Merlo is boosting its business with a double-shot of appointments and a blend of expansion plans.
A recruitment drive has led to the appointment of the Brisbane-based company’s first Chief Operations Officer Rohan Taylor to oversee Merlo’s expanding café network as well as its growing online and wholesale business.
Mr Taylor, formerly of Bethanie Group aged care services and Blackburne property group, will manage the growth of Merlo Coffee’s 16 retail outlets and its 1500 wholesale customers across the country.
He will also ensure the right operational framework is in place for the company’s online business which has grown by more than 25 per cent in the past year with forecasts, that figure could be as high as 40 per cent before the end of the year.
“We filled 15,000 online orders last year for around 30,000 items, so we’re seeing a big surge in the number of people right around Australia looking for Merlo Coffee beans to make their favourite brew at home or at work,” said Merlo CEO James Wilkinson.
He said the growth in online business had led to the development of a new $5 million distribution centre at Eagle Farm on the CBD’s outskirts earlier this year.
“We’re also actively searching for new opportunities in Melbourne, the coffee capital of the country.
“We’ve seen a real increase in business since opening our first café at the bustling and historic Queen Victoria Market in 2016. We’re now looking to expand our footprint in Melbourne.”
Newly appointed Head of Retail Operations Warwick Jones will manage the day-to-day business of Merlo’s busy cafes across south-east Queensland and Melbourne.
Mr Jones has had an extensive hospitality career highlighted by senior roles with food franchises like Guzman Y Gomez as well as café chains Jamaica Blue and The Coffee Club.
Mr Wilkinson said the two new appointments would help Merlo Coffee, founded by Dean Merlo in 1992 with a single espresso bar in Queen Street in Brisbane’s CBD, to continue to grow.
“Both Rohan and Warwick will be vital to ensuring our business strategies are successful and sustainable,” he said.