After a 35 year hiatus, the 125-year old company Dunham Bush (DB) has returned to the Australian market with big plans.
DB (Australia), its local representative, has established its Australian headquarters in Sydney and in recent weeks opened a second office in Melbourne in partnership with a local operator.
There are also plans for Western Australia with DB in the final stages of establishing a partnership in Perth.
DB (Australia) director, Robbert Frielink, said DB will maintain 55% ownership in the partnership arrangements.
“We expect to be up and running in the next few months in Perth,” Frielink said.
For those who can remember DB's presence in the Australian market, the company was known for supplying the Rolls Royce of chillers.
Its high performing, highly engineered cooling solutions are manufactured in the United States, the United Kingdom, Malaysia and China.
In the 1960s, DB was the first company to develop, patent and use screw compressor technology which is still widely used in the industry.
DB has always been associated with quality and it’s what first attracted Frielink to the brand.
“I have been to the DB factories to check quality assurance processes and it exceeded expectations. Dunham Bush products, testing facilities, software and catalogues are all AHRI certified. I think it is the reason why the company is so well established in the defence sector throughout South East Asia,” he said.
After working for an engineering consultancy for a number of years it was Frielink who instigated the company's return to Australian shores.
“I firmly believe there is a lot of potential in this market which is why I was able to convince the company to return,” he said.
“It will take a few years to build traction in the Australian/NZ market but DB can provide a complete offering from large chillers and air handling units to heat pumps, thermal energy storage and rooftop packaged units.
“Except for the magnetic bearing and scroll compressor we do all of our manufacturing in-house which gives us a lot of flexibility to meet the needs of customers; quality and customisation is our specialty.”
“We recognise that it’s not just about quality equipment it’s important to be able to back it up with good support and spare parts that is why we keep our warehouse well stocked,” he said.
“There may be that 1-2% we have to order overseas but it’s rare because once we sell equipment we assess what the customer may need down the track and immediately ensure it is stocked and ready to go.”
DB (Australia) maintains two select service companies in each state with up to 15 staff.
“We don't allow just any technician to service our equipment,” Frielink explained.
“Technicians must first travel to our factory in Malaysia for a full week of training followed by a test that they must pass in order to receive accreditation. If they fail, they have do the training and test again.
“We do not give our technicians a certificate for simply turning up.
“More importantly, we don't charge money for training.
“In fact we don't make money from training at all, we think that approach is fraught with danger.”
Dunham Bush has over 2,000 staff in 15 regional offices.