Manufacturing Productivity Networks

$600,000 is available to establish a manufacturing network to improve the competitiveness of Victorian manufacturers.

Manufacturing Productivity Networks


Manufacturing Productivity Networks  aims to improve the productivity and competitiveness of Victorian manufacturing firms by providing support to manufacturing networks to undertake activities or projects for their member firms that:

  • Improve their understanding, exploration and implementation of productivity improvement opportunities, including through research.
  • Facilitate new export markets, development of new products and production methods, and other value-added opportunities.
  • Enhance and increase collaboration within the manufacturing sector and between manufacturing firms and other industry and supply chain stakeholders.


The Project Streams

Stream One – Planning, Scoping and Information Activities

Manufacturing Productivity Networks Funding of up to $50,000 over one year is available under Stream One to assist networks to undertake network-based activities that will improve network members’ knowledge and understanding of productivity issues in their sector/ organisations and to explore, plan for and scope productivity enhancements.


Stream Two – Productivity and Competitiveness Collaboration and Implementation Projects

Manufacturing Productivity Networks Funding of up to $600,000 over three years is available under Stream Two to assist networks to undertake significant projects designed to enhance the productivity and competitiveness of their members.


Eligible Projects

The networks eligible for Manufacturing Productivity Networks assistance shall include: formally established networks (such as industry groups, associations, clusters, regional or locality based business groups, communities of practice, cooperative research centres, and technical and trade-based groups); and informal groupings of manufacturing firms with an established common productivity agenda, market or supply chain. In order to be eligible, an applying Manufacturing Productivity Network must:

  • Have a charter or purpose that represents the interests of Victorian manufacturing firms.
  • Have a membership of at least five small or medium sized Victorian manufacturing firms.
  • Have sufficient dedicated resources to manage the MPN project and coordinate the participation of member firms.



Round 5 closed on 5 August 2014. The next round is yet to be announced.


Latest Recipient

Minister for Manufacturing David Hodgett today announced a $544,000 grant to the Geelong-based Australian Sports Technology Network (ASTN) to help grow Victoria’s emerging sports technology industry.

“This MPN grant will help the ASTN deliver the innovative $1.088 million Victorian Sports Manufacturing Export Development Program,” Mr Hodgett said.

The grant was made under the Napthine Government’s Manufacturing Productivity Networks program which supports networks, manufacturers and research institutions to collaborate, improving the productivity and competitiveness of Victorian manufacturers.

“This grant will support the state’s sports technology manufacturers to tap into the expertise of research institutions and business experts so they can better take advantage of the opportunities the $300 billion global sports technology market presents,” Mr Hodgett said.

“More than 65 per cent of Australia’s sports technology industry is based in Victoria and the Victorian Sports Manufacturing Export Development Program will see the state’s growing number of companies involved in the industry work with universities and research centres on globally-competitive product innovations, and help them to find new export markets.”

Member for South Barwon Andrew Katos said the grant is great news for business in the Geelong region.

“The sports manufacturing technology industry is fast growing and has a strong presence in the Geelong area,” Mr Katos said.

“Today’s announcement shows the Napthine Government’s support for these growing industries and for jobs in Geelong.

Mr Hodgett said the Victorian Sports Manufacturing Export Development Program will deliver a range of activities over the next 3 years to cater for various levels of export readiness.

“This includes an innovation and commercialisation initiative that will see companies work directly with sports engineering and innovation research centres and the commercial research arms of at least six Victorian-based universities to identify and promote commercialisation of manufacturing technologies into sports product markets,” Mr Hodgett said.

“By sharing ideas and planning industry strategies, these network activities will contribute to Victoria’s manufacturing capability, jobs and export growth.”

“The Napthine Government recently announced its Victorian Jobs in the 21st Century Jobs plan. This visionary jobs plan will create more than 200,000 jobs, provide training to 850,000 young people and offer 60,000 apprenticeships, helping to transition Victoria into its next generation of jobs.”

Under the Manufacturing Productivity Network program, Victorian manufacturing networks can receive up to $50,000 to support collaborative information, planning and scoping activities, or up to $600,000 to support significant network projects.

“To date, we have awarded $7.3 million to 42 manufacturing networks under our MPN program to support them to establish collaborative initiatives to help grow their domestic and international trade, which has assisted more 1,120 companies,” Mr Hodgett said.

“Today’s announcement adds to our support of the ASTN, which includes an earlier $50,000 MPN grant for an Advisory and Mentoring Program and our partnership in ASTN’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Program with its business incubator, Headstart Accelerator, and the ICT Geelong Network.




AIRnet (Manufacturing)

AIRnet will assist manufacturing members to improve competitiveness in international markets and identify areas of productivity improvements through delivery of workshops, productivity audits and facilitation of in-bound missions.Location of Network: Melbourne

Advanced Manufacturing CRC

The AMCRC will undertake a number of additive manufacturing research projects demonstrating the design and fabrication possibilities in polymers and selected metals. Additionally, to assist greater industry uptake of the technology, AMCRC will establish training sessions in additive manufacturing.Location of Network: Hawthorn

Australian Industry & Defence Network –Victoria (AIDN-Vic)

The Australian Industry & Defence Network -Victoria (AIDN-Vic) will undertake a submarine collaboration study, which will involve researching capabilities and identifying gaps for defence SMEs and SMEs in adjacent markets to supply to the submarine sector.Location of Network: Ashburton

Australian Sports Technologies Network (ASTN)

The Australian Sports Technologies Network (ASTN) will undertake the ‘Sports Technologies Advisory and Mentoring Support Program’. This program aims to provide Victorian firms with access to experts and advisors in sports technologies commercialisation and marketing with the aim to develop business growth plans, investment attraction and export readiness.Location of Network: Geelong

Ballarat ICT

Ballarat ICT will conduct roundtables, workshops, digital manufacturing seminars, as well as develop an interactive information kit, designed to assist regional manufacturers to become more competitive and productive.Location of Network: Ballarat

Bendigo Manufacturing Network (Resources)

Bendigo Manufacturing Network will undertake a selection of activities that highlight Bendigo’s manufacturing capabilities in the resource sector, including development of a Quality Assurance package for businesses and assisting local SME’s to access major projects by way of collaborative promotion.Location of Network: Bendigo

Business Efficiency Network (BEN)

The Business Efficiency Network (BEN) will undertake the Hume Cleantech Manufacturing Capacity Building Project, which will involve conducting a study to assess manufacturing capacity within the City of Hume region. The Network will work with participating local manufacturers to examine growth opportunities for their businesses in clean technology industries.Location of Network: Broadmeadows

Defence Materials Technology Centre (DMTC)

Defence Materials Technology Centre (DMTC) and selected industry participants will undertake a titanium additive manufacturing benchmarking study.Location of Network: Hawthorn

East Gippsland Food Cluster

The East Gippsland Food Cluster will undertake a number of projects designed to improve the productivity and competitiveness of local manufacturers by sustainably growing the agrifood sector of East Gippsland.Location of Network: Bairnsdale

Engineering Network Geelong (ENG)

The Engineering Network Geelong will undertake analysis to prepare a market development plan on the needs and opportunities for clean technology industries. The Network will conduct capability assessments for participating manufacturing firms in the Geelong region, with the aim to identify opportunities and feasibility for businesses to expand into clean technology industries.Location of Network: Geelong

Geelong Manufacturing Excellence Network Program

The Geelong Manufacturing Excellence Network Program is a facilitated workshop program aimed at all management levels and operational staff to develop innovation skills and leadership competencies and improve productivity and competitiveness of participating member businesses.Location of Network: Geelong

High Performance Consortium 2

High Performance Consortium 2 is a program designed as a whole of business improvement model for non-competing high potential small to medium sized enterprises. The program incorporates events, site visits, coaching and facilitated peer-to-peer forums enabling enterprises to work together in a challenging and results oriented environment, aiming to assist businesses remain competitive and improve their productivity.Location of Network: Melbourne

Melbourne’s West Export Network

Melbourne’s West Export Network will undertake scoping and information sharing activities in the western metropolitan region. Areas of focus will be supply chain mapping, facilitating roundtable events to discuss business productivity improvements and investigating industrial resource efficiency opportunities in the Brooklyn region.Location of Network: Melbourne West (Brimbank area)

Mildura Murray Darling Wine Industry Association (Mildura Wines)

Mildura Murray Darling Wine Industry Association in partnership with the Mildura Development Corporation will undertake a suite of events including facilitated business workshops, one-on-one meetings and site tours with local manufacturers, aimed at identifying ways to remain competitive and increase productivity in the region. Outcomes will inform an industry development strategy for the Mildura region.Location of Network: Mildura

Key Commodity Manufacturers –AutoCRC

The Key Commodity Manufacturers Network, is part of AutoCRC’s Automotive Supplier Excellence Australia (ASEA) Division. It will undertake projects with the Tier 1, 2 and 3 metal stamping and plastics commodity suppliers for the automotive industry to improve existing supply chain efficiencies and explore new product development in other sectors.Location of Network: Melbourne

Recreational Vehicle Manufacturing Association of Australia Ltd (RVM Australia)

RVM Australia will undertake an automation feasibility project that will look at improving productivity for large, medium and small recreational vehicle manufacturers by reducing the time spent on the compliance requirements during manufacture.Location of Network: Hawthorn

Strategic Lean Improvement Consortium

The Strategic Lean Improvement Consortium will engage the Institute for Lean Systems to conduct lean assessments with non-competing SMEs with the aim to identify productivity improvements for each business. Location of Network: Hawthorn

Supply Chain Ecosystem Project – Scope (SCEP-S)

The Supply Chain Ecosystem Project – Scope (SCEP-S) under the auspice of AMTIL will scope network projects that will bring together SME suppliers and key industry primes from the automotive, heavy transport and defence sectors with research institutions to identify supply chain related areas of improvement. Location of Network: Wantirna

Victorian Vernier Society

The Victorian Vernier Society will undertake capability audits of participating network firms and conduct a workshop to explore collaborative approaches for improvement.Location of Network: Beaumaris

Victorian eCommerce Food Network (Premium Australia Foods)

The Victoria to China: The Victorian eCommerce Food Network will undertake to provide Victorian premium food sector manufacturers with collaborative access to Chinese markets using an innovative eCommerce platform.Location: Melbourne

Wimmera Grains Cluster

The Wimmera Grains Cluster will undertake the next phase of the ‘Protein Extraction Project’ which includes commercial site testing for protein extraction from grain by-product, and to further explore market opportunities for protein use.Location of network: Horsham

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