Long Trailer Connection


The manager of one of Australia’s biggest trailer dealerships has witnessed some big changes in technology over the years

Long Trailer Connection
David Rees

David Rees has come full circle in the Australian trailer industry.

His first job straight out of school 35 years ago was as a draftsman in the design office of Freighter Industries in Ballarat.

Now he sells and services Freighter trailers as general manager of Transport Connection in South Australia, majority-owned by the public company MaxiTRANS.

"It's the sort of industry where once you're in it, it gets in your blood I suppose," Rees says in the modest board room of his dealership at Wingfield on Adelaide's northern outskirts, right across the road from the big BP truck stop.

"There are people in MaxiTRANS in the engineering office that I worked with 35 years ago - they're still there.

"It's interesting, it's challenging, you can get a sense of fulfilment from putting something you're proud of out on the road, or backing it up with good service."

If Transport Connection is not the biggest trailer dealership in South Australia, it's very close to it. Customers range from owner-operators to large South Australian-based companies such as Collins to big national outfits Qube Logistics and Toll.

Since MaxiTRANS took an 80 percent stake in the dealership late last October, Transport Connection has been selling and servicing the full stable of MaxiTRANS brands - Hamelex White, Freighter, Lusty EMS, Azmeb, Maxi-CUBE and Peki.

"From tautliners to skels, semis, refrigerated vans, tippers and side tippers, we're now set up to be able to assist with just about any enquiry," says Rees.

About the only types of trailer he doesn't sell are tankers and stock crates.

Hamelex White has been sold and serviced at Transport Connection since day one in 1985 under founder Terry Critchley, who retired last year with the MaxiTRANS friendly takeover.

Rees has been with Transport Connection for 20 years, and as an equal partner with Critchley since the mid-2000s. He retains 20 percent of the ownership. Previously he was with Krueger Trailers.

For more on major changes in trailer technology over the past three decades see the full feature in the May issue of Owner//Driver, on sale May 13.

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