The founder and Managing Director of JD Refrigerated Transport, Joe Joseph, has a somewhat unusual career history for the owner of a transport company.
He started as an accountant and then spent 20 years in the consumer goods and private equity sectors in Sydney before deciding to make the move to Brisbane where he started a transport business.
“I wanted to move back to Brisbane so our kids could grow up with their cousins – most of my family live in Queensland,” Joe says.
He gained his Multi-Combination truck licence and spent six months driving in order to learn all he could at the coalface before committing to running his own business.
“I use the analogy of crawl-walk-run – build the foundation strong and a sustainable business will follow,” he says.
Starting out in 2011 with three-pallet capacity light-duty refrigerated trucks, Joe soon realised that the heavier end of the business was where he would do best and at that point started transitioning to heavy rigids, semis and B-doubles to form the backbone of the operation.
The semi-trailers and B-double trailers are a mixture of MaxiCUBE and FTE and Joe says he is equally satisfied with both brands and the service provided by their respective Brisbane dealerships.
Each of the trailers feature BPW Transpec axles and air suspension, with Joe explaining that using this brand is a non-negotiable for him.
“I don’t have a transport background and I’m not mechanically minded, but I do have a simple philosophy that we partner with the best suppliers to ensure our equipment is second to none in terms of reliability and uptime,” Joe says.
“When I was first looking to buy trailers, I spoke with a few experienced operators who each focussed in on certain components that they deemed the best ones to have – and unanimously BPW axles and suspension was one of them. That was good enough for me,” he says.
“All our trucks and trailers are under full service and maintenance contracts and with the trailers we also do preventative maintenance on a monthly or bi-monthly basis which includes cosmetic maintenance to ensure they are always looking their best – we take a lot of pride in the appearance of our fleet.”
Joe explains that after his employees, the high calibre equipment is the best form of marketing for his business which, again, is why he seeks to partner with the best in the business when purchasing new equipment.
The company’s current fleet comprises 21 vehicles split roughly 50-50 between rigid Isuzus and a mix of Mercedes-Benz and Kenworth prime movers pulling two 34-pallet B-double sets and five 22-pallet semi-trailers.
Every vehicle in the fleet is refrigerated with the freight carried comprising produce, poultry, meat and eggs.
While a good proportion of the rigid and semi-trailer work is concentrated in south-east Queensland, the B-doubles travel farther afield to Bowen in North Queensland and Glen Innes in northern New South Wales. Running on an around-the-clock basis sees the B-doubles rack up around 250,000km annually.
According to Wayne Azzopardi, General Manager Commercial at JD Refrigerated Transport, the people at BPW Transpec have been exceptionally good to work with since he joined the company in 2019.
“Since buying our first BPW axle-equipped trailer in 2018 we have had no issues and the staff at BPW Transpec have always been happy to assist us in any way they can,” Wayne says.
“The people at FTE Brisbane and Trailer Sales (MaxiCUBE) have also been really good to deal with, helping us to ensure the trailers we buy are the best specified to suit our requirements.”
Airing his thoughts about the company, Wayne says JD Refrigerated Transport is a great company to work for, with a passionate team of people who are committed to excellence.
“Our pride in what we do is what sets us apart,” he says. “Providing a sustainably reliable service in cold chain logistics requires the combination of great equipment, experienced drivers, refined processes and cutting-edge technology. A genuine pride for what we do means that we consistently work hard at all of these elements for the benefit of our clients.”
Working hand-in-hand with the industry to provide what are widely considered among the best trailer axles in the market is BPW Transpec, a company that also prides itself on supplying products and services that best meet the needs of its clientele.
BPW Transpec provides a range of heavy-duty trailer axles, suspension and other quality components that help companies like JD Refrigerated Transport deliver top-shelf service to their customers.