Amino Z from 2005 - a little bit of history...
My name's Jay and I'm the owner, founder and CEO of Amino Z. We're a small business with big ambition and we started from very humble roots. To this day, we have a strong vision and I'd love to share a brief history on how we have come to this point!
Back in 2005, I had embarked on a fitness journey by entering a competition by Australian Ironman magazine. It was a gruelling 12 week before-and-after challenge which I subsequently was lucky enough to win. Before and during the challenge, I spent copious amounts of time learning and researching fitness, nutrition and supplementation and quickly realised that there is a wealth of misinformation within the fitness industry. After being announced as the national champion, it was obvious to me that if I could do it, ANYONE could do it. My idea was to start a website to help educate - that website was Amino Z.
So back in 2005; young, living at home with my parents and practically no money to my name, I spent about 6 months in the library learning how to code and build a website simply because I couldn't afford to pay someone to do it (and I had no business plan!). On March 12 2006, I launched the website and from memory we had about 30 visitors that day (woohoo!). The website had a few articles and I also offered a personal training service.
In 2008, my online personal training service had grown and I had roughly between 30-40 clients. But I decided to offer the sale of some supplements to assist them toward their training goals. So, using my newly discovered coding superpowers (ie. copy-paste from Google), I managed to add some functionality into the website to allow customers to place orders. And voila, we had about 2 orders in a month!
Then, an amazing thing happened. People started to refer others and we started to grow. This was no overnight feat - it took years, but eventually we managed to get to about 20 orders a week. I still remember packing up all the orders from home, hand-writing every address and then driving to the Post Office daily. It was at this point that I decided to get serious about business and...hired my sister!
So this is when things began to really start to pick up. We began to grow the business more and supplements started taking over my parents’ house - goodbye garage, spare bedroom and living room. Orders continued to grow and so did the supplement stash (eventually taking over my parents sign shop and my grandfather’s spare garage). We hired our first "real" employee in 2010 (Peter, who still helps to this day) and subsequently moved into a small space in Beverly Hills, Sydney.
Oh boy was I excited; we finally had our own shop! Just a few problems - my office was literally a cupboard (the door would not shut with me in it…not that I would want to since there was no ventilation). Plus we had no customer parking and we outgrew the space within 9 months. A shipping container and two storage units later, we eventually moved to a larger warehouse in Mortdale, Sydney.
At this time, I was still personal training and writing for various magazines. Business continued to grow and I had to make the decision to cease the personal training and focus solely on Amino Z as a retail company. In 2012 we opened a small retail showroom in Mortdale out the front of our larger warehouse. We really loved interacting with our customers in-store, so following further growth, in 2015 we moved to another location in Mortdale and opened our head office in Caringbah.
Several things then happened from 2015 to 2019. We closed Mortdale, we opened North Parramatta (only to close it 2 years later), we began manicuring our own Amino Z brand of products and we now sell solely through our website and our warehouse outlet. There have certainly been a lot of successes (and failures) along the way, but it's been an amazing journey to date. What's even better is that our team has now grown to around 30 amazing and passionate people - this journey would never have been possible without their support. And further, I cannot thank all our customers (and former personal training clients) who have made this growth possible.
Nowadays, this company extends far beyond me, which is very humbling. I still run this business as a small business with the goal to help educate and assist all our customers to cut through the misinformation. I don't believe for a second that there is a magic pill for any health or fitness endeavour - whatever your goal - it requires knowledge, consistency and the work required to form a lifestyle to support that goal.
Meanwhile, here's a screenshot I found of the website back in 2006...oh boy...