Joining forces to power indigenous business success

Removing barriers in the complex defence environment

Kieran Hynes, Willyama Services owner, and Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Ken Wyatt celebrate the opening of the Indigenous Business precinct in Canberra.

Raytheon Australia has joined forces with Willyama Services, a 100% Indigenous and veteran owned business, furthering its ongoing commitment to developing the nation’s sovereign defence industry capability.

Through the company’s innovative small and medium enterprise engagement program, Capability Plus, Raytheon Australia is bolstering local industry by creating new and easier pathways for SMEs like Willyama Services to do even more work with Defence.

Raytheon Australia’s chief of Contracts & Supply Chain Ohad Katz said Capability Plus was designed to build capability in SMEs “in order to develop, enhance and sustain sovereign capabilities in support of the Australian Defence Force.”

“Capability Plus is about setting ourselves and our partners up for future growth as well as the delivery of existing programs – all with the ADF’s requirements top of mind,” Katz said. 

“What’s different about Capability Plus is that we have worked hard to create genuine partnerships, and that is definitely the case when it comes to Willyama Services.

“This Indigenous business is a great case study in what Raytheon Australia is working to achieve with all of our Capability Plus partners – a situation where we are offering SMEs opportunities to collaborate and participate in our current and future programs, and also gain from our knowledge and expertise so their business can grow,” he said. 

“Even more satisfying for us is the opportunity this has created for our partners to work with each other, leveraging their own capabilities and experience to develop opportunities for collaboration and growth.

“We want to remove barriers for smaller businesses in the complex defence environment – an environment that many find challenging to navigate without solid support,” Katz said.

Willyama Services has several initiatives to support Australian industry including its Indigenous Business Incubator and monthly Black Coffee business networking events as well as supporting veteran programs.

Led by owner Kieran Hynes, an ex-Australian Army Signal Corps Officer, Willyama Services is now recognised as an expert SME with the broader community at its heart.

Hynes said Raytheon Australia’s support for Willyama Services continues to provide leverage for its success. 

“You can’t do anything in the social environment without having commercial partners who support you as a client, and Raytheon Australia has been incredibly supportive,” he said. 

“And it’s a true partnership now, where we are being asked by this large company to actually deliver key capability services to critical parts of their business.”

Willyama Services currently employs 50 people, with 15% identifying as Indigenous Australians. 

The Capability Plus program is evolving as more SMEs join the current cohort, Katz said.

“We are focused on tailoring the program to provide as much benefit as possible to each SME,” he said. “We find some are seeking mentoring, while others want guidance on entering certain supply chains. Every business is different, and our team recognises and appreciates their needs will be different."

“Our goal is to help all of them grow their businesses and maximise their competitiveness in the defence industry.”

Published On: 12/08/2021
Last Updated: 12/15/2021