In the first two blogs of this series, we focused on the past and present, following the journey which began from humble beginnings in a tin-shed, to winning the Telstra Business of the year award, acquiring Hummingbird Electronics and so much more. All of this has helped form the foundations of who REDARC are today and in the 4th and final instalment of our 20 Years Strong series we talk about the elements that will pave the way for growth into the future.
The customer will always be King
A goal that has remained consistent throughout the duration of the Kittel era at REDARC is the importance of customer satisfaction. Total customer satisfaction is what makes REDARC stand out from its competitors. This customer is king mentality will continue to be a driver for our success into the future and remain the sole focus as we continue to cover new ground.
The REDARC facility in Lonsdale, South Australia
The REDARC of Tomorrow
To date REDARC has established itself as a provider of world-class products and services for the automotive and transport industries. We have been able to achieve this through our dedication to innovation, quality and again our focus on the consumer. There is no doubt the REDARC brand will continue to grow in the automotive aftermarket. You can expect REDARC to branch out with product offerings for an increased assortment of vehicles, be it light vehicles, heavy vehicles, leisure vehicles and just about anything else that moves or houses a battery.
The acquisition of Hummingbird Electronics in 2015 was a major milestone in REDARC’s history, and the two companies are highly complementary with comprehensive product portfolios, industry-leading technological and innovative excellence and outstanding staff.
Hummingbird will be able to develop bespoke products for new and existing markets both domestically and internationally. There is no doubt that Hummingbird and REDARC will reap the benefits of their innovative product portfolio and through its recent move to the Williamtown Aerospace Centre in the coming years.
Hummingbird's new innovation centre located in Williamtown, NSW
As well as leveraging and improving on the existing pillars of the business, REDARC will be branching out from its traditional roots to focus on new opportunities and industries both domestically and internationally.
Export Manager, Craig Herriot speaking to American customers at the recent Overland East tradeshow in North Carolina, USA
One of the most important targets for growth at REDARC will be the opportunities that international markets represent through the exportation of our products. REDARC will be looking to increase its footprint in overseas markets, ensuring that our domestically proven products will be competitive in markets such as North America and Europe. Expect REDARC to grow from its roots as an established Australian brand to become a serious contender on the world stage.
Assisting defence capabilities
REDARC’s product design, manufacturing and assembly capabilities in Australia have placed the business in an advantageous position to be a key supplier to vehicles in the defence industry in the future.
Senior Design Engineer Phil Hancock at the 2017 Avalon Airshow
2017 has seen REDARC strengthen its presence in the Australian defence industry, which was highlighted by being named as a teaming partner for Rheinmetall and BAE Systems Australia who are both tendering for the LAND 400 -PHASE 2 contracts. The outcome will result in REDARC partnering with the successful prime to deliver a range of services and products to the vehicle type each prime have put forward.
We have also visited several primes across Europe during the year, including multiple organisations in Sweden, Germany and the UK, yielding some positive results relating to the strengthening of our position in the defence industry.
Most importantly you can expect REDARC to continue to design and manufacture innovative products well into the future. It’s at the core of what we have done in the past and will continue to do into the future.
One key enabling function to the future of REDARC lies in the expansion of our Lonsdale facility in Adelaide. The expansion is fuelled by a $2.5 million Federal Government Next Generation Manufacturing Investment Programme grant and will see significant expansion to our facility in many areas.
Overall the redevelopment of our facility will see an additional 2,000 sqm of advanced manufacturing space, new state of the art equipment and specialist testing devices.
The Turning of the SOD marked the beginning of a new era for REDARC
These additions represent a significant leap forward in REDARC’s capabilities, providing the ability to meet the high-quality needs of international markets, medical and defence industries and will be the basis for many of the strategies outlined above.
To support our new advanced manufacturing technology, systems and facilities, we will nearly double our workforce with many jobs created in the areas of innovation, advanced manufacturing, quality and business development.
As an advanced manufacturer, our staff are key to REDARC’s success and will continue to be leading to the future. We are fortunate enough to have a highly skilled and empowered workforce who have created a culture where the commitment to learning and embracing training is impressive. Without our highly skilled workforce our product would not be at the technological level it is today.
REDARC's employees are a real asset to the business
The future in scope
Paramount to ensuring REDARC’s success in the future is our ability to scope projects that ensure a consistent methodology is in-place for product development with Lean Manufacturing principles that allow for future optimisation of the technology and processes behind its creation.
Road-mapping the future with German research body Fraunhofer
REDARC has recently engaged the services of cutting-edge German research body Fraunhofer who provided valuable insights into manufacturing industry trends. Industry 4.0 is the global trend towards how processes and information flow through organisations.
From this consultancy process, we reviewed how our products could be better connected and how efficiencies, quality and service offering can be more aligned. As a result of this report, we gained a greater understanding of the processes needed to roadmap our products through to 2025.
Bucking the trend
In the 20 years that the Kittel’s have owned REDARC perhaps their greatest overall achievement has been bucking the trend against the slowdown in Australia’s turbulent manufacturing industry. The pillars for the next 20 years are in place and will be shaped by our significant investment in R&D, embracing Industry 4.0, further evolution of our world-class manufacturing facility, our capabilities in design, manufacture, and assembly and importantly the continual improvement of our workforce and strong company culture.
Nobody knows what the future holds, however, one thing that is certain is that REDARC is in the process of embarking on a path of diversification and transformational growth. Under Anthony’s helm, the last 20 years have demonstrated that through adhering to our core values anything is achievable and this is what will shape the REDARC of tomorrow.
Here's to another 20 years for the Kittel's