Case Studies
NCIA connects data sources to accurately monitor and forecast gas usage resulting in savings of $40,000 a month


National Ceramic Industries Australia (NCIA) manufactures and sells floor and wall tiles for commercial and domestic use. With their factory located in Rutherford, NSW, NCIA is Australia’s last remaining manufacturer of large ceramic tiles.


National Ceramic Industries Australia was nearing the end of their fixed rate energy plan, and surging industrial gas prices presented a real threat to the continued viability of NCIA.

At the time, gas suppliers were quoting unit prices of $16-$18 per gigajoule — more than a 200% increase on their previous $5-$7 per gigajoule rate.

Factory Manager, Craig Oliver, and the team at NCIA realized that this price would be unsustainable. So, they began exploring a new structure of gas supply: spot pricing. This model was significantly more affordable at $9-$10 per gigajoule, but required accurate forecasting of future gas requirements.

Unfortunately, NCIA’s attempts to record and scale gas usage manually proved laborious and inaccurate, resulting in heavy penalties (up to $12,000 per month) from gas suppliers.


"The gas price is the price. This integration and monitoring provides us with access to the cheapest way of buying gas — today and into the future."
Craig Oliver, Factory Manager

While there was little that NCIA could do about rising gas prices, they were able to monitor and control their own usage to minimize unnecessary costs. National Ceramic Industries Australia worked with OFS to implement a solution for automated gas monitoring and forecasting. This allowed them to access the cheapest gas prices in the market via spot pricing.

Key features implemented include:

Integrations – NCIA can monitor production events and gas usage in one place

Forecasting – NCIA can forecast energy usage to the accuracy of 99.5%

Analysis – The team can analyze gas efficiency and productivity for their factory, side by side


"The gas savings here are two-fold. Forecasting penalties we have avoided, with the largest savings being the gas unit price."
Craig Oliver, Factory Manager

For Factory Manager Craig Oliver, the benefits are clear. By moving to the spot pricing model, National Ceramic Industries Australia are now saving upwards of $40,000 per month on their gas spend, compared to fixed price options. These savings have allowed the business to remain viable.

Plus, with their gas usage automatically (and accurately) collected, NCIA are able to reduce their previously error-prone and time-consuming manual data collection. This is saving the company up to $12,000 per month that they would’ve had to pay in inaccurate estimation penalty fees.

Looking at their gas usage alongside production data has given NCIA a new stream of insights on the relationship between production events and gas spend. The team can see how equipment adjustments and repairs are linked to gas savings. And they have evidence to support whether certain products, materials, or sizes are more or less energy efficient than their counterparts.

Moving forward, NCIA is looking forward to using their newfound OFS superpower to optimize efficiency on all fronts, while continuing to reduce and optimize their gas consumption.

"Measuring gas and being able to forecast our usage off our production plan takes the pressure off, knowing we are measuring and controlling our side."
Craig Oliver, Factory Manager

Register for a free trial

Interested in finding out what OFS could do for your business? Request a free trial to get our software and hardware at no cost (and no obligation) for 30 days. Or chat to our team to find out more.