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Quickstep completes $10m+ capital investment to support defence exports

2 March 2017

Quickstep Holdings, an Australian manufacturer of advanced carbon fibre composites, has completed the planned A$10 million capital expansion of its aerospace manufacturing facilities in Bankstown, NSW including a capital investment program for the expansion of JSF production and the commissioning of an automated robot drilling cell for C-130J production.

This takes the total investment at the Bankstown site to around A$30 million and provides Quickstep with further production capacity to take on addition manufacturing work at the facility, says CEO and Managing Director David Marino.

"We are delighted to announce that we have completed the capital expansion of our Bankstown facilities where we manufacture advanced composite components and complex assemblies for export to our global customers - Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and BAE Systems. We have recently invested in additional capital equipment at the Bankstown site to support contracted growth with our existing customers, and we now have production capacity to take on additional growth opportunities, which will improve our performance and profitability. ”

Quickstep has also recently completed a capital investment program in robotic drilling for manufacture of wing flaps for the C-130J which has now entered production, says Mr Marino. "We are the global supplier of this complex assembly to Lockheed Martin; the current C-130J contract is over five years to 2019, and there is a strong expectation that this will be extended in line with Lockheed Martin’s orders from the U.S. Government. The C-130J contract is now producing 24 ship sets per annum plus spares."

The company has also completed over A$5 million of capital investment to increase capacity for the manufacture of major composite parts for the JSF Program for Northrop Grumman under a contract valued at A$700m over the life of the program. 558 JSF parts were manufactured for Northrop in FY16, and the program is now ramping up, with Quickstep on track to triple the volume, says Mr Marino. "Peak volumes are still a few years away with full rate production continuing well into the 2030s."

Mr Marino says Quickstep had also completed qualification and initial production of the composite parts for the JSF Vertical Tail program and is supplying vertical tail spars, skins and fairings to Marand Precision Engineering for assembly and supply to BAE Systems in the UK under a contract valued at A$139m sales over the life of the program. Quickstep supplied 32 vertical tail parts in FY16 and this volume is expected to grow in line with JSF production increases. The JSF growth will see an increase of about 80 direct staff at the Bankstown site by 2019, says Mr Marino.

Issued:
02/03/2017

Media Contact Details::
Ashley Rambukwella / Robert Williams
Financial & Corporate Relations
Telephone: +61 2 8264 1004 / 0407 231 282
or +61 2 8264 1003 / 0468 999 369
E: a.rambukwella[at]fcr.com.au or r.williams[at]fcr.com.au