In November 2010 Revolve Group, the owners of leading European supplier to the industry, Matrix Polymers, signed a significant deal to purchase the business of Vanglobe in Australia and New Zealand and form Vanglobe Matrix.
This acquisition combined the local compounding and micronising expertise of Vanglobe with the extensive range of rotomoulding materials and technical expertise of Matrix Polymers in Europe.
Vanglobe has long been one of the biggest suppliers to rotomoulding market in Australasia with operations in Brisbane and Perth in Australia and Palmerston North in New Zealand. In addition the company also has a research and development and warehousing facility in Melbourne.
Matrix Polymers is also one of the largest suppliers of materials to the rotomoulding process in Europe and has built up a strong reputation for technical excellence and for innovation and development of new materials.
The Group which specialises 100% on developing and producing materials for the rotomoulding sector will now operate from 7 locations across Europe, Australia and New Zealand and will have sales of approximately 50,000 metric tonnes of mostly colour compounded powder.
Over the coming months Vanglobe Matrix plans to add value to the industry by introducing new materials and by working with customers to help develop new products and create partnerships with European rotomoulders.
Martin Coles, Managing Director and founder of Matrix Polymers and Chairman of Vanglobe Matrix comments:
"This is a significant and strategic move which allows us to offer a wide range of new and specialised products, all backed up by exceptional technical expertise, to our market. We will introduce new higher end technical grades for application areas such as marine and leisure, automotive, agriculture, underground applications and products for the mining industry. We see that all of these sectors have good potential to grow and we are well placed to assist the development of products in these markets.
"This is a great opportunity for our industry as we will be actively encouraging links and co-operation between our customers on both sides of the globe. Following recent visits to some of the largest rotomoulders in the region we know that people are looking for opportunities to expand and develop and many could benefit by partnering with European rotomoulders who are interested in licensing, selling intellectual property or exchanging moulds.
I am very excited by the acquisition of the Vanglobe business. From the outset I was really struck by the ethical and honest way they work and the fact that the customer always comes first – this has always been our philosophy at Matrix. They are great people and have built up a strong position in the market by building long term, trusting and close relationships with their customers. We are looking to bring in new and innovative products which we hope can help our customers become even more successful.”
If you are interested in speaking to any of our European customers please contact us for more information.
The Australian rotational moulding industry has long been dominated by the manufacture of water storage tanks. Over 75% of all rotomoulded products produced are related to tanks and many are very large compared to what is seen elsewhere in the world. A common size of tank is 22,000 litres and some are as big as 48,000 litres.
Demand for water storage tanks has changed rapidly over the last decade and has developed from a rural customer base to a market which has experienced high growth rates in urban areas. Polyethylene tanks have largely replaced steel and concrete because they are cheaper to produce, easier to transport and can be economically produced in a wide range of shapes and sizes.
In recent years demand for water tanks in Australia rose dramatically following the introduction of government rebates which offered incentives to home owners to purchase and install rainwater tanks. The water tank rebate schemes in all states increased demand significantly and this led to an unprecedented increase in the number of tanks sold and created a boom effect which peaked in 2007. The subsequent withdrawal by federal and local authorities of many of these schemes had a severe impact on the industry and led to a significant fall in demand for water tanks. Since then the industry has experienced some consolidation and levels of demand have stabilised and are now more in line with those preceding the ‘boom time’.
While not in the same league as water tanks, demand for certain custom moulded and proprietary products have experienced some growing demand in recent times. Typical products include kayaks, boats, diesel tanks, road barriers, furniture, automotive products and products for ‘in-ground’ applications such communication boxes.
New Zealand also has a relatively large tank market but this sector is less dominant with custom moulded products relating to the agricultural and leisure industries accounting for a much larger market share.
The applications for rotational moulding in the region are not as widespread as in Europe due to smaller populations, a more limited supply of different materials and less knowledge in the design community of what the process can offer. There is significant scope and opportunity for Matrix to add value to the new Vanglobe Matrix by using its’ knowledge gained over the years to help provide more technical support and process know-how and by offering customers and designers a much wider choice of new materials.