the next chapter in its 90-year history
If you’re Kiwi and enjoy the great outdoors, you’ve heard of Kilwell. This 3rd generation family business has become a household name that is known for its fishing and hunting gear and loved for the good times they make possible.
But ask certain aerospace engineers from Silicon Valley what they know about Kilwell, and you’ll get a very different answer.
Alan Weston, CEO of LTA Research & Exploration
That’s because Kilwell has two divisions: the sports division we know and love in New Zealand, and a composite development and manufacturing division, known as Kilwell Fibretube, that competes on the world composites stage.
“Over 95% of what we produce is exported, or value-added and then exported” says director Geoff Wells, who shares the reigns with his sister Amanda Wells. This dynamic duo represents the 3rd generation of the Wells family to steer the Kilwell ship, and they are certainly not shy of ambition.
“The market has changed massively since Kilwell Fibretube began in the 60’s. We realised that, while we’re still exceptional at manufacturing carbon fibre tubing, we really fly when we’re helping clients solve complex technical challenges with carbon fibre, not just making parts”, said Geoff.
“Low-spec, high-volume carbon fibre tubing is not the market we want to play in”, says Amanda Wells, marketing director for the group. “The emerging economies service that space. We have three generations of institutional know-how and an incredible team of seasoned composite experts. We’re capable now of helping engineers and designers push the boundaries of what is possible in carbon fibre, like building the world’s largest 3D printed sculpture or the internal structure for a new generation of airships”.
With their eyes firmly set on showing the world what they’re made of, and further raising New Zealand’s reputation as a composites powerhouse, it is time for the next iteration of this company’s rich 90-year history.
This iteration reflects the true nature of Kilwell’s composites arm; a world-leading business with generations of know-how and craftsmanship, built upon a relentless pursuit of progress to help clients go bigger, faster, lighter and stronger.
Chief Executive, Craig Wilson says, “we want the world’s best and most ambitious engineers and product designers to know that we’re the people you call to make the impossible possible. That here, in little New Zealand, there is an absolute hive of innovation, backed by the expertise and grit to bring game-changing ideas to life”.
With our borders on the path to opening, Kilwell Fibrelab hopes to be welcoming international visitors to meet its team and tour its 4000M2 Rotorua facility in the not-too-distant future.
Keen to team up? Let us know what you have in mind, and one of our team will get in touch to talk through your project and scope it with you. If you would like to share any drawings now, please do. Or, if you would prefer that we enter in an NDA first, we can make that happen quickly and easily.
COLLABORATION MAKES USSTRONGER LIGHTER FASTER BIGGER