Business Review Australia February 2016

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WWW.BUSINESSREVIEWAUSTRALIA.COM

FEBRUARY 2016

Australian

INGENUITY The

RENEWABLES

TEAM

Top10

Industries to invest in



EDITOR’S COMMENT

T H E M O N T H O F F E B R U A R Y is often synonymous with love.

United Kingdom philosopher and 1950 Nobel Prize winner Bertrand Russell once said: “To fear love is to fear life, and those who fear life are already three parts dead.” With Valentine’s Day approaching, this magazine is a special gift to you. Our featured company is Snowy Hydro Limited, as CEO Paul Broad discusses recent acquisitions and upgrades, as well as what the company has up its sleeve for the future. Our tech feature takes and in-depth look at the new Breakthrough Energy Coalition, which was formed by a collection of the most famous entrepreneurs around the globe to help solve the world’s energy issues. As a special treat, Adaptive Insights area vice president Fintan Diviney shares his four keys to drive success for today’s CFO in an exclusive opinion piece. We wrap up this month’s issue with wraps up with the top 10 industries to invest in, in addition to several other company features, such as the success of gold miner OceanaGold.

Peace and love to all.

Eric Harding Editor eric.harding@businessreviewaustralia.com Twitter: @eharding10 3


CONTENTS

FEATURES

20

TOP 10

Industries to Invest in

6

LEADERSHIP Winning Formula

4

February 2016

14

TECHNOLOGY The Renewables Team


44 Snowy Hydro 28

COMPANY PROFILES ENERGY 28 TasNetworks

TasNetworks

70

Hitachi Consulting

44 Snowy Hydro

MINING 60 Era Resources

SUPPLY CHAIN 70 Hitachi Consulting

82

SUDA Ltd.

HEALTHCARE 82 SUDA Ltd.

60

Era Resources

5


LEADERSHIP

Winning

Formula ADAPTIVE INSIGHTS AREA VICE PRESIDENT FINTAN DIVINEY SHARES FOUR KEYS TO DRIVE SUCCESS FOR TODAY’S CFO

W R I T T E N B Y : F I N TA N D I V I N E Y, A R E A V I


I C E P R E S I D E N T AT A D A P T I V E I N S I G H T S


LEADERSHIP FOR EVERY BUSINESS, the role of the finance team is critical — ensuring the business understands its financial past and present, as well as its next steps moving forward. In the age of digital disruption and increasingly competitive markets, the role of the finance team extends well beyond the books. Organisations are demanding that CFOs evolve to become strategic leaders who are at the centre of critical and new business decisions. In order to make this transition, CFOs must harness the power of actionable data and the more sophisticated analytics tools that are now available. Taking advantage of technology that aims to modernise and streamline functions is crucial. By building a good technology infrastructure, finance executives can help company executives make better decisions. According to the Q3 2015 CFO Indicator Report from Adaptive Insights, 69 per cent of CFOs believe keeping data siloed is the biggest financial mistake a business can make. The global survey of 435 CFOs also showed that while financial data is their domain, CFOs are increasingly being asked for non-financial data 8 February 2016

— namely human resources and sales data — by their CEOs. Combining data across the organisation can create a holistic view of the business, which is a vision that is no longer a ‘nice to have’ but a ‘need to have’ for CFOs across the globe. Here are four ways CFOs can draw on technology to secure their place in setting the strategic vision of the


business. 1. Let technology do the grunt work Complex and fragmented financial systems have been holding CFOs back, making it difficult to access accurate data and forcing financial leaders to spend more time managing that data than unlocking its value.

The limitations of personal productivity tools such as spreadsheets have hindered the finance team’s ability to assume a more forward-thinking, collaborative approach, and have made it hard to find time for strategic initiatives that are most important to building a business. Disruptive cloud-based tools and 9


SaaS applications are putting the power back in the hands of CFOs, and placing them at the helm of strategic direction. With the right infrastructure in place and working properly, CFOs will have more free time to think about the bigger questions such as: How do I grow the business in new markets? How do I accelerate the current business? How do I predict change 10 February 2016

and help my business prepare for it? 2. Remove the possibility of human error It’s incredibly important for CFOs to have confidence in numbers and avoid being caught up in the details of processing the data and reviewing it multiple times for errors. In order for the CFO to play a key role in the


boardroom, the responsibility needs to evolve from being a guardian of the data to steering the business forward in new directions. With automated financial systems in place and new data analytics tools, organisations can be secure in knowing that data will be accurate and CFOs can complete the transition from number-crunchers to strategic

thinkers. 3. Build a technology infrastructure that unifies the business Making data accessible to the whole company — in metrics that everyone can understand quickly and effortlessly — not only frees up time in finance, but helps to build trust and 11


LEADERSHIP

“Disruptive cloud-based tools and SaaS applications are putting the power back in the hands of CFOs, and placing them at the helm of strategic direction” – Fintan Diviney, Area Vice President, Adaptive Insights

credibility with other departments. By building a unified technology infrastructure, the finance team can help the organisation create a team-led approach and help other departments scale and accelerate the business. For example, Cochlear, a pioneering medical devices company, has a complex finance environment that operates across multiple currencies 12 February 2016

and five different regions. Having a cloud-based, collaborative solution that provides visibility across the entire organisation’s planning, budgeting and forecasting operations, empowers Cochlear’s leaders to make strategic, insights-based business decisions as one global team. This in turn builds a unified organisation working towards a comprehensive and common strategic


BUSINESS REVIEW AUSTRALIA

business objective. 4. Unlock and share powerful insights Finance departments are interacting more than ever before with other operational departments, and have the opportunity to guide decision-making through actionable, data-driven insights. Success means bringing financial insights to different parts of the organisation. However, there is a tonne of data out there and finance departments need to distil the most useful metrics that demonstrate what the real financial and operational business drivers are. Organisations today must deliver intuitive and self-service reporting and analytics, slicing and dicing deep into data sets. Insights — and the decisions made based on them — impact multiple parts of the company. For example, with real-time customer insights, sales and marketing are now more than ever in lockstep with finance, particularly in identifying new markets, new buyers and the strongest market opportunities. The shift to collaborating digitally

Fintan Diviney, Area Vice President at Adaptive Insights is one of the biggest challenges — and one of the biggest opportunities — facing today’s CFOs. Ensuring performance data is comprehensive and presents 360-degree business visibility is a necessity for critical business decision-making. To truly lead an organisation armed with deep financial insight, it’s up to CFOs to embrace and drive new technology adoption: technology that will help to create a repeatable process of getting the right data, to the right people, at the right time. 13


TECHNOLOGY

THE RENEWABLES TEAM: Inside Look at the Clean Energy Coalition A collection of some of the world’s most famous entrepreneurs collaborate to create new Breakthrough Energy Coalition

WRITTE ERIC HA


N B Y: ARDING


TECHNOLOGY IN AN ATTEMPT to create what is being described as an “economic revolution,” revolving around clean energy, some of the world’s most recognizable billionaire entrepreneurs have launched a new investment drive for renewable resources. The Breakthrough Energy Coalition includes Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, Facebook co-founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg, and Virgin Group head Richard Branson. Other investors include Reid Hoffman, founder of LinkedIn, and Amazon founder Jeff Bezos. “The existing system of basic research, clean energy investment, regulatory frameworks, and subsidies fails to sufficiently mobilize investment in truly transformative energy solutions for the future,” the coalition said in its mission statement. “We can’t wait for the system to change through normal cycles.” The Breakthrough Energy Coalition, made up of more than 25 investors from 10 countries, was launched in Paris as part of the U.N. climate talks. The coalition is based on the principle that technology will solve our global energy issues and will be a public-private partnership between 16

February 2016

governments, research institutions and investors. The group will mainly invest in early-stage clean energy companies across a range of sectors, such as electricity generation and storage, transportation, and agriculture. The initiative has been announced in conjunction with Mission Innovation — an effort from 21 governments, including Australia, the U.S., the UK,


BUSINESS REVIEW AUSTRALIA

Germany, China, and Brazil to double the amount of public money going into clean energy innovation. It’s expected this will bolster governmental assistance in renewables, such as solar and wind energies, to $20 billion. Earlier this year, Gates announced he would invest $1 billion of his private fortune in clean energy over the next five years. The Microsoft founder has

also talked about energy poverty in recent years, suggesting that some of the investment could go to distributed solutions that bring modern energy access to the more than one billion people who live without it. With off-grid solar solutions have begun to proliferate and become a profitable business, the time is now. According to Gates, the world will use 50 per cent more energy by the 17


TECHNOLOGY middle of this century than it does today; however, this is still problematic because most of this energy will be derived from fossil fuels such as coal and oil. “The renewable technologies we have today, like wind and solar, have made a lot of progress and could be one path to a zero-carbon energy future,” said Gates. “But given the scale of the challenge, we need to be exploring many different paths — and that means we also need to invent new approaches. Private companies will ultimately develop these energy breakthroughs, but their work will rely on the kind of basic research that only governments can fund. Both have a role to play.” Zuckerberg believes the ongoing process toward achieving sustainable energy is too slow, while Branson added: “We must produce an abundance of clean, renewable energy and drive further innovation to make the next generation of energy more efficient. It will benefit the environment, our society, and the economy.” Meanwhile, Hoffman said efforts to transform energy sources have struggled because they require 18

February 2016

collaboration between private and public sectors. “The swords that cut this Gordian knot: breakthrough technologies built and deployed by entrepreneurial companies with global scope,” he said. “Making the right investments in the right innovations now is essential to solving this energy challenge for current and future generations across the planet.” The group hasn’t yet put a total dollar amount on its level of investment, but acknowledged it will be focusing its resources on government-funded innovation that comes from countries involved in the Mission Innovation initiative. Global investment in clean energy rose to US$270 billion last year, which is the first significant increase after a three-year lull in investment. China led the way with $89 billion in new money for renewables, followed by the U.S. at $51 billion. The tumbling costs of renewables — solar, for example, has fallen by 70 per cent since 2009 — has helped increase installation, although experts have warned that dependency upon fossil fuels will need to be wound back more quickly if the world is to avoid


BUSINESS REVIEW AUSTRALIA

dangerous climate change fueled by greenhouse gases. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, most of the world’s electricity can — and must — be produced by low-carbon sources by 2050. The panel said that renewables needed to grow from a 30 per cent share today to 80 per cent of power generation by 2050, with fossil fuel energy without carbon capture and storage technology phased out by 2100. Executive director of the environmental group, the Sierra Club, Michael Brune said clean energy was

already “winning the fight” against fossil fuels. “Now, these incredible public and private commitments, which are historic, essential, and timely, show that the nations of the world — as well as many of the world’s leading visionaries and philanthropists — are committed to making clean energy even more widespread, even faster,” said Brune. “What’s now clearer than ever is that our future will be 100 per cent clean energy, and that dirty fossil fuels are merely riding out their final wave.”

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TOP 10

TOP 10 INDUSTRIES TO INVEST IN The best sectors to make an investment in 2016

I

t doesn’t matter how strong the economy is or how successful the industry; No stock is ever a 100 per cent safe. Companies can be hit by lawsuits, be victims of fraud, face new competition or simply struggle due to product failure. Although U.S. government Treasury bonds are often considered to be completely safe due to predictable and guaranteed returns, sectors don’t have that advantage. The predictability and certainty of returns is often the

most important criteria of assessing the safety of an investment. Following the global financial crisis of 2007-08, investors have become more risk conscious and are searching for safer investment opportunities. Rather than putting their money into specific companies, investing in industry-specific index funds, mutual funds and ETF’s has become increasingly beneficial. Below are the top 10 stocks to invest in this year:

Written by: Eric Harding


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TOP 10

10

HOUSING AND REAL ESTATE

The real estate sector continues to be an attractive one for growth investors, as it represents an opportunity for high returns on equity, but without the risk level of more speculative investments. The real estate sector is very often a significant part of asset allocation in a growth investor’s portfolio.

9

LOGISTICS

The transport sector is showing robust growth worldwide. Customer demand for quality is high, and transport must be sustainable and fast. The logistics sector aims to use this development to obtain a leading global position, which requires innovation.

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February 2016


BUSINESS REVIEW AUSTRALIA

8

WATER

Water is even more important to human life than food, with some even predicting the next major war will be fought over it. With requirements for potable water and industrial consumption anticipated to increase, businesses operating in water treatment, transport and packaging are expected to benefit. Because of this, water is a pretty safe industry to invest in.

7

LEGAL AND COMPLIANCE

The world will always be filled with conflicts and challenges, which often lead to legal issues. Because of this, the service-oriented legal and compliance sector is one of the safest industries to invest in. Unless there is a complete halt to crime in today’s society (unlikely), legal and compliance will always be needed.

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TOP 10

6

INSURANCE

Historically, the insurance sector has enjoyed modest returns and perceived safety. It’s been a favorite for investors who want a piece of the financial sector without the risk of investment firms or banks. However, the insurance industry has evolved and now provides an alternative to other high-growth financial stocks. Insurance companies offer large annuity products and choose more sophisticated portfolios for their underlying capital base, although it remains unclear whether this has been a positive transition.

5

FOOD

Since food an essential part of human life (duh), it’s one of the most profitable sectors and is likely to flourish even more in the future. The industry is comprised of businesses associated with foods such as cereals, grains, beverages; in addition to companies that specialise in food packaging or processing. Since most countries have measures and regulations in place for efficient production, supply and purchase of food items.


4

CYBERSECURITY

There’s a lot of money on the table for software companies — and investors — who are ahead of the cybersecurity trend. Financial services firms are hit by security incidents an amazing 300 times more frequently than other industries, mostly because that’s where the money is. Despite stockmarket turmoil and uncertainty in the venture-capital community, cyber security companies are raising large amounts of financing from investors, whose tremendous appetite for high-tech defenses against cyber attacks is not expected to subside even in a market correction.

3

HEALTHCARE AND PHARMACEUTICALS

The World Health Organization (WHO) values the pharmaceutical industry at $300 billion, making it one of the world’s most important markets. In addition, its value is expected to increase to $400 billion in the next three years. Although there have been major scientific advancements in the industry to help humans live longer and healthier, global epidemics such as Ebola and swine flu give this sector even more importance. Even as we continue creating new vaccinations, new diseases will continue occurring, and this industry will remain prominent for years to come.

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TOP 10

2

ENERGY AND OIL

Energy and fuel isn’t going anywhere in the grand scheme of things. Consumers will always have a need for electricity, which can come from a variety of sources such as oil, coal and natural gas. In addition, solar energy and

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February 2016

hydroelectric are large parts of the renewable sector. Investors shouldn’t wait for energy stock earnings to hit bottom to start buying energy stocks, because energy stocks will rise because of their valuation.


BUSINESS REVIEW AUSTRALIA

1

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY (IT)

Innovation is vital to businesses that want to grow. The development of new technologies is expensive and requires specialist knowledge. But while there is no guarantee that these new technologies will work, a good strategy is therefore essential. The information technology (IT) sector covers most makers and providers of computer, data, and electronic equipment and services. This includes software, networking and telecommunications equipment manufacturers; IT consultants;

providers of internet services; mobile phone producers; and semiconductor manufacturers. The technology sector held up relatively well during market selling bouts in recent months, and has actually performed better than the overall market, despite the uptick in volatility. The innovation and entrepreneurial spirit that seem to affect the technology sector make industry insiders excited about its future.

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CHA


ANGES WITH THE TIMES A traditional, government-owned business, TasNetworks adapts to remain relevant with its customers. Written by: Eric Harding Produced by: Vince Kielty

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TA S N E T W O R K S

A

traditional, governmentowned business formed from the merger between Aurora’s distribution network and Transend’s network, but it’s not a traditional future the company is preparing for. Tasmania-based TasNetworks has an opportunity to create something that’s more commercial and adaptable, thanks to the merger. 30

February 2016

The previous Tasmania state government commissioned an independent panel to look into the state’s energy supply production and areas for processes reduction. This resulted in the panel recommending a merge between Aurora Distribution (poles and wires) business and the Transend network (towers and powerlines) business. The two combined in July 2014,


ENERGY

making $913 million in the first year of operation as TasNetworks. “The big challenge for us is, how do we energise, motivate and build the capability of our people so that we can move with the market,” said Justine McDermott, TasNetworks general manager of people and performance. “And it takes a lot of effort, strategy and leadership to do that.

“It’s a change from a conservative culture to an achievement culture. And it’s never been done before in an Australian government-based organisation. It will be a very interesting case study to see if we can achieve it.” I T S TA R T S AT T H E T O P Today, TasNetworks is about much more than simply poles and wires. w w w. t a s n e t w o r k s . c o m . a u

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Software Solutions for Australian Electricity and Gas, Retailers, Distributors and Metering Businesses.

Market Integration & Gateway Layer (MIL) CATS Module (CATS) Standing Data Repository (SDR) Standing Data Reconciliation (SDREC) Meter Data Management (MDM) Meter Data Delivery (MDD) B2B Network Billing (DBILL) NUOS Reconciliation (NREC) Energy Portals & Real-time Monitoring Retail Biling (RBILL)

ACN: 117 192 499 / ABN: 58 117 192 499


Brave Energy Systems (Brave) is a software solution provider speciďŹ cally focussing on the Australian energy market. Our team members have participated in industry committees for Gas and Electricity and have lead roles in the implementation of systems for some of the largest energy organisations in the country. Brave has been solving data problems for retailers and distributors since 2005 and aspires to be Australia’s pre-eminent software vendor for electricity and gas solutions. Brave enthusiastically invests in its product offering and is continually increasing the functional depth of our existing products and expanding the breadth of the overall solution set. Our investment extends to Research & Development on other initiatives such as battery and solar technologies. Brave has a strong commitment to the ongoing market compliance of our solutions. We participate in the assessment of proposed changes to the industry and upgrade our solutions to meet these changes as they are approved.

Brave Energy Pty Ltd 17 Carroll Crescent, Glen Iris Victoria 3146 Main: 03 9575 9000 Fax: 03 9575 9001

www.braveenergy.com.au


SUPPLIER PROFILE

Employees: 60 Established: 2005 Industry: Provider of software to the Australian utilities sector Services: Brave Energy provides products and services designed specifically for participants in the Australian utilities sector. These products are available through Brave’s BRAVO product and include billing engines, data management solutions, revenue assurance solutions, metering services solutions and gateways. Brave host solutions and provides back office operational services. Brave’s customers include Retailers, Distributors and Metering Service Providers Ongoing Projects: Brave has a number of large projects underway for existing clients and is in various stages of delivery for new clients. Brave’s existing clients are expanding their use of BRAVO to benefit from the foundation productions and functionality implemented previously. New clients include start up retailers and clients wishing to enter into the provision of competitive metering services Key to success: Brave’s success is driven by its considerable experience in the Australian Utilities sector across both gas and electricity fuels. Brave employees are sourced from within the utilities sector to ensure this experience and knowledge continues to benefit our clients. BRAVO, Brave’s modular product suite, is specifically designed for the Australian utilities sector and is a further driver of Brave’s success Future developments: Brave continues to invest in BRAVO to meet market demand or to reflect changes arising from energy regulators. Development of BRAVO is also driven by Brave’s own desires to offer products and services that our clients’ customers may wish to use and benefit from. Brave’s current focus is on delivery of metering services and refinement of cloud based solutions Management: Michael Hamilton - CEO; Peter Tillig - COO; Trent Jenkins - CTO Website: www.braveenergy.com.au


ENERGY

The company’s role is changing rapidly, with a greater emphasis on getting people to buy into a different future, as well as helping employees understand that doing what they’ve done in the past is no longer enough. “We clearly understand there are some levels of the business that are rapidly advancing upon us,” said McDermott. “In an environment like Tasmania, which is an island with isolated areas, the traditional poles and wires aren’t necessarily the best way to service those customers. It’s about collaborating with other suppliers to produce standalone

services.” Executing this plan takes strong, yet empathetic leadership, which McDermott believes TasNetworks CEO Lance Balcombe excels in. “To be effective in leading change, you need leaders who are courageous. He’s really being courageous and backing the things that we’re doing,” said McDermott. With the consistent commercial message around the market constantly changing, the company has to change along with it. The significant part of TasNetworks’ strategy is: The strategy won’t happen if they don’t make it happen.

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ENERGY

“Leadership and investing in our leadership programs to help people change and measure our progress is critical,” said McDermott. “Lance has backed all of that, and not many leaders or CEOs would so visibly.” THE CUSTOMER COMES FIRST The new plan for TasNetworks’ business revolves around aligning the business to unlock efficiencies, staying relevant in a changing environment, and standing behind the customer. “The big opportunity for us is helping our people be effective at working within a changing environment, which is something entirely new to the majority of our people,” said McDermott. “Everything you do in this business should be

SUPPLIER PROFILE

Lance Balcombe, Chief Executive Officer

LITMUS GROUP

Litmus Group is a management consultancy firm specialising in the execution of business strategy. We work alongside clients to plan and deliver a positive return on their strategies through effective decision making and aligned implementations. Our focus is on creating real enterprise value by helping our clients to deliver business benefits, manage risks and accelerate the delivery of strategic outcomes that are tangible and sustainable. We are an employee-owned firm with a committed, experienced and talented team. Litmus is part of The Clovis Capital Company which manages a portfolio of businesses that together maximise tangible value for its clients through advisory services, specialised skills provision, private investments and product partnerships. Litmus has offices across Australia and Singapore and is part of is part of Cordence Worldwide offering our clients access to global knowledge and cross-industry experience from more than 2600 consultants in 50 offices around the world. Website: www.litmusgroup.com

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UXC OXYGEN – THE SAP SOLUTIONS COMPANY. WE LET BUSINESS LIVE.

As the leading SAP consulting and services system integrator and cloud solutions provider (also offering SAP as SaaS) across Australia and New Zealand, we liberate Utilities from the complexity of their IT systems so they can do business in a way that is streamlined, optimised and focused.

Offices throughout Australia and New Zealand Australia Phone: 1800 002 354

New Zealand Phone: 0800 008 606

info@uxcoxygen.com

www.uxcoxygen.com

Commercial Cleaning & Sanitation Service Solutions As a family owned company operating throughout the length and breadth of Tasmania, ABC Healthcare Services Pty Ltd has been offering industrial and commercial cleaning and sanitation service solutions for more than 30 years under current ownership. ABC Healthcare Services is currently engaged with more than 30 major clients including all four major Australian banks, Statewide Tasnetworks Sites, National and State Educational Institutions, and Federal and State Government owned buildings.

PO Box 297 Glenorchy, Tasmania, 7010 Phone: (03) 6273 0218 / Fax: (03) 6273 4655 Email: admin@abchealthcareservices.com.au


ENERGY

about the customer.” A central part of TasNetworks’ customer theme is its Voice of the Customer program, which initially caught some off guard due to its vagueness. “Everyone asked, ‘What is it?’ And I said, ‘We’ll figure it out along the way,’” said Tas Networks CEO Lance Balcombe. “A lot of people struggle with that because they want something tangible. That creates challenges for some people,

when they’ve been used to dealing with certainty.” TasNetworks has developed a Voice of the Customer Program to drive the focus on delivering quality service outcomes for its customers. Despite its ambiguous nature, or perhaps because of it, Voice of the Customer is designed to reflect TasNetwork’s highly flexible nature, keeping customer satisfaction as the ultimate goal, rather than as secondary one. w w w. t a s n e t w o r k s . c o m . a u

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ENERGY

FLEXIBLE E M PLOY E E S WA NTE D Although engineers traditionally seek perfection and stability, TasNetworks employees must move quickly, juggle unknown variables, and take risks in such a dynamic environment. “We have a clear understanding that we’re embarking on a transformation program,” said McDermott. “We want to keep doing what we do well, and learn

multiple new skills and capabilities. We have known that from the start. One of the great opportunities of a new business is you can put the scaffolding in place to build change.” Change isn’t for everyone, but one thing TasNetworks prides itself in is helping its people adjust to change, while also helping them make the right choices if it doesn’t suit them. TasNetworks puts emphasis on assessment, measuring both its w w w. t a s n e t w o r k s . c o m . a u

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TA S N E T W O R K S

internal culture and engagement, before sharing the data with its employees and putting them through culture development workshops. “We talk to them about how each of our behaviours creates the culture, and what we may need to do differently to change our culture to one that is more achievement focused,” said McDermott. “Becoming more adaptable is a big change. We’re not expecting it to happen immediately, but it’s the start of a long-term program.” TECH LEADERS With a recently upgraded starter system along with a myriad of business software platforms, TasNetworks signed off on implementing a business transformation project at the end of October with SAP at its core. According to Balcombe, it’s a twoyear implementation that will cost just over $58 million. “It’s not an IT project,” said Balcombe. “We very much view this as a business transformation project. Obviously there’s a lot of 42

February 2016

risk with large IT implementation, but we’ve done a lot of work making sure we resource it properly. “A big component of the project is change management, because the way people do things as result of this project is going to change.” In addition, TasNetworks transmission system consists of a 220 kV and a 110 kV transmission network that connects generators to the distribution system, major industrial customers and the


ENERGY

Company Information NAME

TasNetworks INDUSTRY

Energy FOUNDED

2014 ABOUT

undersea cable called Basslink. The intricate system comprised of over 3500 circuit kilometers of transmission lines, 49 substations and seven switching stations, a telecommunications network and a control centre. And along with its own telecommunications requirements, TasNetworks also owns and operates a telecommunications business that serves customers in the electricity industry among others. It’s just yet other ways TasNetworks adapts to its surroundings.

TasNetworks commenced operations on 1 July 2014, formed by a merger between Aurora’s distribution network (the poles and wires) and Transend’s network (the big towers and lines). TasNetworks is a Tasmanian State owned corporation that supplies power from the generation source to homes and businesses through a network of transmission towers, substations and powerlines.

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Australian

INGENUITY Snowy Hydro Limited CEO Paul Broad discusses recent acquisitions, current upgrades, and reveals what the company has up its sleeve for the future. Written by: Robert Spence Produced by: Glen White


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SNOWY HYDRO LIMITED

S

nowy Hydro Limited has a long and proud heritage as an Australian company. Growing from early beginnings as an electricity generator into a leading end-to-end energy provider, Snowy Hydro captures the essence of the innovative Aussie spirit. “Snowy Hydro was dreamed about back in the 1880s when they were trying to move water from the east of Australia to the very dry west. As a result, the inception of a massive hydropower system that has the capacity of generating 600 megawatts (MWs) was developed,” said Managing Director and CEO, Paul Broad. “Electricity generation was in the beginning a way to pay to move the water. But now, the scheme can generate 4100 MW of renewable electricity and Snowy Hydro has grown to be the leading provider of peak electricity in the NEM,” Broad said. Completed in 1974, the Snowy Scheme is one of the biggest engineering and construction projects undertaken in Australia, taking over 25 years to complete 46

February 2016

Tumut 3 Power Station, SHL

with more than 100,000 people from over 30 countries working on the project. Today, its construction is an important symbol of Australia’s identity as an independent, multicultural and resourceful country. In 2014, Snowy Hydro began to emerge as a major player in the energy retail sector with almost one million retail account holders.


ENERGY

At the same time, the company is embracing technology as a means to improve efficiency, reliability and connectivity across the company. I N T E G R AT E D E N E R G Y PROVIDER Simply put, Snowy Hydro Limited is an energy producer, supplier, trader and retailer for Australia. The company has 5500MW of

generating capacity across New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia, utilising the power of the Snowy Scheme, three gas-fired power stations and diesel peaking generators. Between the Scheme, 300MW Valley Power gas-fired power station, the 320MW Laverton North gas-fired power station and the recently acquired 667MW gasfired generator at Colongra in New w w w. s n o w y h y d ro . c o m . a u

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ASBESTOS REMOVAL & DEMOLITION ASBESTOS SAMPLING & TESTING DEMOLITION

Since 2008, AGH Demolition and Asbestos Removal Pty Ltd has worked with clients throughout Australia to provide innovative and economical solutions, specific to each project. Our qualified and highly experienced team will manage all aspects of your hazardous material project. AGH’s professionalism and focus on safety ensures that the client receives a high standard of remedial service.

02 6299 0323 admin@agh.com.au www.agh.com.au


ENERGY

South Wales and diesel peaking generators in South Australia, Snowy offers a flexible and reliable mix of energy. “The key to our success is our ability to utilise the Snowy Scheme’s large, reliable and fast start capability to our advantage, whether it’s through spot generation, risk management for our wholesale customers, futures contracts or electricity and gas supply to households and commercial and industrial customers,” said Broad. The Snowy Scheme is comprised of 16 major dams, nine power

stations (two underground), a pumping station and 145 kilometres of interconnected tunnels and pipelines and 80 kilometres of aqueducts. The company commenced a $68 million modernisation program in 2012 to improve efficiency and update infrastructure. This is in addition to continued investment in maintaining and improving the reliability and response time of assets. “The physical upgrades include smarter, more efficient runners on the turbine, which means we’re getting 10-15 per cent more

SUPPLIER PROFILE

AGH

In relation to our association with Snowy Hydro we have undertaken a significant amount of asbestos removal work including the following: · Removal of asbestos contaminated phase barriers and the reinstatement of these · Removal of asbestos contaminated door seals, brake pads, friable mastics, insulating components within the Snowy Hydro plant · Environmental cleaning Some other projects AGH has been involved in include the following: · Asbestos removal and demolition of homes affected by Mr Fluffy insulation · Main contractor in an MBA Award Winning project – Guideline ACT (photo attached) · Ongoing projects at schools, hospitals, government departments and residential Website: www.agh.com.au

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We are an Australian based company with a highly skilled and qualified team that extends around the world, to the U.S., U.K., New Zealand and South America. Our specialist workforce in Large Rotating Machines in both the Mining and Power Generation industries enables us to offer extensive field services to clients large and small. Whether you need a turnkey solution or just a few extra staff, our services include consultation, project supervision, test and inspection, dry ice cleaning, full installations, rewinds and rewedges.

Winding Specialists Working Globally

AUSTRALIAN WINDERS 5 Muros Place, Midvale, WA 6056 Phone: +61 8 9274 8652 Fax: +61 8 6296 7687 Email: info@australianwinders.com.au

www.australianwinders.com.au


ENERGY

output. The turbines are running far more efficiently and that’s added enormously to our value,” said Broad. “Secondly, we’ve integrated these machines with a centralised control room. In the past, all these plants were run individually and now they’re centralised so we can dispatch electricity faster and more efficiently and make this work seamlessly across the whole suite of generation assets we have.” NEW MARKETS Recent acquisitions have also allowed Snowy Hydro to bolster

SUPPLIER PROFILE

its energy retail business. The company has invested almost one billion dollars in acquisitions in recent years to grow its customer base and expand generation assets, including acquiring energy retail company Lumo Energy in late 2014 and integrating it with its successful Red Energy business. The combination of Red and Lumo has helped Snowy Hydro nearly double the size of its retail business to almost one million customer accounts and become the fourth largest energy retailer in the NEM. “Red Energy has been part of our

AUSTRALIAN WINDERS

AUSTRALIAN WINDERS Pty Ltd is a company committed to providing top quality ’on site’ services to perform electric motor / generator winding and refurbishment to customers worldwide. Australian Winders has grown commercially, technically and developed full resources, to be in a position that enables them to compete with OEM and international companies in large machine repair and long term maintenance contracts. We have been successful in securing main contracts in turbine and hydro generator work this past year. Highlights being a major hydro generator outage to perform inspection, testing and repairs for Snowy Hydro Limited and a very successful partial discharge repair on turbine stator windings of a generator for GDF Suez. ‘With the capabilities we’ve pooled by incorporating highly experienced team members who have leading knowledge in services in this field– no company that supplies winding labour has ever been so well equipped to serve your business.’ Website: www.australianwinders.com.br

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BHA offers innovative survey services to suit the clients needs

• Epoch monitoring surveys of existing dams • Review of existing survey networks for stability • Detailed reports of methodology and results. • Analysis of surveyed deformation displacements including vectors and time based plots. • Survey of terminal structures for calibration of embedded instrumentation. • Update coordinates and grid datum to suit GNSS including conversion algorithms.

Tel: +61 2 4353 9644 Mob: 0412 432 561 Email: admin@surveyors.com.au

www.surveyors.com.au Member Association of Consulting Surveyors (Aust.)


ENERGY

Guthega Dam, SHL

business for more than a decade. We are now working on integrating the two successful retail businesses into one extraordinary retail business, while remaining focused on superior customer service,” said Broad. According to Broad, Red and Lumo now offer both electricity and gas to customers in Victoria and New South Wales, while expanding the availability of gas to other markets, enabling a dual fuel

offering which attracts and retains more retail energy customers. “Our retail companies Red Energy and Lumo Energy pride themselves on customer service with energy backed by one of the great civil engineering wonders of the modern world—the Snowy Mountains Scheme.” ACE UP TH E S LEE V E Snowy Hydro continues to participate in emerging w w w. s n o w y h y d ro . c o m . a u

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SNOWY HYDRO LIMITED

Employees, SHL

ASBESTOS CONSULTANCY HAZARDOUS MATERIALS ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT & REMEDIATION LABORATORY SERVICES OCCUPATIONAL HYGIENE TRAINING & DEVELOPMENT RESPIRATOR FIT TESTING Contact John Directly: Mobile: 0412 087 298 Email: john@robsonenviro.com.au

technologies that will help challenge and disrupt the energy industry and they remain at the forefront of Australian innovation as the energy industry shifts towards consumerled generation, energy storage and use. “We embrace technology—it is at the heart of efficiencies for our company,” said Broad. A great example is Snowy’s trial of battery storage with Panasonic. The system is expected to help solar households double their rates of

As Managing Director of Robson Environmental for over 25 years, John Robson and his team of 20 professionals and technicians have been engaged as specialist consultants on local, national and international projects. The team at Robsons are widely recognised for providing expert, practical and cost effective advice supported by clear , accurate and concise documentation to government, , corporate and private sectors. As well as being a NATA technical assessor, John contributes to a number of entities that address workplace, environmental and asbestos safety. John is available to share his knowledge and expertise to help our clients find the right solution. Contact John today to discuss how Robson Environmental’s capabilities can meet your requirements.

www.robsonenviro.com.au

JOHN ROBSON B.Sc. Grad. Dip. Occ. Hyg. Cert.IV TAE


ENERGY

Snowy Hydro SouthCare Rescue Helicopter

self-consumption from around 30 per cent to 60 per cent, by storing excess solar output during the day for use later, as well as provide a cost effective alternative to grid infrastructure investments. According to Broad, the 8kWh lithium-ion battery storage system, with an output of 2kW, has been designed specifically for the Australian market, which best suits solar arrays of around 5kW. “Battery storage is just part of where we think the modern energy world is headed. Panasonic is a great partner for us given the

technology and innovation they’re adopting in their own backyard. We think they’ll be a beautiful fit for us in the business we run for the foreseeable future,” said Broad. Along with innovative partnerships, Snowy intends to harness the power of smart metering technology as well. “Metering is going to become a bigger issue in Australia. Traditionally it’s been controlled by the network companies here, but that’s about to change in the next two years. We will be at the forefront of smart metering, establishing w w w. s n o w y h y d ro . c o m . a u

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Aerial view Colongra Power Station, SHL


ENERGY

another point of contact with the household so we can provide multiple services with our system.” The true ace up Snowy Hydro’s sleeve is the introduction of high-tech unmanned underwater vehicles (UUV) for inspection and the use of drones to inspect and report back on the state of assets. In the past, inspecting the many kilometres of tunnels was a massive operation, requiring the tunnels to be drained of water, essentially shutting down part of the Snowy Scheme and several power stations for up to a month. “We used these unmanned subs for the first time about 18 months ago. The technology has been around for a while but the new innovation is the sonic wave, which can give you forensic details of the structures in these tunnels. Now we can build maps of the tunnels and revisit them regularly to see any movements like rock caving that might indicate a problem sometime down the road,” said Broad. “This gives us phenomenally detailed information and the ability to build detailed models of the assets we have and really

Paul Broad CEO & Managing Director

Noel Cornish Chairman

“The technology has been around for a while but the new innovation is the sonic wave, which can give you forensic details of the structures in these tunnels.” – Paul Broad, CEO & Managing Director w w w. s n o w y h y d ro . c o m . a u

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Lake Eucumbene, SHL

understand the condition they’re in, including better understanding the capital investment we have to make to sustain them.” SHINING OPPORTUNITIES ON THE HORIZON

As a predominantly hydro company, Snowy is a leader in renewable energy and intends to compete with the likes of Tesla and others to 58

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capture more of the solar market in Australia—an estimated 1.4 million households. Snowy currently services only 30,000 of those solar powered homes through its retail companies, but according to Broad, that’s merely the beginning. “We are entering the solar market very carefully because it’s a new frontier we haven’t extensively explored. Snowy doesn’t


ENERGY

Company Information INDUSTRY

Utilities HEADQUARTERS

New South Wales, Australia FOUNDED

2002 EMPLOYEES

1700 PRODUCTS / SERVICES

Snowy Hydro is a producer, supplier, trader

necessarily have a comparative advantage yet,” said Broad. “But with our innovative battery technology trial and solar technology, we are formulating a very competitive product that we and the people of Australia can be proud of.” As a cornerstone of the Australian historical and energy landscape and an integral part of the communities in which they operate in, Snowy Hydro is taking things to new levels in 2016 and beyond.

and retailer of energy and is also a leading provider of risk management financial hedge contracts to the Australian National Electricity Market (NEM)

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VALUE CREATORS

Era Resources is committed to unlocking opportunities and creating value through diversified projects, commodities and locations. President and CEO Pieter Britz discusses the company’s current high-quality assets, including updates on its flagship Yandera copper project, as well as reveals possible opportunities moving forward. Written by: Robert Spence | Produced by: Andy Turner

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anadian resource company Era Resources is committed to building a global base metals business focused on the discovery, exploration and development of mineral opportunities around the globe. Undergoing a name change in late 2015 from Marengo Mining Limited, the newly invigorated Era Resources represents a revamped, broader company outlook combined with a renewed and ongoing commitment to the development of the company’s flagship Yandera copper project

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in Papua New Guinea (PNG). The addition of a new management team, along with the recent acquisition of the La Cobota copper project in Mexico, only cements Era’s ongoing commitment to delivering value through diversified projects, commodities and locations. P O R TFO LI O O F VA LU E Known as one off the most geologically rich mining provinces in the world, Era Resources’ 100 percent owned Yandera copper project is situated in the Madang


MINING

Province of PNG. As the copper apple of its eye, the company is wholly committed to advancing Yandera towards feasibility, having already drilled 575 drill holes resulting in 630 million tonnes of measured and indicated resource and 117 million tonnes of inferred resource.. “We’re planning to take Yandera into a scoping study — basically a preliminary economic study —

which should be done by 2016,” said Pieter Britz, President and CEO of Era Resources. “Then we’ll plan another drill campaign to push the resource reserve to a billion tonnes and hopefully commence a feasibility study by the start of 2018, and have financing underway shortly after that. By early 2019, we’ll be ready to make a decision on moving forward.” eraresources.com

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Once up and running, Britz expects the mine to produce at least 100,000 tonnes of copper in concentrate per year. With over 624 square kilometres of exploration licenses in the prospective New Guinea Copper Belt, Era Resources is poised to create significant value for shareholders in coming years. In September 2015, Era Resources purchased an option 64

February 2016

for the La Cobota copper project in northern Mexico—a move that will further its resource opportunities. The project, which is comprised of three contiguous mining concessions encompassing 1,800 hectares, is located in the Laramide Metallogenic Belt of southwest North America, which is home to numerous world class porphyry deposits and widespread


MINING

occurrences of iron-oxide mineralization. “It’s a great looking project and completely different from Yandera. This project is an iron hosted vein, similar to a gold vein deposit,” Britz said. “It’s prospective for multiple styles of copper mineralization.” The company commenced a drilling program in December 2015 to test the grade and continuity of

known copper-silver mineralization associated with a major iron-oxide vein at the La Cobota underground mine. The assay results from the project are anticipated to be received in the first quarter of 2016 and a final decision to exercise the option and acquire the mineral rights in the second quarter of 2016. “This initial resource will form the basis for next year. By 2016, we eraresources.com

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plan to exercise the option for the mineralization and surface rights and move the project forward,” Britz said. R E L AT I O N S H I P S A N D LEADERSHIP Era Resources’ foundation is built upon strong relationships with both shareholders and the local communities in which it operates, particularly in PNG. “If you operate in challenging countries like this, you really need the local people and the local insights,” said Britz. For the past 10 years the company

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and its subsidiaries in PNG -Marengo Mining (PNG) Limited and Yandera Mining Company Limited -have worked extensively to cultivate strong relationships within the local community, building communication and transparency among local land owners, villages and tribes, as well as the provincial government and federal government. Along with a name change, the company revamped its management team in an effort to lead the company into the next phase of its development. The company’s site-based community affairs teams continue to engage


MINING

eraresources.com

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with local communities in PNG, and all of the company’s efforts there are supported by Sir Rabbie Namaliu. “Namaliu is a former prime minister of Papua New Guinea and is widely regarded as among the most respected prime ministers in their history. He sits on the company’s board of directors and is very actively involved with us in our activities in Papua New Guinea,” Britz said. “He’s instrumental in all our 68

February 2016

relationship management needs.” ON THE HORIZON For Era and other mining companies that operate in remote locations, electricity remains one of the biggest challenges. “There have been a few commercialized developments lately with the government and Exxon Mobile, and we’re confident those gas resources will form the basis for cheap electricity in the near future,” Britz


MINING

Company Information NAME

Era Resources INDUSTRY

Mining and metals HEADQUARTERS

Ontario, Canada E S TA B L I S H E D

2005 ABOUT

said. The company plans to hold various discussions and workshops with specialist companies in coming months to discuss power generation, as well as consider alternative solutions. Moving forward, Era openly intends to investigate other base metal opportunities in coming years, along with advancing its Yandera and La Cobota projects. “Our approach is to acquire at an early stage, grow projects through discovery and resource definition, and then advance them through feasibility studies,” explained Britz.

Era Resources is working to further the development of the company’s flagship Yandera Project as well as the identification and assessment of projects that would complement the company’s current assets.

eraresources.com

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A New Age

SUPPLY CHAIN

Hitachi Consulting leads the way through the s advancement of new technology Written by: Eric Harding | Produced by: Glen White


N

sector’s

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echnology is advancing in the supply chain industry, and Hitachi Consulting is at the forefront of the movement. A catalyst of positive business change, Hitachi Consulting assists its clients through enabling superior operational performance and helping them realize their business vision. Hitachi Consulting is transforming the way businesses engage with customers and employees through technology, as the company’s customer experience solutions help clients achieve better engagement and interaction across multiple channels and devices. Meanwhile, Hitachi’s employee experience solutions have assisted

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in better employee productivity and happiness, driving innovation and efficiency. With the technological landscape always changing, Hitachi stays on top of the latest trends and innovations. INTERNET OF S U P P LY C H A I N The Internet of Things (IoT) is connecting daily, mundane objects to the internet, transforming them into the extraordinary. When an object can be represented in a digital space, it can be monitored and controlled from anywhere, as well as feed realtime information from its operator or owner and environment constantly. Through this connectivity, data can be gathered from more places and provide more ways to increase efficiency and asset utilization, innovate product development, streamline the supply chain, enhance the customer experience and improve safety and security. Although IoT hasn’t quite made a major impact on the manufacturing process, the beginning of a fundamental shift is coming. IoT will


S U P P LY C H A I N

“I think we’re on the cusp of a breakthrough. IoT will radically change things.” – Hitachi Consulting Australia Director of supply chain Owen Keates

enable real-time data to be shared from the prospective customer, manufacturing and logistics environments, and products already in use. “I think we’re on the cusp of a breakthrough,” said Hitachi Consulting Australia Director of Supply Chain Owen Keates. “It will radically change things.

“Ultimately, you’re going to have far more visibility of product movement, as well as productivity and scheduling within operations, You’ll be able to track where a product is. In terms of supply chain planning and optimisation, real time visibility and analysis of data will provide better decision making around delivery, changing the game

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IMPROVE CASH FLOW AND At Hitachi Consulting, we help you establish organizational readiness for change with one-on-one coaching to help you through these six key steps. This way you can identify opportunities, anticipate and forecast change, and navigate that change with foresight, agility and conndence.

6 STEPS to Supply Chain Value You Can Measure & Sustain Create supply chains that are both cost effective and responsive to customer demand. The Management Consulting division within Hitachi Consulting can guide you through six steps that will deliver improved cash fow and ROI.

Integrated Planning

Network Optimizatio

15-20% reduction in inventory; 5-10% reduction in supply chain costs; 5- to 10-fold ROI

5-15% reduction o distribution costs

“The organizational structure and mindset of key players can determine 90% of the success of the transition from supply chain to value chain” www.hitachiconsulting.com | Info@hitachiconsulting.com


ROI

on

of s

Strategic Procurement

Working Capital

Logistics Excellence

Operational Excellence

15-20% reduction in inventory; 5-10% reduction in supply chain costs; 5- to 10-fold ROI

5-15% reduction of distribution costs

10-20% savings on external expenditures

Make the transition happen in your business There is no question whether there is a necessity for a re-deenition of the supply chain function – the needs and challenges in the market are driving that. The question is much more how to make that transition happen and what it means speciically for your own organization. We believe that IT plays a major role in enabling this, but will not be the solution. Instead, the setup of proven processes and, more importantly, the organizational structure and mindset of key players can determine 90% of the success of such a transition. The ability to master these dimensions might not be easy, but can make the difference between remaining a “technical” supply function or ecoming (and being recognized as) a driver for the value chain.


H I TA C H I C O N S U LT I N G A U S T R A L I A

significantly.” “And that is just the beginning,” Keates continued. “Adding the ability to crunch vast amounts of customer and customer behaviour data, we will be able to move toward anticipatory shipments of goods, with the ability to adjust the last mile routing to fulfill the actual order.” Keates also pointed out that IoT-enabled advanced monitoring of products will enable predictive 76

February 2016

maintenance and shipment or 3D printing of service parts if and when they are needed. THE CLOUD OF THE FUTURE As more devices and processes get connected via the Internet, risks to cyber security also increase. Big businesses such as Hitachi are aware of these risks and significant developments are underway to


S U P P LY C H A I N

improve cyber security for IoT systems. “Cloud-based solutions are the absolute future,” said Keates. “It’s clear that not only the big enterprise resource planning (ERP) providers are moving to the cloud, but also the on-premise servers probably won’t be there in the future. Everything will be cloud based.” Optimising and transforming a successful supply chain starts at the very top. Often, the best way to start is have discussions about the importance of supply chain at the C-suite level. It then turns into a process of

understanding the strategy and how it needs to be spread through the company. “Today, the best-in-class companies have don’t just recognize the supply chain is a critical part of their business,” said Keates. “These companies comprehend that their entire business is a supply chain in and of itself, and they take ownership and drive the overall performance of that supply chain end to end.” Also important is intimately understanding the customer, which Keates believes is the core of major businesses like Google

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S U P P LY C H A I N

and Facebook; meanwhile, more traditional players have started to realise and better use the treasure trove of customer behaviour data at their disposal. “Understanding customer segmentation and buying behaviours through the use of deep analytics sets the scene for true supply chain transformation, because ultimately you have to determine the appropriate service levels for each segment, not only in terms of reliability, but in terms of responsiveness,” said Keates. “For us, it’s definitely about looking at the future,” said Keates. “With IoT, there is so much additional visibility being made available to supply chain management.”

C O N T I N U A L LY IMPROVING According to Keates, embedding the learning culture within the company and ongoing continuous improvement is the key to supply chain success. “There’s an element of foundational best practice that needs to be truly embedded in an organisation. Leading companies embrace the continuous improvement philosophy of examining their current processes, benchmarking with best practice processes and empowering crossfunctional teams to implement the changes required to ensure ongoing competitive advantage. “It is critical that consultants who implement technology solutions

“Today, the best-in-class companies have recognised supply chain is a critical part of their business.” – Hitachi Consulting Australia Director of supply chain Owen Keates w w w. h i t a c h i c o n s u l t i n g . c o m

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for their clients work collaboratively with the clients themselves. This ensures appropriate upskilling and change management for all personnel, as well as effective business process and practices are developed, resulting in overall business success.” C O N S U LT I N G F O R THE FUTURE The organizational structure of the company within the next few years will adapt from the setup of a typical manufacturing company, in Keates’ view. He points out that there will be an increased importance of understanding the customer and the need to develop collaboration with both the customer and supplier. “I think you’ll see more and more process managers and greater alignment of the internal processes to the particular customer segment or product family,” said Keates. “That will be a fundamental change that the early adopters will take on. And with IoT, there will be a much bigger involvement of the traditional IT role in operations and supply chain functions. 80

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“It will become more practiced as those functions start helping businesses look for breakthroughs. IoT can give them a competitive advantage and the IT systems will be better powered by cloud-based systems.” Supply chain management will soon become much more real time and predictive. Keates believes there will be a significant increase of collaboration between the


S U P P LY C H A I N

Company Information NAME

Hitachi Consulting Australia INDUSTRY

Supply Chain HEADQUARTERS

New South Wales, Australia ABOUT

suppliers, the operations itself and third-party global logistics providers. “Data will be shared and decisions will be made in real time more than ever before,” said Keates. “Part of that disruption can already be seen in the growing on line retail businesses. These businesses are already using the extensive customer browsing and buying data that they collect, to continually improve their product offerings and service levels. You need that visibility to make the right calls to service.”

Hitachi Consulting is a recognised leader in delivering proven business and IT strategies and solutions to Global 2000 companies across many industries. With a balanced view of strategy, people, process and technology, Hitachi Consulting works with companies to understand their unique business needs, and to develop and implement practical business strategies and technology solutions.

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Reinventing the Wheel A drug delivering company, SUDA Ltd has become the top manufacturer of oromucosal products. Written by: Eric Harding Produced by: Vince Kielty


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H

aving established a broad technology platform for its oromucosal drug OroMist, SUDA Ltd is now constructing a pharmaceutical business based on reformulated products that demonstrate major cost, functional and effectual advantages over the competition to corner demand. SUDA holds over 70 patents related to OroMist, covering approximately 300 active pharmaceutical ingredients formulated into patented oral sprays. Using this technology, SUDA is developing low-risk, innovative products that improve both patient’s health and lifestyle. It’s a two-pronged business strategy: Either SUDA formulates a market-leading drug in the therapeutic category into a spray, taking it through clinical development to a stage at which the SUDA will out-license the spray; or other companies come directly to SUDA with their molecules and ideas to develop them into spray applications. “We have what we believe is world-leading technology, expertise 84

February 2016

and know-how of how to formulate oromucosal sprays,” said SUDA Chief Business Officer Nick Woolf. With its home office based in Perth, SUDA has other subsidiaries throughout Western Australia and Europe. Its subsidiary business, called West Coast Surgical and Medical Supplies, provides everything from pharmaceuticals to vaccines for a range of customers.


H E A LT H C A R E

SUDA laboratories in Perth, WA

West Coast’s four divisions include aged care, pharmacies, hospitals and supplying mining sites in Western Australia. The company reported revenue of $5.7 million in the 2014-15 financial year, with underlying revenue growth of about 20 per cent, excluding activities related to Detention Centres. “Westcoast is growing very nicely,” said Woolf. “It’s a nice ‘add-

on’, non-core business for us.” B E T T E R S P R AY S M E A N B E T T E R R E S U LT S SUDA often takes existing tablet form drugs with either expired or close to expirated patents and reformats them into oral sprays. There are several advantages to delivering drugs through the oral mucosa, including ease of use, w w w. s u d a l t d . c o m . a u

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Oral sprays


H E A LT H C A R E

lower dosages, less side effects and a quicker onset of action. “Because the lining of the mouth is highly vascularized, the drug is absorbed directly into the blood system, avoiding hepatic first metabolism and the gastrointestinal tract,” said Woolf. “This can provide enhanced bioavailability — meaning you need less of the drug to get the same amount absorbed into the blood system and with quicker onset of action.” “We also avoid the need for patients to have to swallow — which is important for pediatrics and geriatrics, as well as when nausea or vomiting is involved. We formulate our sprays with flavours and tastes for a pleasant patient experience, which gives better compliance and convenience.” SUDA’s pipeline of sprays include ZolpiMist® — the same active that is administered in tablet form as Ambien® or Stilnox® — which is used to treat insomnia. The product is registered in the U.S. and is expected to be launched in 2016, and SUDA is currently speaking with pharmaceutical companies in other

Oro-mucosal drug

parts of the world to license the drug. In addition, a sublingual spray for treating pediatric malaria called ArTiMist™ has completed a Phase III study, where it was compared to intravenous quinine. The results from this study confirmed that SUDA’s spray was superior. SUDA is in dialogue with The World Health Organisation (WHO) and other philanthropic groups to make the drug accessible in malaria epidemic countries, as well as expanding the use of the product to include early interventional treatment in the pre-referral setting. Other key products in SUDA’s w w w. s u d a l t d . c o m . a u

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A high performance liquid chromatography (HP identify, and quantify

pipeline include first-in-class sprays of market-leading drugs for treating migraine (SUD-001), nausea & vomiting (SUD-002) and erectile dysfunction (SUD-003, DuroMist™). The active drug in DuroMist™ is the same as Pfizer’s Viagra® tablet, which is world’s top selling treatment for this condition. 88

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AHEAD OF THE REST While it isn’t the only company formulating oral sprays, no one is doing it quite like SUDA. Although there isn’t a single type of technology SUDA uses, there are several different approaches the company takes depending on the molecule to be formulated into an


SECTOR

PLC) machine used in analytical chemistry to separate, each component in a solution

oromucosal spray. Moreover, SUDA has established a first-rate team of chemists, which Woolf believes separates the company from its competitors. “None to our knowledge have the breadth of intellectual property (IP) and experience that we have,” said Woolf. “Our approximate 300

molecules span many different drug classes and size of molecules as well. We work with different solvents, different types of excipients, different flavours and taste masking.” That being said, there are several obstacles to clear when translating drugs into sprays. w w w. s u d a l t d . c o m . a u

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SUDA board members Joseph Ohayon, Michael Stewart and Stephen Carter

“The challenges of formulating a tablet into a spray are solubility, stability and permeation. With solubility, we have to get the dose drug dissolved in a certain amount of liquid.” “With stability, there are a lot of drugs that are stable in dry powder, but will degrade immediately in a solution, so we have techniques and know-how to overcome stability issues.” 90

February 2016

“With permeation, the question is how you formulate it so the drug is rapidly absorbed. We have knowhow and access to proprietary permeation enhancers. That’s what differentiates us.” IN V ESTOR MAGNET Through its in-house pipeline, SUDA specialises in formulating products and developing them through clinical studies to a stage that


H E A LT H C A R E

creates added value for investors. SUDA’s business model doesn’t involve sales and marketing, but instead revolves primarily around out-licensing to pharmaceutical companies around the world to complete the clinical developments to the extent required, as well as oversee the registration and commercialization of SUDA’s pipeline of sprays. In these licensing agreements, SUDA seeks up-front payments for the license, milestone payments associated with the successful registration of the products, commercial milestones associated

with hitting sales targets and royalties on sales. “Ultimately we will create value through the up-front and milestone payments, and the sustainable income that comes with royalty flows,” said Woolf. “In our codevelopment collaborations where companies are coming to us, they will pay for us to do the formulation work, and if it was formulated in our lab, we will seek to have a royalty income stream from it.” SUDA also works with manufacturers, such as IDT in Australia, who operate to the standards of good manufacturing

“The challenges of formulating a tablet into a spray are solubility, stability and permeation.” – Chief Business Officer Nick Woolf

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Providing Insight Where Law, Business and Government Meet. Our Corporate practice is top ranked for domestic and cross-border M&A transactions and provides support for clients on all aspects of complex local, cross-border and multi-jurisdictional corporate matters. To find out more go to www.squirepattonboggs.com

44 Offices in 21 Countries

practice (GMP). IDT is currently manufacturing SUDA’s clinical batches of its first-in-class antimigraine spray in preparation for its pivotal upcoming trial. “We’re a deliberately lean company, so we outsource where appropriate,” said Woolf. “We work with a number of contract manufacturers around the world. We work with regulatory consultants around the world, but particularly in the U.S. to ensure everything we 92

February 2016

do in relation to the FDA is up to the highest standard.” W AY O F T H E F U T U R E With several clear advantages, Woolf predicts oral sprays will become even more common in the future. “For diseases or patient groups where a spray offers advantages, it can become the market leader,” said Woolf. “Technology has advanced to the extent that we can


H E A LT H C A R E

Company Information INDUSTRY

Healthcare Pharmaceutical Manufacturing HEADQUARTERS

Osborne Park, Western Australia ABOUT

overcome the challenges of formatting drugs into sprays. We envision many more sprays coming into the market in the future.” SUDA established its laboratories in Perth in 2014, but continues to add staff and equipment to the facilities as the company expands and works on more projects. “At some point we will outgrow our current facilities and will be looking for new facilities,” said Woolf. “And I envision that happening within the next 24 months.” “We have an exciting 12 months ahead of us,” said Woolf.

SUDA Ltd (ASX: SUD) is a drug delivery company utilising its proprietary OroMist® oromucosal drug delivery technology to develop low-risk, innovative pharmaceuticals that improve the health and lifestyle of patients. The many potential benefits of administering drugs through the oral mucosa, which is the moist lining of the oral cavity (ie: cheeks, tongue, gums and palate), include ease of use, lower dosage, reduced side effects and faster response time.

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