Posted: 6 June 2017

International optical and optoelectronics firm ZEISS will consolidate its presence in South Australia when it relocates from its current location at Lonsdale to new $6 million premises at Tonsley Innovation District.

Founded in Germany over 170 years ago, the ZEISS Group is a leading developer, producer and distributor of measuring technology, microscopes, medical technology, eyeglass lenses, camera and cine lenses, binoculars and semiconductor manufacturing equipment. ZEISS has a presence in more than 40 countries, with over 50 sales and service premises, 30 plus manufacturing sites and approximately 25 locations dedicated to research and development.

The high-tech company will bring 120 permanent staff to their new location, adding to the more than 1000 staff that already work at Tonsley. In addition to the potential for subsequent job growth, ZEISS is set to further enhance the district’s reputation as the location of choice for innovative, high-tech businesses across the high-value manufacturing sector.

Tonsley management has entered a ground lease agreement with developers MAB Tonsley Holdings Pty Ltd for an initial 25-year term to construct and separately lease the facility to ZEISS for an initial 10-year period. MAB Tonsley Holdings is investing $6 million in the new building to be constructed on a 3950 sqm tenancy in the Main Assembly Building (MAB), which is expected to be completed in early 2018.

The new premises will feature:

  • a combined sales and service centre for the Australian market
  • a prescription laboratory
  • a global R&D team for vision care
  • a global business solutions team delivering digital and knowledge-based services.

At the welcome event held on 2 June, Manufacturing and Innovation Minister, The Hon Kyam Maher, MP, acknowledged that ZEISS is a perfect fit for the Tonsley Innovation District with the following statement: “The local ZEISS business has managed a successful transition from being a manufacturing-intensive business to a sales and service focus, along with the development of smart digital technologies to drive international business opportunities.”

ZEISS joins other anchor tenants Siemens, SAGE Automation, Flinders University and TAFE SA. Tonsley is now home to more than 112 businesses with more new tenants  expected to move into the district in the coming months. A number of other businesses have also expressed interest in setting up in the district and are in negotiations with Tonsley management.