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|Type||Privately owned company|
|Founder(s)||Carlo Salteri AC|
|Headquarters||North Sydney, Australia|
Tenix is a privately owned Australian company involved in a range of infrastructure maintenance and engineering products and services to the utility, transport, mining and industrial sectors in Australia, New Zealand, the Pacific Islands, and the United States.
The antecedent company Transfield was established in 1956 by Carlo Salteri and Franco Belgiorno-Nettis. The company focused on engineering and infrastructure construction, and expanded into the naval shipbuilding industry in the 1980s (initially under the name AMECON, then Transfield Defence Systems). A 1995 dispute between the company's managing directors (the eldest sons of the two founders) led to Transfied being split in two; the Belgiorno-Nettis family kept the Transfield name and the construction side of the business, while the Salteri family retained the infrastructure, defence, and technology elements, which were relaunched in 1997 as several companies under the Tenix name.
Tenix Defence grew to become one of Australia's largest locally-owned defence and technology contractor until 2008, when its defence assets were sold to BAE Systems Australia. Tenix's infrastructure arm was not sold at this time, and is still operational as of 20 August 2012.
The origins of the Tenix Group commence in 1956 when Transfield was founded by two Italian–born mechanical engineers, Carlo Salteri and Franco Belgiorno-Nettis. Together they built one of Australia's most successful companies focused on major engineering projects, such as bridges, tunnels, dams, hydro-electric and coal power stations, oil rigs, concert halls, sugar mills and power lines. Included in their list of major achievements are the construction of the Gateway Bridge in Brisbane and the Sydney Harbour Tunnel. By the early 1980s, Transfield had in excess of 3,000 employees and an annual turnover of A$350 million; and within five years grew to the point of being the biggest engineering firm in south-east Asia.
The company acquired the Williamstown Dockyard in Melbourne and, in 1989 after winning a A$6 billion contract to build ten Anzac class frigates for the Australian and New Zealand governments, the largest defence company in Australia. When visiting Australia in 1986 Pope John Paul II toured the Transfield factory located at Seven Hills.
First known as AMECON, then as Transfield Defence Systems, the company re-established a naval shipbuilding capability in Australia with the successful construction of two Adelaide class frigates for the Royal Australian Navy. It was later awarded the Anzac Ship Project contract, for 10 Anzac class frigates: eight for the Royal Australian Navy and two for the Royal New Zealand Navy.
In 1989, Salteri and Belgiorno-Nettis stood down as joint managing directors in 1989 in favour of their eldest sons, Paul Salteri and Marco Belgiorno-Zegna. However, in a dispute between Salteri and Belgiorno-Nettis in 1995, the differences between the two families became irreconcillable and Transfield, then valued at A$733.2 million was split in two. The Belgiorno-Nettis family kept the name Transfield and the construction side of the business, while the Salteri family got the company's North Sydney headquarters and the defence operations, which they then renamed as Tenix.
The defence contracting arm of the business was called Tenix Defence Systems when Tenix was launched in November 1997, and then became Tenix Defence. Tenix expanded afterwards with the acquisition of Hawker de Havilland (an aerostructures manufacturer) in 1998 and leading engineering and maintenance contractor, Enetech, in December 1999. Enetech was renamed Tenix Alliance in July 2001. In June 2000, Tenix finalised the purchase of Vision System's defence businesses, Vision Abell and LADS Corporation; which became part of Tenix Defence. Late in 2000, Tenix sold Hawker de Havilland to Boeing.
In January 2008, the Salteri family sold Tenix Defence to BAE Systems Australia for A$775 million. The sale required the approval of the Australian Government's Foreign Investment Review Board and Department of Defence. Despite the infrastructure arm of the group, Tenix Alliance, also being up for sale, the sale process was discontinued.
Another arm of non-core business, Tenix Aviation, formerly known as Rossair that offered a range of aircraft, propeller and component maintenance services to the aviation industry worldwide, was sold in December 2008 to TAE Australia. Meanwhile, Tenix LADS Corporation that undertook hydrographic projects for international oil and gas exploration companies and seismic survey organisations was sold to Dutch multinational Fugro six months later.
Tenix's main areas of operations include infrastructure maintenance and engineering services to the power, gas, water, telecommunications, mining, and transport industries in Australia and New Zealand. Some examples of projects completed by the Tenix group since 2005 include the construction of water recycling and wastewater treatment plants, the construction of wind and gas turbine stations, and geothermal power projects, gas mains connections to residential developments, supply and fabrication of equipment and plant for mining operations, parking management and infringement processing services. In November 2005 the company was threatened with losing the contract for operating speed cameras in Victoria, when the Victorian Government had to withdraw fines due to incorrect calibration of equipment by Tenix employees. In August 2007, Tenix lost the A$150 million contract to operate Victoria's mobile speed cameras, but retained the contract for processing and managing the enforcement process.
Tenix's affiliates include RLM Systems, Australian Marine Technologies, and the company that operates the Sydney Harbour Tunnel, where Tenix holds a 25% interest until the operating contract expires in June 2023.