Issue 4 – Creative enablers

Over the past ten years Australian plastics manufacturer Palamont has undergone a gradual yet total transformation; from a made-to-order, purely functional mindset, to a highly entrepreneurial position where the business, in partnership with a team of leading Australian designers, is poised to launch its own branded products directly to market.

Palamont is the type of business the ADU identifies as a ‘Creative Enabler’, a business with production capabilities that takes a long-term view in their dealings with designers. In Palamont's interview with us this issue, their Managing Director Norman Johnson speaks about valuing the commercial potential of a designer’s intellectual property as much as he does their own production capabilities. They are willing to meet entrepreneurial designers half way – providing access to valuable tooling and production facilities for a joint return on the product.

It is this approach to business building that sets a path for other Australian makers. Palamont represents a growing group of eager entrepreneurs within the manufacturing sector, who understand the value in the crossover between design and industry, the unquestionable need for product sector diversity, and the benefits for those who embrace the opportunity.

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This issue of ADU begins an ongoing series of interviews with a broad range of creative enablers including local manufacturers who are fast dispelling the myth that nothing comes of designers collaborating with manufacturers in Australia. We explore the many not so obvious benefits that can be gained from design integration, and propose that once Australian manufactures and designers start speaking the same language, working together may well assure one another’s survival.

Ewan McEoin and Heidi Dokulil

You can read the interview with Palamont's Managing Director Norman Johnson here.


Published 16 March 2010.

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About ADU
Part magazine, part bulletin, part business resource, ADU is a publication and archive about design and creativity published monthly to encourage and support designers. ADU is an independent and strongly collaborative voice within the design sector with a broad network that connects designers from across the country to the resources they need. ADU is also a vehicle for workshops, forums and exhibitions produced to encourage discourse and develop skills around design, creativity, entrepreneurship and ideas. ADU collaborates with design institutions and existing initiatives to enable designers to develop new markets at home and abroad. ADU is a joint venture between Parcel and Studio Propeller.
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Heidi Dokulil & Ewan McEoin
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Heidi Dokulil
Peter Salhani
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Graeme Smith
Lee Wong
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