Truck handovers help mark Volvo Group’s 50 years in Australia

Volvo Group Australia this week marked five decades of building trucks in Australia with the handover of two special trucks to key customers.

The keys to a 50-year branded Volvo FH700XXL were handed over to Scott and Regina Harvey at the event while Nathan Stephens of Ipswich based JR Stephens also took delivery of a 50-year themed Mack Anthem.

Volvo Trucks International Senior Vice President, Per Erik Lindstrom was also present at the anniversary event.

“We talk about the Volvo family, and you as customers are part of that family,” he said. “I am super proud to be here to help celebrate 50 years of building trucks here, this country is very important to Volvo Group, and we are here to stay.” Martin Merrick, Volvo Group Australia President and CEO echoed the sentiment.

“While this is a celebration of our success and longevity in one of the toughest trucking markets on the planet, this is also a celebration of customer success,” he said.

“Without long term customers like SRH and JR Stephens we wouldn’t be able to mark this occasion,” continued Merrick. “Our customers challenge us to go on the journey with them. As they grow and succeed, we too grow and succeed.

“These companies are just a small part of the colourful tapestry of characters and stories that make up the Australian transport industry yet their contribution to our society and our economy is invaluable.” Gary Bone, Vice President Volvo Trucks Australia also spoke at the event.

“It’s when you dig into the history of these customers and their partnership that you reflect on the journey that they’ve taken over the years,” he said.

“Scott and Regina Harvey started SRH milk haulage back in 1996 with a single Volvo at Hexham NSW. Move on 26 years, over half the time that Volvo has been building trucks in Australia, they’re now in three states with over 60 trucks utilising both the Mack and Volvo brands,” said Bone. “

SRH Milk Haulage Managing Director, Scott Harvey called his 26 years in transport an adventure.

“But I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it all the way through,” he said.

“For me it’s the people and the relationships that make it work,” said Harvey.

“The backup and support, especially when you’re on milk 24/ 7, has always been there for SRH without a doubt.” Tom Chapman, Vice President, Mack Trucks Australia offered some thoughts during the handover.

“We’ve actually been building trucks in Australia for 59 years now, and this year marks 20 years of Mack trucks being built at our Wacol plant,” he said.

“And JR Stephens have been here from the beginning, they have been with us on the journey for the entire time,” said Chapman. JR Chapman is also a logistics supplier to the VGA factory further testament to the relationship according to Chapman.

“Over 50 years we’ve built a relationship with Volvo Group, it’s definitely the people that make the business,” reflected Nathan Stephens, JR Stephens, General Manager.

“From the salespeople to the workshops to engineering, we really appreciate the rapport that we’ve been able to build over the years,” he said. Volvo Group Australia’s Wacol, Queensland manufacturing plant was established in June 1972.

Since that time more than 70,000 Volvo and Mack trucks have been produced at the site.

Production of battery electric trucks is also expected to commence at the Wacol plant by 2025.

Nathan Stephens, General Manager, JR Stephens Transport with Tom Chapman.
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