Ma­ture bug­gers keep win­ning work

Men’s ex­pe­ri­ence, flex­i­bil­ity put south­ern fran­chise on the na­tional map

Central Otago Mirror - - NEWS -

An east­ern South­land busi­ness started by two blokes hav­ing a yarn over the fence last year is set to take on the rest of New Zealand af­ter their fran­chise piqued the in­ter­est of a large agri­cul­tural sup­port com­pany. Known for its hu­mor­ous, of­ten tongue-incheek clas­si­fied ad­ver­tise­ments, Us Bug­gers started 18 months ago as two ma­ture blokes look­ing for ca­sual farm work based in Gore. Fast for­ward a year and the two-man op­er­a­tion has fran­chises out of Gore, In­ver­cargill and Cen­tral Otago. Founder Dusty McLeod said there were also plans to ex­tend into North Otago af­ter be­ing ap­proached by ‘‘the right type of bloke’’ to buy a fran­chise off them. ‘‘We’ve re­quested them to hold on for a bit un­til we catch our breath,’’ he said. Mr McLeod in­sists the suc­cess­ful busi­ness re­ally came about by ac­ci­dent, and he owes its suc­cess to the en­cour­age­ment of east­ern South­land farm­ers. ‘‘We were two ma­ture blokes widely ex­pe­ri­enced in all agri­cul­tural work. ‘‘Within a month of first ad­ver­tis­ing we found we were turn­ing away more work than we could han­dle.’’ The ap­peal of the busi­ness was sim­ple, he said. ’’Farm­ers were telling us it was near im­pos­si­ble to to find blokes like us that could come at very short no­tice to help them in the busy times like tail­ing, wean­ing and so forth.’’ The fact that all Us Bug­gers em­ploy­ees are ma­ture, re­spon­si­ble and ex­pe­ri­enced also proved pop­u­lar with lo­cal farm­ers who had bet­ter things to do than train and then su­per­vise young and some­times ir­re­spon­si­ble work­ers, Mr McLeod said. The com­pany was re­cently ap­proached by one of New Zealand’s largest agri­cul­tural sup­port com­pa­nies, look­ing to get fi­nan­cially in­volved in or­der to use its ser­vices na­tion­ally. Us Bug­gers Cen­tral Otago rep­re­sen­ta­tive Peter True­man, of Alexan­dra, said he got on board af­ter an­swer­ing an ad­ver­tise­ment in the Mir­ror. Mr True­man, who was semi-re­tired, said he wanted to get back into agri­cul­ture busi­ness and pass on the skills he had learnt through­out his life. The busi­ness would also suit peo­ple in the re­gion who owned life­style and small block farms and wanted some ‘‘old fash­ioned ex­pe­ri­ence’’ help­ing out, he said.

Got the skills: Us Bug­gers founder Dusty McLeod, of east­ern South­land, and Cen­tral Otago rep­re­sen­ta­tive Peter True­man of Alexan­dra meet up in Alexan­dra to dis­cuss busi­ness last week.

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