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Company History

1992

Allen Lombard starts manufacturing flat-pack carcasses in a shop in Fontainebleau, Randburg.
A showroom selling fitted kitchens under the name “Easyfit Cupboards” is also started in same premises.

1993 The factory moves to leased premises in Strijdom Park.
“Cupboard Hardware Centre” the predecessor of “EasyFit Cupboards” opens in Fontainebleau, Randburg.
The store is dedicated to the DIY enthusiast & trade customer.
1994 Second company-owned Cupboard Hardware Centre store opens in Ferndale, Randburg.
1995 Philip Kirby joins the company as Administration Manager.
Pilot Cupboard Hardware Centre Franchise opens in Lynnwood, Pretoria.
1996

Third company owned store opens in Woodmead, JHB and Allen Lombard emigrates.
Gerald Haumant, ex MD of Cashbuild Ltd., purchases controlling interest in the Franchising & Manufacturing Companies.

1997

The company legally and financially restructured to allow for the development of a franchise network.
The new trading format is developed for the franchise, and the name is changed to “Easyfit Cupboards”.
Four new Easyfit Cupboards franchises are opened, in Boksburg, Edenvale, Centurion and Windhoek.

1998

A fifth Easyfit Cupboards franchise is opened in Faerie-Glen. 
The supply agreement with the four Cupboard Hardware Centre stores lapses and are not renewed.

1998 - 2000 Easyfit Cupboards opens three company-owned stores in Fourways, Matsapha (Swaziland) and Witbank.
2001 - 2002 Randburg and Ruimsig franchise stores opened.
Company-owned store opened in Gaborone.
Company-owned store in Fourways was sold off to Franchisee, and Matsapha and Witbank stores were closed.
JV started with Kitchencraft.
2003 Easyfit Cupboards becomes a household name in Gauteng and plans for a Cape factory and two franchise-owned stores get underway. Nelspruit opens.
Extensive market research prompts the name change from Easyfit Cupboards to Easylife Kitchens.
2004 - 2005 Pilot Cape franchise opens in Tokai, Cape Town.
The Faerie Glen Franchise is sold.
Factory set up in Bellville South, Cape Town.
The Cape Region opens Easylife Kitchens franchises in Tygervalley, Somerset West, Knysna & City Bowl.
The Gauteng Region opens Easylife Kitchens franchises in Morningside, Montana and Ballito.
Gerald Haumant retires in January 2005, and Philip Kirby succeeds him as MD.
2006 4 new franchises are opened – Polokwane, Port Elizabeth, Xavier Street and George.
Company-owned store in Gaborone is sold and converted to a Franchise.
The factory in Strijdom Park is purchased and expansion plan start and are completed in March 2007.
2007 Introduced Top Performers incentive for all Design Consultants.  Cape Town factory doubles its size to allow for future growth.
The franchise agreement with the original Easyfit Cupboards Windhoek is cancelled.
JHB factory successfully implemented EKOOMS.
3 new franchises are opened – Midrand, Milnerton, Paarl.
Joint Venture in Mirrodoor sliding systems begins.
2008 1 new franchise opens in Windhoek in May 2008 (supported by Easylife Kitchens Cape).
ELK Milnerton franchise agreement terminated.
ELK Montague Gardens franchise opened.
December 2008 – New Easylife Kitchens brand launched.
2009 Implement automated and board optimization in JHB & CT factories.
Roll out new branding in all franchises and to the general public.
ELK George sold to ELK Knysna franchisee.
ELK Paarl changed ownership.
ELK Management Cape acquires a 51% share of ELK Tygervalley.
The franchise agreement with the original ELK Faerie Glen lapses and is not renewed.
2010 ELK Training Academy officially opened and National Training Manager appointed.
ELK George, ELK Knysna and ELK Midrand close.
ELK Brooklyn opens, and new franchise is opened in Faerie Glen.
2011 ELK East London, ELK Hermanus, ELK Illovo, ELK Langebaan open.  
The franchise agreement with the original ELK Montana lapses and is not renewed.
The franchise agreement with ELK Windhoek is terminated.
ELK Montague Gardens franchise agreement is terminated.
ELK Ballito is closed.
ELK PE franchise agreement cancelled and franchise becomes company owned.
The Joint venture in Mirrodoor ends and the JV company is liquidated.
2012 Cape region Franchise Field Advisor and training Manager appointed.
ELK Kenilworth, ELK Tableview and ELK Umhlanga open.
ELK Edenvale franchisee passes away and ELK Management takes over the ownership.
The franchise agreement with ELK Hermanus is terminated.
2013 A new franchise is opened in George.
The company celebrates is 21st birthday with a competition, prizes and birthday parties in Johannesburg and Cape Town.
2014 New ELK franchises are opened in Bloemfontein, Kyalami, Pretoria North, Stellenbosch and Vanderbijlpark.
South African rugby legend, Jean De Villiers, comes on board as the Easylife Kitchens Brand Ambassador.
The invitation to the Top Performers gala dinner is extended for the first time to all Franchisees, Design Consultants and Suppliers.
ELK Umhlanga is closed.
2015 Opened 2 new ELK franchises – ELK Middelburg and ELK Northriding.
New European design trend was launched by Easylife Kitchens.
2016 ELK Langebaan is closed.