LOCATION: Brisbane, QLD
Aus Ships, the ship builder chosen to make Brisbane’s new CityCat, is a longstanding BlueScope Sheet Metal Supplies’ customer. Director Tommy Ericson explained the secrets to the company’s success.
Based in the Rivergate Marina & Shipyard precinct on the southern side of the Brisbane River, the Aus Ships Group is a maritime business dedicated to providing a comprehensive products and services portfolio to high quality clients.
As Aus Ships Group Director Tommy Ericson explained, the business is made up of two distinct entities. “The first of these is the Aus Yachts studio, our design, professional services and consulting business, which is focused on everything from new design and owners’ representation for new buildings to technical consulting and advisory services. It involves a team of naval architects, engineers, draftsmen, and professional consultants,” he said.
“Then we have Aus Ships which provides our manufacturing capability. This part of the business is involved in new building, refit, repair and component services.”
Aus Yachts has operated globally since 2008, while Aus Ships was incorporated in 2011 and ramped up considerably in 2014. Overall, the Group employs 30 people, including over 20 in the manufacturing area.
Aus Ships Group’s customers include large Australian public companies (involved in ferry operations and infrastructure provision), as well as smaller commercial operators and Government Departments (like Police, Fisheries, and Parks and Wildlife) that may only run a couple of vessels.
“Then, we also serve ultra-high net worth individuals who make up the global super yacht market,” said Tommy.
As Tommy explained, his relationship with BlueScope Sheet Metal Supplies goes back to the 1990s when he worked for another Brisbane-based ship builder.
“That was where I got my start,” he said. “And that’s where I first met Regan Hess, the BlueScope Sheet Metal Supplies account manager we still work with today.”
“I’ve been working with BlueScope for 20 years now, and I’ve worked with Regan for over 15. She’s always been a big supporter of our business and the industry, and always provides a timely service.”
Aus Ships uses BlueScope Sheet Metal Supplies’ marine grade 5083 aluminium sheet and 6082 extrusion in the hulls and superstructure of all their vessels. On top of that, the company uses BlueScope Sheet Metal Supplies’ router cutting services for the profile cutting of all their aluminium.
“We get very good support from the BlueScope Sheet Metal Supplies team. They offer quality product, prompt delivery, and competitive pricing. Plus, the fact that they are an Australian company with a Brisbane base is a big plus for us. We always like to support local industry,” said Tommy.
“But the most important benefit of our association with BlueScope Sheet Metal Supplies is that it ensures we have a reliable supply of aluminium. Supply chain relationships like this are critical. We actively pursue them.”
Whenever necessary, Aus Ships can call BlueScope Sheet Metal Supplies and ask for mechanical properties or details on a particular material. Then, on the production side of things, they always know they have access to the materials they need at a cost-effective price point.
“This has a knock-on effect. It strengthens the relationships between us and our own customers. It means we can deliver on our promises; and do what we say we are going to do, when we say we are going to do it,” said Tommy.
Asked about the strengths and future directions of the Aus Ships Group, Tommy was equally positive.
“We intend to become Australia’s preeminent ship designer builder. That’s our key differentiator. We’re not just a boat builder; we integrate the design with manufacturing and provide a one-stopshop to our clients. From concept to creation to commissioning. We do all of it in-house.”
The company’s continued involvement in high-profile projects is testament to its direction. More than two decades since the arrival of the first CityCats, Brisbane is set to welcome the latest addition to its high-speed catamaran fleet. The 22nd CityCat is on the way. Able to carry 170 passengers, the two-level boat will have 16 seats on its upper deck, as well as lounges and USB charging points.
The vessel, which will be making waves on the Brisbane River later this year, will feature BlueScope Sheet Metal Supplies’ marine grade 5083 aluminium sheet and 6082 extrusions.
For more information visit www.ausships.com
Download Case Study – Aus Ships Group
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