Tim Jones took the reins as managing director of MMJ in Wollongong on Monday, making him the third-generation Jones to hold the position.
The move was part of a succession plan initiated by his father Geoff Jones whose own father Allan Jones was the inaugural managing director of Martin Morris & Jones when it started at 141 Crown Street almost 60 years ago. It then moved to 299 Crown Street and then to its present site at 6 Regent Street in 2001.
Geoff Jones will continue as a director but said the time was right for him to step down as managing director. He explained it was part of a carefully planned succession plan to help the company survive and grow for decades to come.
Geoff reflected he was ready to ease back to four days a week and take a step towards retirement as a new generation of partners and shareholders, including Travis Machan, Luke Rollinson and Daniel Hastings, help his son take the company into the future.
He said that transition began six years ago and is part of a carefully thought-out strategic plan that will ensure the company continues to change, adapt and improve.
“I enjoy coming to work every day and it is hard to let go of leading the company, but the time is right. Tim has taken over a lot of responsibility for some time now.
“I am very, very proud. He will continue to move the business forward. He is a good operator and a good guy.”
Tim Jones noted it was an honour to be the third-generation Jones to take on the managing director’s role at the company, which presently has 53 staff and is spreading its wings nationally as it continues to expand on a growth trajectory.
He has worked with the company for more than 16 years and said he felt very proud of taking on the position, helped by his highly-respected father.
“To be able to carry on the tradition and continue the hard work they have put into this company over the years is a real privilege,” he said.
“We have franchised outside the area to other locations during the last five or 10 years.
“It makes me proud that a Wollongong-based company is able to penetrate new markets like Sydney, Melbourne, Perth and Canberra.
“It helps us in our endeavours here when we are trying to list large-scale commercial properties if we have a network nationally to be able to bring to the table.”
Tim Jones sees a big future for MMJ, which he describes as a very diverse real estate company along with more opportunities to continue to diversify the business and think outside the square.
Tim expects the company to continue to look at opportunities to franchise in more locations around the country and create more employment opportunities in the Illawarra.
“It is a changing landscape,” he said.
“You only need to look at what is happening at the top of Regent Street and it is a different world.
“For example, ‘Signature’ has been a fantastic development and great for our company. In the first 48 hours of that development we sold 48 units.
“It is a very exciting development. We can’t wait to see it finished”.
Tim said it was great to have his father Geoff Jones continue in the business and noted he had been a great mentor and role model, and someone he would like to emulate.
“We are very happy that he is going to stay here for a little longer yet,” he said.
“He has earned a lot of respect over the years. I hope to be able to achieve the same one day”.