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BUSINESS OWNER: "For me, the best thing about owning my own business is mentoring staff and team members," Sarkis Akle of Hair by Phd said. Picture: Geoff Jones

BUSINESS OWNER: "For me, the best thing about owning my own business is mentoring staff and team members," Sarkis Akle of Hair by Phd said. Picture: Geoff Jones

The art of hairdressing runs in the Akle family bloodline.

Castle Hill resident Sarkis Akle and his sister Louise have been running Hair by Phd for more than two decades.

Hair by Phd was one of the first unisex hair salons in Parramatta, established by Sarkis’ father Peter Akle in 1968.

“My three siblings and I would spend our teenage years working part-time at the salon when we weren’t at school or studying,” Mr Akle said.

“I started my apprenticeship in 1985 and never looked back. Years later our one salon has grown from one to three.”

After successfully opening a second store in Carlingford, Mr Akle has recently opened a third salon in Camden.

“For me, the best thing about owning my own business is mentoring staff and team members,” he said.

“The part I enjoy most is watching my staff grow and develop overtime into great hairdressers and people. That’s a main focus for me in our business – as well as making our clients look and feel great, of course!”

With 32 years of hairdressing experience, Mr Akle is still discovering ways to boost his family business – with help from the Australian government.

The 47-year-old has taken advantage of the Australian government’s Australian Apprenticeships Incentives Programme which he says has been hugely helpful to the business.

“In terms of developing our teams, the incentives for our apprentices upon commencement and completion are extremely helpful,” he said.

“We’ve also taken advantage of the Australian government’s immediate tax cuts for small businesses, including a $20,000 tax deduction on equipment.”

In a labour intensive business like hairdressing, Mr Akle says every bit of help really makes a difference.

“The $20,000 immediate tax deduction allowed us to remodel the shop and purchase new equipment. We just bought three new steamers as well, which go for about $6500, so we can claim that instant deduction – which is fantastic for the business.”

Mr Akle said injecting cash flow back into the salon helps in the long run.

“It does help to put money back into the business and invest in it more when those government incentives are on offer,” he added.

“If you’re thinking about making a big purchase for the business, the decision is made for you when you’ve got those incentives available.”

Mr Akle knows what it takes to make working with family a success, and encourages other small business owners to find out what measures they may be eligible for.

“The small business website was so useful,” he said. “All you have to do is answer a few quick questions about your business and then you can find out exactly what you’re entitled to.”

  • Visit: business.gov.au/smallbusinessThe website is designed to inform the Australian small business community, their advisors and all Australians about the government’s small business measures, as well as more broadly grow awareness and understanding of the importance and impact of the small business sector.
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