The Andrews Labor Government is helping more businesses reduce business costs and avoid energy waste – with the 50th Victorian business awarded an Energy Assessment Grant.

“We’re doing what we can to drive down electricity bills – to assist businesses like Planex improve their energy efficiency and save money.”

Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio


Victoria’s 50th Victorian business awarded an Energy Assessment Grant.

Planex’s Hallam factory and showroom features energy efficient LED lighting inside and a solar panel installation on the roof.

Hallam based manufacturer Planex has been awarded more than $47,000 to undertake an energy assessment and to implement gas efficiency upgrades. An Energy Assessment Grant of $12,400 will be used to identify and implement energy efficiency improvements. Planex has also been awarded a Gas Efficiency Grant of $35,360 to improve the gas efficiency of its powder coating operations, with the company contributing the same amount.

Investing in energy efficiency is expected to save the business more than $50,000 a year on energy bills. The family-owned business employs 50 people and has been designing and manufacturing steel storage solutions for commercial, educational, sports, hospitality and residential markets since 1972.

“We know we need to reduce our energy bills so these grants will help us to recover energy right across the manufacturing process.”

Planex CEO Jean Pierre Jardel 

Member for Narre Warren North Luke Donnellan tours the Planex factory with Planex CEO Jean Pierre Jardel 

“These grants are one of the many ways that we’re helping Victorian families and businesses to reduce energy costs and identify savings.”

Member for Narre Warren North Luke Donnellan



Hilustre Coatings operates a factory in Thomastown that provides metal coatings services to the automotive, electrical appliance manufacturing, and building products industries. The company has been in operation since 1987 and provides contract powder coating services to a wide range of manufacturing businesses across Victoria.

The project involved the modification of two curing ovens to reduce gas consumption. The gas convection ovens have large openings to enable the entry and exit of powder coated metal components. Due to convection current caused by the escape of hot heated air from these openings a large volume of cold air is allowed to enter the ovens at the bottom of the openings. The gas burner is required to heat this constant in flow of cold air to maintain the ovens operating temperature. Hilustre Coating installed air curtains at the openings to reduce the inflow of cold air and improve the efficiency of the ovens.

The installation of the air curtains improved the performance of the ovens by reducing cold air inflow at the openings. This enabled the ovens to operate at 20 degrees lower whilst maintaining the required heat to cure the powder coated components. Measurements of gas consumption showed a significant reduction in gas use with the air curtains operating and led to $14,500/year in gas savings.

For more information or to apply for a grant go to