Mark Canny began his industrial career with Tubemakers BTM Kilburn in 1985. Two years later, he became Purchasing Manager at Hills Limited in Adelaide.
In 1989, Mark moved to Wales and spent six years as Managing Director of Hills UK (a wholly owned subsidiary company of Hills Australia). The UK business designed and manufactured clotheslines and garden sprayers that were sold in the UK, Western Europe and Scandinavia.
Mark returned to Australia to head up the Home and Hardware Division of Hills. The business manufactured and sold consumer durable products under the brands of Bailey, Hills, Kelso and Triton, The Division had 550 staff in factories in Adelaide, Melbourne and Brisbane and logistics operations in each Australian state and the north and south islands of New Zealand. There were three R&D teams totalling 40 staff and a sales and marketing team of 60 spread across Australia and New Zealand.
In 2007 Mark became the CEO of Intercast & Forge, Australias largest independent iron foundry operation. The Adelaide and Sydney foundries produced 70,000 tonnes pa of iron castings with primary markets being automotive and rail track systems. The key shareholder was the Sydney based private equity group CHAMP Ventures. The Sydney operation, together with the automotive supply contracts, was sold in 2010 to an Australian automotive supply group. In 2012, the Adelaide foundry was sold to its largest rail customer, a French based industrial group.
Since the 2012 sale, Mark has undertaken a number of project roles, with a focus on manufacturing and marketing strategy.
Role and Hopes for ILF
Mark believes that the future for business in South Australia lies with great management and leadership.
We have a great standard of living in South Australia, and to maintain that, we must innovate at all levels especially our business models. Our future lies in high value added niche businesses and this requires outstanding leadership.
My hope is that the ILF can help to foster a pride in business leadership and a community wide desire to develop and nurture our potential leaders. The ILF can only be a catalyst but this is a critical role in the process.