What impressed me the most, was the Argos team spirit. Building a strong relationship is the foundation in any business venture.
Way back in 1996 Romann Rademacher and myself met during a soccer tryout. Wibit was a nameless idea that began bouncing around in our heads between soccer practice and our other full-time jobs. By 2000, to our happy disbelief, Wibit had already blown up into a full commercial grade water park company.
We’ve been working our tails off for the past 23 years to grow the floating water park world. We’ve also been working to make sure that our own standards of quality, integrity, safety and innovation are upheld across the entire industry that we’re proud of creating.
Our core values do a pretty good job of summing up who we are, who we work with and the pillars that we live by. Reliable business partner-we always keep our promises and maintain our customer relationships on a long-term basis. Make people happy- There is nothing more gratifying than making someone’s day. Wibit stands for over 40 million smiles. Innovative thinking-we’re constantly working on new ideas to offer optimal solutions to our customers. Doing it right- at Wibit we never compromise on safety and quality. If we do something , we do it right.
Before Argos became a shareholder, we were growing very fast and struggling with growing pains. We simply could not keep up the pace. It was clear and inevitable that help was needed to get to the next level. Our choice of partners was not a difficult one. We chose Argos as they really believed in us. When you have someone, who believes in what you’re doing and can relate to your vision then that’s very powerful. We made the right decision with Argos.
Argos instantly provided us with speed and structure. They could immediately see very simple things they could help us with, for example, shipping, purchasing, logistics, using their network of contacts etc. This gave us the improvements needed in a relatively short time.
Without Argos, we would probably still be on a good track, but we would have had many problems and it would have taken much longer to get to the next level. Argos put us on a clear path and in the right direction.
Since we’ve been working with Argos, my perception of private equity has changed. People on the outside may see them in fancy offices with great looking suits, but these guys are real people. A lot of people think that it is just about getting a cash influx, but it’s a lot more than that with Argos.
What changed for me is that not only do they help you with financing, they help you with so many different things that I never would have previously thought of. Hiring the right persons, discovering new business opportunities, finding the right IT systems are just a few examples.
We talk weekly on the phone and have several face-to-face meetings every quarter. The Argos team joined me at an overseas trade show and even visited our manufacturers in the far east. They want to see things for themselves, instead of me just sending a summary in an email. I love that because it shows me that they are interested and want to understand the business inside and out. They really care and show it in actions.
To other founders considering a partnership with Argos, I would say this partner will take you to a level that you could not reach yourself. If you’re playing in the second division, Argos will take you to the champions league.
They are a multi-national company with a diversity of strengths and most importantly, they are great people.