Excellence in Manufacturing

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ACUCUT LTD - Even the name has been cut neatly

AcuCut was the Supreme 
AcuCut was the Supreme Winner at the Waitaki Business Awards 2022. Then-Oamaru Mail editor Rebecca Ryan (far left) presented the award to (from left) Abby Melton, Matthew Melton, and Kathryn Swann. PHOTO: SARI RENEE PHOTOGRAPHY
Oamaru business AcuCut is a CNC (computer numerical control) precision cutting business established in 2016. Its name is short for Accurate Cutting. It began by providing precision waterjet cut profiles for any industry, from engineering parts to small personal projects.

‘‘What began locally has now  expanded nationwide,’’ director and engineer Matthew Melton says. ‘‘Industries supplied include marine, agricultural, engineering, food manufacturing, robotics and general trades, to name a few.

The business has grown on our good reputation for providing high-quality parts, in a wide range of materials, in a short time period. Growth of the business has included moving to new premises, expanding the services we provide, with machines now specialising in laser cutting, engraving, CNC machining, UV colour printing and vapour blasting, as well as having three waterjet machines on site.

One of our successes in growing the business has come through strong customer connections with repeat business and word-of-mouth business referrals,’’ Matthew says.‘‘AcuCut’s successes for me include the year-on-year growth of our workload. The business is highly productive and efficient, whilst operating with just three staff members and maintaining a good work-life balance.

One of our standout moments in the last 12 months was securing a contract to waterjet cut all parts for a local factory, building a new meat chain. Fulfilling this took over 800+ machine hours, producing 2000+ parts, ranging from 3mm to 16mm stainless steel.’’


FARRA - A sustainable future delivering engineering that makes a difference

Since 1863 Farra has never been afraid of evolving or trying something new. In its 160 years as a Dunedin-based engineering firm, it knows for sure that the one certainty is change.

Specialising in contract manufacturing, access machines, and maintenance, repairs and overhaul, Farra’s work is found in aerospace, trains, mines, skyscrapers, and energy generation.

In 2019 Farra pivoted its contract manufacturing business to focus on high-end customers requiring consistent excellence from their supply chain. It chose to focus on public safety, transport, aerospace and defence.
‘‘Our strategy to capitalise on CM opportunities involved analysing customer needs and gaps and comparing them to our capabilities,’’ managing director Gareth Evans says.

‘‘We targeted Australasia OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) and made a group decision to be ‘the best manufacturing engineers in New Zealand’.

Continuous investment in quality systems, software, processes, and team development has led to a steady increase in our annual growth in our contract manufacturing business over the last four years and it is looking sustainable in the long-term, which is very exciting.’’

Beginning with one formally qualified person, Farra now has five with external ISO quality qualifications. The quality department has grown and further expansion is planned.

The 2023 industry body awards recognised Farra’s operations leadership and quality and education programme. Farra has also created many new workshop jobs for youth and women supported other Dunedin manufacturing businesses.


TODD ENGINEERING LTD - Successful business brings work to the South and creates careers

Todd Engineering’s vision is to grow into one of the biggest and most diverse manufacturing engineering companies in the South. It aims to be easy to work with, highly responsive and always delivering.

Owner Mike Todd established the South Dunedin based business in 2004 and today it operates across three distinct sectors: primary food processing, particularly the meat industry, where it works across Australasia as a one-stop-shop to design, manufacture, install and maintain conveyor systems and other specialist equipment; sawmilling and mining, where it designs, manufactures, installs and maintains specialist equipment and supplies engineering expertise; and the construction and building industry, where it is a preferred engineering supplier to significant companies.

Todd Engineering has grown consistently since 2017, increasing turnover by almost seven times. This year’s goal is a further 20% increase. It has expanded to offer consulting, design, manufacturing, installation and maintenance services to clients.

Growing from a workforce of three in 2017 to now employ 23, including seven apprentices, Mike has always recognised the importance of attracting good staff and developing great leaders.

Todd Engineering want to grow in primary food processing and sawmilling and mining, while continuing to provide top service to building and construction customers.

‘‘I am particularly proud that we have been able to grow, employ many local highly skilled engineers and to keep significant work coming into the local economy,’’ Mike says


Read more about our other 'Finalists '....


To buy tickets or find out more about the Grand Business South Awards 2023 on Friday 17th November click here.