This article first appeared on Convenience & Impulse Retailing, authored by Deborah Jackson
Frucor Suntory Oceania has commenced construction on a new +$400 million, state-of-the-art manufacturing and distribution facility in Swanbank, Queensland.
The facility will be an entirely net-zero operation and have the immediate capacity to deliver 20 million cases per annum, with the opportunity to scale in the coming years.
It will see Frucor Suntory embark on an innovation journey by integrating extended reality (XR) technology into its training and safety processes.
A ‘game changer’ for the Oceania region, the facility will enable the business to meet growing customer demand, strengthen in-house capability, and create a platform for further innovation as a future-focused business.
This week, Frucor Suntory teamed up with the Queensland Government’s Advance Queensland initiative to deliver a pitch challenge for virtual and extended reality experts to pitch innovative training and safety solutions in a manufacturing environment.
Following pitches from four shortlisted companies, tech start-up, Nexefy was awarded $80,000 and the opportunity to collaborate with Frucor Suntory in shaping the future of the Queensland facility.
Nexefy is known for creating immersive training experiences, using extended reality to create transformational learning programs. This approach will be a game changer in a manufacturing environment as training can be delivered in a truly immersive way with zero safety risk for participants.
The team will continue working closely with Frucor Suntory to further develop virtual training and safety programs.
Innovation minister Stirling Hinchliffe said collaboration with industry, local start-ups and entrepreneurs was important for building Queensland jobs and manufacturing.
“The Advance Queensland initiative is about turning great Queensland ideas into the job creating Queensland industries of the future in a competitive global environment,” Hinchliffe said.
“Pitch challenges backed by Advance Queensland have a great track record for connecting the Queensland knowhow of home-grown start-ups like Nexefy with Australian and international investors.”
Mark Toomey, program transformation director at Frucor Suntory, praised the collaboration with Nexefy.
“It’s been fantastic to see the creativity and talent that the local business community has to offer. Our site will be world-class, and it’s incredible to be able to source the technology and expertise we need locally as we build our new facility. The site is due to be online mid-2024 and we’re incredibly excited about our future,” he said.
Nexefy will embark on a partnership pilot program with Frucor Suntory to expand and refine the solution for implementation at the new facility.