Minto's Holloway Group and Smeaton Grange's Biax Foundations work together

Matthew Holloway
Matthew Holloway

The pandemic has seen many companies, especially those in manufacturing, have to reevaluate the way they do business.

With international shipping times blowing out, businesses have looked to home shores for their products.

And that's exactly what happened to pair two Macarthur-based businesses together in the past year.

Minto-based injection moulding and innovation facilitator Holloway Group is one of the few Australian-based plastic injection moulding companies that can produce large goods.

So when owner Matthew Holloway saw a concrete void filler product that was being imported from China, he contacted the owner to see if they could do business.

"As a growing organisation, we are always looking for new opportunities to expand into new industries and to form new business partnerships," Mr Holloway said.

"I read about Biax Foundations' concrete void filler product in an article on LinkedIn and knew straight away that it was something we could manufacture."

Up until that point, Smeaton Grange-based Biax Foundations was manufacturing their product in China and importing it into Australia. The freight costs and blown out lead times made this difficult to sustain.

"Not only are we manufacturing the Biax product, but we've assisted with the improved design of the void filler, and will be assisting with their supply chain and distribution," Mr Holloway said.

"Our engineers and industrial designers assisted with a Finite Element Analysis (FEA) and were able to simulate the product using CAD (computer-aided design) and produce real-time data.

"The second series design that will be supplied from Holloway Group is a much more innovative product, lighter and stronger than the incumbent design.

"By working with another local company, we're contributing to the local economy and creating jobs in the Australian manufacturing industry."

The Biax system is a new product that provides a framework and fills a void for concrete slabs in the construction industry.

Made from 100 per cent recycled polypropylene, it is connected using the keystone clips that form a grid.

Products made from polystyrene have been used in a similar way in the construction industry for many years.

"The larger of the two moulds for the Biax product weighs eight tonnes and is one metre by one metre by 900 millimetres, which gives an idea of the scope of this product," Mr Holloway said.

"That mould, which has just been commissioned, will be used in our largest injection moulding machine to produce the void fillers.

"The Biax system has several advantages over its polystyrene competitors, including its compact nesting ability for freight and storage, and it is not as lightweight so does not blow around on building sites.

"When foam is cut on site it also ends up in waterways and waste streams and the Biax system eliminates this issue."

Another focus of Holloway Group is environmental sustainability. The Biax product is made of 100 per cent recycled plastic. Using a void filler also ensures that less concrete is used in the construction process. It also easily nests together for transport, cutting down on transport costs. Each pod weighs less than three kilograms.

The Holloway Group-manufactured Biax Foundations' pods will begin rolling off the production line in a few weeks.