16/06/2011 - 00:00

Fresh burgers Jus the ticket

16/06/2011 - 00:00


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BURGER entrepreneur and chef Justin Bell has taken a sizable bite out of the Perth market and is aiming to serve up his unique fare in Melbourne by spring.

Fresh burgers Jus the ticket

BURGER entrepreneur and chef Justin Bell has taken a sizable bite out of the Perth market and is aiming to serve up his unique fare in Melbourne by spring.

Mr Bell started out a few years ago with skill, passion and an 80-page business plan, which he showed to several investors.

Eventually, one backed him and Jus Burgers opened its doors in Leederville in January 2009.

Jus Burgers claims to set itself apart from other gourmet burger bars in Perth’s crowded market by offering fresh, locally sourced food and a ‘no-freezer’ policy. The company supports local businesses and the environment.

Jus Burgers has quickly expanded to three operations and is due to open its Fremantle outlet this month. It also has burger bars in Subiaco and Northbridge.

Jus Burgers has accepted a joint venture proposal with a Perth investor to open the Melbourne outlet.

Mr Bell had faith that a burger bar had the makings of credible and sustainable business.

After his Leederville outlet took off, he concentrated on Subiaco, punting on footy crowds and an “affluent and educated demographic”.

He then focused on snaring a slice of the growing inner-city market and opened a third store in Northbridge late last year.

Jus Burgers has expanded quickly to triple staff numbers to 23, rising to 30 this financial year. Its revenue has skyrocketed and is projected to jump 36 per cent this year.

Jus Burgers has been recognised for its fare, including a tick from the Foodservice Industry Association for best food-service product.

Mr Bell’s strategy was to create the best burger bar in Perth by having a business plan, focusing on ‘killer’ locations and opting for fresh and simple food.

“Our culture had to be fun and quirky, professional while not being sterile (and providing) a happy, warm and inviting space for our guests,” Mr Bell says.

Mr Bell learned his management skills while working as a chef for hotels and resorts in Western Australia, which he says helped him select the right plan and assemble the best team from day one.

He has also employed an operations manager to help him run the fast-growing business, enabling him to spend more time on the floor.

Mr Bell attributes his success to a highly trained, motivated and responsible team. It is also important to have the company’s finances in order so that it can plan realistically and achieve its expansion goals.

“Our culture operationally works as the right structure is in place,” he says.

“We want our staff to have fun and be themselves.

“We encourage the hospitality model as well as embracing the service standards that we apply day to day.”

Mr Bell believes a sense of competition exists between his stores as they strive to do their best.

“Our people can shine and be rewarded with increased pay rates through dedication, which is monitored and managed through a systematic review/appraisal. This defines our internal motivation,” he says.


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