SECRET ASIA DEAL
“Air Radiators continues to operate because we produce products that are niche and high-value.”
A LARA radiator manufacturer has secured a top-secret contract to provide its products to an Asian defence force.
The two-year deal worth $500,000 is the latest notch in the belt of Air Radiators whose cooling systems for diesel engines are exported to Japan and America.
The company’s radiators are found in Japanese bullet trains, power station generators, V/Line trains and the Australian Army’s Bushmaster armoured vehicle.
To remain competitive in an era of manufacturing change, the company has developed two products for its range which are almost ready for roll out.
Air Radiators general manager Jamie Baensch said the products, PinFin and AluFin, focused on providing lightweight cooling systems resistant to clogging in dirty environments.
“Air Radiators continues to operate because we produce products that are niche and high-value,” Mr Baensch said.
Employing 130 staff — including some from the city’s most disadvantaged areas — at its Heales Rd facility, Air Radiators manufactures its products from scratch.
In coming years the company plans to increase its exports by 13 per cent.
This week, Air Radiators sales staff and Corio MP Richard Marles visited Washington DC for the Association of the United States Army annual exposition to spruik the company products. While the trade mission hasn’t secured a deal yet, Mr Baensch said it had sown the seeds for future deals.
“There were representatives from all over the world there. It is a global exercise,” he said.
Mr Marles, the Opposition’s defence spokesman, said the work of Air Radiators showed the diversity of manu- facturing across the Geelong region.
“Their presence at Association of the United States Army annual expo 2017 shows that our local companies have the skills to make them truly world-class players,” he said.
“We need to make sure we’re taking advantage of the skills our city and surrounds have to be part of Australia’s defence industry.”