ASDAM emerges as Australian owned defence manufacturing powerhouse

By Peter Roberts

Two of the veterans of the Australian venture capital industry have increased their footprint in defence manufacturing with their majority owned ASDAM advanced manufacturing business moving to take over another two Australian defence suppliers.

CPE Capital, founded by industry pioneers, former Austrade boss Bill Ferris, and Joe Skrzynski, have been investing in majority owned ASDAM which has grown to become the largest supplier to the F-35 joint strike fighter programme.

It has been reported as the purchaser of aerospace manufacturer TAE Aerospace and Swiss technology group RUAG Australia, having previously swallowed up Marand Precision Engineering and Levett Engineering.

ASDAM, formerly known as Marand, is a former automotive supplier which reinvented its business to become a global supplier of precision engineered solutions to a range of industries, including aerospace, defence, rail, automotive and mining.

The company designs and manufactures complex equipment for its predominately blue chip client base, including Lockheed Martin, Boeing, BAE Systems, BHP, Rio Tinto and carbon fibre road wheel manufacturer Carbon Revolution.

According to CPE Capital” “The business offers total manufacturing solutions that encompass project management, design, manufacture, installation, commissioning, ongoing maintenance and spare parts support for any Marand supplied precision machine or product.

“The business is also complemented by Levett Engineering, a South Australian based supplier of precision components and assemblies for the defence and commercial aerospace industries.”

The focus by Ferris and Skrzynski on defence manufacturing bodes well for the growth of a new, major Australian owned and controlled manufacturing house.

The two pioneered the venture capital sector with their investment funds including CHAMP Ventures but in later years moved their focus from early stage to mid-sized development and expansion opportunities.

They have a track record of patient investment in companies, including unusually for venture and development capital, in the manufacturing sector.

ASDAM is one of a number of companies owned by CPE Capital, which has made made 84 platform investments across $4.3 billion in funds since 1987.

Picture: CPE Capital

Share this Story

Stay Informed

Go to Top