Good to see Penguin Composites get a contract to supply fibreglass parts for the Hawkei, following Quickstep’s decision to cancel (Quickstep refocussed this year, and glass fibre bonnets etc. were non-core business).
I visited Penguin’s factory a couple years ago and owner John van der Woude told me they’d tried their hand manufacturing just about everything from dog wash trailers to caravans to septic tanks over the years. They started nearly four decades ago, making fibreglass canoes for outdoor enthusiasts.
Like many in the north-west of Tassie, they were a supplier to Caterpillar Underground Mining, before Cat moved this manufacturing to Thailand, and were working out what they’d do to fill the gap.
A lot of people think in terms of big shipyards or JSFs on runways when they think of our defence investment, but there’s a lot of mum and dad suppliers like Penguin, of course, that make a local defence industry possible.