65 new jobs as chopper firm’s expansion takes off
The fast-tracked $10.3m expansion of a Sunshine Coast aircraft manufacturing and modification facility on the Sunshine Coast will create more than 65 new jobs.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk on Monday said HeliMods would accelerate the $10.3m expansion of its current Caloundra facility by almost five years with support from the Jobs and Regional Growth Fund.
The facility expansion will include hangars capable of accommodating large civil and defence aircraft, such as Boeing CH-47 Chinooks, in a segregated and secure environment.
HeliMods, a former Telstra Queensland Business of the year, transforms standard factory aircraft into machines capable of performing complex special missions such as tactical operations, aerial policing, emergency medical services, and search and rescue operations.
The company, founded by Sunshine Coast local Will Shrapnel in 2002 with $5000 from his credit card, is now at the forefront of its field globally.
He said the government funding injection was essential in accelerating the company's growth and will allow it to compete for larger defence and civil contracts.
"This expansion marks a new and exciting milestone for our business," he said. "We have worked hard over the years to build capability that is unique and sovereign and have established a proven track record in industry across both Australia and global export markets," Mr Shrapnel said.
"This investment will now allow us to further scale our capability and become a major player in the aerospace and defence industries, from right here on the Sunshine Coast.
"It represents an opportunity for us to become a next-generation provider to defence, one that can deliver the highest levels of quality and rigour, without compromising on speed or agility."
Deputy Premier Steven Miles said the partnership would create more than 65 Sunshine Coast jobs.
Member for Caloundra Jason Hunt said HeliMods had developed world class capabilities in design, engineering, advanced manufacturing, certification and systems integration to customise helicopters."
"The company now employs a young, dynamic and highly skilled workforce of over 30 people, with more than half of those in specialist technical roles.
"We're partnering with them to create even more jobs in the future."
Originally published as 65 new jobs as chopper firm's expansion takes off