Godfrey Cohen founded the Godfrey group in 1931 during the Depression, back in the days when vacuum cleaners were only sold door-to-door. After dropping out of school at the age of 14, Godfrey sold sewing machines from home. He spotted traded-in vacuum cleaners up for sale in the auction columns and, always on the lookout for new opportunities; he invested two months pay and purchased 30 vacuum cleaners.
Godfrey managed to convince his father to provide him with some window space in the family’s furniture shop. A young Hoover employee saw the vacuum cleaners in the window, and agreed to sell trade-in models to Godfrey - and the business began to grow.
It wasn’t long after that Godfrey opened his first store in the Prahran Market in Melbourne, and then continued to revolutionise the vacuum cleaner business in Australia. He met his business partner, John Johnston, through a finance company and the two became partners over a handshake.
The business grew from strength to strength over the years, and through a business partnership that lasted over 70 years the Godfreys brand became synonymous with vacuum cleaners. Godfrey Cohen passed away in 2004 and his partner, John Johnston, aged 100, passed away in 2018 after an amazing business career. Today, the legacy of both gentlemen continue following the acquisition of Godfreys in mid-2018 by the Johnston family.
From an original investment of $50, the Godfreys Group has grown to almost 200 stores across Australia and New Zealand, making it the largest vacuum cleaner retailer in the world.
Godfreys have sold millions of vacuum cleaners and continue to lead the market through continuous innovation and good old-fashioned hard work.
As a cleaning specialist, Godfreys is in business to provide customers with the best advice, products, and services to meet their cleaning needs.
Godfreys is a market-focused organisation where understanding and servicing customer needs is paramount. The Group’s commitment to its customers is reflected in both the expertise of its employees and the breadth of its products.