20/11/2017 - 10:44

Efficiency key to Split system

20/11/2017 - 10:44

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Perth-founded building systems manufacturer Pro9 Global is planning to shake-up the construction industry, with a new energy-efficient and fire-resistant wall and façade structure.

Efficiency key to Split system
Daniel Jukic says Pro9 Global’s building systems are a game changer for the construction industry in Australia and abroad. Photos: Pro9 Global

Perth-founded building systems manufacturer Pro9 Global is planning to shake-up the construction industry, with a new energy-efficient and fire-resistant wall and façade structure. 

Daniel Jukic’s new building façade system has secured its first international deal, signing a $20 million contract with Croatian strata management company Stano-Uprava this month.

The thermally insulated façade system will be fixed to 150 residential towers in the coastal city of Split as part of a pilot project, with Stano-Uprava collecting data around the system’s energy efficiency and presenting it to the EU, with a rebate funding its installation.

Mr Jukic said Pro9 Global was also currently seeking $12 million through a private capital raising campaign, run by Perth-based Merchant Group, to fund the construction of a second manufacturing facility in Sydney, with its current plant based in Europe.

“There’s a big movement globally to make certification for building materials compulsory, especially following the tragedy in London, for that fire-proof aspect also,” Mr Jukic told Business News.  

“My strategy from the start has been to find out what exactly is needed and make that – what are the problems in the building industry and what can we do to solve that?

“To a lot of people it’s just a house, but when you realise that they’re built slow, the amount of money that’s wasted and you’ve got this product that can fix all that … it just keeps me going.”

The Pro9 Global facade system.

Mr Jukic sold the mechanical mining services business he co-founded, MIE Enterprises, for more than $60 million in 2012, and then bought an initial minority stake in R9, a company that specialised in engineering wall panels. 

At that time, R9 was expecting John Hancock, son of mining magnate Gina Rinehart, to take over its leadership.

But Mr Hancock din’t take up the position, and Mr Jukic became the company’s managing director.

He bought the licence for the product and decided to start a new business, Pro9 Global, which he’s been building for the past 18 months.

“A lot of the product testing (at R9) wasn’t done; I had to finish it and developed a passion to get this thing right,” Mr Jukic said.

“I wanted to take it to the next level, not just provide panels but complete walls.”

Mr Jukic shifted Pro9 Gobal’s initial supply chain out of China and set up a manufacturing facility in Bosnia, and recruited a new team.

The Pro9 Global manufacturing facility in Bosnia.

Pro9 Global chief operating officer Matt Dragun said the original building systems technology was completely redesigned to deliver a more cost-efficient product.

“Daniel developed a fibre cement board, reinforced with magnesium sulphate, as the external and internal face of the wall system,” Mr Dragun told Business News.

“He also worked on developing the way the polyurethane is injected into the wall system for acoustic and thermal properties. 

“And he designed the interlocking system of the steel frame, which is IP protected and a key component of the frame to be able to tolerate movement in the steel without transferring through or damaging the surface of the board.

“Smarter building and better living – that’s our vision.”

Mr Jukic also developed new techniques with his manufacturing partners in Bosnia, designing adjustable moulds so that walls could be custom made at different heights, all at the same price point.

With a patent pending, in December the building systems technology will finalise its independent testing requirements for CE certification (European health, safety and environmental standard) and Codemark stamp, a voluntary Australian building materials certification widely used in Queensland and Victoria.

This, Mr Dragun said, would give the business a significant competitive advantage and prove its benefits, which included significantly reducing the time and cost of build, requiring just two days on site with a team of three unskilled labourers, largely using a robotic crane for installation.

Other advantages it plans to verify include its acoustic and thermal performance, as well as the system’s fire rating, which Mr Dragun said exceeded all competing products. 

Once certification is approved, Pro9 Global plans to fit the façade systems in Split early next year and start distributing its product around Australia.

Mr Jukic said Pro9 Global was considering an IPO and had appointed Veris managing director Adam Lamond as chairman of the company’s board.

Pro9 Global expects to fit the residential buildings in Split early next year.  

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