Our home town: Gladstone Battery World’s David ‘Crock’ Thomas
Battery World franchisee David “Crock” Thomas has ridden the boom and bust cycle of business in Gladstone since 1992 and he wouldn’t have it any other way.
After working in the fuel industry for many years, Mr Thomas and his wife Anne purchased the franchise with their son David in 2016 and hasn’t looked back.
A year later he bought the Battery World Caloundra franchise, plus he has partnered with his daughter and son-in-law Lindsay and Keith Windress in their mechanical repairs and fabrication business TMW QLD.
Between all of his business partnerships, Mr Thomas said he employed 12 people and was soon to hire another staff member for Battery World Gladstone.
“I have seen a lot of changes, the town has definitely grown and there have been a lot of new businesses and industry start,” he said.
“Once the boom and the bust used to be wide apart, but as we progressed we’ve become a town where we recovered more quickly.
“The town is resilient, it keeps coming back and people put their noses to the grindstone and just keep going which is good.”
The up and down cycle of Gladstone’s economy hasn’t encouraged Mr Thomas to relocate.
“I find Gladstone to be a great place to do business and it's a lovely area,” he said.
“I like it here in Gladstone and the people have been good to me.
“So I feel you’ve got to give back to the town that has helped support you over the years.”
Both of his Battery World stores are one-stop shops for all battery, solar and charging needs.
“We stock all types of Australian made batteries with Century Yuasa which are made in Brisbane,” he said.
“We also do solar for cars, second batteries for cars and solar setups for camping.
“We have a big range including portable fridges and batteries for everything from everyday motoring to up-market camping.”
During his years in the franchise, Mr Thomas said he had seen new technologies including lithium batteries introduced.
“Lithium is the future, but it won’t be just that technology, other new technologies will come,” he said.
“We’ll probably see the lead acid battery move more into the background and different types of chemistry will replace it.”
Although lithium batteries provide great capacity and power, lead acid batteries do have their advantages.
“At least with lead acid batteries you can recycle them, 99 per cent of it can be recycled,” he said.
“Whereas lithium at the moment is a problem because its not easily recycled, but it is something that will be addressed and come hand-in-hand with the future.”
Call in and see David “Crock” Thomas and his staff at Battery World at 157 Auckland Street, next to Leading Edge Electronics Gladstone Hi Fi, for all your battery and solar needs.