Groove Tiles & Stone is an independently owned Queensland family business, founded in 2008 by Leo and Terri Barbera. Leo and Terri have over 25 years of industry experience in the tile and stone industry. Together they share a huge passion for quality tiles and enjoy being able to provide their clients with the latest cutting-edge designs. They are both heavily involved in the business operations, with Leo continually sourcing new and innovative products, and managing the sales team; and Terri directing the administration department. Their excellent team has been carefully selected and is equipped with an extensive background in the ceramic and stone industry.
Leo Barbera, Managing Director and founder of Groove Tiles & Stone, has been involved in the Tile and Stone Industry since 1989. Starting out as a contractor with AB Tiling, Leo learnt the tiling trade and gained valuable knowledge about the Tile and Stone industry from a hands-on perspective. After 4 years working the contracting business, taking with him his gained practical experience Leo ventured into retail becoming the owner of a Metro Tiles Franchise on the Gold Coast. After 14 years of running this store and significantly growing the business he decided to part ways from the Metro Group focusing instead on property developing. Recognising his strong passion for the industry, his love of Italian products, and the drive to establish a family owned business Leo decided to re-enter the tile industry only this time as an independent brand. This is how in 2008 Groove Tiles & Stone was born. Since establishing the business Leo has formed excellent relationships with some of the world’s leading tile manufacturers from Italy and Spain. He is always excited to bring the latest in design and technology to his clients, returning from his buying trips with huge enthusiasm. Leo remains very involved in the day to day management of the business. He spreads himself between both the Brisbane and the Gold Coast stores ensuring that his team or “Groovers” as he often refers to them are kept motivated and up to date with our latest products.
Finance & Operations Manager
With a previous background in banking and finance and over 25 years’ experience in the tile and stone industry working alongside Leo. Terri manages the Administration Department at Groove Tiles & Stone. She takes great pride in overseeing all our financial, accounting, marketing and software services, while also keeping a close eye on operations at the Distribution Warehouse. With her analytical and thorough personality Terri works hard to give our team the best possible resources to enable them to give our clients a wonderful experience with their tiling purchase, whether it be the first time they have purchased or the 100th time. Terri says, “I enjoy the variety of responsibilities I have in my position and I love hearing positive feedback from our customers.”
Ben immersed himself in the Tiles and Stone Industry more than 14 years ago when he began working in a stone warehouse, packing orders and unloading containers. Very quickly he then progressed to the position of external sales representative, servicing architects and wholesale customers across southeast Queensland. With this knowledge and eager to learn more about the business side of things he joined Groove Tiles & Stone initially in the administration and shipping department. With a full understanding of the business across all areas and as our General Manager Ben now plays an integral part of Groove Tiles & Stone. Overseeing all operations within the 2 retail stores, managing the sales staff, client relationships and continuing to assist in the procurement of imported products. Ben’s consistent and meticulous personality ensures that his team are fully equipped with the knowledge and tools required to look after our customers exceptionally well. Ben says “I enjoy the Tile and Stone industry as it offers a wide variety and complexity of choice to its customers with all the various types of tiles, stone, finishes and formats”.
Senior Interior Designer
Ad Naolu has been a qualified Interior Designer for 25 years. With extensive experience in furniture design, furnishing, window furnishing, colour consulting, kitchen design, drawings using Autocad, office furniture design and installation, retail shop design, and fit-outs and as a sales rep.
Specifically, having worked in the tile industry as a manager and interior designer for over 10 years. This has allowed him to travel all over the world to tile fairs in Italy, Spain, and America. As well as furniture fairs in Germany to ensure that the Australian market has access to the best possible products.
Ad enjoys working with Architects, Designers and Builders on a variety of different projects (large or small) to help achieve a fantastic result. He has a great eye for detail and passion for what he does. To Ad, building a relationship with each client and seeing them happy at the end of every project is the most rewarding part of his job.
Growing up in Hervey Bay, Bevan’s career began in the hospitality furniture industry. 7 years later, he launched his own business of composite and natural timber decking and cladding which he ran and operated for 8 years before moving to Brisbane. Once in Brisbane, Bevan worked for a short time in architectural lighting and then moved into the tile industry. Bevan says “I’m a visual rewarding person, I take pride in seeing completed projects, and enjoy working with some of the most creative designers and architects in Brisbane. My role at Groove allows me to continue these long-standing relationships, as well as constantly meeting new designers and builders throughout the region. The diverse product range available at every resource allows me the opportunity to offer our product range to every tile requirement, with the flexibility of meeting custom requests when required. The Groove Team is vibrant, and the combined experience of the team is a valuable asset”.
With over 20 years in customer service and almost 15 years specifically in the Tile Industry Tim is an absolute wealth of knowledge when it comes to everything tiles and stone. If there is specific product you are wanting to obtain, or you need to match an existing tile Tim is always up for the challenge in finding a workable solution. Many of his clients continue to remain loyal throughout the years with Groove Tiles & Stone, evidence of his strong ability to provide excellent design and technical advice. Outside of Groove Tiles & Stone, Tim enjoys keeping active and spending time with his 2 boys.
Purchasing & Logistics
With a background in administration duties of a large wholesale tile outlet Hannah gained valuable experience over the 5 years. Eager to gain further skills and take on a more diverse role she started with Groove Tiles & Stone as our purchasing officer. With her ability to work under pressure and great sense of customer service she now takes care of all local purchasing, foreign shipping and logistics. Hannah goes above and beyond to assist the sales team making sure that all customers receive their products within a timely manner. Hannah says, “I enjoy working with the team and the variety in my position”.
Equipped with an Advanced Diploma in Interior Design and a move to Queensland brought Sylvana to Groove Tiles & Stone. Initially working as a sales consultant, Sylvana assisted many clients with the use of our tiles to create stunning spaces from small renovations to full house selections. With a good eye for detail Sylvana’s strengths are now being utilised in our quoting and estimating division where she works alongside the sales team to produce costings and detailed drawings for projects. Sylvana is a valuable team member, aside from her dedication to her work she enjoys baking, often bringing a treat for the office for birthday celebrations.
As a certified wall and floor tiler for 10 years and accredited in waterproofing Craig has earnt his stripes as our Capalaba Showroom Manager and trade specialist. Positive and cheerful, he is always happy to offer our many DIY customers installation tips for their projects and for all our professional tradesman Craig keeps them regularly updated on the latest in adhesive products and tools. Both resourceful and practical Craig utilises his skills throughout the Groove Tiles & Stone Showrooms with the creation of our inspiring and vibrant displays. Craig says, “A combination of my fixing experience and more than 5 years’ working in retail has given me immense opportunity to see firsthand the result of many tiling projects. I feel confident sharing my knowledge and I am continually motivated by the ever changing industry.”