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Manufacturer June 2011 June NZ 2011


Mongolia – The new Eldorado Page 7





Manufacturing Heroes

Let’s be proud of our companies

Fraser Cars handcrafting sports cars

Page 12

Page 29

Howick Engineering leads It’s a bright future for the steel-frame world Brightwater


owick Engineering is today one of the world’s leading – if not the outright top designer and manufacturer – in the supply of steel-frame cutting machines to the global housing and construction industry. For some 34 years now, it has been quietly getting on with growing its international reputation for quality, design, manufacture and service, content to be “the prophet unrecognised in his own land”. The local building industry’s fondness for timber-framing, the lack of skills amongst architects, builders and specifiers in New Zealand, plus the illusion that timber “had to be cheaper” has, until now, restricted steel-framing primarily to barns, garages and sleepouts. Although Golden Homes is

changing all that. The Coubray brothers, Bruce and Alan, who have stuck to their “commitment to innovation, the use of technology and building a reputation for quality”, have never wavered in their confidence that the day would come when New Zealand recognised that “traditional” methods were neither cheaper nor appropriate for many parts of the Shaky Isles. Bruce Coubray: “We have broadened our range of capabilities and products over the last few years to match soaring industry growth overseas. Continues page 17

Local market starts to catch up

Deon Anderson (UK office) and GM Rowe discuss specifications for a machine destined for Russia


n just over 30 years Nelson-based Brightwater has come a long way from a small five employee general engineering workshop located in the Brightwater farming and small industrial region at the top of South Island. Following a recent reorganisation and rebranding exercise, Brightwater has three divisions: Brightwater Engineering (formerly known as Brightwater Engineers) continues to represent about 65-70 percent of the revenue and activities of Brightwater; Brightwater Manufacturing (formerly SCS) with some 20 percent; and Brightwater Services (new entity grown from Brightwater Engineers) with 15 percent. The latter two are expected to grow extensively in the next few years, as that split becomes more balanced. Today Brightwater is one of our leading multi-disciplinary industrial corporations delivering innovative bespoke solutions, and employing some 300 people in operations across Australasia – Nelson, Auckland, West Coast, Christchurch, Melbourne, the Gold Coast and Perth -- as it starts to rapidly fulfil the vision of its founder Hugh Grey. His traditional values of trust, and integrity, coupled with a “cando” attitude remain ingrained in the company across its various specialty divisions, resulting in prized repeat business and several enduring commercial and individual relationships. One imagines he would give a knowing nod to the fact that Brightwater Manufacturing recently

David McGregor

delivered the largest commercially available mobile Vertical Shaft Impactor (VSI) in Australasia, developed from its quarry and minerals’ product range; and powered by a 720hp Caterpillar turbo-diesel, with an output capacity of up to 450 tonnes per hour. Plus, acquired one of New Zealand’s largest horizontal diameter CNC lathes with a capability of machining up to 1.8m diameter components. This investment will significantly reduce the manufacturing cost of multiple large-diameter components, such as large conveyor pulleys and winchdrums. And that a large, wood pellet production plant and storage facility, established by Mathew Fletcher and his Perth-based Brightwater Engineering team in Albany, Western Australia, won the “Environmental Project of the Year”, from the “Bulk Material Handling Review” in Australia. Continues page 18

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NZ Manufacturer June 2011

NZ Manufacturer June 2011


If there’s a bit of Doug in you, then there’ll be a bit of Kiwibank too. Call one of our Business Banking Specialists today on 0800 601 601 or visit to hear more from Doug.


NZ Manufacturer June 2011



Budget cautious and safe.

Professor Guy Littlefair ➡


MSc PhD CEng MRSNZ is passionate about manufacturing and is constantly striving to improve training methods for students. He is Head of the School of Engineering at Deakin University in Australia.

Mongolia – The new Eldorado.

OPPORTUNITY HAMILTON Paint facility ready in August.


• Coming to a town near you.

• Do you work in New Zealand’s best workplace?

Page 6 – FOCUS: BUDGET 2011 – A Budget to save NZ’s credit rating. ➡

6 7 8 11


• HERA welcomes Audsley Jones.

12 13 19 24

• Demand for graduates increasing.


Let’s be proud of our companies.


• Land developments to expand city fringes. • Machinery and equipment manufacturers diverse exporting sector.

Page 10 – OPPORTUNITY HAMILTON – Aviation expo tipped to make millions.

Bruce Goldsworthy

An advocate for NZ manufacturing for 40 years, he was Chief Executive of the Auckland Manufacturers Association for seven years He has been Manager of EMA’s Advocacy and Manufacturing Services, and lately manager for Export New Zealand in the north.

MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY First wirelessly powered wind turbine.


• Vibration tester provides on-the-spot diagnosis.

• Unique three in one protection cap.

28 30 31



• World demand for machine tools to increase.

Page 22 – LEAN THINKING – Have you made a profit today?

• EXPORTNZ lifts India focus.


• 80 years of drive engineering that changed the world. • Search begins for leading innovators. • Full steam ahead for sailboats.

• Automation strengthens supply chain industry.

Page 23 – FROM WHERE I SIT – Barrie Carruthers, managing director, Precision Microcircuits Ltd on why he does what he does.

John Walley

Is the Chief Executive of the New Zealand Manufacturers and Exporters Association. John consults to a number of overseas companies and is a Chartered Engineer, a Fellow of the Institute of Professional Engineers NZ, a Fellow of the Institute of Management NZ and a Member of the Institute of Electrical Engineers UK.

• A reason to be inspired.


Chris Whittington

Technical Director with Camplex NZ Ltd. An experienced Graduate Mechanical Engineer with extensive experience in both Product Design and Manufacture. Considerable recent experience in both rapid prototyping and reverse engineering.

Hans Frauenlob ➡ Is New Zealand Trade and Enterprise’s Director – Specialised Manufacturing, with responsibility for NZTE’s Specialised Manufacturing team.


Technology ruins work-life balance.

July in


Manufacturing Heroes

Page 29 – MANUFACTURING HEROES – Handcrafting sports cars for overseas markets.

Catherine Beard

Is Executive Director of Export NZ and Manufacturing, divisions of Business NZ, New Zealand’s largest business advocacy group, representing businesses of all sizes.

NZ Manufacturer June 2011


Most newspaper companies still have their heads in the sand, but other media companies are aggressive. - Rupert Murdoch


Media Hawke’s Bay Ltd, 1/121 Russell Street North, Hastings, New Zealand 4122.


Doug Green T: +64 6 870 9029 E:


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Our products are good, markets abound

The quality is there and so are the markets


herever you look, there are some wonderful opportunities available for our manufactured products. The quality is there and so are the markets. If you are in manufacturing associated industries with engineering, civil services, building, mining, food, logistics or infrastructure as your primary concern then chances are there is a very significant and profitable market opportunity for you in Mongolia. This from Peter Allport, Honorary Consul of Mongolia in New Zealand who has been a frequent visitor to Mongolia for 20 nearly years. Peter has business interests in the country, sits on company boards and has worked on various projects in Mongolia. So he is one person who ought to know about business opportunities there; you can read his observations of the market potential on Page 7. While we’re talking about overseas business, ExportNZ is working closely with the India New Zealand Business Council (INZBC) to assist New Zealand companies maximize on the growing business market in that country. And the business comes the other way as well. Lewis Woodward, managing director, Connection Technologies, Wellington wants recognition for importers whose efforts go towards supporting our exporters (Page 12). Lewis is referring to those companies who either make the ‘nuts and bolts’ or import the same to allow exporters to produce what they do. And then there is Fraser cars, a Beach Haven company that exports Lotus 7 replica sports cars around the world (Page 29). Quality New Zealand manufacturing is right at the heart of the company which employs “hugely talented craftsmen who put their souls into the cars.”

Doug Green

ISSN 1179-4992

Vol. 2 No. 4 June 2011 Copyright: NZ Manufacturer is copyright and may not be reproduced in whole or in part without the written permission of the publisher. Neither editorial opinions expressed, nor facts stated in the advertisements, are necessarily agreed to by the editor or publisher of NZ Manufacturer and, whilst all efforts are made to ensure accuracy, no responsibility will be taken by the publishers for inaccurate information, or for any consequences of reliance on this information. NZ Manufacturer welcomes your contributions which may not necessarily be used because of the philosophy of the publication.



NZ Manufacturer June 2011

FOCUS: BUDGET 2011 Budget Quotes A Budget to save NZ’s credit rating T

Budget 2011 builds a strong platform for jobs and growth, sets a credible path back to surplus by 2014/15 and helps increase national savings

– Finance Minister Bill English

“This is a responsible and balanced budget for the times. We can start repaying debt and contributing to higher national savings” -- Prime

Minister John Key.

“Zero out of 10, worst budget in living memory. No credibility, it’s built on smoke and mirrors” -Labour’s finance spokesman David Cunliffe.

“Sometimes boring is good for you” -- KPMG partner Paul Dunne. “The budget is like giving a seriously ill patient a sedative before undergoing major surgery” -- NZ First leader Winston Peters. “What the country needed was bold and courageous action. What we’ve got from National is a long list of broken promises” -- Labour leader Phil Goff.

“This budget was boring but I mean that as a compliment. For far too long, budgets have bribed the electorate with its own money” -Federated Farmers spokesman Philip York.

he Budget is designed to save New Zealand’s credit rating and lift our national savings rate with KiwiSaver, the Employers & Manufacturers Association says. “If this Budget’s deficit was not reduced sufficiently, New Zealand would face a credit rating downgrade resulting in a huge increase in interest rates to everybody, with borrowers the first to suffer,” said Alasdair Thompson, EMA’s chief executive. “And increasing the KiwiSaver contributions from April 2013 is a much better option than raising taxes. “Its not as if those paying more into their KiwiSaver accounts will lose anything – they’re simply being asked to put more aside for later on. “The principles behind the scheme remain intact. Keeping the

$1000 start up incentive, and the tax credit albeit at the reduced level of $521 annually, means KiwiSaver remains a very attractive scheme. “It also means the government will not have to borrow so much thereby lessening the risk of a credit rate downgrade. “Keeping intact the principles of the scheme means the incentives to savers can be raised again in future. “Larger employers will more likely be able to afford the extra contributions than smaller firms though the extra cost will be seen as part of the overall cost of employing people. “The Budget could have cut deeper, but its not easy to do with the country in or near recession; making deeper cuts at this time would fly in the face of the lessons learnt from the days of the Great Depression.

Budget cautious and safe


usinessNZ has characterised Budget 2011 as cautious and safe, with most announcements generally pointing in the right direction of reducing government expenditure and debt. However BusinessNZ Chief Executive Phil O’Reilly said the Budget lacked signposts towards future reforms and other than the extensions to the mixed ownership model, more could have been done to produce structural change. “The Budget is heavily dependent on the Treasury’s predictions for growth being realised. “Efficiencies in the public service are to be welcomed and will help address the imbalance between the public and private sector contributions to the economy.  But only a third of the announced $980 million savings will come from efficiency improvements, with the bulk of the savings being generated by the removal of central funding for KiwiSaver and other government superannuation schemes. “KiwiSaver’s reduced tax credits, larger member and employer

“Given the experience of the PM and the Finance Minister its fairly certain the cuts will be sufficient to ward off downgrades by the credit agencies. If not this Budget will have failed in its primary purpose.”

contribution and an end to the tax free status of employer contributions will represent greater costs to employers; however employers are likely to recognise that the moves will help secure KiwiSaver’s viability. They will have a reasonable amount of time before introduction to take account and plan accordingly.   Saving government expenditure of $2.5 billion over four years will be a reasonable payoff from the changes. “Slightly better targeting of Working for Families, reducing outgoings by about four percent, is a Phil O’Rielly move in the right direction, although given its current role in diminishing “Increased funding for training incentives to work and produce, and employment assistance are more reductions and more targeting positive but not game-breaking.    would have been desirable. Given the importance of skills “Student loans, the other development to productivity immajor area of expenditure where provements there is concern that the significant change is called for, Budget has produced no coordinated brought disappointment.  Reversing plan for skills development.  More the interest free status of student needs to be done to increase the loans would have brought a much clarity of pathways through the larger shift to financial health and education and skills system and to would have helped bring better respond to the urgent need to raise www. incentives in study choices and the literacy, language and numeracy completion rates. skills of the workforce.”

baskiville. com

Alasdair Thompson

NZ Manufacturer June 2011

The budget is like giving a seriously ill patient a sedative before undergoing major surgery. – NZ First leader Winston Peters

Mongolia – The new Eldorado



one of the last remaining frontiers!


o the north of China and to the south of Siberian Russia, lies the democratic republic of Mongolia. A very large landlocked nation over six times the size of New Zealand but with a population of only about 2.8 million. It is extremely cold during the winter and, in some desert areas, extremely hot in summer. It experiences very stable continental weather patterns with over 290 days a year of cloudless skies (albeit the outside temperature may be minus 30OC). Mention of Mongolia usually conjures up images of nomadic herders living in round felt houses. It evokes thoughts of the Mongol hordes of Ghinggis Khan who, in the 13th century, united the Mongol tribes and waged a series of ferocious military campaigns sweeping across Asia and into eastern Europe forming the largest contiguous land empire the world has ever known (22% of the Earth’s total land area) which, at its peak, stretched from the Pacific Ocean to modern day Poland and from Siberia to Vietnam. Today Mongolia is the 18th largest country in the world with a land mass of over 1.5 million km2 (bigger than Spain, France and Germany combined) but it is the least densely populated country in the world. In 1921 Mongolia came under strong Soviet influence and the Mongolian People’s Republic was

declared in 1924. After the eventual collapse of the Soviet Union, Mongolia had its own peaceful democratic revolution in 1990 with the first democratic elections in 1991 and the passing into law of the current democratic constitution in February 1992 The political structure of modern day Mongolia consists of a single seat 76 member Parliament with a Prime Minister at the helm and an elected President as head of state. Mongolia’s historical economy has been based around (semi nomadic) pastoral agriculture with a peak livestock census of over 40 million head until that was severely impacted by extremely harsh winter conditions in 2009/10 (known locally as dzud) which saw about 22% or 9.7 million livestock perish. The immediate future of Mongolia will be powered by major mineral resources development –

If you are in manufacturing there is a very significant and profitable market opportunity for you in Mongolia.

initially Copper, Gold, Coal and Oil followed by Uranium, Iron, Rare Earth Elements, Molybdenum, Tin, Tungsten, Silver, Zinc and Fluorspar. Seemingly, wherever they dig a hole in Mongolia, there are valuable mineral resources to be found. The extraction, processing and marketing of this mineral wealth along with the infrastructure development to facilitate these industries will drive the Mongolian economy in the immediate future and Mongolia is forecast, by some, to be the fastest growing economy in the world over the next decade. For example, the major Rio Tinto/Ivanhoe Mines, Copper and Gold deposit at Oyu Tolgoi in South Gobi will result in the second largest Copper mine in the world; will be a $US5 billion development investment which alone will double the GDP of Mongolia (2009 GDP was $US4.2 billion or a GDP per capita of $US1,551). In full production, OT, as it known locally, will produce an average 450,000 tonnes of Copper and 330,000 ounces of Gold per year over the projected 70 year mine life. Mongolia currently has known reserves of Coal of over 150 billion tonnes some of which has been assessed as being the best remaining undeveloped deposits of coking coal in the world. Much of this coal is to be found in the South Gobi within ready reach of seemingly insatiable

By Peter Allport, Honorary Consul of Mongolia in New Zealand. industrial demand in Northern China. The most significant of these deposits is Tarvan Tolgoi which has an assessed life of 200+ years and is scheduled to produce 15 million tonnes per year of mainly coking coal, starting from 2012. This deposit alone will generate $US87 billion over the next 29 years. In addition to mining and perhaps a little longer term, will be huge opportunities in energy. In addition to its mineral energy wealth Mongolia has a great abundance of other energy potential in renewables such as wind and solar. In future Mongolia will be a significant net energy exporter having far greater intrinsic energy supplies than it is ever likely to need to meet domestic demand. In my view, energy exports have the potential to ultimately exceed the value of mining as a component of Mongolia’s economy


Continues page 27


NZ Manufacturer June 2011


The future belongs to those who see possibilities before they become obvious.

– John Sculley, Former CEO of Pepsi and Apple Computer

State-of-the-art aircraft paint facility ready in August


cting Minister for Economic Development, the Hon David Carter, recently turned the first sod in a ceremony marking the start of construction of a state-ofthe-art aircraft paint facility to be built in Hamilton, New Zealand. The Minister said New Zealand, and particularly the Waikato region, is fast developing a reputation for excellence in the areas of air training and aviation servicing. “This plant will certainly boost that reputation and I applaud the Aviation Industry Cluster’s initiative in developing what looks to be one of the best facilities of its type in the world.” Construction of the $2 million, 1300 square metre paint began in April and will be open for business by August this year. The state-ofthe-art plant integrates the world’s latest spray-painting technologies and will be capable of potentially painting an aircraft 65% faster than any current facility operating in Australasia. The plant will be located adjacent to the runway at Hamilton International Airport, alongside CTC Aviation Training (NZ) Limited’s airline pilot crew training centre. Aviation Industry Cluster Chairman, John Jones, says the facility is not only unique for New Zealand but is thought to be a world-first. “As far as we are aware, this facility will be the first of its type in the Southern Hemisphere and may even be a world-first. Construction of this plant is the result of two years of research, gathering the very latest paint stripping, electrostatic paint application and bake curing techniques. And, we’re combining them all under one roof. “This is not only a coup for the New Zealand aviation industry, this is a facility that will be an asset for the broader Australasian aviation industry as well,” explains Mr Jones. “There are numerous spillover benefits to the region and New Zealand.” The paint facility will be built in two stages. The first stage will be completed by August 2011 and will accommodate helicopters through to ATR, Q300 aircraft. The Cluster also expects high demand for repainting by owners of the 4000-plus light aircraft currently operating in New Zealand. The Cluster plans to construct the second stage of the facility in approximately three years time, which will be capable of painting

passenger aircraft as large as a Boeing 737 and military sized aircraft like the C130 Hercules. “We estimate stage two of the paint facility will be built in 2014, however this construction timeline could be accelerated if industry demand is high,” said Mr Jones. Following construction of the first stage of the plant, the facility will employ approximately 10-12

The facility is not only unique for New Zealand but is thought to be a world-first.

Hamilton International Airport chief executive Chris Doak says, “The paint facility is an excellent tenant to have located at the airport. Leasing land to the paint facility is consistent with the airport’s desire to facilitate economic growth around the airport especially when it is related to the aeronautical business. “We already have a strong cluster of aviation related companies located here and we are confident the paint facility will attract further aviation-related businesses to choose our international airport as their New Zealand base.” Hamilton’s aircraft paint facility is a joint venture project between Waikato-based private investor, IGS Group, and the Aviation Industry Cluster. The Aviation Industry Cluster will be investing Major Regional Initiative (MRI) funds into the project, granted to the organisation by New Zealand Trade and Enterprise.

Digital Hamilton to boost business and economy


digital “technology revolution” is set to sweep through Hamilton, thanks to the pending rollout of ultra-fast broadband in the city. Ultra Fast Fibre (UFF) commercial manager Jack Ninnes said the network, due to be rolled out from later this year, will boost economic growth and will be available to city residents and businesses within five years. The UFB is expected to boost business productivity and economic growth by between 1.2 and 1.4 percent, with World Bank analysis indicating broadband infrastructure investment has a high flowthrough to productivity. “There is a technology revolution coming to Hamilton. This broadband is going to bring significant opportunities to businesses which have never been available before,” Jack said. Ultra-fast broadband has the potential to benefit businesses, schools, health premises and residences in the city, with straightforward connections to be provided free to each household or business. “The connection will be available on the premises, so the occupants can either take just a phone service or purchase internet packages from the retailers,” Jack said. Ultra-fast broadband will allow

full-time employees. John Jones says the facility should provide a boost to the local economy. “Not only will the new paint facility provide around a dozen new jobs in the first stage, the Aviation Industry Cluster also believes the new facility will make New Zealand more attractive and less costly to new aircraft manufacturing companies seeking to establish or expand in the Australasian region. Having access to a high-end, specialist aviation painting service will be a huge benefit to these types of companies. “It is hoped that aircraft maintenance work will be required, and that the facility may attract new aircraft assembly plants to the region, creating more jobs and a stronger industry. The facility will be available to all New Zealand aircraft owners and operators, and to local manufacturers,” explains Aviation Industry Cluster General Manager, Shaun Mitchell.

businesses to operate their telephone systems over the internet. Higher levels of service are to be provided over the new network for about the same cost as current services, according to Jack. While Hamilton retailers have not confirmed the rates for packages, a Whangarei retailer is offering 10G of UF broadband, a phone line with free local calls and 5 cent per minute national calls for $79 including GST per month. Business, education and health sectors will be among the first to receive ultra-fast broadband,

The broadband rollout helps put Hamilton on a level playing field globally.

with benefits including greater engagement from students, improved learning outcomes and more opportunity to create, collaborate and connect on-line. In the health sector potential uses include tele-health technologies allowing patients to self-monitor their health at home and improved electronic transfer of high-tech medical imagery. Business development manager Adrian Dixon, of Opportunity Hamilton, said Hamilton is well placed to be the leading digital destination in the South Pacific thanks to the new technology and innovative city businesses. Opportunity Hamilton, the economic development agency, is managing the implementation of the Digital Hamilton strategy. The strategy supports the development of “weightless” industries, such as creative and digital. “Projects are already underway linking leading Hamilton companies to global innovators and potential strategic alliance partners with a view to accelerating their growth. We will work with stakeholders to support global growth using ultrafast broadband,” Adrian said. Programmes to increase the use of technology in non-digital sectors are also being developed. “Hamilton has world-leading technology in a number of areas, and the broadband rollout helps put us on a level playing field globally. It is safe to say Hamilton’s digital future has arrived.”

NZ Manufacturer June 2011



I’d love to be finance minister. – Don Brash

Clearing bottlenecks for manufacturing team leaders


any team leaders and managers face real challenges when setting priorities and justifying capital expenditure (capex) proposals. Tight timeframes and tight funding are only the start. Many prospective projects crowd the asset management plan (AMP), competing for squeezed capital funds. ‘Needs’ must come before ‘wants’ but how do you prioritize product quality or health & safety initiatives ? And how do you systematically balance manufacturing plant failure risks against commercial objectives in an objective and transparent way? Few Finance Managers today outline the company policy, criteria and business rule hurdles team members must clear to get funding approval. Project leaders often wait in line for accountants (busy with reporting priorities) to help them address the capex business case. Should they buy or lease equipment, and how can asset replacement business cases best be prepared ? The next challenge is to cross a minefield of executives trained to say no. First the CFO, then the CEO, and – fingers crossed – the Board. And if any detail isn’t thoroughly documented the proposal is ‘bounced’. Even finding out who is “sitting on” capex requests can waste precious time. With these challenges in mind, Hamilton company Capex Systems Ltd has upgraded and re-launched an inexpensive project-focused solution. It’s principal, Tony Street has many years’ experience of such problems in widely different fields. Originally a capex projects accountant with extensive hands-on involvement in industry, he became a specialist management consultant in the field, then a project manager. Today he is a software solutions developer. “Our corporate partners include leading NZ companies that have been using this system consistently for 10 years now to slash management time input and gain better outcomes,” said Street.

The solution - Capex® - attacks corporate bottlenecks. It streamlines priority setting through a powerful and dynamic decision support module for “must-do” projects. A simple framework is provided to develop sub-categories. A manufacturing company, for example, might recognize the need for, amongst others, a sub-category assigned to “Product quality”. The graphical user interface (GUI) lets busy managers set up their own priority score drivers – such as product defect criteria, and risk of failure metrics. Priority scoring then becomes simple – users just drag a pointer bars on the GUI and

Many prospective projects crowd the asset management plan (AMP)

the system assigns a priority score and downloads to a supporting database. Using Capex methods, company procedures and criteria for gaining capex approval are available for all stakeholders – promoting transparency and consistency. Project leaders get to understand the business rules from the outset. And it gets better. Capex provides a five minute video to show team members how to develop expert financial evaluations and business cases. Actually for the financial part they don’t have to do much – all depreciation, tax and financial calculations are done automatically – to a standard that pleases even the most discerning Finance Managers. Qualitative analysis is also important and the system applies a balanced scorecard – again using a GUI. Twice independently audited, the system also alerts senior

managers to the key questions they should ask and assumptions to test, to avoid approval delays. These incorporate the experience gained from having evaluated more than 4,000 capex proposals at a senior management level. Enabling tools are provided – right at the point of use. Finally, the headache of tracking many paper based capex requests is eliminated through an integrated on-line paperless workflow and collaboration system. It can operate either as a ‘Cloud’ Internet application or if preferred, runs on the in-house Intranet. Users go online and check how their projects are tracking through the approval process, and exception reports alert managers as to project tracking behind schedule. nextSTEP Visit


NZ Manufacturer June 2011


The only way to predict the future is to have the power to shape it. – Eric Hofer

Aviation expo tipped to make millions


he launch of up to 10 new products and the opportunity for aviation companies to close millions in sales are the two main outcomes expected at a Waikato-based aviation showcase planned for October. NZ Flair 2011, to be held at Te Kowhai Airfield near Hamilton from October 13 to 15, will showcase a wide range of New Zealand products and services and innovation within the burgeoning aviation sector. Waikato Aviation Industry Cluster and NZ Flair 2011 organiser Shaun Mitchell, said the event will bring New Zealand’s “under the radar” aviation industry into the international spotlight. “NZ Flair 2011 will leverage off the extra profile of New Zealand during the Rugby World Cup and is a real opportunity for growth, development and innovation of our industry,” Shaun said. A New Zealand Trade and Enterprise report from June 2010 showed the New Zealand aviation sector brought an estimated $9.7 billion into the economy in 2009, with $5.9 billion from domestic activities and $3.8 billion from export activities. The New Horizons report shows the industry is expected to grow to $12.6 billion by 2015 with experts predicting Waikato will net a “significant slice” of the growth. Waikato economic development leader Sandra Perry, of Opportunity Hamilton, said NZ Flair 2011 was a “coming out” for New Zealand’s multi-billion dollar aviation industry. “This will attract thousands of visitors and key aviation business people and potential investors from around the world. It’s a real chance for these businesses to get global attention,” Sandra said.


The aviation cluster’s celebrations of the launch of the 1000th aircraft. Pacific Aerospace’s P-750XTOL was officially the 1000th plane produced in Waikato.

NZ Flair 2011 is modelled on AirVenture Oshkosh, a United States aviation event attracting 500,000 visitors from more than 60 countries. “It is a combination of exhibitors, demonstrations and air displays. It will incorporate everything aviation, from manufacturing and design to space exploration and pilot training,” Shaun said. More than 70 exhibitors will showcase products and services including luxury aircraft fit outs, World War I and II replicas, new developments in micro lights and aircraft, manufacturers and suppliers, repair and overhaul and pilot training. Guest speakers for NZ Flair 2011 seminars include international aviation specialists Jim McCoy and Glenn Martin, developer of the Martin Jet Pack. Exhibitors will have the chance to pitch their innovations to potential investors at pitch and mingle sessions. The event is also a chance to showcase the aviation cluster’s $2 million state-of-the-art paint facility, being built nearby at Hamilton International Airport.

From bloodmeal to bioplastic

ow-value animal protein is being given new life as a high-value biodegradable plastic with the discovery of a new manufacturing process by University of Waikato scientists. The new process, developed by

Faculty of Science and Engineering senior lecturer Dr Johan Verbeek, takes bloodmeal, a by-product from meat processing, and puts it through a chemical and biological process turning it into a biodegradable plastic.


he Lean Gemba Academy provides the unique opportunity to combine expert training from New Zealand’s leading Lean training organisations with the chance to see how Lean Thinking has been applied within a real business. Participants can experience the culture of Continuous Improvement, witness the results and hear how employees at a New Zealand company make the most of Lean Thinking in everything they do. Each course includes a tailored tour of the operation, and a chance to see how the theory learnt in the classroom is applied in practice. Come and see for yourself how Lean has transformed Stainless Design, with a relentless pursuit of customer focus and a passion to eliminate waste, everywhere, everyday!

How to Lead Change 6th July, Hamilton. Attendees will:

• Understand the basic principles of

a successful Lean journey, how to avoid the pitfalls that can have it fail and the psychology of change.

• Develop the skillset to engage your company and understand why they should go on the journey with you.

• Build confidence by talking to

others on the Lean journey, including a round-table discussion with the CEO of a company at the leading edge of Lean implementation in New Zealand.

Who should attend? All leaders with a desire to understand the fundamental principles of change, and how to lead the Lean journey. The trainer for the course Ian Lines has been helping organisations on their Lean journey for over ten years. In the UK he worked in the automotive industry implementing Lean and taking Leadership Teams on the journey of Lean transformation. Since moving to New Zealand seven years ago he has worked with over 30 organisations, in the service and manufacturing sectors, developing Lean processes and strategies. For more details visit

NZ Manufacturer June 2011


A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and gets to bed at night, and in between he does what he wants to do. – Bob Dylan

Coming to a town near you


f you’ve been wondering about what benefits research and development (R&D) could have to your business, come along to one of the seminars Industrial Research Ltd (IRL) is hosting around the country. IRL, a Crown Research Institute dedicated to supporting New Zealand’s manufacturing and services sector, has a long and successful track record of innovation and technology development. IRL is no stranger to hosting breakfast forums or other showcase events that successfully reach out to business. This time, it is partnering with regional development organisations to put together a series of seminars throughout the country to boost understanding of the benefits of research and development to New Zealand industry.

IRL Planning Manager David Archibald says one of the aims of the seminars is to help businesses access funding to support technology development. “Businesses are encouraged to come along and learn more about how they can leverage support for innovation and R&D that can increase their export potential and international competitiveness,” he says. Approximately 20 events are being organised throughout the country, kicking off with a lunch event on 21 June in Timaru (run in conjunction with the Timaru Chamber of Commerce) followed by another lunch event on 23 June in Dunedin (run in conjunction with the Dunedin Chamber of Commerce). nextSTEP Visit:

HERA welcomes Audsley Jones


he Heavy Engineering Research Association (HERA) is delighted to welcome graduate Structural Engineer Audsley Jones to the HERA Structural Systems team. Audsley is currently completing her Masters degree in Engineering at the University of Auckland, undertaking research in the area of low-cost buckling restrained braces for low-rise buildings in developing and developed countries. Audsley completed her Bachelor of Engineering Honours degree in July 2010 at the University of Auckland majoring in Structural Engineering.


Do you work in New Zealand’s best workplace?


he search has begun for the best organisation to work for in New Zealand as the JRA Best Workplaces Survey 2011 officially kicks off this month. In its 12 years, the survey has become the benchmark for best workplace practices nationwide and is the country’s largest workplace climate/employee engagement survey. Registrations for this year’s survey are already up on the same time in 2010 and JRA managing director John Robertson says he expects total numbers will exceed last year’s record of 245 participating organisations. “It’s encouraging to see the increasing number of organisations who are making steps to build great workplaces and are clearly taking employee engagement seriously. Also its great to see just as many new faces entering so far this year as old ones,” he says.

The survey, which invites employees to give valuable feedback on what their organisation is like as a place to work, takes employees just ten minutes to complete and covers aspects of workplace climate including culture and values, common purpose, communication, learning and development, and reward and recognition . Finalist/winning organisations are recognised and celebrated at a black-tie event in November and featured in a special New Zealand Herald supplement as well as throughout other media. They’ll also enjoy a boost to their employment brands. Organisations from all industry sectors can register now to participate in the survey, which is available between June 1 and August 31. nextSTEP Visit

Demand for graduates increasing


espite gloomy economic predictors, employer demand for university graduates is growing significantly. The number of graduate vacancies on the NZUniCareerHub website to the end of April has doubled compared to the same time last year and nearly 60% more employers were using the website to advertise internships, scholarships and graduate positions. The website, which is available free to students, is run by University Career Advisers of

New Zealand (UCANZ). UCANZ represents Auckland University of Technology, Lincoln University, Massey University, the University of Auckland, the University of Canterbury, the University of Otago and Victoria University of Wellington. More than 900 employers are registered on CareerHub and use the services for participating in campus career expos, employer presentations and advertising to specific student target groups or courses.


NZ Manufacturer June 2011



The trouble with not having a goal is that you can spend your life running up and down the field and never scoring.

– Bill Copeland

Let’s be proud of our companies

s I listen to all the rhetoric about export, export, export, it amazes me that no one stops to think about the large number of industrial importers whose products go to support the efforts of the exporting companies. Whilst there is a hue and cry about the vast amount of consumer product bought into the country and the resulting cost on the nation for importing so much cheap “junk” product from the east, no recognition is made of the people who import the industrial products who, with their inherent product knowledge, support the rest of the NZ infrastructure along with the exporting companies of the nation. The piece of the market I refer to is those companies who either make the “nuts and bolts” or import the same to allow the exporters to produce what they do. I have previously commented that NZ has become a “nation of spare parts”. To this end we have lost most of our volume manufacturers and when we as importers buy for our clients, the quantities we purchase is frequently similar to what the manufacturer overseas might lose in set ups on their production equipment. Companies like ourselves who offer a specialised service, be it electrical, mechanical or any other product typically are run by “baby boomers” who started with a trade training and grew to develop a business bringing on board years of specific knowledge in that trade or industry. There is frequently an attitude that the local agent or supplier is good for providing the technical support, but when it comes to purchasing, then deals can be made with overseas companies who will supply cheaper product, based on huge buying power. Invariably, however, there is little or no technical support.

Government departments, specifically defence have a policy of looking for local support on a technical basis but then place orders direct overseas on FMS (Foreign Military Supply). This is different to Australia where the services buy product from the local Australian agent and fully support their own industries. Why can’t it happen here. The global market has sprung up large catalogue resellers who produce a large catalogue, product is invariably shipped in from overseas and using their global buying power often out price the local distributor. This creates the situation where the locally based distributor of any of these products will reduce the range they are prepared to stock which has the inevitable outcome of reduced turnover and or margin and lessens the number of locally employed people. Like many of these international companies, there is little value to the NZ economy as a whole; money instantly disappears overseas, no profit is recycled through the economy, no local employment, in fact, no NZ based support of any kind. Why then do we support such business when the country is in such dire straits to grow the economy within our own homeland?

NZ has become a “nation of spare parts”. To this end we have lost most of our volume manufacturers.

JULY 2011 ISSUE FEATURES Advertising Booking & Copy • Auckland Manufacturers Deadline – 1Oth/ • South Island Manufacturing 12th July 2011 • Contract Manufacturing • Manufacturing Technology – How to Enhance Productivity For further information contact:

Managing Editor: Doug Green P: 06 870 9029 E:

Sales Manager: Max Farndale P: 06 870 4506 E:

Many customers claim to go overseas because local support is not up to scratch or product is expensive; in fact many have only themselves to blame, as they take the business off shore. The local supplier finds it uneconomical to stock the wider range and as manufacturers increase the minimum purchase quantities, a decision has to be made somewhere to limit stocks, which in turn limits staff numbers and business overall. For the country to prosper we need the various industries, councils, and other bodies around the country to recognise that buying from and supporting NZ based companies will help grow the economy, will provide employment and in general put NZ in a better place. Government departments need to follow the Australian trend and support the economy, rather than bypass local distributors and suppliers. As I peruse the various trade magazines that purport to be representing NZ/Australian industries, it is becoming more and more apparent that these seem to promote primarily the Australian distributor and it is becoming obvious that NZ distributers are choosing not to support a publication that seems to pay lip service to the NZ side of the industry. If the desire by many is for NZ wages and conditions to get closer to equaling that of Australia, this will not occur by buying all our requirements from Australian suppliers and letting them kill off the NZ distributors. Equally, as I watch Australian distributors and companies expanding into NZ, I suggest that due to the costs of opening up here, if they were to spend the same amount in Australia, the rewards must be greater for less cost. This is a cry for NZ’ers to take a greater pride in the business’s already in this country, support it and allow it to grow, to provide a future for our children and don’t be so fast to allow all the profits to disappear to Australia or further afield. Let’s keep the intellect, the engineering skills, and the business skills in this country for the betterment of our economy. The old phrase comes to mind, “use it or lose it”. Ask the question, how much money did Wisconsin Rail leave in NZ, how much does the major on line computer giant invest in manpower and infrastructure in NZ, how many occasions do we see advertisements on the web offering

By Lewis Woodward, managing director, Connection Technologies Ltd, Wellington Lewis Woodward has been in the Connector industry for over 30 years, owned and operated Connection Technologies Ltd for the past 11 years, been involved in a wide range of applications requiring electrical and electronic connectors ranging from telecommunications, OEM PCB manufacturers, Defence and avionics applications and all sorts of industrial areas. overseas sources for products? None of this enhances the NZ economy and whilst I am told that we live in a global market, how much of that global market really benefits our economy by moving the money through the NZ economy. For the companies we do business with but domiciled elsewhere in the world, how much tax do they contribute to the IRD coffers? Let’s be proud of and support the NZ based companies who claim to be 100% NZ owned and operated, lets grow the technical base of our people by giving them a place to work in NZ. Let’s be watchful as to where the profits are reinvested from our enterprises, whilst the likes of Bunnings, but to name one company, who may provide employment for many, we need to query where the profits go and where many of the items they sell come from. We need to encourage government to promote and support the business’s we have and to be conscious that many of the specialist importers of industrial type products are NZ owned, employ New Zealanders, pay tax into the NZ economy; in general not all business’s can be exporters.

NZ Manufacturer Manufacturer May June2011 2011 13 13 NZ

Land developments to expand city fringes


eveloping greater Auckland’s commercial and industrial land potential will require a careful balance of quickly identifying and zoning suitable areas while simultaneously maintaining the rural amenities of lifestyle block land owners, according to one of the city’s senior property experts. Commenting on Auckland Council’s Auckland Unleashed discussion blueprint, Bayleys Real Estate commercial general manager Chris Bayley said that while the region had considerable land capacity to expand, just where exactly that expansion should occur was reliant on several factors. Chris Bayley said those determining factors included access to transport infrastructure, proximity to labour force accommodation, the efficiency of land use, appropriateness to existing businesses zonings, and alternative land-use options. There was also the long-time controversial issue of environmental protection of ‘green belt’ lifestyle blocks. Auckland City’s future plan document highlights that the city will need up to an additional 780 hectares of business land over the next 30-40 years. Mr Bayley said most of the areas suggested for expansion in the Auckland plan were viable, while the rational behind some options was questionable. “Expansion of the current Westgate retail zone across the motorway on the current northern boundary for example makes sense

– replicating the development of Constellation Drive/Albany basin zones on the North Shore, albeit with the Westgate centre being more focused on smaller stand-alone department store outlets,” he said. “There’s an abundance of available land, and infrastructure construction is already well under way. This includes the soon-to-beopened Hobsonville to Greenhithe dual carriageway linking the North Western motorway via a high speed route to the North Shore, thereby allowing access for both people and products. “Similarly with Silverdale. There is considerable greenfield space immediately on both sides of State Highway One to ensure quick motorway access both north and southbound. “Moving further east from Westgate, Whenuapai looks attractive for the construction of a logistics hub if the proposed second airport were to eventuate at the present air force base,” he said. “Should Whenuapai Air Force Base be built into a residential suburb as is also mooted, I would however suggest a buffer of some sort between commercial and industrial use. With a considerable coastal access plain running down to the Upper Waitemata reaches, such a subdivision would lend itself to homes of a higher calibre – and the owners of such properties would not necessarily choose to live directly across the road from a panel-beaters yard or widget manufacturing factory. “I’m somewhat less warm to

the idea of expanding Kumeu to any great extent. This proposal would limit the council’s plan of maintaining rural landholding sizes. People on lifestyle blocks choose to live there for a reason – and the reason is that, on the whole, they are well away from commercial activity.” South of the CBD, the Auckland Plan identifies Drury, Paerata and Glenbrook along the base of the Bombay Hills as potential commercial and industrial expansion zones. Mr Bayley said while Drury and Paerata made logical choices, he was somewhat puzzled by the thought of developing industrial land around Glenbrook. “Paerata benefits from being surrounded by acres and acres of gentle rolling hillside paddocks which could be easily developed. Paerata is also only a short distance from Pukekohe, which is expanding at a phenomenal rate, and offers a northern growth opportunity to compliment the current spread of the town to the south. “Paerata also has a rail line running through it and is a short distance so would therefore make sense as a manufacturing zoned hub where goods can be distributed via rail. And it is a short distance from two major motorway connections,” he said. “Drury is already zoned for industrial usage and is ideally placed for easy motorway access. Development over say a 35-year period, underpinned by ongoing population growth throughout the Manukau and south/eastern suburb

districts, could see a commercial merging with the existing Manukau City retail and office parks.” However, the potential for Glenbrook required further explanation, Chris Bayley said. “The steel mill is the only real industrial plant in that vicinity, and while it would make sense for the construction of heavy industry away from any large population base, New Zealand’s heavy industry plants such as the oil refinery, the aluminium smelter or the pulp and paper mill, are already well established and are capable of taking on board any spare capacity or expansion. Therefore why build at Glenbrook?” Mr Bayley said the council’s Auckland-wide rationale of ‘protecting’ existing industrial zoned land from residential encroachment, while absolutely logical, was in fact contrary to what had been occurring over the past decade. “For years now, fringe residential dwellings have been gaining council consents for conversion into professional services or homebusiness premises, such as medical centres, pre-school facilities, accountancy firms or legal practices. “What were once clearly defined industrial/commercial and residential boundaries have now become grey ‘mixed use’ zones. Section sizes and building structures will, I believe, self-govern the availability of this type of expansion – so it’s unlikely home owners will suddenly find a bulk retail outlet springing up in the neighbouring ‘quarter acre’ property,” he said.


NZ Manufacturer June 2011


The only limits are, as always, those of vision. – James Broughton

Machinery and equipment manufacturers


achinery and equipment manufacturers diverse exporting sector, Machinery and Equipment Manufacturers make up 16% of manufacturing enterprises in New Zealand and 16% of manufacturers in the Auckland region. Businesses in the Auckland are slightly larger on average than those across the rest of NZ. (Stats NZ) This group of manufacturers are, on the whole, not clearly defined, nor is there one cohesive industry body that they belong to. Most, particularly, machinery manufacturers tend to identify with the industries they supply machines and equipment to. On the surface they are predominantly unknown to the man on the street, nor do many have household names or brands as their markets are more commonly other manufacturing businesses. The majority of this group of manufacturers are exporters selling a diverse range of very highly technology products which range from scientific equipment, ophthalmic machinery, optical equipment, medical technical equipment, photographic and imagery equipment, specialised pumps for oil, to gases the dairy industry and sealed food and pharmaceutical compliance processing. Computer technology, electrical equipment, specialised lifting machines, specialised weights and

flow meters gauges, and precision steel cutting and rollforming along with others are also all part of this diverse group. They look like a very disparate group of un-connected companies with the incredible diversities in what they produce and the environments they manufacture in, but they are key drivers within the New Zealand manufacturing sector and the economy as a whole and have some threads of commonality across them all. This group tends to have a high portion of very short run manufacturing to bespoke individualised customer one off solutions. The sales process is slower than other higher volume manufactured goods due to the cost per item being high and the sale being frequently a capital item in the purchasing company. Most clients are scattered across the world making for a high spend on travel for sales, demonstrations, trades shows, client relationships etc which is a significant part of the marketing budget within the companies. The global-wide spread of clients means management in these and other exporting businesses have an additional set of business skills and activities when compared to the manufacturer for the domestic market.

They need to be consistently aware of exchange rate fluctuations, how international banking works; individual client country compliances and import related issues, tariffs, cross border freight requirements. When using a local agent to sell or look after the businesses interests in various countries, the actual

The majority of this group of manufacturers are exporters selling a diverse range of very highly technology products

agreements need to be appropriate under differing legal and cultural business structures across the world. This is the third highest value add per employee across all the manufacturing sectors. The employees are not typically the uneducated factory line workers. They are highly educated engineers, designers, scientists, ICT enablers and materials specialists. Many contribute to the overall skill pool of New Zealand by taking on apprentices in tool and dye making, electrical engineering etc. A high incidence of our research and development activities are driven from this group of manufacturing companies as they consistently look for solutions to problems in finding better materials, better processes, better design and more effective enabling ICT for mechatronic solutions. This group of businesses is important to New Zealand as an exporter group; highly skilled employer groups, a contributor to raising our overall educational standard and often very sophisticated in business systems. We need to get to know them better and promote them more as a very viable high contributing group. nextSTEP Contact Bessie Nicholls, ATEED Tel 09 262 2244 or email: or visit:

Better trained staff improve the bottom line


he Skills4Work Business Improvement Programmes have been widely delivered to over 50 organisations in New Zealand from manufacturing to services in the public and private sectors. The key to the programme’s success is the combination of Lean with an effective cultural change programme. These programmes form the foundations for high performance with outcomes including greater employee engagement, better utilization of skills, cost savings, increase in capacity, the building of a continuous improvement culture and increased capability for the organization to adapt and innovate.

Skills4Work designs and deploys customized Business Improvement Programmes within each business. Each programme is tailored to the ‘way we do things around here’ to ensure both staff and management are motivated and engaged to improve productivity and the quality of working life. There is also available a Maintenance training programme to enhance the ability and effectiveness of maintenance staff.

We all know that maintenance has a large effect on the bottom line and this Skills4Work programme provides education in best practice maintenance and how to apply it to the workplace. This programme assists with:

• Installing a culture of maintenance best practice in

your workplace downtime through effective planning and scheduling • Increases reliability of key plant and machinery • Improving productivity through structured maintenance • Using staff time more effectively.

• Minimising

nextSTEP Visit: Tel: 0800 275 455

NZ Manufacturer June 2011

W W W. I N V E S U R E P R O D U C T I O N S . C O . N Z



NZ Manufacturer June 2011

AUCKLAND MANUFACTURERS Rebuilding Christchurch quickly – and once

Yesterday’s home runs don’t win today’s games. – Babe Ruth


irst you have to see the opportunity. Then you have to come up with something better. See how it goes down with the market. Get into that market, boots and all. And then keep responding to that market’s needs – and when you are really on top of your game, challenge that market to use what you’ve invented to go even higher; and keep at it. That in essence is the 34-year story of Howick Engineering, “the designers and manufacturers of the best steel-framing machines in the world”. Obviously, you need to get good people around you and make it worth their while to stick with you too. And in the phase they are in now, you have to get about the world and show-off what you’ve got and done – so far. Or you can run a steel-frame conference on innovation, and invite the world to come to Auckland, and impress them. You also have to remember that this is an industry which is obsessed with design and quality manufacture.

That’s what the Coubrays did very successfully last year and are planning to do in 2012. Their order books from the last one tell them it will be worth repeating. Last time they roped in a number of local heavyweights like Sir Kenneth Stevens, chairman of the company he founded, Glidepath, as well as Chairman of Export New Zealand, who earns praise locally for ensuring the bulk of materials used in Glidepath are generated or made within New Zealand, including the flat steel plate. (Overseas customers like that because New Zealand is seen as a stable and secure market, so deliveries are likely to be on-time. Chris Kay, the man responsible for developing and marketing New Zealand Steel’s AXXIS® Steel for Framing brand, which, according to Bruce Coubray, has been instrumental in growing the steel framing category in New Zealand, was another key speaker. Kay pointed out AXXIS steel was made with consideration for the environment -- manufactured here from local iron-sand and a

Howick Engineering GM Wayne Rowe with one of the “best steel-frame cutting machines”

By Kevin Kevany

Howick Engineering founder Bruce Coubray is a stickler for design and quality

component of recycled steel. Steelframing requires no additional preservative chemicals and as it’s pre-manufactured there’s minimal wastage, reducing the environmental impact of waste going to landfill. He resisted saying that you only build a steel-framed house once – i.e. if it leaks it won’t rot: Howick has had a galvanised steel frame for a small house standing unclad and totally exposed to the elements, in their car park, for nearly a decade; and it’s as good as the day it was made. Although the recognition AXXIS has received for its non-allergenic properties from the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation of New Zealand as a “Sensitive Choice”, probably says even more. As Bruce Coubray notes: “They used to make car chasses and airplane fuselages out of wood until something better came along. It was the end of ‘near enough is good enough’ for that industry, and will soon be for NZ houses too.” GM Wayne Rowe adds: “Some companies in the US have recruited workers from the automotive industry to build their homes, because they were more accustomed to precision and accuracy in their work.” Another trump card they pulled out of the local hat for the Innovation

Could innovation and offsite modular solid construction be the answer?

Conference was PREFABNZ’s Pam Bell who believes “there is a clear need for a radical paradigm shift to improve building quality in a sustainable way by decreasing defects, while also decreasing costs and timeframes.” PREFABNZ is the hub for prebuilt construction in New Zealand a self-sustaining non-profit incorporated society representing the interests of a wide range of materials and stakeholders in the design and construction sector. And the man who needed no introduction in the steel-framing world; Professor Charles Clifton, the University of Auckland’s associate professor of engineering. Clifton has been at the forefront of the evolution of steel use in the country, including fire performance (of particular interest to Australians and Californians, where local experience shows that steel-framing is preferable in fires), composite materials to determine span capabilities. His knowledge around thermal breaks and fire performance is said to be second-to-none. In addition, he is a Fellow of the Institute of Professional Engineers and the New Zealand Society for Earthquake Engineering. He has been a key participant in research carried out in Australia to test a steelframed house in a simulated quake at the strength of the most severe of the Christchurch earthquakes. The house withstood the test with minimal impact. Young Nick Coubray was bought back from the UK where he runs Howick’s operation, serving Europe. Having been there since 2005, he has seen that market explode, working closely with several of the big companies who are developing new systems, as well as developing links with the software companies based in Europe.

NZ Manufacturer June 2011

To win without risk is to triumph without glory. – Pierre Corneille

He was able to tell them about UNITE Modular Solutions (UMS), a Howick Engineering customer, which has recently also been profiled in the Eco Building Magazine in the UK, as well as the Scottish firm RB Farquhar, which has been in the game for some 20 years. Today RB Farquhar turns out 1,000 prefabricated, robust steel, concrete and tile bathroom units a month for luxury hotels across the UK and Europe. And he could demonstrate the days of creaky and noisy timber floors would soon be over as steel and concrete flooring no longer have to concede on weight, and add to the overall stability and integrity of a structure. UMS uses state-of-the art, offsite manufacturing technology, to From page 1 In Britain now, companies are building up to 11 storeys in lightgauge steel – thanks to our unique end-bearing stud -- and, of course, the arrival of the offsite built, ‘plug-andplay’ bathroom and kitchen ‘pods’ for hospitals, student residences, military barracks etcetera around the world, means our innovative and technology-based approach is constantly relied on.” The world’s best? What do you reckon? As you listen to Coubray and GM Wayne Rowe – he started here as an apprentice 26 years ago—outlining the strategy they have implemented over the years, they clearly haven’t put a foot wrong: starting with the establishment of Rollforming Services Ltd; developing enviable expertise and an understanding



design, manufacture and construct fully-fitted, “volumetric modular units” to form permanent, multistorey buildings – up to 11, to date -for student accommodation, hotels, residential, social and affordable housing and military barracks. Modern methods of construction, utilise light steel-framing combined with innovative design and engineering techniques to provide factory-manufactured, self-supporting buildings, incorporating all living and working accommodation, service areas, and common areas, without the requirement for additional support structures. This method is ideal for a rainy climate. The volumetric modules are delivered dry, to site, factory-fitted to the requisite standard with beds,

stairs, kitchens, bathrooms, sanitary ware, furniture, floor and wall finishes together with all mechanical and electric services, as specified by their customers, and make for fast and efficient on-site installation. The success of off-site volumetric modular build is reliant on quality, flexibility and choice of room content and finishes. To this end UMS’s design, manufacture and construction philosophy is centred on the idea of “creating buildings and not producing boxes”. Typical lead times are a month for first designs and approval by the client, with a further month to the first modules being completed. To give Kiwis an idea of the size of a facility to do all of this; UMS has a 16-acre, 185,000 sq. ft. manufacturing facility which is

one of the most sophisticated and efficient in Europe. It has a maximum capacity of approximately 10,000 units per year. Typically a fullyfitted module currently comes off the end of the manufacturing line every 55 minutes. Established in 2002, today they employ 130 designers, technicians, surveyors and specialist manufacturing staff, including CAD/CAM technicians and process engineers. As you’d expect, they meet all the ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 requirements, is a Quality Assured Business, committed to reducing environmental impacts. Interestingly, the UMS volumetric modular system is specifically designed to yield a minimum building design life of 60 years.

Howick Engineering leads the steel-frame world of “who does what best in their industry”(enabling them to subcontract successfully to local firms)”; good working relationships with high-tech componentry suppliers and software providers – they cleverly decided not to lock customers into proprietary software systems, but to opt for an open source (CSV) control system; a substantial stake in Kiwi Graeme Stubbing’s innovative steel and concrete, Speedfloor, which developed the rollformed steel joist about the time Howick Engineering became focused solely on machinery manufacture. “Our floor cassette machine allows the efficient production of the total componentry needed for a whole floor assembly from one machine, without any changeovers. Large swaged service-holes enable

the fitting of services on-site, or in pre-manufacture, which is favoured overseas in extreme conditions,” Rowe says. “The tab connection for joist-tobearer gives the manufacturer the option to assemble the floor either on-site or in a factory.” There’s also a Howick-created double-ended rivet which provides superior truss connections for the output of the company’s H400 Truss Machine, a sophisticated rollforming mill which produces completed selfjigging truss components, ready for assembly, thereby eliminating the previous need to manually cut the components to size. “Each component is labelled to match the assembly drawings, again providing the option for assembly offsite or packaged into kit for on-

site assembly.” Coubray again: “Today, a steelframed house in New Zealand is very competitive. And that’s before the next timber price increase,” he smiles. “We have supplied machines into more than 45 countries through our growing distribution network and from our bases here and in the UK. Our newest markets include Russia – a major growth centre; new distributors in Brazil and India and a breakthrough into the Middle East. I hope it won’t be long before New Zealand becomes a much bigger market for us too.” That dream has probably just taken another step forward with Howick Engineering recently winning the Metals Industry’s 2011 Innovation Award.

Howick design and manufacture a complete range of CNC controlled

rollforming machinery to produce products for Light Gauge Steel construction all over the world. Profiles include Steel Framing, Walls, Trusses and Floor Joists. Applications include Residential and Commercial buildings, Transportable Homes, Bathroom and Kitchen pods, Worker accomodation and Multi level developments. With over 30 years experience and a reputation for innovation Howick has the machinery solution for you.

TEL: 09 534 5569


NZ Manufacturer June 2011


You must either modify your dreams or magnify your skills.

– Jim Rohn

Auckland food industry to “cluster” around new facility


early 200 of the big names in the national and Auckland food industry turned out at the Villa Maria Conference Centre in early June to get a taste of what was to come with the launch of an $8-million Food Innovation Centre in Manukau, Auckland, the first facility to be part of the national food innovation network and a key piece of the “Auckland Food Bowl” project. The Manukau Food Innovation Centre (MFIC) will be a 2000 sqm export certified, purpose-built plant due to open in September to support food manufacturers to develop and test products for commercialisation, specifically for the fast-moving consumer goods market. The MFIC is located at Auckland Airport, the country’s primary export hub, and is expected, over time, to From page 1

attract and develop into a cluster for associated food businesses. Indeed, “cluster” was the buzz-word of the evening’s events. The event sponsored by Westpac Bank featured a keynote address by food industry legend, Tony Nowell, who outlined the challenges and opportunities facing the food industry and the contribution the Verissimo Drive centre would provide to food manufacturers. The MFIC will be the first publicly available facility of its kind in New Zealand and will help to address critical gaps in the food product development pipeline. It is also expected to provide a major boost to the economy, which will in turn benefit the wider community. Already responsible for over half of New Zealand’s export earnings, the food and beverage industries

have been identified a critical sector to be stimulated to accelerate the growth of high-value exports based upon kiwi innovation and research. The national food innovation network will have four regional hubs, this one at Manukau, Waikato, Palmerston North, and Canterbury. The network will be overseen by a New Zealand Food Innovation Network Ltd. “Within the food sector, there is a wide gap between those companies who want to commercialise products and the resources available to enable that commercialisation to take place. This gap constrains the economic and development activity of those companies and of New Zealand in general. “This will basically enable you to hire a full range of facilities for a short time, while you do trial commercial

runs of new products you have tested in your own laboratories and assess their market-readiness and suitability for thousands of dollars – rather than millions. “We expect this and other facilities to come, all around the country, to be well-used and make a significant contribution by adding value to those commodities and products which we have done so well with to-date, and boosting New Zealand up to the food production levels currently being achieved by a country like Denmark, which sits at the top of the list right now,” said Nowell, who represented the Auckland Council CCO on the night, but is also the immediate past Chair of the New Zealand Food and Grocery Council; Chair Continues page 21

It’s a bright future for Brightwater in engineering, manufacturing and services

Like its founder, this is a gritty engineering Group. A glance at its website or one of its corporate brochures, highlights rugged equipment like rippers, yarders, shredders, grinders, screening & crushing, cable loggers, “1,000 tonnes an hour” statements and the like. Brightwater Manufacturing recently shipped a, 140-tonne TC 1885 specialist mobile crushing machine – the product of 18-months of work at its Christchurch specialist manufacturing facility; the largest of its kind in the world; and capable of that “1,000 tonnes an hour” – to an Australian contracting company. When it comes to EPC projects, the coal processing plant for Solid Energy’s Stockton mine is the biggest “Turn Key” project so far for the Brightwater Engineering team. All good news for those clients looking to have design, engineering, manufacturing, and service capability locally available to create equipment, processing plants and expertise to maintain the machinery New Zealand will need to quarry and mine its way to economic success. Mechanical, electrical, design and project management are all catered for by in-house capabilities based within Nelson, Christchurch, Auckland, Melbourne and Perth operations. According to industry sources, Brightwater is very fortunate to have one of the more industry savvy and commercially experienced Boards in Australasia, supported by a strong, innovative management team committed to professional delivery. That management team was recently strengthened with the

appointment of David McGregor. David has extensive experience in Business Development and Management – a role he now fills for Brightwater -- having previously been the Australasian GM for RCR Energy Systems. He has broad experience in the energy sector – some 29 years in Australia and New Zealand -- as well as a strong grasp of Brightwaters other core business areas, providing a strong base to ensure the Groups growth is driven and coordinated in a planned and strategic fashion. McGregor says that whilst Brightwater continues to grow its operations throughout Australasia, significant efforts are being made to extending the bespoke tailoring of large machinery into standardised lines as the company pushes on into North America, Europe and later, South America. He believes Brightwaters track record for supplying “proudly-New Zealand innovation”; “pushing the boundaries”; and the “Kiwi can-do” attitude, as well as its commitment to “NZ Inc”, will prove highly attractive in the local and international mining, energy, wood processing, forestry and minerals sectors, which, when they aren’t all going gang-busters at the same time, also provide a good balance of opportunities and income flow for Brightwater across the board, whatever the state of the financial markets may be. Brightwater can provide many impressive references to those new markets and sectors it is targeting, with equipment and projects having being delivered to; Nelson Pine Industries Ltd, Solid Energy NZ,

The Cone Crusher is built in Christchurch by Brightwater’s Manufacturing division

NZ Steel, Holcim, Barro Group, Laminex, Oceania to name a few. If you have the feeling that Brightwater might be one of those companies that gets swept up in its own public relations and image, think again. In recent months, following the Pike River tragedy (Brightwater built its coal processing plant and train loading facility) and the Christchurch earthquakes, it hasn’t turned its back on them and faced outwards to other options. No, it’s acquired Greymouthbased engineering company, Gray Brothers, recently announced a new, state of the art, purpose-built workshop facility in Westport to be completed by the end of this year. These operations demonstrate the Brightwater commitment to their customers and further strengthens Brightwaters presence and capability on the West Coast Safe work practices is a high across all divisions priority demonstrated by an outstanding safety record – a feature which always comes to the fore in companies which go on to greater things.

They are also a sponsor of the Brightwater Food and Wine Festival in Nelson each year, a symbol of their commitment to the local community and staff which gave it life and recognition enabling the company to become a significant force in the top of the South Island’s economic growth. Another hint of what one of Brightwater secrets of their success is, according to customers: its communication – regular and open communication, which McGregor believes “gives peace of mind that work will be completed on time, on budget and that the project is on track”. “Good communication also means that our clients are aware of any potential problems or deviations, which may arise during any phase of the project. This means that there are no surprises. And we are dedicated to making each project simple, and we personalise our service to get the best result possible for all our clients,” he adds. Clearly a winning formula, backed by tonnes of steel, technology, engineering and innovation.

NZ Manufacturer June 2011

Long-range planning works best in the short term. – Doug Evelyn



PowerMILL takes NRE to the forefront of race-car engineering


rogramming its five-axis machining centres with Delcam’s PowerMILL CAM software has taken Noonan Race Engineering (NRE) in Queensland to the forefront of race-car engineering in Australia and overseas. Without the software and its broad range of machining strategies, it would be so much more difficult for NRE to produce the sort of racespecification engines and specialised components that the company is becoming famous for developing. PowerMILL enables NRE to translate its outstanding designs into products that can be marketed and sold worldwide. “To NRE, CNC machining is not just a form of engineering, it is pure art,” said Jamie Noonan, one of the founding partners at the company. “Our customers look at our products and are amazed at how the toolpaths flow and add character to the product.” That’s no accident as the company uses the inbuilt versatility of the software to ‘tweak’ things and add extra dimensions to their machining. “With PowerMILL, we have the ability to control the toolpaths to a very high degree, creating not only a proven performance product but also a stunning world-class finished result,” added Mr. Noonan. “The porting strategies have also enabled us to bring another key area of our products in-house.” PowerMILL undertakes an automatic division of the port machining process between areas

that can be reached using three-axis techniques, and those that require positional or continuous five-axis operation. With most machine tools, using three-axis or positional five-axis cutting offers greater rigidity and so allows more accurate machining, at higher speeds, with less vibration of the cutter. However, most engine ports require continuous five-axis machining for part of their manufacture. PowerMILL automatically optimises the overall machining sequence so that as much material as possible is removed with three-axis and positional five-axis operation, and that continuous five-axis machining is only used where necessary. This reduces the overall machining time, while maintaining the required level of surface finish. The sequence uses a spiral motion for the roughing cuts but gives the operator a choice between using a spiral or a plunging approach for the finish machining. Using a spiral approach produces cusps across the flow of gas and so increases turbulence, while using the plunging technique gives cusps parallel to the flow direction and speeds the passage of the gas mixture through the port. PowerMILL also divides the CAD model automatically to create the surfaces that will be machined from either end of the port. The user can specify the length of the overlap between the two sets of toolpaths to ensure a smooth transition between the two areas.

Software improves productivity

Such detailed control is not possible in many other programs, especially for five-axis machining, or may be very time consuming. Time is a luxury when developing race engines and associated products. There’s always another race just around the corner and teams demand rapid delivery, as well as more power and reliability. NRE supplies engineered race products to a number of motorsport sectors – drag racing, circuit racing, speedway, boat racing and rallying. As with any supplier to this industry, they are continually pushing the boundaries to deliver more power without sacrificing reliability. The company has received approval from the National Hot Rod Association – the premier US governing body for championship drag racing in North America – for competitors to use the NRE X1 aluminium Billet Hemi Top Alcohol cylinder head, based on a big-block Chrysler engine in the ‘Blown Alcohol’ classes. NRE is the only overseas supplier to receive this

stamp of approval from the NHRA. In Australia, NRE has supplied engines and engineering expertise to many V8 Supercar teams, perhaps the most well known are Brad Jones Racing and Paul Morris Motorsports. The company’s facilities contain all the equipment needed to design, manufacture and test the race products they develop, including state-of-the-art, five-axis machines. “The ability to work with simple 2D toolpaths all the way through to very complex five-axis surface machining, while maintaining simple-to-use forms, is of great benefit,” added Andrew Collins, joint business partner and head of the machining area at NRE. “In a lot of cases, suppliers of CAD packages don’t complement the CAM package. With PowerMILL and PowerSHAPE design software, you are getting two genuine heavy hitters in their own right, which are really made for each other.” nextSTEP Contact: Chris Whittington, Camplex NZ Ltd Tel 06 836 7487

FactoryTalk Batch software provides intelligent processing capabilities


pplication development capabilities of FactoryTalk Batch software have been expanded to help users design and run batch applications more rapidly. The software features new intelligent recipe capabilities, secure operator overrides, expanded data collection and reporting and improved material management capabilities. Seamlessly integrated with the scalable PlantPAx Process Automation System, the FactoryTalk Batch software provides solutions ranging from small, basic sequencing to large, complex batch applications. The need for greater agility and responsiveness is driving manufacturers away from customengineered batch software applications to standardised, open technology. FactoryTalk Batch

software, based on ISA-88 standards, is designed to meet that demand, while providing batch operators with more control during runtime.

New features include:

Intelligent Recipe Features – When defining a product, recipe authors can now reference systemwide data, such as previous ingredient feed-actuals or material properties, to simplify recipe development. The use of expressions based on this historical data rather than entering specific defined values allows the system to adjust run-time set points to accommodate variable batch activity. Improved Run-time User Control – Run-time user control has been improved by giving operators with security clearance the ability to move a batch forward in the process.

In the past, procedural flexibility had to be designed into the system. With the latest version of the FactoryTalk Batch software, operators have more control to advance a batch based on real-time conditions — without time-intensive system engineering. Expanded Data Collection and Reporting – This release continues to expand the system data logged into the electronic batch record. This includes information on shared equipment such as pumps and other processing equipment, to help manufacturers further meet trackand-trace compliance requirements. Rockwell Automation is also adding context to data within the batch system. System designers can now associate a material set point with the actual amount delivered — without relying on naming

conventions or other complex association methods. The simplified data analysis enables more sophisticated, global reporting. Improved Material Management Capability – FactoryTalk Batch Material Manager brings material management to batch execution systems, allowing more effective management of materials and recipes. The latest version of the software helps increase flexibility by allowing late binding to material inventory. This is critical for batch applications where some materials are in transit or not available at the start. In the past, batch applications required custom engineering to accommodate these situations. FactoryTalk Batch version 11 is now shipping as part of the PlantPAx Process Automation System.


NZ Manufacturer June 2011


Success is often achieved by those who don’t know that failure is inevitable.

– Coco Chanel

Oasis - a lean machine with help from Epicor ERP


asis Engineering (Oasis) operating from Tauranga, is a precision engineering production facility specialising in the manufacture of products for the Oil and Gas, Pharmaceutical, Food Service and Hygiene Industries. Key markets for the company are in Australia, Europe, USA, Canada, South America and Asia. It has been a user of Epicor ERP since April 2004.

The Challenge

As a specialist engineer to order business, Oasis was hard hit by the effects of the global financial crisis. During March of 2009, the order volume dropped off dramatically. Not only were orders rare but Oasis’ competitors were being forced to quit their inventories at whatever price they could get for them. Not one to waste a crisis, the team took the opportunity of the economic downturn to invest in research and development along with a LEAN implementation project. “We decided to implement a LEAN initiative to improve the processes not only of manufacturing but across the entire business. This process took approximately one year to implement, much less than the 2 to 3 years that it can take. A big investment in person-hours allowed this to happen in such a short time frame,” said Kevin Flint, Oasis’ General Manager. “We are now seeing a dramatic upsurge in orders and requests for quotations. This situation is welcome but we are now facing problems with sourcing additional staff. We have to be very careful that when we accept orders, we will meet our order demand,” said Kevin. The market situation is highly competitive but Oasis is winning from the competition because it can respond much quicker to demand and can produce smaller runs, more efficiently. Margins are now smaller so this puts even more emphasis on efficient production and cost reduction. Key to Oasis’ lean initiative is the

Looking Ahead

Kanban inventory system, which has significantly reduced inventory levels. The effort in research and development during the quiet time has allowed Oasis to develop many new product concepts which are now ready for launch. Customers are asking for rapid turnaround of product so this investment is allowing Oasis to meet this demand.

The Solution

Oasis looked to the Epicor ERP system as a part of maintaining a competitive edge. They wanted to have full visibility of costs. They were able to tailor the Epicor ERP system to work with a LEAN implementation. Being a make-to-order company Kanban jobs are used in the system to help improve response to customer demand and reduce non-value adding processes. The inventory for these products uses Kanban triggers for replenishment. With agreements with suppliers to keep stock at Kanban replenishment quantities, lead times for raw material are kept to a minimum. Scheduling uses Theory of Constraints (TOC) methodology to determine throughput through the constrained resource. They track the constraining resource and release jobs at the rate the resource can produce. Oasis knows exactly when products can be delivered. “We have put a lot of effort into eliminating unnecessary processes and waste. We provide our customers and suppliers with the right information every time so there are no mistakes We also have an Opportunity for Improvement process that can be initiated by

anyone for any part of the business. We change our systems and processes as we see fit,” said Kevin.

An Oasis of benefits

When asked for the key to a successful ERP/LEAN implementation, Kevin commented, “the key is getting the people onboard. It is a longterm process. It can take 3 years or more. Using the system is crucial to a successful implementation. Previously some people would say Epicor ERP is wrong. Once people understood that it is the process, not the software that is wrong, that’s when people come onboard and makes things work,” said Kevin.

Next for Oasis is, without doubt, more improvements. Kaizan projects are run every six weeks to work through different areas of the business in turn. For Epicor ERP, the next scheduled improvement will be Advanced Print Manager - handling documents electronically and CRM for sales tracking and marketing. New products are also in the pipeline backed up by processes in place ready to ramp up production. Oasis plans to grow the business as a specialist R & D manufacturer by focusing on final assembly, quality assurance and traceability. An example of the results from investment in R&D is the improvement in performance of their bespoke bus CNG filler. A normal filler would typically take 4 hours to complete the filling operation. With Oasis’ new design, this operation is now accomplished in 10 minutes. A fantastic improvement with clear benefits to the user.

Grant helps companies get ahead


n Auckland Manufacturer has seen a 20% improvement in production cycle times through a grant assisted performance programme. Part funded by ATEED and delivered by the INTENT Group, the Business Performance Accelerator programme (BPA) has really delivered for participating

companies, and a case study can be found on page 21 of this month’s NZ Manufacturer. The next intake for the BPA is late July 2011, and ATEED funding expires on 30th June 2011. Read the case study for more information and contact details on page 21.


First wirelessly powered wind turbine


roxi-Ring 480, a contactless slip ring, provides wireless power and data to pitch control systems that drive blades in wind turbines. The Proxi-Ring 480 makes wind energy generation more cost-effective by increasing uptime and reliability and eliminating costs of maintaining and replacing mechanical slip rings. The contactless slip ring has been

working flawlessly since installation in a hydraulic wind turbine in Spain eight months ago. It replaced a mechanical slip ring which was causing problems several times a week and this frequency was increasing as the turbine aged. These faults are very hard to diagnose due to their intermittent nature and as turbines are stationary when tested.

NZ Manufacturer June 2011

A stumble may prevent a fall. – English Proverb




Mitsui embraces LanzaTech’s clean energy technology

lean energy technology company LanzaTech has signed a memorandum of understanding with Mitsui Global Strategic Studies Institute (MGSSI), part of Mitsui and Co. Ltd (“Mitsui” head office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo).

LanzaTech Chief Executive Dr Jennifer Holmgren says MGSSI will introduce LanzaTech’s proprietary gas fermentation technology throughout Mitsui. LanzaTech will concurrently execute a MOU with Mitsui & Co Plant Systems Ltd

Programme excellent for Transformers


NTENT Group’s Business Performance Accelerator (BPA) programme was chosen by Process Improvement at ETEL Transformers. Stuart Cumming, whose role is to promote Lean manufacturing processes and continuous improvement within ETEL Transformers, had previously worked with INTENT on another project and had been impressed with the understanding of Lean. Furthermore, the content of the BPA offered a great opportunity to help spread the principles of Lean manufacturing and continuous improvement within ETEL. Stuart was very keen to get a real mix of people on the BPA to spread understanding and integrate teams. ETEL has attended two BPA training cycles and attendees have been taken from a range of functions including sales, purchasing, quality management, production managers, supervisors and senior management. At ETEL the BPA has played a very important role in some excellent business improvements achieved over the last 12 months. This includes reducing the production cycle time from 16 days to 13. Waste has been reduced across the site and stocktaking improved. ETEL has

(MPS) - Mitsui’s engineered plants business group. MGSSI and MPS will play a strategic role leveraging Mitsui’s global position in a variety of industrial sectors, identifying value added opportunities for the application of LanzaTech’s process. The commercial deployment of LanzaTech’s technology will be accelerated by utilising Mitsui’s strong portfolio of capabilities in engineering, project development, financing and product off take contracts. LanzaTech uses non food renewable resources to produce fuel grade ethanol and key chemical building blocks used to make

polymers, plastics and hydrocarbon fuels, including drop in jet fuel. Dr Holmgren says her team is delighted and honoured to have Mitsui as its global business partner: “Mitsui has both an outstanding history and a progressive vision for the future. With a comprehensive strategy on energy and the environment and a track record of being a catalyst to investments across a range of industries, Mitsui will enable LanzaTech to globally deploy low carbon industrial solutions to meet the changing needs of the times. Footnote Mitsui’s revenues are around 50% of NZ’s real GDP.

From page 18

Auckland food industry to “cluster” around new facility

Stuart Cumming

made some great financial savings as a result. Stuart says “the Business Performance Accelerator programme has been excellent for ETEL Transformers. We have achieved significant cost savings and have people across the business with a much better understanding of Lean manufacturing and continuous improvement is invaluable. “Every business needs to examine what it does on a regular basis and look for ways to do it better. I would recommend the BPA programme as an excellent way to develop a culture of continuous improvement.” nextSTEP Contact: Tel: 09 820 6110

of the New Zealand Packaging Accord Governing Board and the ASEAN New Zealand Combined Business Council; Co-Chair of the Government’s Food and Beverage Task Force and a former boss of Zespri and Griffin Foods. The national food innovation network is a joint initiative involving the Ministry of Economic Development, industry, research, education and local economic development agencies, including ATEED. Nowell paid tribute to the work and commitment of David Anstice, Sector Specialist - Food & Beverage ATEED and colleague, Bessie Nicholls, Sector Specialist – Manufacturing, ATEED in getting the project off the ground.

Manukau has a catchment of over 1,000 food companies who can use the facility, plus a wider base of potential users from other regions of New Zealand, many of whom are expected to participate in the collaborative New Zealand Food Innovation Network. The new, eagerly-awaited airport cluster facility will offer facilities which include: • Extrusion and milling/blending • UHT/ beverage • General purpose (Winger Process facility) • High-pressure pasteurisation • Freeze drying • Microwave thawing and a • Production kitchen • 24 hours a day, seven days a week operation.

TEL: 04 566 5345 • FAX: 04 566 5347


NZ Manufacturer June 2011


Excellent firms don’t believe in excellence - only in constant improvement and constant change.

Lean manufacturing – Have you made a profit today?


his is not a trick question for manufacturers as the substantial majority of small to medium sized jobbing manufacturers that I speak with on a daily basis, namely: furniture manufacturers; kitchen manufacturers; shop fitters; timber joiners; window and door manufacturers and the like throughout the country, do not know whether they have made a profit on a daily basis. To answer the question for you the only way you can know whether you have made profit on a daily basis is to achieve the following: 1 Have a current and accurate overhead cost per productive staff member per hour 2 Have accurate budgeted labour times costed into your quotations or pricelist 3 Not exceed your total daily Downtime hours. [If you have 10 factory staff your budgeted daily Downtime, which is allowed for on your overhead cost calculation, might be for example 10 hours Downtime daily or 50 hours Downtime weekly. You need to ensure that your budgeted Downtime hours are not exceeded daily and weekly] 4 Complete all your manufacturing jobs within your budgeted times Common mistakes manufacturers make – which means that they do NOT know whether they have made a profit in their businesses on a daily basis are outlined as follows. I suggest that you use a pen to rate your company performance next to each of

the eight points below - ‘We do very well’, ‘We do reasonably well’, or ‘We do poorly or not at all” 1 Lack of any current (ie 2011) and accurate overhead cost calculation to know the true cost per productive staff member per hour to run the factory [on average, most Australian small to medium sized jobbing manufacturers range from around $60 to $80 per productive staff member per hour overhead cost. Some manufacturers are higher than $80 per hour when any or all of the following apply; rent cost is high, the ratio of non productive to productive staff numbers is high or a lot of expensive machinery means annual depreciation cost is high] 2 Office staff and management staff numbers and salaries, which are generally treated as an overhead cost, have changed significantly from the last time an overhead cost calculation was carried out in the business [if at all an overhead calculation was carried] 3 Office staff and management working unproductively by not completing their pre production jobs on budgeted times. Acknowledging that most manufacturers do not have budgeted times for pre production jobs (ie pre production jobs include for example designing, programming and materials ordering [although this is changing and progressive manufacturers are both budgeting their labour times for their pre production processes on each job and also time tracking actual times on those same jobs. This is making a substantial improvement to office productivity, cost savings and profitability]). 4 Little idea of total actual Downtime

hours daily and weekly 5 No budgeted labour time per stage of Manufacturing jobs 6 Job costing (ie back costing) does not occur in the business or occurs infrequently. This means that mistakes in costing budgeted labour times in quotations or pricelists go unnoticed and are likely repeating themselves daily. So budgeted labour times in quotations and pricelists are generally inaccurate 7 No time cards that factory staff fill out to confirm what jobs and times they worked on and completed throughout the day. Or time cards that are filled in by factory staff at day end, or week end, so times recorded on all jobs are highly inaccurate [such ‘manual’ time cards are commonly referred to in the industry as ‘lie sheets’, ‘cheat sheets’ or ‘crime sheets’.] 8 No or inadequate assessment by management of staff and factory productivity reports to ensure that budgeted labour times on jobs are achieved daily and not exceeded The solution to resolve all these eight issues outlined above is to put a few 2nd hand PCs on your factory floor yourself (it will cost you approximately $1,000) and invest in labour management software (which will take you a week to put in and learn). Labour management software tracks all your actual times on all Downtime jobs and Manufacturing jobs and compares them to your budgeted times. Labour management software can be implemented in your business in one day and working well and achieving significant gains in your business within five days. Labour management software costs $11,000 for most factories and full

return can be achieved in less than two months. Suppliers of Empower labour management guarantee both: 1 Successful implementation of software in your business 2 And significant factory productivity gains in your business Empower Software guarantee successful implementation and significant productivity gains because; 1) they have been doing this for ten years and 2) they have implemented time tracking software at over one hundred and twenty manufacturers to date. For your interest the least increase that has been achieved on one manufacturing site, in ten years across one hundred and twenty manufacturers, is a 15% factory productivity increase - which for this particular client’s original investment of $11,000 the annual return was $140,000 per year saving in wage cost alone. I suggest that you go to www. now for a short time and type in empower software time tracking and you listen up to fifteen or so four to five minute short videos of manufacturers talking about how labour management software has transformed their factory productivity and profitability.

demonstration track to become a useful pilot line. How the SkyCabs system works was explained in detail. Comparisons were made on how Skycabs with an estimated construction cost of $15 million per km fares to the latest US$54 million per km light rail line committed to in Minneapolis, and to the ULTra PRT at Heathrow. The potential offered to solving with huge cost savings New Zealand transport issues was also outlined. The SkyCabs developers also outlined business model options

allow recognition for industry contributions to the project and how this represents a pathway of a NZ Inc approach to climbing out of our economic woes with high value, innovative and IP based niche market product development largely for export markets. Within this project are plenty of opportunities in exporting knowhow, processes, components, assemblies or even whole turn-key projects. nextSTEP Contact Hugh Chapman at Skycabs .

Green NZ innovation in global transport market


he New Zealand inventors and developers of SkyCabs would like New Zealand to capitalise on a unique design of clean green elevated passenger transport beating legacy engineered transport modes. The SkyCabs design received a world-wide PCT clearance and is secured with NZ Patent, Trademark and Copyright and has been extensively patented and trademarked in US, Europe, Asia and Australia. Its high IP value lies in the patented principle of being able to run high volume and demand driven two-way traffic with very light weight cabs from a single rail beam dramatically reducing construction cost, land demand and visual impact. There are huge opportunities to carve a niche or invest in an annual worldwide $17-50 billion passenger transport market. As this system is truly a rapid

passenger transport system for busy urban use, shifting large numbers of passengers, the market for this system in existing built up cities is global and also includes applications in private investments such as theme parks or airport developments. Therefore this highvalue congestion and pollutionreducing patent has multi-million dollar export opportunities for NZ offering companies involved in engineering design or modular-type manufacturing and construction, IT solutions or supplying components a unique future focused business opportunity. In June, as part of the HERA’s business opportunities development program, a workshop was held with interested NZ companies about industry input into the building of a demonstration track planned for this once-in-a-decade invention on a University of Auckland site. There will be an opportunity to extend the

– Tom Peters

by Sean O’Sullivan

NZ Manufacturer June 2011

Change before you have to. – Jack Welch

Barrie Carruthers


Software helps with compliance

Barrie Curruthers is managing director of Precision Microcircuits Ltd, Barrie has 50 years manufacturing experience and he shares with us why he does what he does. What do you do? I am currently involved in several company operations. Electronics and farming is a mix I enjoy mostly, one dramatically different from the other. Electronics produces the challenges, the demands, and in many respects the satisfactions, that for me are the spice of life. Farming gets me outdoors in a clean, relaxing and dramatically contrasting way away from the pressures of commerce. Improving a block of land allows endless scope for creativity and to really leave your mark. You can look behind you and see where you have been. Why do you do what you do? Mostly for the love of it, what better reason is there? ‘Work’ has a ring of drudgery about it. For me what I do is mostly enjoyable, I enjoy the challenges, and mostly I enjoy the achievements.  I enjoy working with young creative people. At this point in my career I seem to be functioning more as a sounding board, and cross fertilizing ideas. It is not really work, it is still an adventure. I enjoy what I’m doing so why do anything else?

How is business in New Zealand for your company? Manufacturing here in New Zealand, as elsewhere in this day and age, has inevitably been affected by the current financial meltdown and associated recessions which have affected businesses to some degree across the board. Much of our

product is ultimately exported into the American market, and America is still in a very difficult situation. I believe this has sharpened our perception of where we stand in the marketplace and how we must move forward in today’s climate. What is your philosophy for success? “It is not as hard as one thinks to be a success. All it takes is optimism, - plenty of it, a real love of the job, perseverance when things go wrong. The sort of respect you earn by constantly improving the quality of the product and services that you offer your customers. And oh yes, - the sense to choose the right teammates and trust them - Author unknown from then on.”

Are there opportunities overseas for your company? Yes of course there are. Lots, often in niche little markets that tend to suit our smaller manufacturing operations here in New Zealand. The trick is to be able to identify them. We often have customers coming to us looking for someone who is able to solve a problem they have. New Zealanders are good at doing that. That can open doors. Good promotion can help, but as always, word-of-mouth based on your performance is by far the most effective. Greatest achievement? That is a hard one. Achievements are the spice of life. Each one, like winning at anything, gives great satisfaction at the time, and to try and reflect upon what has been the



greatest achievement is difficult. I can’t but help think of some of the innovation, technical breakthroughs and lucky breaks that we have had along way.   Perhaps one that has given ongoing satisfaction though could have been the winning back of a Chinese contract because of our quality, consistency and product performance against really aggressive Asian competition based on pricing. Greatest influence? Probably my elder brother Peter, when I was aged 10.   I was trying to make my first valve radio in the 1940’s and it wouldn’t work. He knew what was wrong and wouldn’t tell me, and made me try and try over again until I solved the problem on my own, - and in the process I learnt the valuable art of perseverance and self-reliance.

Favourite quote? “Any company that is either not developing new technology or adopting known technologies to their present business has made a conscious decision to be out of business in 5 to 10 years”

- Dr Bruce Merrifield, Secretary for Productivity Trade and Industry, USA

uperstructure Groups’ AQD software helps customers ensure their compliance with safety processes, asset risks, record and report incidents and conduct audits. Based in Wellington, the 23 person company is held by a British firm 90 per cent owned by New Zealanders. It has an office in London and a turnover of $5 million. With more than 100 customers who include Air New Zealand, Qantas, Cathay Pacific, Etihad, Singapore Airlines, LAN Chile and Saudi Arabian Airlines they cater for a dynamic sector. It is said the company could expand into other transport industries as well as oil and gas, pharmaceuticals, energy and health. l l l l

Rex Bionics offshore?


ex Bionics, the Auckland robotics company we have featured before, needs extra funding to build up its business and may need to move headquarters offshore if there is a lack of local investors. Chief executive Jenny Morel says that sales take time to execute and there are more in the pipeline. l l l l

Who wants Gulf Harbour?


s it the Chinese? Investors from that country may well be in negotiations to take over the Albany City project and Gulf Harbour development. Timely in light of recent revelations of Chinese companies wanting a greater stake in New Zealand. Both these projects have experienced financial difficulties and it is rumoured that Chinese sovereign wealth fund had committed $6 billion to invest in Kiwi assets.

Or visit:


NZ Manufacturer June 2011


You only have to do a very few things right in your life so long as you don’t do too many things wrong. – Warren Buffett

Vibration tester provides on-the-spot diagnosis of mechanical problems identifies faults by comparing vibration data to an extensive set of rules developed over years of field experience. The Fluke 810 determines fault severity using a unique technology to simulate a fault-free condition and establish a baseline for instant comparison to gathered data. This means that every measurement taken is compared to a “like new” machine. The vibration tester includes Viewer PC software, compatible with Windows XP and Vista, to

expand its data storage and tracking capability. With Viewer the user can: • create machine setups at the computer keyboard and transfer the data to the 810 Vibration Tester • generate diagnostic reports in a PDF file format • view vibration spectra in greater detail • import and store JPEG images and Fluke .IS2 thermal images for a more complete view of a machine’s condition.

Unique three in one protection cap


n advanced troubleshooting instrument available for vibration, the Fluke 810, enables maintenance teams to rapidly collect data and diagnose and solve mechanical problems with an affordable, easy to use tool. Handheld, the Fluke 810 is designed and programmed to diagnose the most common mechanical problems of unbalance, looseness, misalignment and bearing failures in a wide variety of mechanical equipment, including motors, fans, blowers, belts and chain drives, gearboxes, couplings, pumps, compressors, closed coupled machines and spindles. When it detects a fault, it identifies the problem and rates its severity on a four-level scale to help the maintenance professional prioritise maintenance tasks, and recommends repairs. Context-sensitive on-board help menus provide new users with realtime guidance and tips. Many industrial maintenance teams work under severe financial and time constraints. The vibration tester uses a simple step-by-step process to report on machine faults the first time measurements are taken, without prior measurement history. The combination of plain-text diagnoses, severity ratings and repair recommendations helps users make better maintenance decisions and address critical problems first. Typical vibration analysers and software are intended for monitoring machine condition over the longer

term, but they require special training and investment that may not be possible in many companies. The Fluke 810 is designed specifically for maintenance professionals who need to troubleshoot mechanical problems and quickly understand the root cause of equipment condition. Mechanical diagnosis with the 810 begins when the user places the triaxial TEDS accelerometer on the machine under test. The accelerometer has a magnetic mount and can also be installed by attaching a mounting pad using adhesive. A quick-disconnect cable connects the accelerometer to the Fluke 810 tester. As the machine under test operates, the accelerometer detects its vibration along three planes of movement and transmits that information to the Fluke 810. Using a set of advanced algorithms, the 810 Vibration Tester then provides a plain-text diagnosis of the machine with a recommended solution.

A new approach to machine testing

Evaluating mechanical equipment typically requires comparing its condition over time to a previously established baseline condition. Vibration analysers used in condition-based monitoring or predictive maintenance programs rely upon these baseline conditions to evaluate machine condition and estimate remaining operating life. In contrast, the Fluke 810 is a troubleshooting tool that analyses current machinery condition and


i-Q Electronics Ltd, leading New Zealand distributor of protection products, especially protective Caps and Plugs, has designed and manufactured in New Zealand a unique protection cap. Safety requirements on work sites and building projects are requiring the protection of exposed scaffold tube, reinforcing bars and stakes to avoid injury and damage to buildings. As a result of demand and lack of a multipurpose protection cap being available, Hi-Q decided to design and manufacture one. Their main objective was to simplify things by designing a cap that could fit as many things as possible. Their thinking, a multipurpose cap would save time and money for contractors,

eliminating the need to choose and stock multiple caps for the various tasks and sizes. The result was a clever design that enables the Hi-Q caps to fit scaffold tube, reinforcing bar sizes D10, D12, D16, Waratah and garden stakes. Manufactured in UV stabilised LLDPE, this unique protection cap has NZ patent and registered design. The cap is available from stock in four colours, yellow, orange, green and black. Other colours are available to order. The Hi-Q cap is a simple, economic, and quick way to provide protection. nextSTEP Contact: Hi-Q Electronics Ltd Tel: 0800 800 293

NZ Manufacturer June 2011



To succeed… You need to find something to hold on to, something to motivate you, something to inspire you. – Tony Dorsett

World demand for machine tools to reach $b121 in 2014


orld demand for machine tool products -- encompassing metal cutting machine tools, metal forming machine tools and machine tool accessories -- is projected to increase a strong 9.4 percent per year through 2014 to $121 billion. The best prospects will be found in the developing world, especially in China and India. Growth in North America will post respectable gains, but only because 2009 was such a bad year for the dominant US market. Japan and Western Europe will continue to see gains that considerably lag the global average. Although the industrial machinery and equipment market will continue to account for the largest share of demand in 2014, the transportation sector will post the strongest gains.


Transportation sector growth will be aided by recovery in motor vehicle production levels from a depressed 2009, especially in the developed world. Demand will also be aided by a healthy commercial aircraft production industry. Gains in the electronic equipment market will benefit from increasing incomes in developing countries that will enable consumers to purchase these products. In developed countries, a significant number of electronic products are almost considered to be basic necessities.

The best prospects will be found in the developing world

Miniature ceramic heaters

new approach to miniaturised heaters is proving to be outstandingly reliable, versatile and economic. Miniaturised ceramic heaters capable of independently controlling their dissipation are replacing Nichrome elements universally used

until recently in domestic medical and military applications. It is now possible to mass produce incredibly small controlled dissipation 230 V elements onto small 12 mm x 9 mm ceramic substrates capable of operating at over 350° celsius. Besides heaters the technology can be used for such diverse applications as thermal print heads, molecular gas flow sensors and tracking transmitters. Thick Film technology is used wherever high reliability is required, such as space satellites and heart pacemakers. Circuit elements are physically printed sometimes in multiple layers on thin ceramic sheets and then fired at high temperature typically 850°C to form working electronic modules.

The global market for metal cutting machine tools is projected to expand 8.6 percent per year through 2014 to $61 billion, with growth aided by a recovery in key end-use markets in the developed world. Metal cutting tools will continue to account for a majority of the total machine tools market in 2014. World demand for metal forming machine tools is projected to increase 8.3% per year through 2014 to $23 billion. The global market for machine tool accessories is forecast to increase

MEMS revolutionising siliconbased micro-electronics


EMS are a class of enabling technologies that are revolutionising silicon-based micro-electronics through use of micro-machining technology. The integration of MEMS into high volume CMOS manufacturing facilities, and the promise of monolithic integration of CMOS + MEMS, allows lower cost production of devices with integrated electronics and moving parts. These devices have and will continue to enable novel performance unachievable by other means. Everyday examples include


accelerometers for airbag sensors or handheld gaming devices, extremely high performance switches for communications, fluidic devices used in inkjet printer heads, and micromirrors for digital light projection. These four examples include highly diverse physics for the MEMS sensor, spanning mechanical motion sensing, tuning of high speed radio frequencies, actuation of fluidic valves, and optical reflection and tuning, respectively, for the products mentioned above. nextSTEP E:

Software spending to grow

atest research into technical software application spending indicates that, in 2011, worldwide recovery is likely to be fastest in the Aerospace and Defence and the Process and Utility industries. A significant factor is the recovery and reinvestment funding that is

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11.6 percent annually through 2014 to $37 billion, easily the fastest growth expected in any of the major machine tool market segments. Newer metal cutting and metal forming tools last longer and need less frequent replacement, reducing their growth potential. In recent years, machine tool users have found it economical to accessorize existing tools with attachments such as cutting tools, dies, jigs and the like in an economically uncertain and competitive environment.

supporting many infrastructure programmes around the world. Technical applications cover AEC (architecture, engineering and construction), geospatial (GIS) and manufacturing (CAD/CAM/ CAE and PDM/PLM) software applications

Auckland Manufacturers Manufacturing Technology – How to Enhance Productivity Contract Manufacturing South Island Manufacturing

Advertising Booking Deadline –8th July 2011 Advertising Copy Deadline – 12th July 2011 Editorial Copy Deadline – 12th July 2011 Advertising material is to be sent to: Max Farndale, P O Box 1109, Hastings 4156, Hawke’s Bay Email: Tel: 06 870 4506 / Mobile 027 628 2033

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At NZ MANUFACTURER our aim is to keep our readers up to date with the latest industry news and manufacturing advances in a tasty paper morsel, ensuring they do not get left behind in the highly competitive and rapidly evolving manufacturing world.


NZ Manufacturer June 2011



The difference between failure and success is doing a thing nearly right and doing a thing exactly right.

A reason to be Inspired

he launch of Metals New Zealand in April at the inaugural Metals NZ Conference in Wellington was both a humbling and inspiring experience. Humbling in that so many of the metals industry’s heavy lifters were there - the companies who everyday work to build our important infrastructure, replace imports and to export around the world. It was inspiring to be part of one of the few conferences in the world to bring together the whole metals industry and to hear a depth of expertise which is rarely recognized in New Zealand but constantly noted by those we export to. The figures tell the story, an industry worth over $7.3Billon each year with around 30% of this in exports. It is inspiring that New Zealand competes as a steel and aluminum supplier to the world, that our exports are as diverse as super yachts, machinery to form steel for steel framed houses, to milking carousels for the dairy

industry, gas compressors and desalination plants and drying kilns for the timber industry.   The very diversity of our industry has been one of its strengths in that we operate in many market niches. Another strength of our industry has been the relatively small size of many New Zealand companies which has meant that they are closer to the market and quick at adapting to market needs. Many of the solutions that New Zealand’s metals industry has delivered to the market were borne out of New Zealand’s isolation and the need to solve a problem for a customer in the domestic market. New Zealand expertise in building racing yacht keels stems from building keels for the America’s Cup contenders and today keels are built and shipped worldwide from a number of New Zealand companies. Massive industrial meat cookers, first built for the local industry are now processing meat in the Americas and a company specialising in the handling of drilling mud who built

equipment for the New Zealand drilling industry, now ships its products to wherever oil and gas exploration occurs in the world. It is hard not to be inspired by these and the many more companies that make up the New Zealand Metals Industry. The major priority for New Zealand has to be to ensure that the temptation posed by cheap and sometimes inferior products, imported from countries where industrial standards are lower than here, do not prevent the development of the next generation of New Zealand products to take to the world. Buying cheap comes at a

State Owned Enterprises need to be working with New Zealand engineering companies today.

– Edward Simmons

By HERA Industry Development Manager Nick Inskip

very high price to the future of New Zealand. If we are to be inspired by our industry in twenty years time, companies including State Owned Enterprises, who are looking for industrial solutions, need to be working with New Zealand engineering companies today. The New Zealand Metals industry has the demonstrated competence and capability to be innovative; the question is, can local purchasers of technology be equally inspiring, or is ‘cheap at any cost’ their mantra?

NZ Manufacturer June 2011


The great leaders are like the best conductors – they reach beyond the notes to reach the magic in the players. – Blaine Lee From page 7

Mongolia – The new Eldorado

To service the development and operation of these mega- mine and power generation sites there will need to be infrastructure developments on a massive scale – roading, railway expansion, living accommodation and services, water and sewage services, logistics, engineering and maintenance facilities etc.... the list goes on and on. Seemingly, whatever product or service one can imagine to support life, industry and social development Mongolia currently needs in large quantities. One example of this is the requirement to more than triple the current rail network from 1,815km currently to 7,498km If you are in manufacturing associated with engineering and civil services; building; mining, food, logistics, or infrastructure there is a very significant and profitable market opportunity for you in Mongolia. This in a country which welcomes foreign direct investment ; which is relatively business friendly; has a straight forward tax system; recognises the rule of law and international contracts and is a viable and determined democracy supporting an exploding market economy.

In the second article of this series, I will hone in on some of the specific opportunities which are now presenting themselves in Mongolia and I will provide some insights and valuable linkages which may be helpful to those interested in further exploring the once-in-alifetime business opportunity which Mongolia presents for New Zealand manufacturers with an adventurous spirit. Currently every second expat on the streets of Ulaanbaatar speaks with an Aussie accent – come on Kiwis you are missing the boat to Eldorado! Note: Peter Allport has been a frequent visitor to Mongolia for nearly 20 years. In the 90’s he worked on projects associated with primary production industries and the privatisation of State owned assets in the post-communist era. He currently has extensive business interests in Mongolia in mobile telecommunications, aviation, property management and development and power generation and sits on the Boards of a number of Mongolian companies. In 2007 Peter Allport Honorary Consul of Mongolia in New Zealand.


ExportNZ lifts India focus by partnering with INZBC


xportNZ is increasing its focus on growing opportunities in India by entering a partnership with the India New Zealand Business Council (INZBC). Catherine Beard, Executive Director of ExportNZ says the new agreement will create a strong alliance focusing on maximising the benefits of the anticipated freer trading environment (FTA negotiations with India are underway) with one of the world’s fastest growing economies. “Working in close co-operation with the INZBC will add huge value to the services we can offer our members. In effect, INZBC will be our specialist unit serving the Indian market. “The recent visit by Indian Commerce and Industry Minister Hon Anand Sharma highlighted the potential India holds as a trading partner for New Zealand. As the Minister pointed out, India

is a land of limitless opportunities. After meeting with NZ Trade Minister Tim Groser, they agreed that trade could triple from the current $1 billon a year to $3 billon by 2014, and identified tourism and education as key areas for increased cooperation.” Wenceslaus Anthony, Chair of INZBC says that the partnership opens up huge opportunities for our members and contributes directly to mainstreaming INZBC activities across all sectors of the economy. “We are also working on key partnerships with major India based business associations and all of these will dramatically expand NZ-India trade and add value to the members of both organisations.” While ExportNZ and the INZBC will work together offering services and activities to their members, they will retain their individual autonomy and operate independently.



NZ Manufacturer June 2011


My list of ingredients for success is divided into four basic groups: Inward, Outward, Upward and Onward.” – David Thomas

80 years of drive engineering that changed the world


011 is a very special year for the drive automation specialist headquartered in Bruchsal. Christian Pähr founded the “Süddeutsche ElektromotorenWerke” in Bruchsal 80 years ago. After the war in 1945, Ernst Blickle, Christian Pähr’s sonin-law, took over as managing director of the company. He soon laid the foundation for SEWEURODRIVE’s international success with a number of visionary ideas and developments.

Our world is shaped by movement, change and innovation. There is no such thing as standstill— the concept only exists in our minds. SEW-EURODRIVE embraced this dynamic principle of nature from the very beginning and used it to help shape the face of modern drive engineering in the past 80 years. The company’s innovative products created the basis for developments that actually made the transformation from the industrial age into the era of modern drive engineering possible.

The future

characterised by both their diversity and consistently high quality. At the time when the modular system was being developed, SEWEURODRIVE was also working to open up international markets. Owing to increasing demand from abroad, Ernst Blickle had already made the decision to assemble innovative drive solutions from SEW-EURODRIVE in countries where customers were operating as early as the 1960s. The first SEW subsidiary was opened in Hagenau, France in 1960. From 1968, new developments followed in rapid succession. Today, SEWEURODRIVE has 11 production plants and 60 assembly centres (two in New Zealand at Auckland and Christchurch) as well as sales offices and representatives in 71 countries. The company’s consistent international orientation is yet another milestone in the field of modern drive engineering. This orientation benefits customers around the world with services that include much more than just a wide range of high-

The revolutionary geared motor formed the basis for modern drive technology


It was only a small step from the invention of the countershaft motor in 1928 to today´s gearmotor. SEW-EURODRIVE has worked consistently to further develop the basic principle of an efficient gearmotor. Today, customers throughout the world benefit from new manufacturing processes, which have been developed to continually improve the performance and reliability of the products. In the mid-1960s, SEW-EURODRIVE was the first drive engineering company to develop a modular system for the production of gearmotors. A manageable number of standard components and subassemblies formed the basis of this system. These components could now be used to create drive solutions that were both simple and costeffective to implement in next to no time. Furthermore, they were

The company’s innovative products created the basis for developments that actually made the transformation from the industrial age into the era of modern drive engineering possible.

quality products. The company´s competence has been confirmed over the years by the awards that SEWEURODRIVE has received from independent institutes, associations and organisations. At the beginning of the 1990s, Rainer and Jürgen Blickle took over the leadership of the company. At this time, they made the decision to start developing in-house control solutions and to establish electronics production facilities. The electronics production was named “Factory of the Year” shortly after it had been opened. The electronics products are also based on a modular concept and are an important element of the company’s portfolio today.

In future, customers and partners will continue to be able to rely on SEW-EURODRIVE—a company with three quarters of a century of innovative drive. The history of the technical developments in this sector is too closely associated with ideas that originated in Bruchsal to be able to do without the head office in Germany. The future is sure to hold more pioneering ideas from SEW-EURODRIVE that will shape the fields of drive engineering and automation in the time to come. MOVIGEAR®, the mechatronic drive concept, or MOVIAXIS®, the multi-axis servo system, are just two examples of new standards that the company continues to set. “Driving the world ...”—this is and will remain the company’s motto, because even when others are talking about standstill, SEWEURODRIVE keeps the world moving. And this is a fact that customers all over the world can rely on! nextSTEP

Search begins for New Zealand’s leading innovators


nnovation and innovative people are key to the future success of New Zealand and therefore should be recognised at a national level. That’s the basis of the New Zealand Innovators Awards, which have been revamped with a new website and a much broader range of categories, including a supreme innovators award, a people’s choice award and the most inspiring innovator award. Previously known as the Bayer Innovators Awards, the new awards progamme has been created by Bayer New Zealand, Ideas Accelerator and Idealog, and is supported by the New Zealand Innovation Council. Bayer New Zealand Corporate Communications Manager William Malpass says the link between innovation and business success is well known. The challenge is creating the environment where innovation can blossom into business success. “As the company behind the awards for the last few years, Bayer is excited to have new partners on board who are just as passionate about innovation as we are. “Together we have not only

significantly updated the Innovators Awards, but plan to take them to the next level. We not only want to recognise innovation efforts, but eventually create an innovation network that will ultimately help with getting the economy moving again. The New Zealand Innovators Awards has several categories: Health & Science, Design & Engineering, Environment & Agriculture, ICT, Manufacturing and Marketing & Communications. There are also a People’s Choice Award and Supreme New Zealand Innovators Award, plus the Precommercial Award and the Most Inspiring Individual Award. The closing date for entries is 12 August 2011. Winners from previous Bayer Innovators Awards include: Ray Avery (Medicine Mondiale), Ross McKenzie (Old Fashioned Foods), Ian McRae (Orion Health), Dr Stephen Goldson (AgResearch), Prof. Olaf Diegel (AUT), Dr Brian Ward (Mesynthes), Rod Walker (Simcro) and Dr Robert Hill (Lincoln University). nextSTEP Visit:

NZ Manufacturer June 2011

In this world you can have whatever you want if you just help enough OTHER people get what THEY want. – Zig Ziglar




Driven by tradition

Handcrafting sports cars in New Zealand

raser Cars has been handcrafting Lotus 7 replica sports cars in New Zealand since 1988. Company founder, Neil Fraser, had been so impressed by the Lotus 7 replicas he was competing against at a race day he attended in 1987 that he drove home and decided to build one himself. When Neil took his handbuilt replica to the 1988 National Car Show, admiration for his car produced three orders on the spot.

And Fraser Cars was born

Neil ran the business until 2006 when he sold it to his chassis maker, Scott Tristram, who now runs Fraser Cars with his wife, Ida. Based in Beach Haven, Auckland, there are now five people working full-time at the workshop where they build two models, the Clubman and the sportier Clubman S. The cars are available in kit form or as a finished vehicle. However, pretty much every car is unique because owners get choice over a range of components and attributes, from suspension set-up to upholstery, engine model to paintwork.

Fraser at home and abroad

Worldwide there are 325 Lotus 7 replicas which have been built by Fraser with around 35% of those still in New Zealand. Because the business has a reputation for quality that rivals the company most associated with the replica, UK-based Caterham, they export regularly. Australia and Japan are the main markets but the company is keen to expand into the US. Scott and Ida say that overseas clients aren’t just excited by the car; they are also excited by the standard of workmanship on offer.

A Fraser during assembly.

An ex-marine fabricator who forged his career on luxury yachts uses painstakingly accurate welding methods to take the collection of hand-machined tubes and create the robust chassis. And the hugely experienced sheet metal engineer hand-forms the aluminium body around that chassis using many traditional hammer forming, shrinking and stretching techniques. The Tristrams do use subcontractors on certain specialist tasks. Their trimmer has created or restored the interiors of many award winning classic, modern and show cars. And the man charged with

Managing the build today and tomorrow

Manufacturing using traditional skills

Quality New Zealand manufacturing is right at the heart of Fraser Cars. “Many people don’t instantly grasp what handcrafted really means,” explains Ida. “Basically we employ hugely talented craftsmen who put their souls into the cars.” In the workshop you’ll see the pattern pieces lining the walls ready for hand-machining by a man who has worked on everything from specialist sonar buoys for the British Navy through to revolutionary motorbikes built to race the infamous Isle of Man TT course.

Scot and Ida Tristram.

the painting, which is the only part of the build to take place outside of the workshop, has an equally high reputation.

We have brilliant craftsmen in New Zealand, as well as the great Kiwi ‘can-do’ attitude.

Yet despite all this customer choice, and the traditional skills employed, the manufacturing process is carefully managed. “We set out detailed schedules right at the start of each project,” says Scott. “We keep stock to a minimum, machining the components and ordering parts just as they are needed. But we always have everything ready two steps ahead of where we are in each build programme.” Engines are bought-in, usually from Japan, but almost all other components are made at the factory or within New Zealand. Scott continues “We could source components from overseas but that

just doesn’t sit with our values. We have brilliant craftsmen in New Zealand, as well as the great Kiwi ‘can-do’ attitude. This means we can keep the quality but still think creatively to deliver what the customer really wants to drive.” For the future, Ida and Scott are keen to push sales at home and abroad with Australia being a major focus. They are also preparing to reorganise the workshop to enhance the workflow and help them manage a growth in orders. But the couple are adamant this will not affect the end product. Ida concludes “Fraser Cars has created a reputation for quality and we simply cannot sacrifice that. If we grow as we hope to, the way we work will of course need to change. But the manufacturing process will always be steeped in traditional New Zealand craftsmanship.”


NZ Manufacturer June 2011

SUPPLY CHAIN Full steam ahead for sailboats

I like thinking big. If you’re going to be thinking anything, you might as well think big.

– Donald Trump


hen Dean Barker and his Emirates Team New Zealand crew lifted the Louis Vuitton Trophy last year, Maersk Line NZ Port Operations Manager Sunil Thakur and his team could have been forgiven a little champagne spraying of their own. Without Maersk’s involvement, and the meteorological nous of ETNZ weather guru Roger “Clouds” Badham, the ETNZ boats would have been at long odds just to get to the start line. When ETNZ needed to get 2007 Louis Vuitton Cup winner NZL92 and fellow 2007 America’s Cup campaigner NZL84 up to Dubai last year for what was to be their final race in ETNZ colours, they turned to long-time sponsor Maersk. Sunil and his team were tasked with getting the yachts on board the Maersk Danville and safely away. One small, or not so small, problem. Containers are forty feet by eight feet by eight-and-a-half feet; the Maersk Danville is 32 metres wide. Americas Cup class yachts are typically 25 metres long; their masts 35 metres long. An extraordinary load, with some extraordinary challenges. “It’s not simply a matter of laying them across the top of a stack of containers,” explains Sunil. “These yachts weigh more than 20 tonnes, so they need to be loaded in a way that doesn’t jeopardise the overall stability of the ship. The masts are made from some pretty sophisticated materials. They’re

racing machines, like thoroughbred horses – and like thoroughbred horses, they’re expensive, sensitive, and need careful treatment,” Sunil says. For Sunil and his team, that meant a lot of detailed planning. “The size of the yachts and the mast meant they couldn’t go in the hold, so we needed to ensure they were protected throughout the loading and unloading process, which we did by surrounding them with a container fortress. “With the yachts being made of carbon fibre, we wanted to minimise the chance of a spark from the exhaust causing damage, which meant putting them in the forward part of the boat. “And of course, as always, we wanted to organise the load so as to leave as many plugs as possible available for our reefers (refrigerated containers).” However, some things you just can’t plan for: 60 knot winds, for example, which started blowing late on the morning of the scheduled departure day, and generated some

It’s not simply a matter of laying them across the top of a stack of containers

pessimistic predictions from port staff. “The size of the masts – and the fact we had to load them fore and aft – makes them particularly sensitive to swing. To be honest, I was starting to wonder if we would be able to get the boats on board in time to make our departure window – and more importantly, in time to get to

Tanjung Pelepas for transhipment,” Sunil says. That’s when ETNZ’s expertise came into play. Operations manager Kevin Shoebridge got on the phone to weather guru “Clouds” Badham for a forecast. “It was quite incredible,” says Sunil. “Roger predicted the wind shifts and pockets with remarkable accuracy. It was touch and go timewise, but we made it.” Even Shoebridge – who had seen Badham in action many times, was impressed. “Clouds has been the difference between us winning and losing a few times in the past. In this instance, he was the difference between us getting to the venue in enough time to prepare for the regatta or scrambling to get there at all.” However, Shoebridge is quick to share the credit. “The way Maersk worked around the weather to get everything organised was outstanding as well – and typical of the support we have received from them,” he says. Alls well that ends well: ETNZ not only made the start line, they made the final, where they defeated Oracle 2-nil, giving them four wins and a second over the five regatta series. The Dubai regatta was the last such event for the Americas Cup class yachts; however, the Maersk star is likely to appear on the exciting AC72 wing-masted catamarans when the battle for The Auld Mug resumes in 2013.

Automation strengthens supply chain industry


n today’s complex supply chains, it is important for manufacturers, vendors and everyone in between to be able to communicate quickly and effectively. This is difficult when companies are based in many different countries and time zones. New strides in software-as-a-service platforms and supply chain management services are breaking down the communication barriers by delivering automated software. As a result, the world of global trade just got a little more user-friendly.


Much of the process is automated. Use of paper invoices eats up valuable time and resources, for both the buyer and supplier. Manually keying in data, shuffling papers to sort out amendments, and manually matching purchase orders to invoices are inefficient and they

Global trade requires global communication and automation lead to errors. Paper in the supply chain creates visibility gaps at every steps of the process, all the way down to the creation of shipping labels at the factory floor. Errors or miscommunication can delay a shipment to a retail store so long that the customer faces stock outs and empty shelves.

Online Platforms

Today, online supply chain platforms are available to enable electronic documents and correspondence to be sent to different parties involved quickly and efficiently. This saves time and, of course, money. For example, a supplier manufacturing widgets in Otago can find out important contract and shipping information by simply clicking on to the platform where key

data is stored. Software-as-a-service solutions eliminate technology barriers that once hindered small overseas factories. Today, just a web-browser is needed to access purchase orders, amendments. invoices, payments, and even trade financing. When documents and workflows are automated on a single platform, buyer, seller and factory are all linked, breaking down barriers that previously prolonged the transaction. Picture accounts payable automation (AP automation) extended all the way down to the factory floor. An automation purchase order serves as the catalyst for visibility and communication as the product moves through its lifecycle.

Communication Location




differences were formerly an issue in supply chain management. With software-as-a-service platforms, this is no longer an issue. Some supply chain management companies offer support teams in other countries that eliminate the need to add staff and resources overseas. These local services ensure suppliers and factories are up and running on the system. Shifting market conditions and consumer buying patterns make it more difficult than ever to align supply and demand. Consumers are picky and they know what they want, when they want it. Supply chain automation is vital to the success of merchandising and retail, as businesses strive to meet consumer demand. When processes and documents are automated, retailers have agility to react quickly and easily.

NZ Manufacturer June 2011

I had to make my own living and my own opportunity! But I made it! Don’t sit down and wait for the opportunities to come. Get up and make them! – C.J. Walker

Technology ruins work-life balance


echnology advances enable us to work faster and smarter than ever before, but does this also mean the traditional Kiwi holiday is at threat? A recent workplace survey found that most of us now find it difficult to ‘switch off’ while we are away from the office. Almost two thirds (62%) of the NZ finance and accounting professionals surveyed stay connected remotely to what’s happening at work or do work related tasks while they are on holiday. Of those that stay connected, 15% say that it is because they find it ‘impossible’ to switch off while on holiday; while 43% claim it’s because technology allows them to access work information from anywhere in the world. Robert Half general manager, Megan Alexander says workers feel compelled to stay connected to work because the technology they have at their disposal enables them to do so. The survey findings back this up - a quarter of respondents believe that they should be available because

they use a company mobile phone. Over half of respondents (53%) like to stay on top of work issues even when on holiday, a high proportion of which reporting that filtering through work emails while away from the office meant they are less stressed when they return to work. It seems Kiwi employees are also more conscientious than bosses expect them to be while on holiday. Just 6% of employers claim they expect employees to constantly be available while on annual leave, and 14% expect employees to be available outside of office hours. 49% were required to be available only in emergencies. Not surprisingly, there are higher expectations for senior management to stay connected after hours.  The survey found employees are not being compensated for being ‘on call’ while they are on annual leave; 43% are not remunerated at all, 37% are offered time off in lieu, while just 29% get overtime payment for the additional hours worked. Alexander says that in an

environment where we are encouraged to do more, with less time, work/life balance is vital. Promoting it as part of business culture can lead to increased productivity, reduced absenteeism and better staff retention. “Blackberries and iPhones have made connecting to work so accessible that for many of us, gone are the days that you stop working when you shut down your office computer. Helping employees strike the right balance between their professional obligations and personal life is easier, and less costly than employers might think,” says Alexander.

Employees are not being compensated for being ‘on call’.



Robert Half general manager, Megan Alexander

Alexander suggests making allowances for flexible work schedules, avoiding the temptation to contact staff after hours, awarding time off for a job well done, or even harnessing the power of technology to provide opportunities for telecommuting, which can enable staff to work from home a few times each month. “Bosses need to walk the talk too and know when it’s important to step away from the laptop or put down the phone.”


NZ Manufacturer June 2011

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