Bustech launches 1000th bus, gears up for more

By: Jason Whittaker


Bustech has celebrated the manufacture of its 1000th vehicle with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and a guest appearance from the Queensland

Bustech has celebrated the manufacture of its 1000th vehicle with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and a guest appearance from the Queensland State Treasurer, Andrew Fraser.

Company staff and management were in attendance at a function on the Gold Coast today, which included proprietor Joe Calabro and family, Managing Director Luke Gray and General Manager Marc Cleave.

Calabro says he is very proud of the work he and his staff have achieved.

"We started off in ’97, twelve years ago, and we were only going to build 16 to 20 buses a year," Calabro says.

"Some acquaintances in the bus industry said: ‘we’ll give you a go.’ So they bought buses."

Now a bus a day rolls off the Bustech production line.

"We don’t market a lot; we’re selling on our good name, and we produce possibly the most robust vehicle in the industry," Calabro says.

"I’m a motor mechanic by trade. I tell the boys here continually: you build the bus but I have to live with it for 25 years, operating it.

"[Our vehicle] is good for 25-years – whether you’re going to keep it that long or not."

In a brief speech delivered on board the bus, Fraser said Bustech’s milestone was a "great local story, a great story for a great business".

"While front pages are full of stories of corporate collapses, here’s a success story, right here on the Gold Coast, of a company that’s done well, in the face of the global financial crisis," he says.

"This thousandth bus represents the success of Bustech, where they’ve gone from a production capacity of around 20 buses a year to around 200 buses, which is hugely impressive."

The Bustech site at Burleigh employs 120 workers.

"I’m very proud of my workers," Calabro says. "The employees here are excellent people.

"They’ve strived to reach a goal of building one bus a day – and they’re currently doing that.

"I’m very proud that today we’ve built the thousandth bus and we plan on being here in years to come."

The thousandth bus came off the assembly line at the Gold Coast on Wednesday, November 4, and will be put into service in Cairns.

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