff.

Her company is exporting its gift and homeware products to the US, Europe and New Zealand, and sells through 800 Australian outlets.

The products are made from either plaster or concrete.

Ms Chandler and her business partner and husband, Mick McElhinney, have decided to enter the Family Business Awards that were officially launched last Thursday.

Mr McElhinney said the company was looking for the prestige such an award would bring it and for the chance to meet people in the same situation as he and his wife.

Ms Chandler said her husband handled the business side while she concentrated on design.

“Every artist needs a partner like that,” she said.

Ms Chandler said the business had grown from a combination of her life experiences as a jewellery designer and a traveller.

To make it a true family affair, her brother Tim runs the O’Connor factory.

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