West Gosford manufacturing company, Chamberlain Group International, has taken out the Excellence in Sustainable Operations category in this year’s Hunter Manufacturing Awards (HMA), after continuing to thrive during COVID-19 restrictions.
As businesses around Australia were forced to adapt to the challenges posed by the pandemic, the company implemented processes and systems to ensure jobs were kept on the Central Coast.
The world’s largest manufacturer of garage door openers has expanded its operations to a global market and has not only retained all staff but has increased staff numbers by two positions.
This year, Chamberlain Group developed a strategy resulting in significant growth opportunities for the Middle East and the US, for its Australian manufactured commercial door operators and poultry winches.
This has seen a 20 per cent growth in the Middle East market in 2020, and a US export overall opportunity valued at AUD $1M annually, with export orders expected to increase by 200 per cent in 2020 and a further 50% in 2021.
Head of Operations – Oceania, Graeme Sheekey said new market opportunities were a key focus for the organisation.
“The company was established in 1914 and re-located to the Central Coast 30 years ago from Sydney,” Sheekey said.
“Our Grifco brand has been extremely successful and we have continually improved our facilities in past months so we can keep operating.
“The blossoming overseas market has definitely helped our growth because the local market can become saturated.
“It is a big priority for us to keep exploring export projects.
“We are shortly shipping out a full container load of our winches for the poultry industry to the US.
“We did all the normal things to make our facility safe (in view of COVID) including split shifts with separate production teams and a lot of office staff working from home.”
Sheekey said the company’s staff had increased from 34 pre pandemic to 36.
He said taking out the Sustainability award had been a highlight for the company.
“A few of us attended the awards night and there’s nothing like hearing your name called out as a winner.” He said.
“We have made our sustainability strategy a priority.
“We put a lot of emphasis on recycling, have had a 100kW solar panel installed on the roof of our factory to conserve energy and have reduced our water usage.
“We have also gone completely paperless and reduced our overall waste.”