Moving from idea to innovation with R&D


Dr Matthias Weiss and Dr Matt Dingle
Source: FormFlow

FormFlow and Deakin University recently-completed a 12-month R&D project which provides an example of how applied research between industry and academia can proceed successfully.

Deakin University and Geelong-based manufacturing start-up FormFlow have forged a symbiotic business relationship, arguably not seen enough between research institutions and industry in Australia.

It began in 2016 when Dr Matt Dingle, FormFlow’s now Managing Director, and Dr Matthias Weiss, Senior Research Fellow at Deakin University, joined forces to develop a novel metal bending concept initially proposed by their long-term mentor and friend, Professor Emeritus John Duncan.

After partnering with Ross and Lyn George of Austeng, a prototype bending machine was created and the four went on to formally establish FlowFlow and commercialise the concept, known as the C90 Bend.

In the years that have followed, FormFlow’s founders have built its business model around innovative research and development (R&D).

“Our focus is on innovating, refining and scaling smart building solutions that benefit society. And our relationship with Deakin plays an integral role in bringing this vision to life,” Dingle said.

FormFlow’s commitment to innovation is deeply ingrained within the company’s culture. Not only does FormFlow operate using a system of governance that prioritises organisational effectiveness, equality and consent in decision making, but Weiss is also FormFlow’s R&D director. He splits his time equally between the company and Deakin.