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Hort History

Jeff Hort Engineering was incorporated in March 1995.

 

The Business was set in Kenna Street Orange, New South Wales, with the aim of providing an engineering support service firstly into the rural industry and secondly into the then fledgling mining industry given that the proposed Cadia Mine was approved by government.

 

In 1998, JME Engineering was formed in Wollongong under a 50-50 partnership with Woods Tipper Hire.

 

The business invested in a new workshop facility in 2004 and 6-years later purchased additional land at the rear of this facility to enhance future expansion of the business. Truck mounted tyre handling cranes, modification works to road haulage vehicles, abrasive blasting, industrial painting and spare part storage facilities developed throughout 2013/14 are now a feature of the business.

 

In 2000, the company purchased 8-acres of industrial land at Clergate Road in Orange with the aim of eventually relocating the three different locations of the business to Clergate Road.

 

In late June 2001, the company acquired an Orange based engineering company that had been in the engineering business for over 40 years. The acquisition improved the company’s tooling and provided a lease of an existing workshop with improved facilities.

 

During the first half of 2003, a purpose built factory was constructed on the company’s Clergate Road land to manufacture refrigerator heat exchanges, skin condenser coils, dew point tubes and miscellaneous tubes for the white goods manufacturer Electrolux Home Products. Some infrastructure was installed to accommodate future expansion of facilities on the land. Full production of the manufacturing facility was achieved by the end of February 2004.

 

With the change in the global mark from September 2005 through to June 2006, 75% of the products were transferred overseas to China by Electrolux. The remaining 25% of production was transferred in October 2007. This facility was revamped to carry out structural steel fabrication and then in 2010 wear resistant materials linings was transferred from Kenna Street to this facility to take advantage of the heated floor. Structural steel transferred to the Edward street workshop and the Kenna Street workshop was then disbanded.

 

In May 2005, the company started to move towards CNC technology with the purchase of a plasma/Oxy acetylene plate cutting machine that we commissioned at the Edward St workshop in Orange to give us a competitive edge as well as providing a quality product.

 

In 2006, land was purchased in the West Wyalong industrial estate and a workshop was constructed to house a new division of what was then Jeff Hort Engineering. This division was set up to service the Barrick Gold Mine at Lake Cowal. The facility was commissioned in April of that year.

 

In May 2006, and after the success of the CNC plasma/oxy acetylene a new 4 Axis CNC vertical milling machine was commissioned at the Edward Street workshop again to give us a competitive edge and to provide a quality product. This was shortly followed with the purchase of two CNC machining centres.

 

Abrasive blasting and industrial painting became a feature of the business through the acquisition of abrasive blasting and other equipment from an Orange engineering company in March 2007 that had made the decision to shut down their operation.

 

In December 2010, the company acquired the plant and equipment of a structural steel business in Dubbo NSW. The purchase of the facility was finalised in February 2012. The Dubbo division provides engineering services into the north western region of NSW and plays a supportive role to the other divisions of Hort Enterprises.

 

In May 2011, a new purpose designed and built industrial painting booth was installed and commissioned at the Orange Clergate Road facility.

 

In November 2013, Jeff Hort Engineering through acquisition purchased the tools, plant and equipment from an existing quarry maintenance contractor that operated out of Dubbo and Newcastle. This purchase gave the Dubbo division on-site line boring and portable machining capability as a further diversification to the company’s “one stop shop” capability.

 

In February 2014, the long proposed Clergate Road development gave Hort (for the first time) steel fabrication, wear resistant linings, abrasive blasting and industrial protective coating all operating out of the one facility. The facility includes a purpose built communications centre that ties in the other three divisions of Hort Enterprises being West Wyalong, Dubbo and Mudgee.

 

On the 1st July 2014, Jeff Hort Engineering Pty Ltd as a business entity was rebadged to become Hort Enterprises Pty Ltd. This step reflects the maturity, the ownership and stewardship of business

In July 2014, Hort Enterprises successfully undertook a merged takeover of a fabrication workshop located in Mudgee NSW. The acquisition included the purchase of the businesses tooling, vehicles, plant and equipment. This merger was a strategic decision to open up opportunities for Hort Enterprises into the coal industry.

 

In May 2015, Hort Enterprises 50% share of JME was sold. This gave us the capital to continue with the development at our Clergate Rd facility in Orange and open a branch in Cobar NSW.

 

In February 2016, Hort Enterprises opened a branch in Cobar NSW. Already doing quite a bit of work in this area through our Dubbo branch made the justification of taking this step easy.

 

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