With over 90 years of manufacturing heritage, manufacturing is in Wollongong's DNA.
A key sector of the Wollongong economy, the local manufacturing sector produces an output of $8.5 billion and employs 11,600 people.
Wollongong’s advanced manufacturing sector is fast changing and diversifying, with significant operations in industrial, chemicals, mining, defence, construction, textiles and food and beverage.
Local companies compete locally, nationally and internationally by targeting niches which value high-quality, high-performance manufactured product. These include:
- Stolway exporting their HVAC products to the oil & gas sector in over 30 countries.
- Bisalloy exporting their armour-grade steel to militaries across North America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia.
- Barkbusters exporting their niche motorcycle equipment across Europe, South America, North America, Africa and Asia.
Key success factors in Wollongong include:
- A strong skills base, with the University of Wollongong producing over 600 engineering graduates every year and 60% of manufacturing workers carrying a trade certificate or higher.
- Access to world-leading research at the University of Wollongong across advanced materials, robotics and automation.
- Access to a lower cost base:
- Staff costs are typically 90% of those in Sydney.
- Staff turnover is a low 5%.
- Industrial rents are around 30-50% lower than in Sydney, and property prices competitive, allowing some firms to the ability to purchase their own sites.