This year marks Freighter’s 75th anniversary – a feat achieved through the unwavering customer support it has garnered during its long journey. One such business is Victorian-based JL Transport, operated by father and son duo Jack and Mick Hellyer. Here they talk about how the exceptional customer service, backed by a reliable and long-lasting product, has fostered JL Transport’s strong relationship with the Freighter brand.
Jack Hellyer bought his first Freighter trailer in 1990. Since then his fleet has grown close to 60 trailers, with the majority of them Freighter. One of the reasons he went for Freighter at the time was because he had heard good things about the brand. The other reason was the availability of the model with the features that he had wanted.
Today, running the business with his son, Michael Hellyer, reasserts these factors as the reason why the company has remained loyal to the Freighter brand. Both Jack and Michael also agree that Freighter trailers are extremely well-built and are backed by dedicated customer service.
“We have been very happy with the performance of our Freighter trailers. There have been no issues with any of the trailers so far,” Jack says.
“They’ve always been reliable trailers, which is the reason we keep buying them,” Michael notes.
“We started buying Freighter trailers in 1990 when we first entered the interstate business. We went for that brand because we knew they were a good trailer and they were available at the time when we needed it. We have gone back to Freighter for new trailers since then,” Jack says.
“Majority of our fleet includes Freighter Tautliner drop decks with mezzanine floors. We also have refrigerated and dry freight vans as well. Over the years we’ve also had some specialised builds where we’ve asked for certain features on some trailers… basically if we want anything done out of the box, they’re always happy to do it,” Michael says.
Originally set up in 1980 as a local transport business servicing the liquor industry, Victorian-based JL Transport now runs general freight across Sydney, Brisbane and Adelaide. Jack, who is the current MD and owner, has been in the industry for 45 years while Michael has been in transport for over 32 years. In a country where we celebrate our family-run transport enterprises, JL Transport is blessed with nearly 10 members of the family and extended family helping grow the business including Jack’s wife, Lyn Hellyer, Michael’s wife, Sarah Hellyer, and their son, Daniel Hellyer.
To celebrate JL Transport’s 40th anniversary last year the company purchased three new sets of B-doubles – four drop decks with mezzanines and two flat top trailers. “Four of the new B-doubles had the mezzanine floor set up in them. We also wanted to do some fresh livery to mark our 40th year so we painted up the six trailers with the new logo and the established date of 1980 on the curtains,” Michael says.
“We are purchasing with growth. Ninety-five percent of our trailers operate on our interstate routes and we use the older trailers locally because they’re still good and are too good to sell off or trade in. We still have 30-year-old trailers – that’s how reliable they have been. Yes, we’ve done maintenance on axles to keep them going but because the body of the trailers has been so good we virtually have pretty much every trailer we’ve ever purchased.”
“Our strong relationship with MaxiTRANS is the reason we keep going back to them. The reliability of the Freighter brand, the servicing support and the help we get there make it a good package for us. It’s been like this from the start – a good product, good service, and good sales team. All of that combined, works really well for us,” Michael says.
“All the sales people we’ve ever bought from in the last 30 odd years have been excellent. And the guys doing the service at MaxiTRANS in Dandenong are excellent. I’ve been dealing with them for years and years. If we need something done, it gets done quickly. We even had a couple of little things done in New South Wales and it was just as good,” Jack says.
“We have always been very happy with the customer service we get from MaxiTRANS. It’s a pretty good relationship. We’ve had the same salesperson for nearly 10 years, Gerry Casse, and he knows what we want and we find it good to deal with him. Good sales people always help businesses stick with a particular brand,” Michael says.