Mincham Aviation soars to new heights in defence industry

South Australian advanced manufacturing company Mincham Aviation is gearing up for unprecedented growth since enduring the global financial crisis over a decade ago.

The company was established in South Australia in 1996, and over the past 22 years has built a reputation for supplying specialist parts to global aerospace and defence sectors.

Employing around 20 staff, the company specialises in the manufacturing and repair of advanced composite and sheet metal components for civil and military aircraft.

Despite being hit by the financial crisis in 2008, Founder and Managing Director Darryl Mincham says the company is expecting strong growth over the next three to four years.

“We’ve invested heavily in the business and its capabilities over the last few years to ensure we are prepared for future work and growth,” he says.

“The company has two major focuses: one is on service and we’ve had a good customer base for a long time now, but over the last 10 years we’ve been doing a lot of R&D (research and development) on product development.”

To cater for future growth, the innovative company is preparing to move to a new, significantly larger facility at Edinburgh Parks – a key defence industry hub.

The 8000 square metre facility is triple the size of the firm’s current site at Parafield Airport and includes the largest autoclave – an important piece of equipment for composite manufacturing – owned by a private company in Australia.

“It’s advantageous for us in the sense that we go from primarily a civil aerospace precinct to a defence precinct, and it’s fundamental for our future development plans and our growth targets,” says Darryl.

“Importantly, it’s located in a key area for Defence; we are right next to some of our major clients and the air force base.”

The company is involved in a range of aerospace and Defence-related projects, including designing and building unmanned aerial vehicle systems, specifically for Anti-Submarine Warfare, aerial delivery systems, components for US supply chains, sniper equipment, as well as aeromedical equipment for the Royal Flying Doctor Service.

“We’ve also had a strong hand in maritime. We were involved in the Air Warfare Destroyer program and have manufactured components for the Collins class submarines,” says Darryl.

“One area we’ve really cut our teeth on in the last 20 years is radar technologies, being a strategic partner of CEA Technologies and other sensor companies.

“Moving forward there’s an expectation we’ll get supply chain work on upcoming naval shipbuilding projects too.”

Mincham Aviation will be among 24 South Australia companies showcasing products and services on the Defence SA stand at Avalon Airshow, in Geelong, from 26 February to 3 March.

“Avalon will be a great opportunity to find new customers and potential future partners, as well as learn about developments in the aerospace and space industries. We’re thankful to the State Government and Defence SA for their support.”