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Ductus turns COVID catastrophe to new opportunity

September 2, 2021

Running a successful enterprise over the last couple of years has been extraordinarily challenging for everybody having to contribute in the effort to eliminate the covid pandemic. Along with these contributions, further sacrifices have been forced on many who rely on the transportation of goods and services, which have increased demand and a depreciated ability to supply.

Those worst affected lost their ability to trade with the manufacturing of their inventory ceasing altogether and without any practical indication of how long before life goes back to normal. As the saying goes, “we are at our best when we face the worst” and the necessity to rise above such times can sometimes produce some inspiring results.

Ductus along with their partners Quality Air Equipment (QAE) have achieved this with the development of an Australian manufactured substitute to the ALPRound duct insulation system, previously manufactured in Italy.

Unfortunate circumstances related to the covid pandemic had caused the manufacturing of ALPRound duct in Italy to temporarily cease. This was a huge concern for Ductus director Jim Malek, the exclusive supplier of ALP Systems and ALPRound duct in Australia and currently responsible for providing 32 floors of ALPRound duct to the prestigious Sydney Central Tower located in the heart of Sydney CBD on Pitt Street through delivery partner Quality Air Equipment.

When asked about his thoughts at the time Jim responded, “We knew we had a big problem. We had worked extremely hard in delivering the concept of ALPRound duct knowing it would be a great feature of the building’s aesthetics, performance, and environmental rating”. “We were extremely proud to have our brand chosen for this project and determined to meet our obligations”.

Early indications of a 4-week delay in production soon became unclear when further covid related complications arose. Jim said, “When we could no longer guarantee the supply of ALPRound duct for the next stage in the Pitt Street project, we knew it was up to us to find a suitable replacement. One which would not only suit the required fit-out but also maintain its unique appearance whilst providing a comfortable working space”.

“Working closely with QAE we decided on three existing alternatives and one which we could fabricate ourselves using the same ALP board,” Jim said, “We call it RegalRound Duct and it was satisfying to find that we could do this ourselves solving the supply issue. Working closely with our delivery partners at QAE on this project with their expertise, extensive understanding of the system, and professional care being of great benefit, we were able to achieve a great result in a timely manner.

With the obvious benefits of using the same board and control of supply “RegalRound duct” was selected to complete the project and is now part of the Australian Ductus brand as another example of Australian innovation, ingenuity, and response to adversity. RegalRound duct is the latest pre-insulated HVAC system on the market and already promises to be a huge success with reports coming back from installers R&D saying,” Great product to work with, RegalRound duct is easy to manage to be lightweight and so easy to install. It all fits together very nicely, looks clean and aesthetically pleasing”.

Integral Group who has been working on the design of the HVAC systems being used on 477 Pitt Street were also pleased with the result. Mr. Hugh Wilson of Integral and acting Project manager says “I’m very happy with the work put in by Ductus, QAE, and R&D. Their ability and willingness to work together and manage the problem and ability to find a suitable solution during some very challenging times is a credit to the industry”. “It was also very comforting knowing how determined they were in avoiding any delay to the ductwork being installed”.

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