A W Bell is a family-owned metal casting and precision engineering business founded in 1952 in Melbourne.
Originally established as a patternmaking shop, A W Bell has grown steadily and is now focused on investment casting, sand casting, production machining and the manufacture of foundry equipment.
Nine years ago, in response to the downturn of the automotive industry in Australia, A W Bell decided to diversify its business and enter the defence and aerospace sectors.
Now employing 80 people, A W Bell has grown to become a major supplier to the automotive, biomedical, defence and aerospace sectors.
A new opportunity
Following its decision to focus on advanced manufacturing within the defence sector, A W Bell became an accredited parts manufacturer for major US defence prime contractors.
A W Bell then won a contract from Northrop Grumman to supply a metal housing and chassis-assembly for the sensory system on the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter aircraft.
These aircraft embody the next generation of strike aircraft weapon systems and bring together cutting-edge technologies from around the world.
Despite obtaining approval from the Defence Export Control Office for the export of military devices, A W Bell lacked sufficient working capital to cover its upfront expenses, including the high cost of obtaining the raw materials.
A helping hand
Our Export Contract Loan allowed A W Bell to fulfil this large-scale contract and cement its status as a world leading manufacturer of parts for advanced defence systems.
By remaining on the front foot and targeting a new industry sector using its advanced manufacturing expertise, A W Bell has established a very strong platform for future growth.