Date(s) – 25/02/2014
3:00 pm – 6:00 pm


Kavanagh Industries

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Kavanagh Industries Factory Tour and Lean Japan Tour Briefing

A briefing will be held in Smithfield, NSW on Tuesday 25th of February to report on the outcomes of the 2013 Australian Industry Group Lean Japan Tour and share learnings from the Japanese company visits.

The briefing will be held at sheet metal duct manufacturer Kavanagh Industries. Kavanagh Industries participated in the 2013 tour and will be opening up their Smithfield facility for a factory tour prior to the briefing.

Attendance at the briefing is recommended to companies considering or currently implementing lean manufacturing principles within their operations. The factory tour and briefing will be followed by a networking session over drinks.

Kavanagh Industries

Kavanagh Industries is a family business that has grown to become Australia’s leading sheet metal duct manufacturer. The company’s 17,000 square metre Smithfield facility houses major equipment such as coil fed plasma cutters, automated straight duct lines, a spiral lock-seam round duct machine, and other automated cutting, turning and welding processes.

Australian Industry Group Lean Japan Tour

The Australian Industry Group Lean Japan Tour was held during the 3rd through 9th of November in Tokyo and Nagoya. The tour has been an annual initiative of the Australian Industry Group and Shinka Management since 2007 and is designed to provide Australian and New Zealand companies with first-hand experience of the world-class application of lean manufacturing within Japanese industry.

15 participants from 10 organizations attended the week-long study tour and learned about the implementation of lean manufacturing and kaizen (continuous improvement) in some of Japan’s top companies. Participants experienced seminars on manufacturing trends in Japan, hands-on training at a Toyota Group lean training center, and several factory tours. Company visits included Toyota, Rinnai, Gifu Auto Body and Chuo Malleable Iron.

In addition to learning about Japanese management philosophy and productivity practices, the tour group spent the week immersed in Japanese culture, and learned about Japanese business etiquette and local food, drink, entertainment and customs.

The briefing will include presentations from New South Wales-based tour participants focusing on insights and lessons learned.


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The event will commence with a site tour of Kavanagh Industries’ Smithfield manufacturing facility from 3:00pm. The tour briefing will follow with presentations from tour participants Aidan Kavanagh, Managing Director of Kavanagh Industries, Stuart Baak, Regional MEX Manager of Lion and Lee Baines, Manager Best Practice Unit of Enterprise Connect.

The event will also include a presentation from John Mills, Business Adviser, Australian Industry Group, regarding Enterprise Connect’s funding and support offerings.

The factory tour and briefing will be held on Tuesday 25th of February 2014 from 3:00pm to 6:00pm at Kavanagh Industries, 14 Cooper St, Smithfield.


The briefing is open to all current and prospective Ai Group member companies in New South Wales, and companies considering participating in a future Lean Japan Tour.

The briefing will be facilitated by Shinka Management. There is no cost for participating. Please forward RSVPs to Paul Smith via e-mail to paul.smith -at- or 08 8394 0005. As the briefings will include a factory tour, the number of participants will be limited, with RSVPs accepted on a first-come first-served basis.