Micway: Mutual understanding

Established by David and Mary Franklin almost 14 years ago, family-owned transport business Micway – named after the couple’s two sons, Michael and Wayne – is a role model for consistency in the cold logistics industry. From national retail chains to local businesses, Micway supplies perishable goods to hundreds of retail outlets scattered across New South Wales and Queensland on a demanding 24-7 schedule.

It’s a sizable operation that just continues to grow by the day, and according to Wayne, Micway’s Director of Operations, the key to sustaining that momentum will be in the many relationships it has forged.

“If you want to improve your business, you’ve got to surround yourself with the right people in the right areas. It’s really that simple – fostering good partnerships and growth have always been major components of our success,” he states.

Naturally, Micway’s on-going growth has directly affected its fleet as well, which now stands at 29 rigid vehicles, 29 trailers and 19, mostly European, prime movers. When it comes to its refrigerated trailers, Micway is supplied by a variety of manufacturers including Maxi-CUBE, FTE and Schmitz-Cargobull.

But according to Wayne, those numbers are likely to change soon as the company was just awarded the ‘Bells Pure Ice’ contract in Queensland, starting this September.

“Even though we have been operating in the Queensland market for the past 13 years, this new contract is actually the first time Micway has branched out into the linehaul service segment,” Wayne says. “In fact, it requires us to run an overnight express, which means we will have to use more B-double combinations to transport chilled, frozen and dry goods to Queensland.

“The contract will accommodate more than 60 outlets in the Wide Bay-Burnett region of the state, servicing towns such as Bundaberg, Hervey Bay and Maryborough. It’s a massive job and everyone will need to play their respective roles to ensure a seamless operation.”

One Micway supplier that will figure prominently in keeping the company’s overnight express motoring along will be renowned fuel brand BP, which has been supporting the company since its inception in 1999. “We started using BP exclusively from day one, and we haven’t changed since,” Wayne says. “They provide us with a price that reflects the amount of fuel we are purchasing, which we consider a fair deal.”

So what prompted the young business to stick the one fuel company? According to Wayne, the answer is obvious. “Location – plain and simple. 

“Our head office in Seven Hills, NSW has a few BP service stations nearby which has always been convenient for our fleet. Naturally, if your vehicles are not only filling up from these stations on a daily basis, but also making regular stops to other BP fuel depots along the main highways, it makes perfect sense to explore a long-term partnership.”

Part of BP’s backup service Wayne refers to includes the company’s comprehensive website, which allows the Micway team to quickly access its account, as well as download critical reports and statistics the company uses as part of its monthly evaluation.

“A major part of our operation includes monitoring all vehicles on the road. All of them are all fitted with C-track satellite tracking that not only monitors their movement in real time, but also assists our drivers by indicating over-revving, extended idling and speeding,” Wayne explains.

“The BP online system fits perfectly into that framework. If we need access to information such as when and where our drivers are using their BP cards, or the volume of fuel that has been purchased, fuel mileage or even fuel terminal figure reports, the BP website can provide it immediately.”

As a result, Micway now planning the next future venture with BP, which will include the installation of a permanent bowser at the company’s new premises that are currently being built. “The new Micway site is still about 18 months off from completion. It’s a much bigger facility that will house our entire fleet and also allow us to install a bowser that will cater to all vehicles. Given our track record with BP, there was no question which fuel brand to ask when we planned it.”

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