LEADERS IN AIR SUSPENSION
From movie sets to the middle of the outback, you never know where Airbag Man will pop up next
For more than 20 years, the team at Airbag Man has built a robust business built on solid foundations.
This proudly Australian-owned and operated family business was established in 1995 by Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, Richard Clamp.
As Australia’s leading distributor for world-renowned Air Spring Manufacturers, Firestone and Dunlop, Airbag Man prides itself on designing and manufacturing unique, high-quality air suspension systems.
“Our range includes air suspension systems to suit hundreds of vehicle types in the automotive industry from light passenger to heavy transport as well as industrial and agricultural applications,” Richard said.
Airbag Man says it has revolutionised the vehicle suspension industry, allowing vehicles to carry loads and tow safely.
“As a company, we are well proven in working with large or small manufacturers or individuals on projects to incorporate airbags as actuators or vibration isolators,” Richard explained.
“Our knowledgeable engineering department has extensive experience and is committed to working closely with customers to design solutions specifically for their individual applications.”
As you would expect, Richard and his team have in-depth product knowledge, but what sets this business apart is the unique company culture.
Needless to say, the talented team at Airbag Man “love bagging things!”
“While enthusiasm for our products is key, we have gone to great lengths to build an awesome team,” Richard said.
“We have continually reinvested in the company to ensure it is strong and ready to grab hold of new opportunities, and of course able to weather the harshest storms like the global COVID-19 pandemic.”
Airbags have many advantages when dealing with actuation and vibration isolation.
“Specialising in the use of these fantastic products has been interesting and challenging. It has seen us work with design engineers from many different sectors, including for diverse applications such as film special effects,” Richard explained.
Today, Airbag Man says it has built a reputation as one of the world’s most trusted air suspension manufacturers.
Richard believes that extensive product testing in Australia’s harsh, off-road conditions is key to the business’ success globally.
“Our suspension products are well proven in Australia’s harsh off-road conditions with thousands of satisfied users,” Richard explained.
“We can confidently say we were the first in the world to put a Nissan Patrol 4×4 on full air suspension, as well as the first caravan.
“We pride ourselves on producing well-designed and easy to install air suspension products, and that has helped us secure our success globally.”
Adding weight to its commitment to quality, Airbag Man has been ISO 9001 Quality Assurance accredited for more than a decade.
“We aim to continuously improve our products and service levels and we can’t do it without our awesome staff, who all live the company philosophy every day,” Richard said.
While Richard established the company in late October 1994 and officially registered Airbag Man in January 1995, he started his journey in 1977 in heavy transport industry automotive engineering.
“I’ve always had a passion for automotive engineering,” Richard remarked.
“I started as a mechanic in the last 1970s and quickly became interested in what was, at the time, emerging air suspension technology.”
Following his start as a mechanic, Richard progressed to the position of fleet engineer – a role in which he was responsible for developing and commissioning air suspension solutions throughout Europe and Asia.
After moving to Australia, Richard imported some of the first modern generation of semi-trailer air suspension. He launched it to the market with great success, off the back of which he seized on the opportunity to open an overall airbag specialist business, and Airbag Man was born.
“We started in a small rental house with an initial stock order of $5000,” Richard described.
Today the company holds a stock of over $4 million at any one time, and is in the process of building a new, purpose headquarters which, when completed, will have a footprint of 3,500 square meters – more than twice the size of its current location.
“As airbag and air suspension specialists, we have many diverse sectors that we service,” Richard explained.
“From the special effects industry through to the industrial, agriculture and of course the light vehicle sectors, we are continually growing new markets while continually investing in product development.”
Of course, Airbag Man also provides a wide variety of solutions for more traditional applications including light and medium commercial vehicles, RVs, 4x4s, motorhomes, caravans, performance, and emergency services.
While designing and manufacturing innovative and robust air suspension systems right here in Australia is at the core of the success of the Airbag Man business, Richard and his team have also invested extensively in building a global distribution network that includes many well-respected companies.
“In manufacturing, components, and distribution, we only work with the highest quality partners,” Richard said.
“This ensures our customers are receiving the best product and the highest levels of service, no matter where they are located in the world.
“Of course, we are always developing new markets, and while the COVID-19 pandemic has made this a challenge in the recent past, we are still working tirelessly to expand the brand’s global footprint.”
Richard explains that the team at Airbag Man is acutely aware of their economic and environmental responsibilities and understands they need to continually respect everyone and everything that can affect or be affected by their actions.
For example, the new headquarters will be wholly solar-powered and will have a provision for electric vehicle charging.
Like many successful businesses in the automotive aftermarket, Airbag Man has enjoyed a long relationship with the Australian Automotive Aftermarket Association.
“We joined the AAAA soon after we launched the business,” Richard said.
“We could see a need for strength in numbers in the aftermarket to address issues that potentially can adversely affect us all in the aftermarket industry together.
“The AAAA has and still does a great job in that and helps us with advice in many areas as well as keeping us updated.”
To discover more about this unique and innovative Australian-owned, family business, visit www.airbagman.com.au