Mike chased boom to Gladstone to promote work tents

HARD WORK: Mike Stewart has made Gladstone home, to promote his new Pop ’n’ Work shelters.
HARD WORK: Mike Stewart has made Gladstone home, to promote his new Pop ’n’ Work shelters. Mike Richards GLA291013TENT

THE life of a travelling salesman in Gladstone is a tough one, even in a boom town, according to Mike Stewart.

"The market is here for the product. It's certainly a busy town," Mr Stewart said.

Mr Stewart recently arrived in Gladstone chasing the boom dollar, reckoning that there would be a lot of people chasing his product.

HARD WORK: Mike Stewart has made Gladstone home, to promote his new Pop ’n’ Work shelters.
HARD WORK: Mike Stewart has made Gladstone home, to promote his new Pop ’n’ Work shelters. Mike Richards GLA291013TENT

He moved here to sell Pop 'n' Work tents - a portable cover for outdoors work - for which he owns the sole Australian rights.

"It's a matter of simply knocking on doors, of getting in there and showing them," he said.

"It's tough though, because they all have their secretaries at the gate, and until you can talk to somebody in the know you're stuffed."

While he said he had had some nibbles from outside town so far, cracking the Gladstone market was proving to be a bit more difficult.

There's just red tape everywhere with those things.

"It's because it's a new product and nobody's seen it before...it's tough," Mr Stewart said.

He says meeting "the right people" in Gladstone is tough, and efforts with online procurement portals have left him frustrated.

"Once you're registered there it seems to be just lost in the system because nobody knows what these things are," Mr Stewart said.

"There's just red tape everywhere with those things."

Mr Steward said he was always available to give prospective customers a demonstration.

HARD WORK: Mike Stewart has made Gladstone home, to promote his new Pop ’n’ Work shelters.
HARD WORK: Mike Stewart has made Gladstone home, to promote his new Pop ’n’ Work shelters. Mike Richards GLA291013TENT