Gold Coast set to be medical software and device hub

GCHKP Project Director Di Dixon with Acting Vice Chancellor Professor Ned Pankhurst and Materialise Australia Business Manager Madeleine McIntyre

World-leading additive manufacturing company Materialise will locate its Australian head-quarters in the Gold Coast Health and Knowledge Precinct (GCHKP) to create a hub for cutting-edge medical device innovation.

The Belgium-based global company will switch operations from Sydney to the 200-hectare GCHKP to capitalise on Griffith University plans for an $80 million Advanced Design and Prototyping Technologies Centre (ADaPT), set to commence construction in 2019.

Materialise is a global pioneer of 3D printing technology whose software and services enable researchers, engineers and clinicians to revolutionise patient-specific treatments that help improve and save lives. This makes the GCHKP an ideal location for medical operations, continuing existing partnerships with leading Griffith researchers and expanding collaborations with clinicians at the Gold Coast University and Gold Coast Private hospitals.

The collaboration is the result of extensive discussions between Griffith, the GCHKP Project Office and Materialise over two years, including a trip to the company’s Belgian headquarters to pitch the opportunity and technical links to research capabilities.

The Materialise move is a coup for Queensland and the Gold Coast, according to Griffith University’s Acting Vice Chancellor, Professor Ned Pankhurst, especially given the significant growth potential, with the university’s investment in ADaPT paving the way to expand the relationship and explore further research collaboration as a co-located industry partner.

“Materialise is truly a world-class company with 24 offices in 19 countries, and for them to choose to locate in the GCHKP at the ground-up stage signals the potential for a world-leading hub to develop here,” Professor Pankhurst said

We’ve already opened up our ADaPT 1.0 industry showcase facility and Materialise staff will initially be based on campus, alongside our leading researchers who are working in areas such as developing orthopaedic and other medical devices.”

Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate is equally delighted, with the City actively supporting the presence of companies looking to expand operations and contribute to local employment opportunities.

“Medical technology is rapidly advancing and we need the best companies here to carve out our global niche in what will be a huge world-wide market — Materialise is one of the best,” Mayor Tate said.

Materialise Australia Business Manager Madeleine McIntyre said the Gold Coast had the right combination of existing world-class research expertise, skilled graduates and the lifestyle to attract global talent, as well as crucial co-location with clinical facilities.

“We have been the backbone of the 3D printing industry for nearly 3 decades, and have pioneered many leading medical applications of 3D printing. The innovative and collaborative environment provided by the GCHKP will help us to further advance our medical software and services,” Ms McIntyre said.

“Matching our company’s entrepreneurial culture, the GCHKP will be a strong base for Materialise to expand our Australasian footprint and provides a lifestyle advantage for our employees and the future talent we will attract here.”

For GCHKP Project Director Di Dixon, the Materialise move represents the chance to build momentum for ADaPT and the entire precinct well before the first sod is turned by sparking additional interest from associated innovative companies.

“We’ve always said the GCHKP is a long-term project and we’re pleased our Project Office efforts have been able to attract a global player of this calibre even before the first building is constructed,” Ms Dixon said.

“This is our preferred model for development — focusing on areas where we have genuine global niche expertise and attracting aligned industry co-location so we can rapidly translate research to great health and commercial outcomes.”


Beyond the horizon, the 200-hectare Gold Coast Health and Knowledge Precinct (GCHKP) is a unique global business location for high-tech industry development, research collaboration and jobs of the future and Asia-Pacific’s emerging health and innovation hub.

About Materialise

Headquartered in Belgium, with branches worldwide, Materialise combines the largest group of software developers in the industry with one of the largest 3D printing facilities in the world. For additional information, please visit: