As 2018 draws to a close, Gavin takes a look back on the year that was and ponders 2019 and the future….

When we set out our goals and targets for 2018 at the beginning of the year, we set some pretty ambitious goals for FloatPac and everyone who works here.  Some of these included:

  1. Increase FishPac regulator usage
  2. Finish developing FloatPac solar and get tooling underway
  3. Start marketing FloatPac Solar, attend the All Energy Expo 2018, start generating leads
  4. Continue to build on our strong sales year from 2017 across all aspects of our business.

I’m happy to say that we have achieved all of these goals and more!

Thanks to our amazing staff and every growing and sensational customer base, FloatPac has had a year to remember (for all the right reasons!):

We signed an exclusive agreement with Lipfish, based in Norway, for FishPac rights to Europe.

This has been quite an amazing business relationship thus far, with 42 FishPac bins now based in Norway, shipments being trialled and commenced, sensor systems being developed, and in general, the FishPac system and methodology of sustainably shipping live fish and seafood with oxygen reaching further around the globe.

We have seen a significant increase in our fish farming liner business, thanks to our designs and exclusive fabrics developed for the fish farm industry over the last 10 years.

This trend looks set to continue well into 2019, with a very full order book, and we are currently working on different applications of our highly successful liner designs, which will hopefully see continued expansion of this aspect of the FloatPac business.

We finalised our product offering to the road and boat industry for FishPac road freight oxygen systems.

Systems has been delivered to various clients in Australia, America, Singapore and Vietnam since we did this. The road freight system allows any delivery truck to become a live fish and seafood transport system, eradicating the need to be dedicated transport trucks, and in the process eliminating high mortalities that these systems traditionally experience, as well as the significant cost of building these systems.

We officially launched FloatPac Solar, after lots of blood, sweat and tears (!) at the 2018 All Energy Expo.

FloatPac Solar floating solar farm

FloatPac Solar is going to have a stellar 2019!

To say the response was overwhelming is an understatement, however we were prepared for it and so far, everything has been going very well.  Our tool is now complete, with trial floats being tested.  Once this is done, he first run of 1500 – 2000 pods will be completed, and we will then complete our trial installation near Healesville here in Victoria.  Once this is done we will then start commercial operations of FloatPac Solar, completing our aim of being the first locally designed and supplied floating solar supplier here in Australia.

Watch this space as the next 12 months for FloatPac Solar are going to be EPIC to say the least.

We continue to see strong sales and growth in all aspects of our fabrication business with Flexitank (Australia).

Marker buoys, lift bags, pillow tanks and RainPac bladders continue to sell exceptionally well.  Even with market pressure, thanks to pretty poorly made product coming from local and overseas ‘competitors’ (if you can call them that), we continue to be a market leader thanks our quality of product, selection of fabric, keen eye for detail and a refusal to deal at the price cutting end of the market.  2019 prospects for Flexitank remain very strong and we continue to explore opportunities both here and abroad for new product developments, strategic partnerships, and new uses and applications for our existing range of product.

FishPac continued its strong usage in the live seafood trade, with another 50,000 of shipments of live fish and seafood shipped around the world.

This was yet again completed without any safety issues at all. It’s quite staggering to think that we now have been shipping with oxygen for over 17 years, and there is no issues.  It’s a testament to our systems, and our clients systems, and the levels of safety that we enforce and continue to improve upon that this continues to happen.

We launched our all new and improved website.

This bought all of our different websites for FishPac, Flexitank and RainPac back under the FloatPac banner, which is where they belong, and also launched our FloatPac Solar site, which we continue to work on and will continue to do so next year. In conjunction with this we started creating some seriously excellent content (in my humble opinion), mainly for the floating solar space, and I really believe that some of the information we delivered and research we reported on will have significant benefit for not only FloatPac Solar, but the entire floating solar industry for years to come.  There will be more and more content created next year, and for many years to come.

I’m sure there are also many other highlights that I haven’t covered off in these 7 points, its just been one of those years!

We wont rest on our laurels – come at us 2019!

FishPac Humid Bin concept

The FishPac Humid Bin concept has an impressive number of applications in a significant number of seafood markets.

In an effort to continue to grow and prosper, we have some very seriously exciting prospects on the horizon for 2019.  Apart from the imminent development of FloatPac Solar, FishPac has been busily beavering away on its new disposable bin concept, called the Humid Bin.  We have received CASA approval for this and will be taking it to market next year.  With this will come a very serious amount of work that needs to be done both locally and overseas, which we very much look forward to.  Flexitank is working away feverishly on developments for our fish farm liner business and looking at how we can expand that offering to incorporate more uses and a greater client base.  I cant say too much about this at the moment, but quite honestly, it could be be spectacular!

And whilst FloatPac Solar is in its infancy, there is always something being done in looking towards the future.  Again, my lips are sealed, but I think with what we have up our sleeve that is being designed as we speak, it will be an amazing feat of engineering and design once it works.

Good lord I cant wait to show everyone what it is!

With such an immensely busy year comes the need for rest.

FloatPac ChristmasFloatPac is closing for our Christmas break next Friday, 21st December, and will reopen on the 7th January 2019.  Some staff (myself included!) are taking some extended time off to reflect on this year and rest up, and get primed for another successful year in 2019.

So as I wrap up this year’s review, I would like to take the opportunity to thank all of our amazing staff – Carol, Peter Rankin, Peter Dimeck, Laurie Willoughby, and Geoff Leach – as without these amazing humans, we would not be able to do what we do.

And of course, our amazing clients, some old, some new, some about to be first time FloatPac clientele.  You continue to amaze us with your support and enthusiasm, and the effect that your business with us has on everyone within FloatPac should not be underestimated.  You are truly an amazing group of special people, and we thank you again for your unwavering support this year.

To everyone reading this, please allow myself, our board, and our staff wish you and your families a very merry and cheerful Christmas, and a safe and prosperous 2019.

Take some time to be thankful for those around you and to reflect on what I’m sure has been an amazing 2018 for all of you also.

Take care of yourselves, and each other.

My very best wishes,

Gavin Hodgins – CEO – FloatPac Pty Ltd