In 1934, Keech Castings was a fledgling three-person foundry operation. Today, Keech Australia is one of the country’s most awarded and innovative operations, with customers across the globe.
Much has changed over the past eight decades but at its heart, Keech Australia retains the focus on innovation that was introduced by founder Gordon Keech Snr. David Keech, current Director, Sales and Marketing and grandson of Gordon Keech Snr, says this has been the secret to the company’s longevity.
“My grandfather established the company on a premise of innovation. He looked beyond what everyone else was doing to find more efficient ways of manufacturing steel,” David says.
“Throughout the 1940s and 50s, Keech was the only firm in the world to manufacture hand and sharp edge tools to size and shape as high-grade steel castings, including the famous Keesteel™ Axe that is still used in wood chopping competitions today.
“Keech still has its ear to the ground, and we respond to our customers with new products manufactured using state-of-the-art technologies.”
In our early days, Keech focused on the Keesteel range of tools and the Keech range of Agricultural tillage parts.Today we have a strong association with the industrial, mining, rail, defence and agricultural industries, producing steel alloys, stainless steel and SG castings.
Dedication to research and development of new products, process improvement and staff training is a key to Keech’s continued growth and success. We invest more than 7.5 per cent of annual revenue in research and development and they work to continuously build on this investment by bringing new and innovative products to market.
“Innovation is not just a word at Keech; it’s the philosophy of our entire organisation. We have invested millions of dollars into innovative solutions to ensure Keech is at the forefront of manufacturing for the global mining and industrial sectors,” David says.
In 2011, Keech opened its Innovation and Quality Centre that acts as a central hub where metallurgists, scientists, innovators, patternmakers and QA specialists work together. The centre develops new products to combat issues experienced by Keech customers in the field, and to continuously improve its existing products and processes.
In 2013, Keech was ranked seventh in the Business Review Weekly 50 Most Innovative Companies list, ahead of some of Australia’s largest organisations.