ABC (Australia) - - IN­TER­VIEW -

Above:

In May, Craig will be suc­ceeded as man­ag­ing di­rec­tor by Loretta Lynch (page 15)..

new cities and new ve­hi­cles to our net­work.

How­ever, tran­si­tion­ing fleets to elec­tric re­quires more than re­plac­ing diesel buses with elec­tric. Up­grades to ex­ist­ing de­pots, train­ing for em­ploy­ees and changes to sched­ul­ing also need to be con­sid­ered.

We were de­lighted the Vic­to­rian Gov­ern­ment com­mit­ted to pur­chas­ing 40 Euro 6 buses as part of its or­der of 100 new buses for the Trans­dev Mel­bourne fleet. These buses are lower emis­sions and are qui­eter, mean­ing lower op­er­a­tional costs and im­proved pas­sen­ger com­fort. Ul­ti­mately, the de­ci­sion to pur­chase a spe­cific type of ve­hi­cle is de­ter­mined by in­di­vid­ual pub­lic trans­port au­thor­i­ties.

ABC: Much at­ten­tion is on elec­tric buses on trial in Aus­tralia or com­ing to our shores in fu­ture soon; where does hy­brid tech sit in the scope of what Trans­dev Aus­trala­sia wants to do with its bus ser­vices?

IC: Around the world, Trans­dev fleets com­prise a range of eco-friendly mo­bil­ity op­tions – al­ter­na­tive fu­els, hy­brid and fully elec­tric ve­hi­cles. We are the lead­ing op­er­a­tor of zero-emis­sion mo­bil­ity so­lu­tions glob­ally, and can draw on our ex­pe­ri­ence and ex­per­tise in this area.

In the fu­ture, hy­dro­gen may be­come the en­ergy source of choice for trans­porta­tion net­works around the world. How­ever, right now, elec­tric ve­hi­cle tech­nol­ogy is more ad­vanced than hy­dro­gen fuel cells. We are ex­cited to be part­ner­ing with Auck­land

Trans­port and ex­pect to be op­er­at­ing one of their hy­dro­gen fleet towards the end of this year.

ABC: Trans­dev Aus­trala­sia is one of a few key big pub­lic trans­port op­er­a­tors here in the re­gion now, with many tra­di­tional smaller op­er­a­tors hav­ing been ac­quired by such big­ger en­ti­ties along the way. Any fur­ther ex­pan­sion plans? Should in­dus­try fear cer­tain op­er­a­tors in­creas­ing size while oth­ers close down or sell up as things con­sol­i­date? Is such con­sol­i­da­tion a bad thing? Or why is it ad­van­ta­geous to the greater in­dus­try?

IC: The world has changed and these

Our driv­ers will re­main a core part of the busi­ness and do a won­der­ful job of greet­ing our cus­tomers ev­ery day.

days there is a lot of reg­u­la­tion bus op­er­a­tors need to com­ply with in­clud­ing en­vi­ron­men­tal and safety reg­u­la­tion. Larger op­er­a­tors are of­ten bet­ter equipped to man­age com­plex reg­u­la­tory en­vi­ron­ments. Con­sol­i­da­tion when man­aged ef­fec­tively, of­ten re­sults in bet­ter out­comes for clients. At Trans­dev, we op­er­ate dif­fer­ent modes of trans­port across a global net­work and draw on our ex­pe­ri­ence and ex­per­tise to de­liver bet­ter out­comes for cus­tomers.

ABC: How big is the Trans­dev Aus­tralasian fleet cur­rently? What’s the mix of brands used or is it all one pre­ferred brand or com­bi­na­tion? What’s been the most suc­cess­ful or re­li­able prod­uct that Trans­dev has used in this mar­ket thus far and why?

IC: Across Aus­tralia and New Zealand we op­er­ate a fleet of just over 1,735 buses. This in­cludes a mix of Sca­nia, Volvo, MAN, Mercedes-Benz and Optare mod­els. When sup­port­ing clients with pro­cure­ment projects, we work closely with our clients to rec­om­mend the ve­hi­cles which will be best suited to the oper­a­tion and will de­liver the best safety and en­vi­ron­men­tal per­for­mance.

ABC: Around the world, where does Trans­dev as an op­er­a­tor sit in terms of be­ing num­ber one in re­gions or coun­tries? Is it num­ber one in most coun­tries now?

IC: Trans­dev op­er­ates in 18 coun­tries across five con­ti­nents. Our fo­cus is to de­velop long-term part­ner­ships with busi­nesses and pub­lic au­thor­i­ties, in the devel­op­ment of safe and in­no­va­tive mo­bil­ity so­lu­tions. We are the lead­ing zero-emis­sion mo­bil­ity op­er­a­tor in Europe, and ac­tively shar­ing our knowl­edge and ex­per­tise with our part­ners here in Aus­tralia.

ABC: Your HQ is in Vic­to­ria – do other States re­port to you, or is each state a lot more in­de­pen­dent in what they do with their fleets in terms of sched­ul­ing and gen­eral pub­lic trans­port strat­egy? Is Trans­dev in all states and ter­ri­to­ries?

IC: We cur­rently op­er­ate bus fleets in Bris­bane, Sydney, Mel­bourne, Perth, Auck­land and Wellington. While there are some com­mon­al­ties and knowl­edge that can be shared across the bus busi­nesses, sched­ul­ing de­ci­sions are de­ter­mined by each bus busi­ness. Gen­eral pub­lic trans­port strat­egy is usu­ally in­formed by the rel­e­vant pub­lic trans­port au­thor­i­ties in each re­gion; we work in part­ner­ship with the rel­e­vant au­thor­i­ties to de­liver ser­vices.

ABC: Driver­less buses – will Trans­dev be op­er­at­ing au­tonomous ve­hi­cles soon and can it con­firm what will hap­pen to the role of the tra­di­tional driver? Any driver­less bus trails com­ing up or in­sight into what branded prod­uct will be used? Or will a few dif­fer­ent man­u­fac­tur­ers’ prod­uct be tested? How are cur­rent tests go­ing? From lo­gis­ti­cal and le­gal views, what are the im­pli­ca­tions for the Asia-Pa­cific re­gion?

IC: At Trans­dev, our be­lief is that shared au­tonomous trans­port will change the way we travel and live, and present a valu­able op­por­tu­nity to pro­vide first and last mile for com­mu­ni­ties.

We have suc­cess­fully com­pleted an Aus­tralian-first trial of a fully elec­tric au­tonomous driver­less shut­tle known as ARDi in Ar­mi­dale.

The Ar­mi­dale Re­gional Driver­less Ini­tia­tive (ARDi) was the first au­to­mated shut­tle to op­er­ate in mixed traf­fic within a city cen­tre and oper­ated on one of the long­est and most com­plex trial routes. The trial helped us un­der­stand the tech­ni­cal ca­pa­bil­i­ties of ARDi and how it in­te­grated into the trans­port net­work and oper­ated in real-life ur­ban traf­fic sce­nar­ios.

Our driv­ers will re­main a core part of the busi­ness and do a won­der­ful job of greet­ing our cus­tomers ev­ery day and get­ting them where they need to go. In the medium term, au­tonomous tech­nolo­gies present some ex­cit­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties for ap­pli­ca­tion in our de­pots.

ABC: What dou­ble-decker buses does Trans­dev have in the fleet, if at all these days? Any chance for more com­ing on board and which ar­eas would they be used in and why there?

IC: Trans­dev cur­rently has a num­ber of dou­ble-decker buses op­er­at­ing in New South Wales, Auck­land and Wellington. Ul­ti­mately, the de­ci­sion to pur­chase dou­ble decker buses lies with in­di­vid­ual pub­lic trans­port au­thor­i­ties.

ABC: So what is it that you, as a per­son, uniquely bring to this role? What is it that makes you dif­fer­ent that will help en­hance the man­ag­ing di­rec­tor role you have been ap­pointed with?

IC: I am a big be­liever you are as only as good as your team. Luck­ily, we have an out­stand­ing team in Mel­bourne and across each of our bus busi­nesses. Their pas­sion for op­er­a­tional ex­cel­lence and im­prov­ing the cus­tomer ex­pe­ri­ence in­spires me daily. I see my role as creat­ing the right en­vi­ron­ment for my team to suc­ceed in and help­ing move chal­lenges out of the way.

Above: Trans­dev op­er­ates in 18 coun­tries across five con­ti­nents.

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