MORE than $1 million will be invested towards local industry partners to refine and upscale a product aimed at Australia’s huge commercial and residential construction industry.

A federal government grant of $1.4 million for FormFlow and Speedpanel will be used to join Deakin University in developing a fire-rated wall panel system.

The project will introduce computer and test platforms to enable a systematic approach to develop and commercialise the new wall concept.

By adding computing support and new technologies, the partnership will eventually create a scalable high-volume manufacturing cell to expand its manufacturing operation.

It is believed the project has the potential to tap into a $340 million market opportunity within Australia’s $60 billion high-rise building industry.

The FormFlow, Speedpanel and Deakin collaboration was one of 24 projects announced in round 14 of the federal government’s Cooperative Research Centres Projects (CRC-P) initiative, and other local businesses are being encouraged to apply and bring their commercial ideas to life.

Corangamite federal member Libby Coker said the grant was helping to highlight the innovative business minds within the Geelong region.

“I congratulate FormFlow, Speedpanel and Deakin University and wish them all the best as they further develop and test their innovative technology and work towards bringing it to market in collaboration with its research and business partners.

“Through innovative design, research and manufacturing projects like this one, our region will continue to be a world-leader when it comes to advanced manufacturing.”

CRC-P applications with a focus on the National Reconstruction Fund’s seven priority areas and Science and Research priorities, as well as those that focus on the circular economy, are being particularly sought.

“And, as Round 15 of the CRC-P is currently open, I’d like to encourage local businesses to access these grants to develop new products and services through collaboration with research organisations,” Ms Coker said.

Since the CRC-P scheme was introduced in 2016, $502 million has been awarded to 232 collaborations across Australia.

“I am pleased to announce a further $50 million through the highly successful CRC-P initiative to support industry-led researchers to bring their innovative ideas to life and transform Australian industries,” Minister for Industry and Science Ed Husic said.

“This initiative is just one of the ways this government is securing Australia’s future prosperity, driving economic growth and creating jobs.”

The grants support industry-led research projects, offering matched funding between $100,000 to $3 million over three years.

Applications for round 15 close on September 14.

For more information or to apply, head to