After decades on divestments in the manufacturing sector, has the tide finally turned?

We certainly hope so with the Government’s Modern Manufacturing Initiative (MMI) prioritising smart sovereign capability. What’s most exciting about the MMI is that it can help create an equal platform for small, medium and large manufacturers across the six priority sectors. The masters of the bespoke, the IP generators, and the job creators will be our small- and medium-sized companies. The co-investment from the Government for innovation hubs and testing facilities will provide opportunities for collaboration while also protecting differentiating IP. Our experts can help you leverage the opportunities ahead.

Top trends in Manufacturing

  • Smart manufacturing comes to the fore
    Smart manufacturing comes  to the fore
    The MMI is underpinned by technology, automation and data analytics. Smart manufacturers will capture the market.
  • Value-adding isn’t just a gimmick
    Value-adding isn’t just a gimmick
    For decades the trend has been to send raw materials overseas to be turned into high-value products that we then buy back. This is already reversing with two plants in WA turning lithium into batteries.
  • Smart manufacturing & new skills
    Smart manufacturing & new skills
    Robotics, engineering, data analytics, cyber security and programming will all become essential skills for modern manufacturers.

Issues impacting businesses in Manufacturing

How is your business tracking?

Our Manufacturing Growth Benchmarking report is a bespoke overview for companies to see how they measure up against other manufacturers in the current environment. Drawing on a large amount of financial data from 100 Australian mid-sized manufacturers, the report outlines benchmarks and trends, covering a number of areas including but not limited to: sales, gross margins, workforce costs, EBITDA, inventory lock-up, debtor days, debt levels, and return on equity. Our 2021 report will be our 5th edition of this report.

Our Australian manufacturing clients have access to this invaluable benchmark report, so please contact us for more information. 

Is your organisation ready to embrace a change in pace?

The roadmap has been laid out for modern manufacturing, but is your organisation ready to embrace the shift? We work with companies to optimise their working capital and to (re)design their operations to be more profitable, create better customer relationships, prepare for future transactions or expand.

Learn more about our approach to performance improvement

Grants and concessions to kickstart growth

With sovereign capability and supply chain resilience high on both the state and federal agendas, we’re seeing a wide range of grants available to support manufacturers to innovate, invest and create new jobs. Grants released by governments are very often highly competitive. Being grant-ready will increase your odds of accessing this government funding.

Learn more about accessing government funding

R&D and commercialising the next great idea

When push comes to shove, the manufacturing sector in Australia has always punched well above its weight in terms of R&D and innovation. New ways of doing things and new products have originated out of manufactures trying to do more with less and finding ways to differentiate themselves in a crowded global market. Our innovation incentives experts understand how to leverage the lifecycle of innovation to help take your next great idea to the next level.

Listen as we explore how to commercialise that great idea

What are you doing with the data at your fingertips?

You don’t need to be Google to leverage your insights into tangible assets. In fact, manufacturers may be sitting on a treasure trove of data that can support better decision making, improve your supply chains and quality control, and help you understand your customer better. Your organisation is collecting data right now, even if you don't know it. And if you do know what data you have, do you know how to use it?

Listen as we explore how any company can leverage their data better

We cut through the complexity of compliance

As manufacturers around Australia respond to new market demands both here and overseas, it’s important to have a handle on your obligations and requirements. Whether it’s tax, audit or risk, we cut through the compliance and complexity.

Our Manufacturing services


Grant Thornton’s expert audit approach will help you comply with regulations, and improve business strategies and internal processes.


We work with clients at all stages of their business lifecycle – and through all their organisation’s major events – to navigate tax obligations.

Finance and funding

Our finance and funding team works to access sources of finance, present your case to potential funders and negotiate a long-term sustainable relationship.


Our consulting team supports its clients with hands-on and proactive advice on all aspects of their strategies for sustainable growth.

Get in touch

Michael Climpson
Partner & National Head of Manufacturing
Michael Climpson
Learn more about Michael Climpson
Michael Climpson
Partner & National Head of Manufacturing
Michael Climpson

Get in touch

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Michael Climpson

Value-adding and mastering the bespoke

Manufacturing isn’t just sending “stuff” overseas. It’s generating value at home as well. You will have heard this a lot – “value add”. It isn’t just a gimmick or a slogan. It’s where the economic benefit in production lies. And Australia has an opportunity to ramp this up significantly under the MMI.

Investment in technology drives efficiency and growth | Redback Boots

Listen to Mark Cloros, Co-founder & Director of Redback Boots, talk about the influence of technology and changes in client expectations has had on shaping their business.

grant thornton Australia


Listen to Michael Climpson, National Head of Manufacturing, talk about trends and issues facing the sector right now.

Creating business opportunities through grant program

Client challenge
Client challenge
Client challenge
Interpack is an Australian family-owned company that manufactures a diverse range of customised, quality metal closures for beverage packaging solutions. When COVID-19 disrupted international supply chains across many sectors, it highlighted significant weaknesses within Australia’s domestic manufacturing capability. Until recently, supply of some essential items for Australian food production, such as glass jar closures (twist-off lug caps), were produced overseas with no domestic supplier. Interpack saw an opportunity, identifying they had transferable manufacturing capabilities and knowledge to innovate and manufacture these crucial food closure products to service the Australian market.
The solution
The solution
The solution
Interpack engaged Grant Thornton to help prepare a submission under the Federal Government’s Manufacturing Modernisation Fund (MMF) – a fund that would support them to meet this new goal. Lead Partner Jacky Millership and the team leveraged their extensive experience to demonstrate how Interpack’s project aligned with the objectives of the MMF program, ensuring the proposal rated highly across all merit criteria assessments in a highly competitive process.
The outcome
The outcome
The outcome
Interpack’s MMF application was successful, one of only 86 successful projects. With the Government support, Interpack has become the only domestic manufacturer of these lids, using the latest automation technology to ensure global cost competitiveness of its products. This project enables Interpack to become a reliable twist-off lug cap provider, supporting national food security with Australian businesses no longer purely reliant on offshore suppliers.
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