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Top independent MAN dealership Johannesburg Truck & Bus, opens state-of-the-art service facility

Johannesburg Truck & Bus, owned by Imperial Group’s Motor Retail Division, officially opened its new dealership in City Deep, Johannesburg, on February 13, 2014.

The new Service Facility forms part of MAN Truck & Bus South Africa’s nationwide network of 31 proprietary and independent dealerships, dedicated to supporting the full spectrum of MAN truck and bus products.

Ribbon Cutting Officially opening Johannesburg Truck & Bus

Having purchased the dealership from Eskom six years ago while it was located in Rosherville, Gauteng, Imperial Group appointed Greg Mervitz as general manager to transform the business from a parastatal organisation into a fully-fledged entrepreneurial operation.

According to Mervitz, “The move to our new high-profile location on Heidelberg Road in City Deep follows an extremely successful half-decade of transformation within the dealership which saw turnover climb by 600% since the buyout in 2008.”

The move from Rosherville to the new R50 million facility in August 2013 was executed with absolute efficiency, enabling the dealership to not lose a single day of operations, adds Mervitz.

For MAN Truck & Bus South Africa CEO, Bruce Dickson, “Greg and his team showed true professionalism and absolute commitment to achieve the seamless move of its operations. This dedication to offering MAN customers exceptional levels of service has made the operation our number-one Aftersales dealership in the country.”

The new dealership was designed to not only function as a ‘drive-through’ service centre but also to rate as a Four-Star eco-friendly building, explains Mervitz: “the new building includes renovated office space, a new workshop with eleven 30-metre drive-through service bays, an integrated parts warehouse and ordering department with roadside receiving and dispatch areas, as well as under-roof parking for 28 vehicles. The strategically configured workflow of the building allows for improved vehicle servicing turnaround times while bringing greater levels of security to our parts warehouse.”

From a ‘green’ perspective, the new facility, “is designed for efficiency,” adds Mervitz. “The fitment of solar panels to our roof enables us to run approximately 80% off-grid during peak hours in summer, while a water harvesting system and recycling plant allows us to use rain water for our wash bays and gardens. A waste-disposal company has been contracted to remove all redundant product from our premises, a process which generates more revenue for the dealership.”

Situated on 22 000 square-metres of prime real estate in the epicentre of South Africa’s logistics hub (City Deep Container Terminal), Johannesburg Truck & Bus’s new dealership is ideally positioned to capitalise on the growth in the road freight industry, both domestically and intra-Africa.

“The new dealership, apart from being close to major highways, will also benefit from its close proximity to the new MAN Parts Distribution Centre in Germiston, which, like Greg’s operation, is geared to keeping vehicle uptime at optimum levels,” says Dickson.

Geoff du Plessis, Executive Chairman, MAN Truck & Bus South Africa states that: “The success of MAN’s relationship with Imperial over the years has been forged on a mutual understanding that customer satisfaction is the number-one focus of our respective operations – for MAN, that means supplying and supporting its independent dealers with purpose-built products, market-friendly financing solutions, skills transfer and capacity building, rapid parts supply and swift warranty settlement.”

Via its Dealer Development Programme (which includes an annual Dealer of the Year Award), MAN offers ongoing support to its dealer network through an array of initiatives designed to boost both human and technical capacity in its dealerships, including enterprise-wide skills development, specialised tool provision, marketing support and various additional tools to help improve operational efficiency.

For du Plessis, “the time has never been better for MAN to significantly increase its market share in this country and north of our borders too, and that, with this new facility as its platform, Johannesburg Truck & Bus will be a primary partner in helping us achieve this.“

As a flagship MAN dealership, Johannesburg Truck & Bus, with its new state-of-the-art facilities, is perfectly equipped to set new vehicle servicing benchamarks in the industry, concludes Mervitz: “MAN has the best Aftersales network in South Africa and its market penetration is constantly improving, giving us all the confidence that our services here will be well utilised. Imperial’s faith in the brand has never been stronger and this new dealership facility is testimony to that.”