A manufacturer that helps manufacturers manufacture has been recognised as the Manufacturer of the Year.
Out of nearly 100 outstanding candidates, ANCA has won the Endeavour Award for Overall Manufacturer of The Year.
Also the Exporter of The Year, ANCA is a go-to for those looking to put forward the argument that Australian manufacturing companies can mix it with the world's best if they're smart enough.
ANCA, a Bayswater-headquartered maker of CNC tool grinding machines, managed to boost its exports (which make up 98 per cent of sales) by 19 per cent in 2012, open a new facility, and released several innovative new products, including the MX5 tool grinder, ToolRoom 2012 software and the MicroPlus workholding and tool support system.
Its focus on innovation is a big part of the success story.
"ANCA continues to innovate each year and spends approximately 10 per cent of its revenue on R&D each year," CEO Grant Anderson told Manufacturers' Monthly.
"This continued investment is a conscious decision to provide leadership in our product segment through working and employing innovative people and collaborating with relevant universities and suppliers in developing these new innovations."
Along with its highly innovative workforce and willingness to invest heavily in improvements, the company's customer service efforts play a part in ANCA's achievements.
"In addition to the continued investment in Innovation and R&D, ANCA has developed a global sales distribution and service network which is focussed on being close to the customer, building strong relationships and providing fast response times," said Anderson.
ANCA launched two new products in the last year. Its MX5 mid-range machine was developed to focus on volume production of cutting tools. It also developed another machine to erode polycrystalline diamond, enabling users to produce tools with a longer lifespan. Both are particularly suited to aerospace manufacturing, where cutting and machining composite materials requires longer lasting tools.
The continued expansion of industrial output of China, and its rising industrial sophistication, have been helpful to ANCA's growth.
"During 2011/12, we had a significant increase in sales into Asia and specifically, into China," explained Anderson.
"The China market continues to industrialise and as more sophisticated manufacturing has developed, so has the need for high-technology machines."
ANCA has received many awards in recent years, and adds its two Endeavour Awards to achievements such as its induction into the Victorian Manufacturing Hall of Fame in 2003, seven Governor of Victoria Export Awards, and the 2011 Endeavour Award for Most Innovative Manufacturing Company.
Anderson and ANCA were rightfully pleased to have been awarded Overall Manufacturer of The Year for 2013, one award out of many for the nearly-four-decades-enterprise.
"Awards that ANCA receives provide recognition for all of the stakeholders at ANCA and particularly our employees," he said.
Image: Pat Boland, co-founder