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Malaga firm cleans up in Japan

A MALAGA-BASED manufacturer has recently signed a deal with Japanese manufacturer Kawasaki to supply the Japanese market with special beach cleaning technology.

Project Industries was established in 1988 to service the marine industry. It has since moved on to develop the beach cleaner, which is towed behind a tractor or car to rake up items left on the beach.

The $1 million-plus deal means Kawasaki will use its extensive distribution network throughout Japan to market the ‘Boss Beach Cleaner’.

The order for 20 machines a year, selling for about $80,000 each, is expected to stretch the resources of the firm.

Until now Project Industries has produced only about eight machines a year for the domestic market from its 1,000 square metre manufacturing plant.

Also stretched will be the 30-strong employees who work on the project.

Managing director Dominic Sabatino said he was considering a number of options, including employing more staff or shift work, to cope with the additional workload.

The Japanese order is the first time that Mr Sabatino has dipped his toes in the export market. But the experience has widened his eyes on the estimated $40 million a year world market, which is currently dominated by major German and US manufacturers.

The technology is by no means untried in Australia. A number of local councils along Perth’s coast line, including Rockingham, Fremantle, Joondalup and Cambridge have already adopted the machinery.

However, Mr Sabatino said the experience has been more than just economically rewarding. It has also been a culturally enriching experience.

“The Japanese are awesome people to do business with. We have got on really well with them. They are very honest to deal with,” he said.

p See Trade, page 24

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