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IDT Australia to raise $7 million for mRNA vaccine production

Pharmaceutical manufacturer IDT Australia is to raise $7 million a fully underwritten entitlement offer of fully paid ordinary shares to eligible shareholders. The funds raised will be used to fund capital expenditure relating to current and potential future works in the mRNA therapeutics field including with Sanofi Australia, enhancing IDT’s capabilities in Antibody Drug Conjugate ahead of an expected increase in work orders, as well as general working capital. In April IDT announced it has signed an agreement with Sanofi to manufacture Sanofi’s mRNA vaccines now under development, as well as developing IDT’s aseptic sterile injectables filling facilities in Melbourne. IDT’s Chair Mark Simari said: “The Company has made significant progress over the past year through securing a number of international and Australian commercial contracts, including Sanofi Australia, and is continuing to build a diverse client portfolio, whilst driving profitability as the business scales.”

Ampcontrol wins innovation award for mine electric vehicle

Electrical engineering manufacturer Ampcontrol was awarded the Innovation Award 2024 for Ampcontrol Electric Vehicle DRIFTEX (pictured) at the Mine Electrical Safety Conference (MESC) Awards. The Innovation Award win signals peer-to-peer recognition within the industry of what is the world’s first IECEx Group I certified Electric Vehicle (EV), using an Intrinsically Safe traction battery. DRIFTEX offers significant health and environmental improvements on mine sites by removing carcinogens, minimising noise, and reducing demand on mine site ventilation. Steve Burgess, Ampcontrol Manager – Electro-Motion Strategy said: “The beauty of DRIFTEX is the technology behind it can be leveraged to satisfy other similar demands of industry to aid in mine site electrification.” DRIFTEX incorporates a 60kWh Intrinsically Safe battery management system with a long cycle life of 20,000-30,000 cycles.

Memphasys appoints Dr David Ali as full time CEO

Reproductive biotechnology company, Memphasys has announced the appointment of Acting Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director Dr David Ali as Chief Executive Officer on a permanent full-time basis, as well as an Executive Director. Dr Ali is a highly qualified senior executive with more than 40 years’ experience in medical management, business development, sales and marketing for pharmaceutical, medical device and diagnostic companies in human and animal reproduction. Chairman Robert Cooke said: “During his tenure as Acting CEO, he has overseen multiple distribution agreements in international marketplaces, accelerated sales activity in Japan as well as continued the development of Memphasys’ other technologies. With this extensive experience, David is exceptionally well equipped to lead the company in its next chapter of growth.”

Genetic Signatures to raise $30 million for commercialisation

Molecular diagnostic company Genetic Signatures has announced a $30 million to commercialise its enteric parasite product in the United States and strengthen its balance sheet. The company has received US Food and Drug Administration approval for its EasyScreen Gastrointestinal Parasite Detection Kit and plans new ‘customer installations’ and the establishment of manufacturing facilities in the US. Proceeds will also fund next generation instrument development and new product development. The raising is made up of a $6 million institutional placement and a $24 million non renounceable entitlement offer to existing shareholders. Genetic Signatures has also appointed the managing director of Roche Diagnostics Australia Allison Rossiter as CEO.

NIOA opens office on US Army base

Munitions manufacturer NIOA’s American company is open for business in the heart of the US Army’s garrison for armaments development and procurement. In officially opening the company’s office at Picatinny Arsenal in New Jersey, NIOA Group CEO Robert Nioa said: “Co-development, co-production and co-sustainment within the allied network starts with co-location. NIOA is committed to expanding its participation in and collaboration with the US defence industrial base to enhance US and allied global security objectives. Opening a permanent office at the US Army’s centre for munitions research and technology provides a gateway for us to grow our presence in the US and work more closely with America’s long-standing allies, particular its AUKUS partners in the UK and Australia.”

DefendTex in discussions to acquire Avibras Indústria Aeroespacial, Brazil

Avibras Indústria Aeroespacial of Brazil and Victorian drone manufacturer DefendTex have been engaged in advanced discussions to facilitate a potential investment aimed at the economic and financial recovery of Avibras, with the goal of maintaining its manufacturing facilities in Brazil, resuming operations as soon as possible, and ensuring the fulfillment of contractual obligations with the Brazilian government. According to a statement: “Both companies are committed and diligently working to finalize the specific terms and conditions of the investment and will keep the market informed.” Avibras is a Brazilian technology and innovation company with products, systems, and engineering solutions in the Aerospace, Defense, Electronics, Vehicles, and Aeronautical sectors. DefendTex has capabilities including in precision guided weapons, energetics, rocket manufacturing and loitering munitions.

Wellnex Life launches new medicinal cannabis brand

Medicinal cannabis manufacturer Wellnex Life will launch Wellness Life, a new medicinal cannabis brand on 1 July 2024. Under the Wellness Life brand, Wellnex Life will launch a full range of medicinal cannabis products. These products, designed with insights from best-selling market trends, will be made available through the extensive Chemist Warehouse network in Australia. Wellnex Life and OneLife Botanicals, which own the new brand, have appointed Dr Sylvia Victor to oversee all activities with the joint venture using her extensive experience in healthcare and alternative medicines.

Memphasys appoints Klean Gene to assist in product commercialisation

Reproductive biotechnology company Memphasys has announced the appointment of Klean Gene, a company established by animal sector executives Michael Cameron and Rod Wellstead, to assist the company in evaluating commercial pathways for its animal applications. Under the terms of the agreement, Cameron will work with Memphasys Animal Breeding Solutions Project Team to undertake evaluations of the effectiveness and commercial potential of AI-Port and RoXsta devices and other products generated by the research team at the University of Newcastle. CEO Dr David Ali said: “The appointment of Klean Gene Pty Ltd, is a major step forward for Memphasys in developing potential commercial pathways for our animal products. Without a doubt both Mike and Rod bring a significant wealth of experience and have strong networks in the agricultural industry.”

PhD project on human factors in cobots completed

PhD researcher Jasper Vermeulen on completing his candidature last week. According to a statement on Linkedin by the Cobotics Centre, the researcher from QUT (Queensland University of Technology) studies were titled “Human Factors in Collaborative Robotics” and conducted under the supervision of Glenda Caldwell, Müge Belek Fialho Teixeira, Alan Burden from QUT (Queensland University of Technology) with external supervisor, Matthias Guertler from University of Technology Sydney. The project was conducted with manufacturers Stryker and B&R Enclosures. “When humans and collaborative robots start working together in close proximity on the same tasks, issues of human factors can arise,” reads the statement from the Cobotics Centre. “This project… explores which human factors are relevant in improving human-robot interactions” and “employs a socio-technical systems approach to gain an understanding of how human workers and cobots jointly shape their collaboration.” More on the project is available here.

Engineers Australia climate conference agenda released

This week Engineers Australia announced the speaker and panel lineup for its 2024 Climate Smart Engineering Conference (CSE24) to be held in Brisbane’s W Hotel on August 22 and focus on the clean energy transition. CSE24 will be opened by Queensland’s Director-General Mike Kaiser and Engineers Australia President Dr Raj Aseervatham and CEO Romilly Madew, followed by a keynote address from The Next Economy’s Head of Programs Lizzie Webb on building support and capacity for a just energy transition. Registration and other details can be found here.
Picture: Ampcontrol/DRIFTEX mine electric vehicle

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