Kiwi concrete home grown

In Short Story March 2023, March 2023, Mack2 MinutesBy Dave McCoidApril 18, 2023

A logical progression for a quarrying and aggregate-hauling enterprise must surely be concrete. Kiwi Concrete started in 2005 in the wake of the 1997 acquisition of well-known Christchurch company Laing Concrete.

The model for Kiwi Concrete since 2005 has been consistent: quality product and outstanding service.

Although that exceptional service goal is exactly what it implies at face value, it also speaks to the other interpretation – servicing the exceptions.

“Chasing the big stuff – the mega contracts – is not our thing,” says Road Metals general manager Dan Francis. “When a customer or contractor rings up a bit stressed with the old ‘I need it this afternoon’ scenario, that’s when we say, ‘Yep, no problem’.”

As traditional and basic as those tenets might be, they’re probably more relevant than ever. There have been a couple of acquisitions along the way. Harmac Concrete in Kaikoura and Downer’s operation in Twizel were brought into the fold when opportunity knocked.

Today the company runs 14 mixers in Christchurch, six in Oamaru and two each in Twizel and Kaikoura.

The great thing about concrete trucks in New Zealand is they actually look like trucks carrying a concrete bowl, unlike their US counterparts that tend to look like concrete bowls reversing rapidly up the road driven by a man in a toilet. The mainstays of the Kiwi mixer fleet are Isuzu FYs, Hino 500s, and as you’d expect, Mack in Metro Liner guise. The Macks look exceptionally slick and add a classy point of difference to what’s often considered an assignment suited to vehicles of a more utilitarian flavour.