Ten Southland engineering firms get PGF funding

Ten engineering firms in Southland are receiving Provincial Growth Fund (PGF) investment to lift productivity and create new jobs, Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones said today in Invercargill.

Minister Jones announced over $4 million of PGF support for projects in the engineering and manufacturing, and aquaculture sectors and for skills and employment training.

“Today builds on recent announcements made in Dunedin to support Otago’s engineering and manufacturing sector, and further enhances the work of the Southland and Otago Engineering Collective (SOREC) which is working on ways the sector can collaborate,” Shane Jones said.

“Ten Southland engineering and manufacturing firms will receive a total of $2.13 million to assist them with purchasing equipment that will lift productivity and create 57 new jobs in the sector.

“It’s great to see these neighbouring regions working together to create more highly skilled jobs, take their businesses to the next level and better connect and support apprentices in the sector. 

“Companies like FI Innovations are set to revolutionise the industry with the purchase of New Zealand’s largest scale 3D printer and scanner. Globally this technology is a game changer for design solutions.

“JK Engineering’s purchase of a new Computerised Numerical Contact Beamline machine will allow their staff to spend less time cutting steel and more time on assembly work so they can speed up earthquake strengthening the region’s buildings.

“In the aquaculture space, the PGF are investing $500,000 in a company to see if it can commercially manufacture New Zealand’s red seaweed into emission reducing food supplements for farm animals.

“The trial will test if Southland can become the first supplier and global leader in the cultivation of this seaweed species which has a known key ingredient bromoform that can reduce methane gas emission in cows and sheep by up to 95 per cent.

“So far the PGF has invested $42.21 million in a range of projects in Southland, including digital connectivity, aquaculture, airport development, water storage, wind power, business start-up, economic development, tourism, rail, and training and skills development.

“I’m confident today’s announcements will help further diversify Southland’s economic base and create new opportunities and new jobs,” Shane Jones said.

Notes to editors:

The Minister will also Hokonui Moonshine Museum to launch a new product. Development of the Hokonui Moonshine Museum was one of the tourism projects announced as part of a $3.7 million package for Gore in April this year.

Details of the engineering firms:

JK’s Engineering: $500,000 to purchase a Computerised Numerical Control (CNC) Beamline Machine to help their work with workshop expansions and earthquake strengthening for local businesses.

FI Innovations: $370,000 towards equipment that will allow them to purchase a large scale 3D printer that will be a game changer for designing innovative and timely solutions in New Zealand.

Yunca: $250,000 for the Invercargill and Dunedin company to purchase new equipment and create an extra 16 jobs for this domestic home heating appliances manufacturing business.

Nulook Windows and Doors: $140,000 to purchase equipment that will allow this Southland based company to fabricate and install doors and windows for more commercial customers.

Bluff Engineering and Welding: $77,500 to purchase five pieces of equipment to lift productivity for their clients in the maritime, farming, transport and construction industries.

Zenitec: $130,000 to purchase equipment that will remove production line bottle necks in this Southland family owned business that services the arboriculture and forestry industries. The company specialises in the manufacture of specialty textile-based products such as protective clothing for chainsaw users.

Stabicraft: $225,000 to accelerate productivity, bring more processes in-house and create 12 new jobs to build more aluminium-chambered vessels for their commercial and domestic clients.

Sheet Metalcraft: $132,500 to purchase equipment and increase productivity for this light-medium engineering firm that specialises in sheet metal fabrication, site fitting, and laser and waterjet profile cutting in a range of industries.

EIS: $55,000 that will create eight more jobs in this automation engineering and electrical company so that it can deliver its fibre-optic services more effectively.

Southern Steel Windows Ltd: $250,000 towards four specific pieces of engineering equipment that will increase productivity and create three new jobs. This company specialises in the design, manufacture, and installation of architectural and commercial steel joinery, including fire-rated windows, fire doors, security doors and windows.

Funding from the Provincial Growth Fund is approved in principle and announced, after which contracts are negotiated. Some funding may depend on completion of business cases. Payments are made once agreed milestones are met. These are set as part of contract negotiations, and differ from project to project.