Brisbane manufacturer GaardTech has secured a $1.7 million deal to supply the British Army with its robotic replica military vehicles.
The Brisbane-based startup, founded by Australian veterans, is the first company worldwide to invent a flat-packed, full-size, steel, robotic military training system for defence combat training which is cost-effective and realistically replicates targets like tanks and missile launchers.
With all products locally fabricated in just six short weeks from Brisbane-based steel supply chains, GaardTech is helping to grow the state’s reputation as a national and international hub for defence innovations and manufacturing – and the proof is in the pudding.
In 2019, the company became a recipient of the Advance Queensland Ignite Ideas Fund, receiving a grant that has put their innovation in the spotlight and opened the door to the world’s most lucrative defence markets in the United States and European Union.
GaardTech founder and Australian Army veteran Steen Bisgaard said the newly secured deal means GaardTech’s first shipment to the United Kingdom would arrive in May 2021 ready for military trials.
“The deal happened after participating in an international Defence trade show in London in 2019, as one of the companies in the Team Defence Australia delegation,” Mr Bisgaard said.
“The Advance Queensland Ignite Ideas Fund grant got us to the world’s biggest Defence trade show and helped us promote our products to potential buyers.
“The contract is a huge win for us not only financially in challenging times, but also because it confirms the global demand and users’ interest in modern training systems.
“I believe we’ll attract further European Union and NATO interest when the UK Ministry of Defence demonstrates to the region, how our military training system translates into combat readiness.”
To date, the company has already proven the demand for their technology with every order or paid trial of their targets leading to repeat sales for the company.
It have established contracts with the Australian Defence Force’s Army and Air Force and the UK Ministry of Defence, has gained interest from other allied military forces and in 2019, their products were used in a joint Australian Army – US Marines training exercise in north Queensland.
Looking to the future, this innovative Queensland company plans on showcasing their target system at major military shows and exhibitions around the globe.
Once their international customer base is established, GaardTech expects its full-time workforce to grow to 50 staff.