Omni Tanker finds winning formula
- From the April 2017 issue.
Sydney company Omni Tanker has taken the next step to disrupting the global tanker manufacturing market by expanding into New Zealand, supporting Jasol, a local chemicals business, during a critical growth phase.
Australia’s tanker manufacturing market has been shaken up significantly since the 2016 Melbourne Truck Show and the subsequent double dissolution election, with a range of agile new players challenging incumbent businesses in a segment long considered too complex to be disrupted.
One new name that has risen to fame since then is Omni Tanker, a Sydney-based company specialising in carbon-fibre equipment for chemicals and Dangerous Goods transportation. Hailed as a unique Australian success story by Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, it has managed to develop a product so unique that it attracted interest from across the globe, with a German subsidiary already up and operational to service a growing European client base.
Europe, however, is only one focus area for the ambitious start-up. Omni Tanker also managed to make a notable dent in the booming Asia-Pacific market over the past year or so, says Managing Director, Daniel Rodgers, with New Zealand the latest country to embrace the OEM’s carbon-fibre concept.
The first Omni Tanker unit to travel across the Tasman was a truck-and-dog unit designed for Jasol, a company specialising in the manufacture and supply of cleaning and hygiene solutions for food manufacturing facilities, supermarkets and industrial applications in New Zealand and abroad. It arrived in Christchurch last month and has now gone into operation, “dramatically increasing” the company’s logistical capabilities from day one, as General Manager, Geoff Polkinghorne, points out.
Geoff says growing domestic demand recently prompted Jasol to set up a small in-house transport operation to be able to respond more flexibly during what he deems a critical growth phase for the business. “We don’t carry large volumes over long distances, so we needed a more flexible truck-and-dog solution that would allow us to seriously disrupt the local chemicals market,” he says. “When we couldn’t find what we were looking for anywhere in New Zealand or Asia, we came across Omni Tanker in Australia. After touring the company’s facility in Sydney, it soon became obvious that we were onto something special. The carbon-fibre approach is fundamentally different to anything we had seen before.”
According to Daniel, both Omni tanks on the unit are constructed with a patented manufacturing technology using a special thermoplastic polymer that gives them a smooth and seamless interior that can be easily washed out post-delivery, allowing for a different product to be loaded almost immediately. “An Omni tank can handle the whole bandwidth of caustic and hypo liquids that are critical for Jasol’s success. It’s a wash-and-go solution, if you will.”
In combination with significant weight savings due to the carbon-fibre structure, Geoff says Jasol’s transport efficiency has gone up about 20 per cent since the new unit arrived. “The local chemicals market is going through a growth phase and competition is strong, so the new unit will provide us with a real, measurable competitive advantage,” he explains – indicating that if growth persists, a fleet upgrade featuring additional Omni Tanker gear will be inevitable.
Daniel says Omni Tanker collaborated with MaxiTRANS Australia for the design and manufacture of the Dog trailer, knowing the company’s well-developed local service network would be well suited to supporting Jasol in an important growth phase. “MaxiTRANS has a well-established brand in Australia and New Zealand, so involving them made sense,” he says – revealing that the time from initial inquiry to commencing the build was very compressed. “We normally have a long ‘incubation period’ from enquiry to order, but Jasol needed to move fast, so we sped up the whole process dramatically, commencing the build within two months of the enquiry, which also included a new Dangerous Goods approval to NZ standards. “To us, providing that kind of responsiveness and complete service is just as important as delivering a high performance product – we want to change the game on every level.
“What we’ve seen in New Zealand is a continuation of an export success story that began a little over a year ago, when our export business started taking off,” Daniel adds, indicating that the unique Omni Tanker design is now dominating the Australian market for Class 8 corrosive chemicals approved equipment. “Omni Tanker is bringing a game-changing value proposition to market that simply cannot be ignored – be it in Australia, Europe or across Asia-Pacific.”