Ampcontrol Rebrands Member Companies in Advanced Australian Manufacturing Expansion

Ampcontrol has today announced the major rebranding of its Member Companies to meet the growth and response to industry needs for innovative power solutions and service.

Wholly owned and operated by Ampcontrol is Austech, Burn Brite, Captech, CPS National and Verico. From 1 February 2023, these businesses will be rebranded to Ampcontrol including name, logo, and website.

The rebrand of its Member Companies comes as Ampcontrol accelerates its strategy to be at the forefront of developing and supplying advanced technology, products, and services to the resources, infrastructure, and energy sectors that enable a competitive advantage in a net-zero carbon environment.

“Our industry and customer needs are rapidly changing in the global low-carbon economy. Incorporating our industry-leading member companies into the Ampcontrol brand will result in our customers benefiting from a rapidly expanding portfolio of products and service capabilities, cutting-edge digital technology, and accelerated innovation to help solve some of the greatest challenges facing our future such as decarbonisation and renewable energy solutions”, said Ampcontrol Managing Director & CEO Rod Henderson.

The existing product and service offerings from Ampcontrol Member Companies will remain the same and form part of the trusted and reputable Ampcontrol offering.

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Ampcontrol Showcases Solutions Supporting the Energy Transition to the Clean Energy Finance Corporation

We recently had the pleasure of hosting a delegation of executives from the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) together with the Committee for the Hunter at our Tomago, NSW site.

As part of exploring clean tech commercialisation opportunities in the Hunter Region, the visit included a site tour, viewing several the innovative solutions designed, developed, and manufactured by #PeopleOfAmpcontrol that support the energy transition to hydrogen, solar and electrified products.

We were able to showcase our Battery Electric Vehicle, DriftEx, purpose-designed for supporting the mining industry’s move to electrification; LAVO hydrogen storage system, Gilghi, an off-grid water purification system for remote communities; and the award-winning Solar Qube, designed and delivered by Boundary Power, our joint venture with Horizon Power.

The visit to our site was part of the CEFC’s two-day tour of the Hunter organised by the Committee for the Hunter, and included visits to Port of Newcastle, Orica, and The Melt. The tour demonstrated the challenges and opportunities associated with the Hunter’s energy and economic transition, and what support industry and businesses require to deliver national commitments for Net Zero and clean energy.

Ampcontrol supports the energy transition and was pleased to be a part of the CEFS’s tour of the Hunter, which provided an opportunity for further collaboration between businesses, government, and industry to support a net-zero carbon environment.

Ampcontrol Delivery Partner of 50 Stand Alone Power Systems (SPS) in Western Australia

Ampcontrol is the delivery partner in the roll out of Stand Alone Power Systems (SPS) in the Esperance region, Western Australia, a green energy initiative by the McGowan Government.

As part of their commitment to cleaner energy and supporting local manufacturing, the McGowan Government will deliver 1,000 SPS over the next five years, with $45.8 million allocated to Horizon Power to deliver 150 SPS in the regions by 2025.

A media statement confirmed the first 50 of the 150 SPS will be rolled out by Horizon Power in the Esperance region from January 2023. Boundary Power, a joint-venture between Ampcontrol and Horizon Power, will deliver the SPS units.

This roll out of the Renewable Stand-Alone Power System (SPS) product – R-Series is part of Horizon Power’s ‘Renew the Regions’. Renewable Stand-Alone Power Systems are a commercially viable alternative to traditional ‘Poles and Wires’ and provide a safer, more reliable power source for remote customers.

The deployment of the systems allows for the removal of 260 kilometres of overhead powerlines, improving safety and supporting the Western Australian Government’s drive towards a low carbon future.

Each system consists of solar panels, battery storage and back-up diesel generation, with its size depending on the customers’ demand – which is on average anywhere from 10 to 70 kilowatts hours a day.

Regional communities will benefit from the SPS rollout, with the removal of ageing power infrastructure and the delivery of cleaner energy, with the systems providing an average 80 per cent renewable energy.

Comments attributed to Energy Minister Bill Johnston:

“In keeping with our commitment to decarbonise energy in Western Australia and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80 per cent by 2030, we committed to roll out 1,000 SPS across the State.

“The Esperance region will benefit from the roll out of the first 50 of these clean energy systems from January, with nine already constructed and ready for installation.

“Western Australia is leading the way in the green energy evolution, improving safety and reliability in regional areas at the same time.”

Read more here.

Keeping Australian manufacturing strong

We’re passionate about keeping manufacturing jobs here in Australia. If you’ve ever considered working for Australia’s largest electrical engineering company, take a look at our job openings: Current Job Opportunities.

Joining BHP in Canada on Project Vital to Global Food Supply Chain

Ampcontrol has been named the supplier for conveyor control systems for Stage 1 at the BHP Jansen Potash Project in Saskatchewan, Canada.

Predominantly used as a fertiliser, potash provides a rich source of potassium which keeps soils fertile and maximises food production. Potash demand is set to increase with global population growth and food demand. This will benefit global crop production through the sustainable intensification of agriculture and the optimisation of crop yields.

iMAC has achieved Canadian Standards Approval

The Ampcontrol iMAC monitoring and control system has achieved Canadian Standards Approval (CSA) and will be used for conveyor controls onsite. This marks the first time an Ampcontrol product has been used in Canada.

Ampcontrol Managing Director & CEO, Rod Henderson, said the opportunity to work with BHP in Canada is an exciting one.

“We have a solid history of working with BHP in Australia for over 50 years. We are looking forward to furthering our relationship by participating in the Jansen Potash Project and are eager to share our world class electrical solutions with the broader Canadian market,” added Mr Henderson.

Designed to maximise productivity while maintaining the highest level of safety, the Ampcontrol iMAC system is customised to the unique requirements of sites and provides features such as high integrity emergency stop, broadcast messaging, and belt hazard identification functionality, with remote interface capabilities.

Working with BHP

“Ampcontrol was selected from a number of different vendors to supply conveyor control signal line equipment for the underground conveyor systems, consisting of upwards of 35 kilometres of conveyor belts,” said Jamie Scheffer, Integrated Project Team Manager Underground BHP.

“The Ampcontrol iMAC was the successful solution because it provided a remote interface which gave us the ability to link in remotely and help fault find should issues occur. This is particularly important for this site due to our remote location” continued Mr Scheffer.

BHP has announced an investment of US$5.7 billion in the Jansen Stage 1 project, which is located 140 kilometres east of Saskatoon.

Work will start on the conveyor system in late 2022 with the current project expected to be completed by 2025.

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Stacey Sleeman Joins Ampcontrol as Finance Director & Chief Financial Officer

  • Stacey Sleeman to join Ampcontrol as Finance Director & Chief Financial Officer in early 2023 from Tomago Aluminium and NSW Renewable Energy Sector Board
  • Appointment backs accelerated plans to be at the forefront of the national energy and low carbon economy transition due to Ms. Sleeman’s deep experience in the resources and energy sector

We are pleased to today announce the appointment of Ms. Stacey Sleeman as Finance Director and Chief Financial Officer commencing in early 2023.

Stacey will join Ampcontrol from Tomago Aluminium, where she has served as CFO and Company Secretary of Australia’s largest aluminium smelter and manufacturers since 2019. Stacey brings over 20 years of corporate finance, operational performance, business improvement, and senior leadership in resources, industrial manufacturing, and renewable energy. During her impressive career, Stacey has held senior financial roles with Anglo American Coal, PanAust, Deloitte, and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Ampcontrol Managing Director & CEO Rod Henderson said the appointment of Stacey Sleeman caps off a strong year and a new era for the Australian-owned manufacturing business in a rapidly changing industry.

“We are thrilled to have Stacey joining our Board and Senior Leadership Team to support our strategic plans and vision to be at the forefront of the global energy transition. We are developing and supplying advanced technology and innovative electrical solutions to help solve some of the greatest challenges facing our future. A highly respected and accomplished professional in the industry, Stacey’s deep experience in the resources and energy sector will add significant value to achieving our performance goals.”

Stacey also holds a board member position on the NSW Government Renewable Energy Sector Board, launched in 2021 by NSW Energy Minister Matt Kean MP. The role of the Board is to deliver on the NSW Government’s commitment to boost local jobs and manufacturing opportunities in the renewable energy sector.

“I am incredibly excited to join and be a part of the people-focused and innovative culture of Ampcontrol. I am eager to add value to the company in its growth strategy to work with its customers, industry, and community to deliver on Australia’s ambition for a thriving, low emissions future,” says Stacey Sleeman.

Welcoming Stacey Sleeman to the Board of Directors, Ampcontrol Chairman Greg Sedgwick said,

“We are honoured to have Stacey join as Finance Director and the first female member of our Board. Ampcontrol is uniquely positioned to capitalise on the decarbonisation thematic with its people, technology, and services. With such impressive credentials and career performance, I look forward to working with Stacey and her contribution to our talented and high-performing team committed to our strategic plans.”

In April 2022, Investment house Washington H. Soul Pattinson and Company Limited (WHSP) increased its shareholding in Ampcontrol Limited to full ownership and appointed a new Board. Ampcontrol remains 100% Australian, privately owned, and operated.

Stacey Sleeman will join Ampcontrol as Finance Director and CFO in early 2023.

Media Release

Amped Up: Ampcontrol Energising the Newcastle Jets for 2022/23 Season

Ampcontrol is excited to announce we are supporting the Newcastle Jets as a Major Sponsor for the upcoming 2022/23 Isuzu UTE A-League season, signalling our second consecutive year of partnership.

As part of our involvement with the Jets, the Ampcontrol logo will be proudly displayed on the front of the Newcastle Jets A-League Men’s Away and alternate playing jersey.

The 2022/23 Isuzu UTE A-League season kicks off this weekend with the Newcastle Jets proudly displaying Ampcontrol on the front of their Away jersey as they take on the Central Coast Mariners at Central Coast Stadium on Saturday 8 October 2022.

Rod Henderson, Ampcontrol Managing Director & CEO, is excited for the second year of partnership between Ampcontrol and the Newcastle Jets.

“We’re amped to be alongside this great club, supporting the growth and success of the Newcastle Jets and the A-League. We can’t wait to see the boys proudly wearing Ampcontrol in their first game of the season,” says Mr Henderson.

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Jobs Growth Strong Heading Into 2023

Ampcontrol Group is set to create more than 200 manufacturing roles across Australia by the end of 2023 as we scale up our operations in response to winning major contracts with the likes of BHP and other major players to a total contract value of $41m.

Alongside these contracts, CPS National (an Ampcontrol Group company) has been named a key delivery partner of the Western Power contract won by Boundary Power, a joint venture between Ampcontrol and West Australian utility Horizon Power, for the roll out of 101 stand-alone power systems (SPS).

The Western Power contract marks Australia’s largest single roll-out of SPS and will replace around 762km of overhead powerlines. Representing a period of significant growth for the Ampcontrol Group in the rollout of innovative solutions for the renewable energy sector.

More than 200 manufacturing roles across Australia

The cumulative job growth associated with the contracts secured in 2022 will see Ampcontrol Group grow by over 200 roles in the next 18 months.

It is a period of significant growth for the Ampcontrol Group in the rollout of innovative solutions for the renewable energy sector.

“Ampcontrol is proud to play an integral role in the uptake of innovative solutions such as SPS across Australia, supporting remote communities by providing a more reliable and cost-effective option through advancing renewable technology rather than traditional poles and wires,” says Rod Henderson, Ampcontrol Managing Director & CEO.

Keeping Australian manufacturing strong

We’re passionate about keeping manufacturing jobs here in Australia. Winning these contracts demonstrates our capability in the solutions we provide for utilities, communications and industry.

If you’ve ever considered working for Australia’s largest electrical engineering company, take a look at our job openings: Current Job Opportunities.

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Aligning Our Business Strategy With SDGs

COVID-19 has been a black swan event, disrupting supply chains globally. Rather than focusing only on the negative, we recognise times of great disruption are also opportunities to innovate and implement change.

With our business focused on applying the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), we utilised this disruption by looking at our overall supply chain management, and how we can achieve cleaner consumption and production (SDG 12) through responsible supply chain management.

Not only does this minimise supply chain risk long-term, but securing reliable and ethically sourced materials develops resilient supply networks which remain steadfast in times of instability.

Ampcontrol and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

When looking at the Ampcontrol supply chain, the SDGs were front of mind for Simon Coleman, our Executive General Manager –Health, Safety, Environment & Quality.

Speaking at the Hunter Business Development Forum on Wednesday 14 September, Simon spoke on how businesses can apply the SDGs within the Hunter Region NSW, alongside CEO of Wavia Global, Christina Gerakiteys and Executive Manager of Strategy & Engagement of Hunter Water, Emma Berry.

Simon emphasised the importance of collaboration when  mapping the trajectory of SDGs across the business. Working with our industry partners and other members of the Hunter Region SDG Task Force to determine the best business practices integrating the SDGs for the Hunter Region is a big part of the Ampcontrol business looking to the future.

Beyond augmentations to supply chain, the SDGs are prominent in business practices within Ampcontrol. It’s no secret Ampcontrol is rapidly growing our presence within the domains of renewable energy and electrification of mining. These areas speak directly to two of the SDGs: Applying innovative engineering solutions to act on Climate Change (SDG 13), while expanding access to affordable and clean energy (SDG 7).

Ampcontrol is committed to fostering good health and wellbeing for our employees (SDG 3). We promote wellbeing and ensure the healthy lives of our people through an internal program ‘Live Work Better’. Since we launched it in November 2020, we’ve had 816 Ampcontrol employees attend 62 Live Work Better sessions to learn about living and working better together. This extends to caring for the mental health of our employees.

We are taking the pledge as individuals in our everyday lives, and as an organisation with responsibilities to our communities, to setting the standard in implementing the SDGs within the Hunter.

Learn more about Ampcontrol’s role in the Hunter region SDG Task Force.

Engineering Excellence Celebrated at Sally Chapman Memorial Dinner

Due to COVID-19, we couldn’t publicly celebrate the award winners for their recognition by Engineers Australia in 2021. Earlier this year, the Sally Chapman Memorial Dinner was able to be held at Fort Scratchley Function Centre in Newcastle, NSW.

Sally Chapman was a much-respected Executive Director of Engineers Australia – Newcastle Division. After nearly 27 years, she became the longest-serving staff member in the history of the organisation. After Sally sadly passed away in 2009, the Sally Chapman Memorial Dinner has been a way to remember her enormous contribution and used as an opportunity to acknowledge the achievements of engineers within the Newcastle region.

The dinner—which had been postponed numerous times—finally went ahead on Friday 8 April 2022 and we were able to celebrate Ampcontrol engineer Dr Ian Webster for his two awards. He was named the winner of the esteemed M A Sargent Medal and the 2021 Professional Engineer of the Year, Newcastle Division.

We were also able to celebrate Ampcontrol engineers Richard Griffiths (Finalist 2021 Professional Engineer of the Year Award, Newcastle Division) and Thomas Steigler (2021 Young Professional Engineer of the Year Award, Newcastle Division).

Ian is Group Engineering Manager at Ampcontrol, and Adjunct Professor of Practice in the College of Engineering, Science and Environment at the University of Newcastle.

Ian’s background in engineering is both extensive and impressive, having enjoyed professional careers in both academia and in industry. As subject matter expert in numerous technical fields of electrical engineering, Ian has written over 30 invited and peer reviewed technical papers and conference presentations in the past five years alone.

‘These awards recognise Ian’s contribution to engineering across academia, regulatory bodies and industry for many years, where he made a noticeable impact. He has been a strong influence on many young engineers who are shaping the Newcastle region today. This is a well-deserved acknowledgement of Ian’s lifelong engagement and commitment to engineering,’ says Pierre Gouhier, Engineers Australia Newcastle President and General Manager – ResTech.

ICU Emergency Ventilator

Since joining Ampcontrol in 2006, Ian has led a number of high-profile industrial projects, most recently the development of an ICU Emergency Ventilator.

When the NSW Government issued a “call to arms” in March 2020 to develop a low cost, lifesaving emergency ventilator as the COVID-19 pandemic unfolding, Ian stepped in.

He assembled an impressive team of engineers, biomedical and clinical specialists from Hunter New England Health, the University of Newcastle, and Ampcontrol—as well as Hunter-based Safearth and Newie Ventures. None of the people assembled specialised in medical equipment.

Ian quickly identified there were strong parallels between the heavily regulated mining sector where safety critical equipment design and controls are the norm with the medical sector.

What ensued was an astonishing effort by 20 engineers, support staff and trades people in parallel, all galvanised by a single heath crisis to successfully demonstrate a working ventilator at the John Hunter Hospital in just 18 days. Ampcontrol was subsequently awarded a contract for design and supply of mid acuity ventilators for the NSW government.

While the skillsets, manufacturing capability and tenacity to produce an emergency ventilator already existed within the Newcastle manufacturing sector, it was nothing other than the leadership shown by Ian Webster that achieved what can only be described as an incredible result.

This is just one example of Ian’s many engineering efforts.

Dr Ian Webster on winning the awards

The M. A. Sargent Medal is awarded by Engineers Australia for longstanding eminence in science or the practice of electrical engineering.

Dr Ian Webster, Ampcontrol Group Engineering Manager said on winning the M A Sargent Medal:

‘I am humbled to be recognised by the M A Sargent Medal. The list of previous winners is inspiring, and to be recognised amongst them is a privilege and an honour. I am no more than the product of the opportunities that others have afforded me, and to them I offer my deepest gratitude.’

Dr Ian Webster, Ampcontrol Group Engineering Manager said on being named 2021 Professional Engineer of the Year, Newcastle Division:

‘Engineering is necessarily a collaborative effort and its outcomes a collective achievement. Above all, this award recognises all of those knowledgeable, dedicated and inspirational professionals with whom I have been fortunate to work alongside.’

A chance to celebrate

Dr Ian Webster is greatly valued and admired for his innovation in the electrical engineering sector and we look forward to seeing his further development in advancing Ampcontrol’s emerging technologies into the future.

The night was a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the achievements of Ian, Richard and Thomas, at both Ampcontrol and within the engineering industry.

Pictured L-R: Thomas Steigler – Research Engineer, Paul Reynolds – General Manager – Technology (accepting award on behalf of Richard Griffiths – Senior R&D Engineer), Dr Ian Webster – Group Engineering Manager, Pierre Gouhier – Engineers Australia Newcastle President and General Manager – ResTech, and Rod Henderson – Managing Director & CEO.

Ampcontrol Announces New Board With Focus on Innovation

Ampcontrol is announcing the new Board of Directors following the acquisition by investment house Washington H. Soul Pattinson and Company Limited (WHSP) which was finalised on 1 June 2022.

Ampcontrol welcomes Jaime Pinto from WHSP and Dr Glenn Platt from the Emergent Group as Non-Executive Directors of the Ampcontrol Board. Ampcontrol CEO Rod Henderson and Chief Financial Officer Nik Wyman retain their positions on the Board as Managing Director and Finance Director respectively. Greg Sedgwick remains as Chairman of the Board, and David Scammell from WHSP remains as a Non-Executive Director.

The first meeting of the new Ampcontrol Board took place on Monday 20 June 2022 in the Hunter Valley, NSW where innovation within the Ampcontrol Group was the key focus.

“I am very pleased to welcome both Mr Pinto and Mr Platt to the Ampcontrol Board. I’m looking forward to the knowledge and experience from this group of people being used for the benefit of Ampcontrol and our future,” says Rod Henderson, Ampcontrol Managing Director & CEO.

Welcoming Dr Glenn Platt to the Board is an indication of the importance Ampcontrol places on innovation. Glenn is currently Chair of the Ampcontrol Innovation Committee, a position he will continue to hold. His focus on how Ampcontrol can prepare for the future and looking for expertise outside of the Group demonstrates the commitment to adapting with the changing times.

“Innovation has always been important to Ampcontrol, now more than ever. We want Ampcontrol to remain as relevant as it was when we began 54 years ago, and that happens when we welcome innovation and respond to changing industry needs,” says Mr Henderson.

Jaime Pinto is the EGM Finance – Private Investments for WHSP, partnering with Pitt Capital Partners and the finance teams of significant private investee companies to help grow their business. Jaime has held senior finance and governance roles in a number of private and public companies, including CFO and Company Secretary for various ASX listed entities.

Alongside being Chair of the Ampcontrol Innovation Committee, Dr Glenn Platt is the Executive Director of Strategy and Innovation at Emergent Group. Glenn is a graduate of Harvard Business School, holds PhD and electrical engineering degrees, and has roles at multiple universities. Glenn has held senior roles at Evergen, CSIRO, Nokia, and a variety of engineering consultancies.

Read the full Media Release below.

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L-R: Glenn Platt, Jaime Pinto, Nik Wyman, Greg Sedgwick, David Scammell, Rod Henderson.