米6米乐体育 2016 shone the light on new ideas within the industry through a brand new feature within the showfloor, 米6米乐体育 Incubator, powered by Cbus Super. 米6米乐体育 Incubator gave emerging businesses the opportunity to showcase new, cutting edge products and ideas direct to the industry at the show.
One of the emerging businesses showcased at the show was TILT. TILT is one of Australia’s leading industrial designers for architects. Their experience with materials, manufacturing can be witnessed in action in landmark projects across Australia, most notably at Sydney’s international award-winning One Central Park, as well as a range of public art, construction and industrial projects.
We spoke with TILT’s Managing Director, Tim Phillips, and asked him a few questions to get a further understanding on what TILT does within the space and what’s ahead for their company.
You became the owner of TILT in 2014, what motivates you in your role?
I am an Industrial Designer with extensive experience in architectural projects. I became the owner of TILT (formerly Kennovations) in 2014 after being part of the team for more than eight years.
I direct a dedicated team of industrial designers, fabricators and engineers, pushing the boundaries to achieve commercially valuable designs that exceed clients’ expectations. I am motivated by a challenge and believe in facilitating creativity for my clients, effectively guiding the design process.
I am also an educator and continue my long association with the University of Technology, tutoring students in Major Project Realisation.
Where did the concept of TILT come from?
The design consultancy I ultimately purchased had the opportunity to work on a number of architectural projects. This work was initially completed under a traditional design consultancy model of hourly rate for design but evolved into a ‘Design and Construct’ model. I was passionate about projects of this architectural nature, I observed a need for this service, and as such I wanted to start a business completed focused on this type of service.
Did you have any concerns entering the industry?
The first two years of business has required a lot of market research and product R&R. This was necessary research in order to understand exactly how this service can be effectively offered and under what type of conditions Architects and Developers are willing to proceed with unique design concepts.
The long lead-times between conceptual design and engagement for construction can also be very challenging. This can lead to large cash flow issues.
Did you face any hurdles during the start-up of your company?
Cash flow is a big challenge as it is for most business. The long lead time for projects has meant a lean start-up. Further to this, as the nature of construction projects is largely cash negative (you get paid on completion) it has been difficult to finance the range of large projects.
We are also working on a range of international projects where communication with architects and builders has been difficult due to language barriers.
How did you overcome those hurdles?
We have been able to negotiate preferable terms with our clients based on the nature of our design offering being very unique. Where our design is specified, our position is strengthened by our unique supply position, and as such we can negotiate contracts more readily than traditional trades who may be competing more aggressively for work.
We have engaged consultants to assist with translation and negotiation for international projects. Whilst relatively expensive, they provide a necessary service. Fortunately, our design drawings are fairly universal so detail can be communicated effectively and software generally transcends any language barriers.
Do you have any mentors or inspirations that you look up to both within and outside the industry?
I don’t have any industry mentors as such as I feel a lot of what we doing is new territory. Further to this we are largely facilitating others creativity so I look to engage with architects who are adventurous and willing to push the boundaries of traditional construction.
What’s in store for the future of TILT?
We are expanding rapidly in the ‘Operable Architectural’ space and I believe this will be an area for continued growth. Architects are enjoying the benefit of mechanical elements which give their designs versatility and flexibility. As confidence in our work grows we will be completing larger and more dynamic features.
Is there an ‘dream’ project for you?
We enjoy working on projects where our product or feature becomes the signature mark of a building. We like to get involved in crowning pieces regardless of whether they are mechanical or sculptural. We like to design and construct architectural icons.
Are there any stand-out projects for you?
Our work with Heliostats at One Central Park in Sydney was fundamental in confirming my passion for architecture and my current business model. This project has provided a great range of opportunities for Tilt and helped to position ourselves as the industry leader for this type of project.
Do you have any advice for aspiring industry professionals?
I believe one of the most important skills in business is being able to surround yourself with people more capable than you. Identify your strengths and don’t try to do everything yourself in running a business – work largely with your strengths and hire people to support delivering your vision.
For more information about TILT, visit tilt-industrialdesign.com
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