Motion keeps wheels turning in waste and recycling facilities

motion waste and recycling

With an unparalleled selection of products, expertise and branches nationwide, Motion is living out its promise to provide Australia’s waste and recycling industries with ‘more choices, more solutions’.

“If it moves, we can add value to it,” says Ryan Kendrigan, Executive General Manager of Engineering Services at Motion Australia. 

It’s this brand promise that has kept the wheels turning in waste and recycling facilities across Australia in the face of some of the toughest conditions.

As well as often harsh outdoor environments – think landfills and concrete crushing plants – recycling facilities and machinery are vulnerable to contaminants that can wreak havoc on conveyors and bearings. Lubricants in shredding and material handling equipment are an important part of preventative maintenance.

Motion’s lubricants, motors and gears have provided viable solutions that improve the reliability of machinery across a range of applications from metal recycling to construction and demolition waste and organics. 

The story of Motion Australia is one that begins more than a century ago, spanning the supply of bearings, industrial drives, motors, lifting, sealing and fluid power solutions, as well as engineering services.

“Each business within the Motion family comes with its own speciality. What’s advantageous is that with all these businesses and their specialties consolidated, our customers have an incomparable breadth of offer.”

Ryan Kendrigan, Executive General Manager of Engineering Services, Motion Australia. Image: Motion Australia

The Motion family includes long-established businesses BSC and CBC – which have traditionally supplied bearing and power transmission products to industry – as well as businesses that specialise in fluid power such as AIP, Hardy Spicer and Powell, and the hydraulic engineering business, CRAM. 

Under each of these businesses is a vast inventory of branded products – totalling more than 600,000 individual items – supported by a network of more than 1600 employees, 180 branches, 30 repair and service facilities and eight dedicated distribution centres.

“Over the past few decades Motion has shifted its focus from being a supplier of componentry to being a full solutions provider,” Ryan says. “We came to the decision through our relationships with customers, and learning what their needs are.”

While some legacy customers may still not be familiar with the ‘Motion’ name, the businesses and brands within the business are well-regarded. Stephen Forbes, Executive General Manager of Fluid Power Solutions at Motion Australia, says that Motion’s approach is still fundamentally a family-business – which is essential to the company’s evolution.

“For most of our history, we’ve operated as a group of family-owned companies and this heritage is reflected in the approach we take today, which is relationship focused,” Stephen says. 

“And our customers are looking to us to make it easier for them. They trust us, the brands that we supply, and the expertise we have to now provide full-service solutions.”

Broadly, Motion’s businesses can be grouped into three key areas – industrial solutions, fluid power and engineering services. As Executive General Manager for Industrial Solutions, Nick Kerwin says the consolidation of the company’s core businesses has had positive implications for customers. 

“We’ve worked with many of our bearing and power transmission suppliers for decades and have built on a wealth of expertise both in partnership with suppliers and in our own team,” he says. 

“Being able to go to industrial businesses with a holistic offering – that incorporates everything from traditional rotating componentry to hydraulics, hoses and fittings to bespoke engineering services, training, and even energy efficiency reviews – is hugely beneficial.”

Engineering growth

When Ryan Kendrigan began his career with Motion it was with the bearing company, BSC. He has since been part of an evolution that has seen the engineering division grow from being one or two people in each business arm, to some 350 specialised engineers.

“We started out as a bearing company that provided engineering support for traditional rotating equipment,” he says. “Now we can look at anything that’s operating in rotary motion, linear motion or hydraulic motion and provide a turnkey solution that will maximise the efficiency and output of that equipment.”

Ryan provides an example of a solution that was delivered to a steel manufacturer to illustrate how the consolidation of the company and its collective of skilled engineers can benefit customers.

“The customer needed a custom-built acid tank and one of the key constraints was the space in their facility. We came up with a solution where we half-built the tank in our workshop, then we dropped through the roof, coming through a whole bunch of different pipework at the sides, slotted it in position, and then built the top part of the tank once it was in-situ,” he says. 

“Once upon a time this would have required six or seven different companies to make that happen. Instead, we created the process and saw the solution executed from concept to delivery – ensuring it was working effectively afterwards.”

Importantly, the journey is ongoing. While engineering services comprise 14 per cent of Motion’s current revenue, Ryan projects that this will climb to about 30 per cent within the next decade. 

A fluid approach

Motion’s head office in Chullora. Image: Motion Australia

Stephen began his Motion career at Hardy Spicer, more than 20 years ago, in hoses and fittings. Today, he heads up the Motion Fluid Power Solutions, which encompasses hydraulic hoses, industrial hoses, mobile service units, and general fluid power componentry, such as cylinders, valves, and filtration products. 

“It’s quite a large market, and one that has been fragmented with lots of smaller, specialised businesses,” he says. 

“A key advantage of us having these specialised businesses under the one umbrella is it makes it a lot easier for customers. We only provide products that meet strict Australian standards and can provide technically precise  solutions.”

Importantly, Stephen stresses that the consolidation of brands under the Motion banner will not come at the expense of the small business mindset that has served many of the company’s customers well for years.

“It’s still vital that we have regional sales reps with strong local connections and knowledge,” he says. “But as part of Motion, they also have access to our extensive network of expertise, which will help them deliver the right solutions and advice to their customers.”

Solutions-focused 

While the general industrial supply side of Motion’s business is its most established, Nick Kerwin is enthusiastic about the opportunities that are unfolding in the industrial solutions space. 

“We’ve got a solid foundation in the bearing, power transmission and mechanical drive solutions space, largely due to the relationships forged over the years with our legacy companies BSC and CBC,” says Nick. 

“What’s exciting is being able to customise solutions so that businesses don’t have to consult with various suppliers to get what they need.” 

Crucially, Nick says, being a customer of any one of Motion’s divisions means customers can benefit from the resources and experience shared between them. 

“Our purpose is to keep the world moving,” he says. “That is what our customers want. They want to keep producing and maintaining their equipment to keep them moving, productive, and profitable.”

The future is in Motion

What does the future hold for Motion? 

Stephen says there’s plenty of room for the Motion business to grow both in its geographical coverage and range of solutions. 

“We’re always looking for opportunities to extend our capabilities to cover any gaps in our offering,” he says. “We’re also very conscious of exploring emerging technologies such as renewable energy. Plus, we’re looking to invest further into our e-commerce capability to better enable customers to access the whole Motion offering.” 

For more information, visit: www.motion.com.au

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