Transport Investments Ltd (TIL Group)
Since its foundation in the 1860s, the original Hooker Brothers transport company has been through more than a few reformations to improve the business – and in July 2014 it went through another, although most customers will be totally unaware of it.
When the current management team took over the business in 1989, the vision was clear – grow the business to survive, says the company’s chairman, Jim Ramsay of Transport Investments Limited (TIL).
“At that time, the industry was still adjusting to the effects of deregulation,” says Jim. “We had just 40 staff and we knew that we had to expand nationwide to survive in the new environment.”
A key part of that expansion was opening branches nationwide and acquiring similar transport businesses that fitted with the company’s operation and thinking – and provided the network and services needed.
In many instances, the acquired companies retained their names and loyal customer base.
25 years later, the company has grown to the point where the TIL parent company has aligned its logistics operations into five distinct groups.
“For the first time, we are bringing all the companies into one cohesive whole,” says Jim.
“It’s all about improving systems and creating efficiencies. We have created one back office system for logistics right across the Group as well as for accounting systems.”
While there is one integrated IT system, the individual transport companies will maintain their identities but will be able to work together better.
“Different brands are strong in different parts of the country and we wanted to protect that so customers won’t notice any outward change,” explains Jim. “What they will experience is a faster, seamless movement of freight around the country.
“With one consignment note, they will be able to track the movement of their freight online around the country no matter which of our carriers it is on.”
Transport Investments Ltd (TIL) was founded as an investment vehicle by New Zealand private equity interests. In 1993 the partners of Hooker Bros (1989) Ltd took control and turned TIL into a holding company for their transport interests. TIL remains privately held by the partners and is headquarted in New Plymouth, New Zealand.
The TIL Group comprises a number of well-known and respected transport operators including Hooker Pacific, TNL Group and RoadstarTransport.
Traditionally the companies within the Group have operated separately and independently of each other. However TIL has recently brought them together under one banner to better utilise their synergies and offer a suite of comprehensive services to their clients.
Under the new model each company retains their own brand however core resources including marketing, administration and financial support are centralised and provided by TIL.
From Left-Right Larry Stewart (Director), Jim Ramsay (Chairman & Managing Director), Alan Terris (Director International & Group Marketing), Greg Whitham (Chief Financial Director)