Conymet Duratray establishes manufacturing facility and global HQ in Victoria

(CHILE 2021)

Chilean-based international designer and manufacturer of mining equipment has chosen to establish its new state-of-the-art manufacturing facility and global headquarters in Victoria.

Founded in 1973, Conymet Duratray has grown to include facilities in Australia, Chile, the United States, South Africa and Russia. Exporting to more than 30 countries, they specialise in the design and manufacturing of mining truck dump bodies, steel and rubber components for haulage equipment for the mining industry.

Conymet Duratray intends to grow its current Victorian footprint by onshoring overseas manufacturing functions and establishing a new innovation division in West Cranbourne, where they will draw on Victoria’s highly skilled workforce and the State’s innovation, research and development capabilities, to develop new specialties in the areas of mining data analytics, Internet of Things, machine learning as well as advanced composite materials for its product line.

Conymet Duratray will benefit from Victoria’s international logistics and distribution network to service its key export markets and the State’s growing and dynamic mining equipment, technology and services sector.

We spoke to Marcelo Medel, Conymet Duratray Managing Director, about the company’s investment in Victoria.

What attracted Conymet Duratray to invest in Victoria?
Victoria is well-known for having a highly skilled workforce, and we acknowledge our human resources as our main and most valued asset. Moreover, Victoria provides great support to innovation and research and development projects, which is essential for us into the expansion to mining data analytics, industry 4.0 and our Carbon Fibre branch. Throughout the process, we have been supported by different entities within Victoria, not only financially, but also in terms of advice and guidance on the best way to approach the project. We also considered Victoria, as it is an internationally recognised hub for imports and exports activity. The state’s logistics and distribution networks are key for our supply chain, successful delivery of our products and satisfactory service to our customers.

What challenges did you face when you were exploring/entering Victoria?
Duratray has always been identified as a highly specialised manufacturer with a unique offer of products. This attribute made it especially hard to find the necessary equipment and training programmes that support our people to learn how to operate our machinery and fabricate our products. Furthermore, when we first arrived in Victoria in 2001, there were still traces from the Asian Financial Crisis in the Australian economic system. It was a hard time to be settling in Australia due to a highly depreciated exchange rate, meaning that any supply and inputs were considerably more expensive. These two factors made it difficult at the beginning, but once we overcame those challenges, our operations began running smoothly and we have experienced great growth since then.

How did working with Invest Victoria help with your investment journey?
The investment to build a new factory is the largest investment Duratray has ever undertaken in Australia and overseas. Throughout this journey, we have met many people and organisations that have provided us with their advice and have guided us on how to best allocate our resources. This is how we came in contact with Invest Victoria, who has played an active role in the development of the project, having in mind our objectives as a company, but also the best interest of Victoria as a State, its valued workforce and its economy as a whole.  They have not only offered financial support, but also have showed us the best way to take advantage of its highly qualified workforce and all the distribution channels available within the state, as well as the wide range of specialised and qualified suppliers that play a major role in our supply chain and the state’s economy. Invest Victoria has enabled us to make the most of every opportunity through the best allocation of our capital and human resources.

What advice do you have for other global businesses looking to invest in Victoria to improve their chance of success?
As a global firm, with offices in 5 continents, we have been positively impressed by the support and active participation of the local government. As Managing Director, I have seen the exponential growth of our company in the last two decades and its expansion exporting our technology to 34 countries from Australia. The support that we have received in Australia and Victoria is something unique. I have experienced first-hand how the Victorian Government has in its best interest the wellbeing of its people and they boost this by seeking financial stability for its community and economic growth for its businesses. I think Duratray is the best example of how the Government has made possible to take a project into a reality. They have been accompanying us on every step we take, including support on a wide range of information on market penetration, how to best lead R&D projects and how to connect with partners and suppliers.

Contact us to explore opportunities for investing in Victoria.

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