COMPONENT VIEW

Print this page

Craig Kimberley

On Application
Victoria, Australia

Just Jeans was born in 1970. It was a time of transition, a time of restlessness, a time of rebellion.

At the time, Craig Kimberley was working for the sportswear manufacturing company, Aywon.  During a buying trip to the US, he noticed something new; shops that only sold jeans. They had names like The Gap and Jeans West.

Upon returning to Australia, Craig Kimberley pitched the idea of jean stores to Aywon, however they were not interested in entering the retail market. As a result, he tried to drum up support in the jean stores with his family and friends. There were only two takers, his brother Roger and his sister-in-law Chrissie and together they formed Zappy Enterprises Pty Ltd.

The original Just Jeans store opened in Chapel Street, Prahran in December of 1970 with the first day of trading bringing in an uninspiring cash total of $37.

Jeans had been around for awhile, but there was nowhere to buy them. Just Jeans brought a new atmosphere and range of sizing to the jeans market. After a favourable article in the Herald, Just Jeans' popularity continued to grow with queues outside the shop every Saturday morning.

In April of 1971, the increased cash flow saw the opening of a second store in Centre Road Bentleigh and within weeks a third store had opened, in Moonee Ponds.

In 1971, the projection for the Christmas rush was $160,000 and the gross projected turnover for 1971-72 was $500,000. Craig Kimberley was urged to leave his full time job with Aywon and was voted in as the full-time managing director of Just Jeans Pty. Ltd.

In the following years, the company continued to grow at an ever increasing rate and by 1993, there were over 200 store locations across the country. In the same year, the company acquired the clothing chain Jay Jays. Following this acquisition, Just Jeans went on to acquire Jacqui-E, Peter Alexander and Portmans in 1994, 2000 and 2001 respectively. This clothing giant was now branded under the name The Just Group.
 
In 2001, Private equity group Catalyst paid Craig Kimberley $64 million for the 30 years' work it took him to build the denim and clothing group.

A thoroughly engaging and eloquent speaker, Craig Kimberley tells a inspirational and determined story of entrepreneurship.

Craig Kimberley speaker

Other speakers you might like:

Kate Morris

Beauty advocate Kate Morris, founder of Adorebeauty.com.au, started Australia’s first beauty e-commerce site in 1999 from a garage in Melbourne at the age of 21.

Starting with just $12,000 and two little known cosmetic companies on board, Adore Beauty has grown to more than 200 brands, 13,000 products, and hundreds of thousands of customers.

James Castrission

Cas is an Aussie Explorer constantly pushing the boundaries of human endurance.

Most recently, on the 26th January 2012, he made history by completing the longest unsupportedpolar expedition of all time, alongside his best mate, Jonesy. In 100 years of polar exploration no-one had EVER walked from the edge of Antarctica to the South Pole and back without assistance. Many had tried, none had succeeded. After 89 gruelling days they made it back to the coast after having skied 2275km with everything they needed to survive in the harshest environment on Earth.

Justin Jones

Justin Jones (or other wise affectionately known as Jonesy) is one of Australia’s premier motivational speakers and extreme adventurers. Constantly pushing the boundaries of human endurance he has undertaken a number of large scale expeditions over the past 14 years. Two in particular have captured global acclaim and attention, setting 2 Guinness World records.

Pippa Hallas

Ella Baché is a respected skin care brand revered across the country. You may think you know its story, but there’s so much more to this brand than meets the eye.

It all started with a bold woman, a pot of wax and the decision to stand out in the foyer of David Jones.

Now, for the first time, CEO Pippa Hallas is opening up about the journey behind the brand, the disruptions, the innovations, the mistakes, the risks - and what it really takes to steer an 80 year old business through a rapidly changing world.

Katrina McCarter

Katrina McCarter is the founder and CEO of Marketing to Mums. She is a marketing strategist who specialises in understanding mothers as a powerful market sector, through experience and research.