It is just coming up to two years since Nautech experienced an unforeseen event which resulted in a substantial loss of business. Through no fault of the company the business lost revenue amounting to around 35% of annual turnover.
Once the dust had settled Nautech set about re-inventing itself to transform its business in to becoming New Zealand’s leading contract manufacturer of electronic and electro mechanical assemblies through the adoption of lean manufacturing principles combined with investment in advanced manufacturing technology in the form of robotics and automation.
The strategy has paid off and in the intervening period the company has grown substantially, winning new customers both at home and overseas.
Today this transformation continues, to date this year Nautech has invested in robotic manufacturing, automated optical inspection and the most recent purchase is a turnkey X-ray inspection system that has been necessitated by the increasing use of “Ball Grid Arrays” BGA’s “Quad Flat No-lead” QFN’s and a range of similar components that are difficult if not impossible to inspect using conventional technology.
Investment in both technology and people is set to continue, combined with innovation, it is the way the business differentiates itself from competitors both at home and overseas. Nautech’s core business is supplying electronic and electro mechanical assemblies to some of New Zealand’s leading technology exporters.
It is well documented that the only way to grow a manufacturing business in New Zealand is through developing export markets.
The competitive advantage gained through investment means that Nautech is now able to sell its services further afield. Over recent months Nautech as successfully competed for business in Australia and is now actively looking at other geographic markets.
R & D features heavily in Nautch’s strategy, in terms of both process and production innovation and offering the capability to develop products either for or in collaboration with customers. In terms of innovation and entrepreneurial spirit, New Zealand punches well above its weight.
However, business often fails in the transition from concept to product. This is where Nautech’s R & D capabilities are able to add significant value, by taking a customer’s concept, refining it Through Design for Manufacture (DFM) and developing it into a fully functioning product. This again is used as a differentiator as few if any of Nautech’ s competitors have the capability to offer such a service.
Continued population growth within New Zealand creates both business opportunities and ensures we maintain a good pool of talent that is needed to maintain business growth.
On the downside, it is concerning and somewhat perplexing that when highly skilled vacancies are advertised the business rarely if ever see’s applications from young Kiwi’s.
Government also has a role to play. You cannot build a thriving balanced economy that is purely focused towards agriculture or other commodity based industries. Government needs to create the conditions whereby our home-grown tech companies can thrive and avoid the risk of such businesses withering on the vine through lack of funding and guidance or even worse, being sold overseas and shipped offshore to more conducive business environments.
Through innovation and a commitment to maintain and develop a world class manufacturing capability the future for Nautech is continued growth and expansion. The business is constantly looking to increase its value proposition through the development of complimentary service streams that enhance the overall product service offering, creating further competitive advantage.
Nautech’s philosophy is best summed up by its mission statement:“We will form strong relationships with our clients and staff, encouraging teamwork integrity and innovation, to design, manufacture and supply quality products and services”.