Clark Rubber History
Clark Rubber is an icon of Australian retailing with a history dating back to 1946. With 60 stores nationally, our stores are specialists in pools, foam and rubber – a truly unique position in the Australian retail market. With such a broad product range, our customer base is equally diverse and includes families, tradies, hobbyists, and commercial customers to name but a few.
The Clark Rubber story began in 1946 when two men, Charlesworth and Clark formed a partnership to establish Clark Matting and Rubber. The business grew quickly, and in 1951 was listed on the Australian Stock Exchange. In 1961, the name was changed to Clark Rubber Stores.
In 1982, Clark Rubber was bought by the Adsteam Group, which continued to operate the business until 1994. At this point, the Clark Rubber name and logo were sold to Vita Pacific, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Pacific Dunlop, and the network of stores was closed down.
It was at this time that Chris Malcolm, a veteran of Australian retail, stepped in. After lengthy negotiations, Chris licensed the Clark Rubber brand from Vita Pacific. Deciding that a franchise model was the best way to grow an already-strong brand, the first Clark Rubber store re-opened in Nunawading, Victoria in 1995. By 1998, the 50th store had opened and Clark Rubber was once again one of the most recognised brands in Australian retail.
Chris Malcolm purchased the Clark Rubber brand from Pacific Dunlop in 2000, and the store network continued to grow. In 2003 Clark Rubber was recognised as the Franchise Council of Australia’s Franchisor of the Year in the ‘Entry Capital Over $200,000’ category. In the same year, Chris Malcolm was inducted into the Franchise Council of Australia’s Hall of Fame. Three years later, Clark Rubber was awarded the Franchise Council of Australia’s highest honour - Franchisor of the Year.
Fast-forward to 2020 and Clark Rubber is now owned by CRG Operations which is headed and owned by Edward Plowman and Graeme Goldman.
The new ownership has ambitious plans to steer this iconic 75-year-old brand through its next chapter and enter an exciting new phase.
With an expanded head office team and store network, greatly improved omnichannel strategy, and improved product/service offerings particularly within the pool and spa category, Clark Rubber will be further cemented as the one-stop destination for Everything Pools Foam & Rubber.