Construction of the biggest industrial design and build project to be undertaken on the North Shore for a decade will start soon in Albany for one of the country's biggest electrical goods distributors.

In June next year, CDB Goldair will move its rapidly growing operation from its 5000sq m premises, leased from a private investor at 8 Orbit Drive, Albany, to a 8000sq m distribution centre at 4-6 Lovell Court nearby. Development company Haydn & Rollett has resource consent and is about to start construction work on CDB Goldair's Lovell Court premises and has instructed CB Richard Ellis North Shore to sell the planned complex. CBRE also has a master agency to lease CDB Goldair's current Orbit Drive premises for the company's remaining lease term.

CDB Goldair, a North Shore grown company, has only been in its Orbit Drive purpose-designed warehouse-office property for five years of a 10 year lease, but expansion in its own products, and brands it imports and distributes, has overfilled the racking in its 12m stud warehouse.

Directors Mark Rice and Andrew Springford say new premises are essential for the company's 1200 products and high volumes of distribution around the country as is staying close to where they are running their business.

John Bedford, North Shore managing director for CB Richard Ellis, worked with Rice and Springford to source the firm's present site and find a developer. Bedford was again called in to find a new location CDB Goldair could expand into.

Months of looking at existing properties and land resulted in Bedford and colleague Simon Farland securing two adjoining sites at Lovell Court that developer Haydn and Rollett bought from investor Danny Chung and aggregated into one 10,670sq m lot.

The company is now developing a 5300sq m warehouse to hold 8400 pallets, a 1900sq m enclosed drive-through canopy and 700sq m of office space for CDB Goldair.

"Haydn & Rollett is building a bigger version of the fully-automated, high-stud warehouse and enclosed canopy model the company operates from at Orbit Drive but it will be 60 per cent bigger at Lovell Court," says Bedford. He is selling the Lovell Court development which is featured in CBRE's Investment Navigator portfolio of properties for sale around New Zealand.

Bedford says it is an investment that doesn't come along often.

"It has a 10-year lease signed by CBD Goldair, guarantees, fixed rent reviews showing good growth and a low office-to-warehouse ratio of about 10 per cent."

Rice and Springford had a big hand in designing the Orbit Drive premises from the inside out and have taken that expertise to Lovell Court. "We have worked the forklifts and pick-and-pack ourselves and know exactly how we want our distribution to work," says Springford.

"It took a bit of time, but we see a lot of companies with premises they don't seem to know how to operate and, as a result, they are inefficient."

CDB Goldair's Orbit Drive premises include a 24-hour drive-through canopy. Truck drivers punch a number into their phones which open the security gate so they can unload or uplift containers. The company can have up to nine containers under their canopy but the Lovell Court premises will be able to handle 20 containers.

CDB Goldair started out in 2000 as a small importer and distributor selling videotapes and recordable media. When it moved into the electrical accessories business, CDB began with two categories and 150 products, but with Rice's sales talent, Springford's backroom prowess, a bit of luck and hard work the small company has been turned into a thriving firm that distributes 1200 products in 40 categories.

Canterbury manufacturer PDL's Goldair heating brand was acquired in 2008 and last year the company released about 150 new products in the range.

About 80 per cent of the products are developed and manufactured in China for CDB Goldair's brands. The rest of the business is importing and distributing other brands throughout New Zealand.

Rice says he and Springford don't stray far from electrical accessories, lighting and heating.

"It is a hard field to operate in. Regulations and testing are becoming more onerous but we are comfortable in the arena now we have established a reputation for delivering reliable products to some robust customers."

Springford says there are four main elements to the success of CDB Goldair. "We know our customers inside out, we understand China, we operate an efficient distribution network and we meet rigorous product standards."

Springford says every one of the company's 30 staff knows the Chinese market and its peculiarities.

"It is critical for our survival that we deal only with the best factories which manufacture to the highest standards if we are to maintain a consistent and trustworthy product range."

The automated warehouse at Orbit Drive operates with six staff who can deal with 200-300 orders and 50-75 pallets a day. CDB Goldair's New Zealand distribution is run from that warehouse apart from seasonal peaks when products are also dispatched from Christchurch.

Bedford says their new building in Lovell Court will be ready for occupation next year. The company has signed a 10-year lease with two five-year rights of renewal.