Meet Alex Holly

“Simplicity really is the key.”

“Thermally broken aluminium has historically been quite complex to assemble and detail, with a variety of screws and fixings required,” says OMEGA Windows + Doors Business Development Manager, Alex Holly.

“Our new 800 Series Thermal Suite prioritises system simplicity. Instead of overloading it with complicated features, we have focused our efforts on creating a high-performing product that is lightweight and easy for our fabricators to use.”

Efficiency and thermal performance are critical, Alex says. “We’ve had thermally broken aluminium frames for 7 or 8 years now, so we were already prepared for the updated building code requirements when they came into effect a couple of years ago. While others in the industry were working hard to meet the new code, we set our sights on streamlining. The priority is to keep the assembly and installation simple, maximise efficiency and offer a functional product that seals well without leaking.”

OMEGA’s thermal break technology is unique to this part of the world, Alex says. Designed in New Zealand but inspired by European design. “We use a polyamide strip system which is mechanically fixed to create a really strong bond with the aluminium. Unlike epoxy systems, the polyamide will last the lifespan of the window as it moves, heats and cools over time. I’ve had a lot of fun taking these products to trade shows and challenging people to get the extrusions to separate – you just can’t. It’s very, very solid.”

One of the other benefits of polyamide, Alex says, is that it is an actively recyclable material. “At this point, the consumption in NZ is too low to justify a dedicated recycler., but as the volumes increase with the new H1 changes, we should start to see that change. If we’re going to produce something with plastic in it, we want it to be reusable. As an aluminium extruder, sustainability is a key value that’s woven throughout our whole business model. On any given day, the recycled content of the aluminium products we’re manufacturing is about 80%, sometimes up to more like 95%, we would want the other components to be recyclable to the same level.”

Michele Saee Teulo

Under the umbrella of parent company McKechnie Aluminium Solutions, OMEGA is one of the primary aluminium extruders in the country, Alex says, and the only extruder who works with a remelt process where waste aluminium is melted down and reused. “Mining and processing bauxite into aluminium is a very chemically intensive process, and one that requires a lot of energy. Remelting has a fraction of that carbon footprint. This is imperative for us, as we know that the future of our natural environment relies on decarbonisation, not just carbon offsetting. We’re a Toitū certified sustainable supplier with a carbon output of 1.29kg of CO2 per kg of aluminium, which works out to about 88% better than the global average of 11.5kg. We’re audited every year and we’re on a constant improvement journey to reduce our carbon output.”

Holding a degree in architecture, Alex sometimes got himself into trouble in university because he was more focused on building performance than design aesthetics. “I’ve always been passionate about buildings that perform really well, and this has definitely carried over throughout my career. I enjoy working with architects on complicated details and deeply considering elements like weather-tightness, installation and retrofitting modern components into legacy buildings. There’s a lot of satisfaction in walking industry professionals through those processes and then seeing the finished work which I know has used some of my details as a building block.”

Recent OMEGA project highlights include Ramaroa, the new visitor centre at Queen Elizabeth Park in Wellington. “There is rich Māori heritage associated with that site, as well as the historical context of US Marines being based there during WII. It was commissioned by Wellington Council and is both efficient and impressive to see. The facade features quite large spans with a lot of breaks and angles, and some very interesting and varied window combinations... On the residential side, we recently worked on a Grand Designs NZ project with Custom Home Products Dunedin to create a ribbon of high-performance glass and framing which wraps around a suspended steel home. The thermal insulation properties of the completed windows exceeded the 6-star criteria of the Window Energy Rating System (WEERS), the highest level of performance.”

OMEGA’s ability to meet the needs of bespoke architectural projects is built on a foundation of local supply and premium service, Alex says. “We do all of our manufacturing in New Plymouth and ship from there to a number of fabricators around the country. We’re focused on supplying high quality extrusions to our fabricators and providing them with quick and comprehensive support. As part of that support, I’m working a lot in Revit to create 2D details and 3D parametric models which industry professionals can use to visualise our products with their project’s unique dimensions and specifications.”

Looking ahead, Alex is excited to keep pushing OMEGA’s products and processes towards their long-term decarbonisation goals. “There will eventually be a reworking of our 400 series Architectural Suite to focus on ease of assembly, installation and detailing. I’m also envisaging that by mid-2024, we’ll have a whole suite of parametric files for BIM architects and designers to choose from. In the future, we hope to be announcing further developments in the decarbonisation space. I think the most important message there is that decarbonisation doesn’t mean losing money, more efficient and modern plant is always a good thing for manufacturing businesses, and New Zealand has an opportunity to be a global leader in that space.”

To learn more and connect with Alex, visit or ring the team on 0800 500 141.

Bex De Prospo
Bex De Prospo