Bins business big suc­cess

Matamata Chronicle - - News -

War­ren Auger Bins deals in big business so it’s only fit­ting they have a big ware­house to go with it. The lo­cal Mata­mata business, lo­cated on Wai­hou St, was es­tab­lished in 2012 and has gone from strength to strength. The company is a ven­ture be­tween Scott Gar­land of Gar­land En­gi­neer­ing and Bradley Scott.

Gar­land said Gar­land En­gi­neer­ing ini­tially did a few auger bin fit-outs for Swaps, who orig­i­nally got the bins di­rectly from Amer­ica as a built bin.

‘‘We did about three builds for them and then we de­cided the freight was too much to get the bins into New Zealand. It was big, big money for the freight so we went over to Amer­ica to see if we could bring them over as a kit set packed into a con­tainer four, five or six at a time . . .’’

This saw a sav­ing on freight and meant War­ren Auger Bins could put the bins to­gether for a cheaper price.

Gar­land said there were 35 or 40 of th­ese bins al­ready in New Zealand, so he be­lieved there was room for an agency in the coun­try.

Gar­land, Scott, John Moore and Lewis Swap trav­elled to Amer­ica to meet with War­ren’s about the pos­si­bil­ity of be­ing a whole­saler of their prod­uct in New Zealand.

Bradley Scott orig­i­nally worked for Gar­land En­gi­neer­ing but has gone into part­ner­ship with Gar­land with this business, which is a break­away company from the en­gi­neer­ing side of things.

‘‘He went away truck driv­ing for two years and came back in 2011.’’ He worked for a year be­fore get­ting in­volved with Gar­land and the new ven­ture. Gar­land said the part­ner­ship is go­ing well.

‘‘I can’t re­ally do it with­out him, Bradley is keen and ex­pe­ri­enced

and it’s a great op­por­tu­nity for a young guy to get in­volved in own­ing a business. I know when the time comes for me to step down, the business will be in very ca­pa­ble hands.’’

Gar­land said ex­pec­ta­tions for the business have been well ex­ceeded.

‘‘We thought we might build three to four bins a year. To date we have built 18 and we’re booked out un­til next July.’’

The bins, which are used largely in the stock food in­dus­try, cart bulk loads of stock food to dairy and chicken farm­ers that have silo stor­age for their feed­ing sys­tems.

The company isn’t in­volved in the con­struc­tion of the truck cab or chas­sis – that side of things comes from the truck­ing man­u­fac­turer. Clients bring the cab and chas­sis in. The bin is al­ready built by that stage and then it is fit­ted to the truck and given a test run, Gar­land said.

There are two parts to the job, build­ing the bin and then fit­ting it.

Lo­cal business Swaps are still a large part of the business, Gar­land said. Lau­rie Ur­lich was one of the first to bring th­ese bins into New Zealand.

‘‘He used to cart all the Ing­ham’s meal feed and when the palm ker­nel started get­ting more popular and ex­pen­sive, farm­ers switched to in-feed shed sys­tems be­cause it cuts down on labour, and they can put the feed straight into the silo.’’

‘‘We al­ways knew that the South Is­land were a year or so be­hind us so they’re just start­ing to get into it now, with all the

dairy con­ver­sions down there. Quite a lot of our clients are from the South Is­land, not only in stock food but in chicken feed as well, it’s prob­a­bly 50/50 re­ally.’’

War­ren Auger Bins ser­vices the en­tire coun­try. ‘‘Ba­si­cally ev­ery­one with a War­ren Auger Bin knows we’re do­ing them here now so we’re get­ting a lot of ex­ist­ing clients that would’ve orig­i­nally had a hand­ful of parts from Amer­ica them­selves in the garage but they’re now buy­ing off us. We have all the parts in stock.’’

Cus­tomers re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate the ser­vice, Gar­land said.

‘‘I be­lieve if you build and sell some­thing, you’ve got to be able to ser­vice it.

‘‘We’re in a po­si­tion where we’ve got bin kits in stock so if we haven’t got a part in stock we can rob it off a kit get it with the next load. Our freight is our big­gest chal­lenge in cost­ings.’’

Gar­land said he was happy to have a name be­hind the prod­uct.

Each bin can cost around $100,000. A com­plete trailer with axles can be around $250,000.

About 200-220 hours of labour is in­volved in a bin build and about the same again to fit them.

‘‘You’re look­ing at two guys, two weeks to build the bin it­self. It’s all a lot of fid­gety stuff that takes time.’’

Gar­land said meet­ing new peo­ple is the best part about be­ing in­volved in the rel­a­tively new business.

‘‘It’s quite a chal­lenge im­port­ing prod­ucts out of Amer­ica. We like to have a prod­uct that is proven and you’re proud to put your name on. It’s a very ba­sic but proven prod­uct.’’

Gar­land said the hard part about the business is the fact they’re deal­ing with a limited mar­ket.

‘‘We’re not deal­ing with ev­ery trans­port op­er­a­tor in New Zealand. You’re prob­a­bly deal­ing with a group of no more than 20 trans­port op­er­a­tors.’’

But Gar­land said a num­ber of lo­cal busi­nesses have sup­ported them when they can.

‘‘It’s only a cer­tain group of peo­ple that are want­ing our prod­ucts, Wa­haroa Trans­port have been great sup­ports and bought a few units off us.’’

Gar­land found it dif­fi­cult to an­swer when the Chron­i­cle asked him ‘‘what should ev­ery­one in Mata­mata know about us?’’.

‘‘I guess the fact that we’re good hard work­ing buggers,’’ he said.

Pho­tos: HE­LENA GRATKOWSKI

STAFF MEM­BERS: War­ren Auger Bins staff, from left, Scott Gar­land, Reuben Mair, Sean Matthew and Bradley Scott.

NEWWARE­HOUSE: The new War­ren Auger Bins ware­house.

TRUCKS: At least a cou­ple of trucks can fit in the ware­house.

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