Rapidly changing consumer requirements and technology have revolutionised modern manufacturing in the last decade.

They’ve been a catalyst for a shift in processes and outputs, with boosting smart sovereign capability high on the Government’s agenda in recent years. To remain competitive in a fast moving, changing market, innovation, agility and flexibility are key.

After decades of divestments in the manufacturing sector, challenges linked to global supply chain disruption putting pressure on strategic alliances across the value chain, and the increasing costs of trade, we look forward to seeing the impact of the Government’s National Reconstruction Fund (NRF) on continuity of supply. Aimed to generate revenue from investments and stimulate private sector investment, this fund across six priority areas intends to support you – the masters of the bespoke, the innovators, the IP generators, and the job creators.

To leverage this investment in innovation, avenues for collaborative partnerships, and to protect your IP, our experts can help you make the most of opportunities ahead.

Top trends in Manufacturing

  • Innovation supports modern manufacturers
  • Value-adding isn’t just a gimmick
  • Smart manufacturing requires new skills
  • Innovation supports modern manufacturers
    Innovation supports modern manufacturers
    From new technology and products, smart manufacturers are adept at differentiating themselves to capture a crowded, global market.
  • Value-adding isn’t just a gimmick
    Value-adding isn’t just a gimmick
    For decades, the trend has been to send raw materials overseas, turning them into high-value products that we then buy back. This is already reversing with two plants in WA turning lithium into batteries.
  • Smart manufacturing requires new skills
    Smart manufacturing requires new skills
    Robotics, engineering, data analytics and programming are being used by some businesses, but they will soon become essential skills for modern manufacturers.

Issues impacting business in Manfacturing 

R&D and commercialising the next great idea

Australia’s manufacturing sector has always punched well above its weight in terms of R&D and innovation. New ways of doing things and innovative products have evolved out of manufacturers trying to do more with less and finding ways to differentiate themselves in a crowded global market. We understand how to leverage the innovation lifecycle and can support you to take a great idea to the next level.

Mastering technology to derive economic value

Spanning across software, artificial intelligence, smart devices, automation, robotics and 3D manufacturing, technology has become an instrumental part of process optimisation in manufacturing. As upfront capital investment to adopt these often-disruptive technologies continue to fall, organisations find efficiencies across reduced inventory, material waste and energy usage, better affordability and – importantly – attracting interest from investors. This enables manufacturers to remain competitive, create bespoke products, value-add and derive economic benefit with scalability.

Grants and concessions to kickstart growth

With sovereign capability and supply chain resilience high on both state and federal agendas, we’re seeing a range of grants available to support manufacturers to scale up, innovate, invest and create new jobs. Although there are over 4,000 Government Grant Programs on offer every year in Australia, these are often highly competitive. Being grant-ready will increase your odds of accessing government funding and secure capital to support your growth.

Cutting through the complexity of compliance

As manufacturers around Australia respond to new market demands both here and overseas, it’s important to have a handle on your obligations and requirements. Whether it’s taxaudit or risk, we cut through the compliance and complexity.

What are you doing with the data at your fingertips?

You don’t need to be Google to leverage your insights into tangible assets. In fact, manufacturers may be sitting on a treasure trove of data that can support better decision making, improve your supply chains and quality control, and help you understand your customer better. Your organisation is collecting data right now, even if you don't know it. And if you do know what data you have, do you know how to use it? Are you across the latest regulatory considerations in the context of emerging tech and changing data sources? We can advise you around improving your processes and client experience to leverage your data to its full potential while protecting your IP.

Embracing a change in pace

Whether you invest in new products, focus on operational efficiency, consider merger and acquisition activity, or are about to adopt disruptive technology, is your organisation ready to embrace the shift? We work with companies to optimise their working capital and to (re)design their operations to be more profitable, create better customer relationships, prepare for future transactions or expand.

Increased focus on decarbonisation, ESG and sustainability transparency

ESG is high on the agenda, with stakeholders including investors, customers and employees, demanding the adoption of sustainability practices. Manufacturers in particular can leverage innovative technologies for machines to reduce carbon emissions, save energy, carbon and costs, and support Net Zero ambitions across products’ value chains. While early adoption of ESG reporting is currently restricted by little guidance on reporting and data points required, being on the front foot with processes, tools, measurement, implementation and disclosure of business activities will be key.

Our Manufacturing services


Our expert audit approach will help you comply with regulations, and improve business strategies and internal processes.

Finance and funding

From investments to merger and acquisition, we help you access sources of finance, present your case to potential funders and negotiate a long-term sustainable relationship.


We work with clients at all stages of their business lifecycle – and through all their organisation’s major events – to navigate tax obligations.


We take a hands-on and proactive approach to advise you on strategies for sustainable growth – from supply chain, to current opportunities and challenges, and more.

Michael Climpson
Partner & National Head of Manufacturing
Michael Climpson

Investment in technology drives efficiency and growth | Redback Boots

Listen to Mark Cloros, Co-founder & Director of Redback Boots, talk about the influence of technology and changes in client expectations has had on shaping their business.

grant thornton Australia

Creating business opportunities through grant program

Client challenge
Client challenge
Client challenge
Interpack is an Australian family-owned company that manufactures a diverse range of customised, quality metal closures for beverage packaging solutions. When COVID-19 disrupted international supply chains across many sectors, it highlighted significant weaknesses within Australia’s domestic manufacturing capability. Until recently, supply of some essential items for Australian food production, such as glass jar closures (twist-off lug caps), were produced overseas with no domestic supplier. Interpack saw an opportunity, identifying they had transferable manufacturing capabilities and knowledge to innovate and manufacture these crucial food closure products to service the Australian market.
The solution
The solution
The solution
Interpack engaged Grant Thornton to help prepare a submission under the Federal Government’s Manufacturing Modernisation Fund (MMF) – a fund that would support them to meet this new goal. Lead Partner Jacky Millership and the team leveraged their extensive experience to demonstrate how Interpack’s project aligned with the objectives of the MMF program, ensuring the proposal rated highly across all merit criteria assessments in a highly competitive process.
The outcome
The outcome
The outcome
Interpack’s MMF application was successful, one of only 86 successful projects. With the Government support, Interpack has become the only domestic manufacturer of these lids, using the latest automation technology to ensure global cost competitiveness of its products. This project enables Interpack to become a reliable twist-off lug cap provider, supporting national food security with Australian businesses no longer purely reliant on offshore suppliers.
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