IF THERE is anyone versed in the knowledge of which products to sell the fitness industry, it must be Andy Cunningham.
Last year, Mr Cunningham took out the title of Mr Australia in the heavyweight category at the National Bodybuilding Championships - the fourth time he has won the event.
Dissatisfied with the product range supplying the fitness industry, he decided to take matters into his own hands.
Drawing on more than 30-years experience Mr Cunningham recently opened his business, Mass Nutrition, in Ruthven St.
"We are a family-owned and operated business that caters for the health and fitness needs of people of all ages and types," Mr Cunningham said.
"We offer all your gym needs such as fitness clothing, supplements and accessories," he said.
Having moved to Toowoomba to open the business Mr Cunningham was concerned by stores that put profits first instead of customers' requirements.
"I see other stores out there in our line of business and they virtually have no experience at all.
"They are selling products for the sake of sales rather than genuine help which I like to offer," he said.
While having been a small business owner only for a short time, Mr Cunningham likes the freedom it offers.
"The hardest part of opening the business was moving away from home and leaving my child in crucial year 12 education back there," Mr Cunningham said.
"Having the freedom to choose the correct products, that I know works from my own experiences, rather than working for someone else and being told what to promote because they offer the best profit margins has been the most rewarding aspect of being a small business owner," he said.
Mr Cunningham said choosing Toowoomba to open his business had been the correct choice.
"I really enjoy the lifestyle here and it has softened the blow at having to move away from my home.
"The people here are extremely genuine," Mr Cunningham said.
The best piece of business advice that Mr Cunningham has been given that he still adheres to is to "always be honest".
"From a strict parental upbringing I have learnt to always tell the truth and people will respect your honesty.
"Stay loyal and have a passion for the industry you work in so you always enjoy your line of work," Mr Cunningham said.
The one piece of advice Mr Cunningham has for those thinking about opening their own business is "ensure you do your research".
"Opening a small business is always a risk.
"If you do your homework on the demographic, find a great location, look after your clientele and have faith you will certainly succeed," Mr Cunningham said.
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