MARKHAM – The Untold Story!

MARKHAM is celebrating!

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.”  Hang on, that doesn’t sound right. A bit moribund.

“It was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen.”  No, that’s weird, and anyway it wasn’t April.

“It was love at first sight.”  Hmm. A bit vague. And may or may not be true. This is non-fiction, not journalism.

“Once upon a time …”  Sigh. Over-used but guess it will have to do.

The Story of MARKHAM

Once upon a time… there was a father-and-son team with keen and innovative ideas and not a lot else to show for it. However the father had rich experience, a keen eye for new opportunities, and was a skilled salesman. The son was energetic, enthusiastic, and a genius at numbers – amongst other things.

By one means or another the father and son had the use of business premises – which were pretty basic. They had a car – which was old even back then.

The digital age was budding but had not yet reached their office! Smartphones were an emerging technology. Fax machines were in their heyday. Email was mainly for geeks. For many businesses, spreadsheets were still made of paper.

This was 1996, with 1997 looming.

25 Years!

Yes, reader, we’re describing the budding, dawning days of MARKHAM – which has just turned 25 years old! In a world where only 30% of businesses see their 10th birthday, we reckon a quarter of a century is a remarkable achievement.


Graham on site

Mr Graham Smith on a site visit in the late ’90s. (Oh, oh! Not much PPE happening there!)

It is a tribute to our founders, Graham Smith and his son Mark, that their vision has stood the test of time.

(MARK + GraHAM = MARKHAM, geddit?)

MARKHAM has always been focused on concrete construction. Initially, the company sold Allen Engineering ride-on trowelling machines, and then fibre reinforcement. Both these concepts were new innovations when MARKHAM first took them on. These technologies are both now well-known in the industry, and MARKHAM has only recently divested the fibre reinforcement to our colleagues at INFORCE, who are going from strength to strength.

A real leap forward came with the acquisition of the AQURON distributorship for New Zealand and Australia. AQURON, of course, is now our flagship suite of products, and we have enjoyed a long working relationship with AQURON Corp in USA, including collaborating on the development of several of the products in the range.

First team

It wasn’t long until MARKHAM had gathered a team. Teamwork is still vital to what we do. And a couple of the faces in this photo are still with us today!

Servicing New Zealand, Australia and Beyond!

Over the years, MARKHAM has spread its wings beyond the original Hawkes Bay location. We comprehensively service New Zealand. We have offices, depots and warehouses across Australia. There’s an outreach base in the United Kingdom, and an agency serving south-east Asia. Keeping everyone on the same page is challenging but very rewarding!

We Can’t Stand Still!

There’s no opportunity for resting on our laurels. Graham Smith actively continued to support research and development, including the construction of our own laboratory, as well as utilizing the skills of many industry professionals along the way. About the time we were celebrating our 20th birthday, the CONQOR admixture range was being developed – a sustainably sourced array of waterproofing and workability additives for concrete.

Even in the face of the challenges of the last two years, we’ve been running like crazy – establishing our environmental credentials; honing our in-house project management systems; revamping how we meet our customers’ industry pain points, and refreshing the visual aspects of our branding. Busy busy!

Check out our new media website, Invisible Strength by MARKHAM, which is our go-to platform for podcast and webinar recordings. You can’t see our products once they’ve been used … invisible strength, right? And it’s a metaphor for team strength, and great customer service.


We’re clearer than ever about our vision for the industry. We call it “Saving the World, One Concrete Structure at a Time.” Sometimes we say “Making concrete stronger, to last longer.” We’re focused more and more on reducing the environmental impact of concrete construction, by reducing the impact and cost of maintenance or repairs; and by reducing the need to replace the concrete – that is, reducing each structure’s lifetime environmental impact.

We’re Here for Our Clients

And for you, our valued clients in all sectors of the construction industry – we’re here to make things easier. Our end-to-end service is constantly being tuned and sharpened, to make sure the asset owner gets exactly what the construction design team intended. And speaking of construction design, we’re currently rolling out our TECT systems – packaging multiple products and benefits into easy-to-specify and easy-to-quantify packages.

So Get In Touch!

New or existing concrete – construction works and remediation alike – we’d love to hear from you. Bring us your concrete challenges, whether it’s routine scheduling or ageing structures, and we’ll be keen to look at them with you.

Here’s to the past 25 years – and the next!

MARKHAM 25 Years

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