Our history

The inception of The Brand Makers (formerly known as Direct Group, Direct Group Uniforms, Direct Group Sports and DGS) began with one person and an ‘a-ha’ moment!

Gordon Smith, a Hamilton local, was the driving force behind bringing engraving while you wait to New Zealand. It was during this time that he had an ‘a-ha’ moment, discovering a gap in the NZ market for clients to get branded uniforms in less than 10 days. From here, Gordon teamed up with Liz Bond and Direct Group Uniforms was formed in 2007.

The Brand Makers started out in a small office in the back of a car yard in Te Rapa, Hamilton. Armed with a catalogue of 20 items, Gordon and Liz set out together in a shared vehicle to sell their products to the people of Hamilton. Soon, demand was so high that they had to expand – hiring additional sales reps to serve their customers. Purchasing StitchIt Embroidery, to bring embroidery services in-house, was the pivotal point in cementing the now-industry-standard of a five-day turnaround for uniforms.

Now with a thriving staff of 25, The Brand Makers has expanded into Penrose, Auckland and their head office is located in Frankton, Hamilton, boasting Australasia’s largest apparel showroom. The Brand Makers has grown to service 4,000+ clients nationwide with an extensive product range of more than 50,000 items of apparel, sportswear, sports gear, and promotional merchandise.

Liz says the key to the Brand Makers’ success over the years is down to their in-house manufacturing, warehouse and production technical expertise, their skilled and robust sales and customer services processes, and their ability to see and seize opportunities for both the company and their clients.