BLK Auto looks local to support Australian industry


BLK Auto intends to support the Australian bus and coach industry. In her latest partnership with AngelTrax, she is helping a First Nations company gain a foothold in the market.

BLK partnered with AngelTrax before and after the recent Expo

Global truck and bus manufacturer BLK Auto first approached Australian First Nations company AngelTrax earlier this year seeking a partnership. Originally, BLK wanted a reliable, Australian Design Rule (ADR) approved electronic rearview mirror for their zero-emission buses. He left with a lot more.

“We first approached AngelTrax about six months ago,” Jason Pecotic, general manager of BLK Auto, told ABC.

“It was based on the fact that we are building new energy vehicles in our electric and hydrogen bus models and we saw the need for approved electronic mirrors.”

BLK moved quickly to use AngelTrax products on its buses. Pecotic says it was the right move for BLK Auto, which is looking to become one of the leading zero-emission bus suppliers in the Australian market.

“It helps position us at the forefront of the industry,” says Pecotic.

“It’s an exciting partnership moving forward and we’re excited for what it will bring.”

For AngelTrax Australia, this was the perfect opportunity for the First Nations company to showcase its diverse range of bus and coach products. AngelTrax sales specialist Bob Barwick says BLK came to them looking for ADR-compliant electronic mirrors, but came away impressed with more.

“We first introduced them to the product and then showed them our development of our new destination signs and electronic mirrors,” Barwick told ABC.

“We then showed them our CCTV range and received a very positive reception from them.

“AngelTrax has thousands of CCTVs in Australia at the moment – it’s a very good and reliable product. It was nice to see that BLK Auto also considered them bulletproof.”

The partnership between BLK and local AngelTrax may be in its infancy, but it is already starting to pay off. The BLK Auto buses it showcased at October’s Australasian Bus & Coach Expo in Sydney will sport AngelTrax destination signs to give the First Nations company wide-scale exposure.

Some of these panels have recently been developed and introduced to the local market as Australian made options. Barwick says he hopes customers who attended the Expo will want to buy AngelTrax’s products because they’re made by a local company.

“We never want to ship from overseas because the cost of buying and shipping is extraordinary,” says Barwick.

“The company employs Australians to make our latest products, so creating local jobs for us is a big deal, and so is BLK.

“We believe that being able to have our products purchased and repaired locally without having to source spare parts overseas is a great advantage for customers looking to purchase signs, mirrors or CCTV models.”

The Australian-owned system manufacturer and supplier has been around for over 70 years. Over time, AngelTrax has specialized in the production of signs, whether it is highway signs or LED signs for buses across the country.

RELATED: BLK Auto Expo Preview

Barwick says being a First Nations company is important to AngelTrax. It continues to supply its mirrors, signs and other systems in Australia to ensure industry customers have a local option for sourcing parts.

“The technology we have is of a higher quality than most other systems overseas because we are developing it in Australia to meet operator and local market expectations,” says Barwick.

“Buying European-designed systems overseas is totally different from buying in Australia-
manufactured and designed products.

“We’re just a small market here in Australia, so it’s important for us to be able to build something specifically for Australian operators.”

BLK Auto will become the first company outside of trials to install AngelTrax electronic mirrors on its buses. Previous trials with Australian companies like Interline Bus Services give Barwick confidence that AngelTrax’s electronic mirrors are ready to adorn BLK’s vehicles.

The partnership between the pair will extend beyond just electronic mirrors. Barwick says BLK is also interested in destination signs and CCTV products from AngelTrax. This includes AngelTrax’s latest CCTV system, which has been expanded to record more information. This means that customers can use different types of cameras at the highest resolution to achieve 30 days of recording while meeting NSW CCTV specifications.

AngelTrax then intends to use its opportunity with BLK Auto as a springboard to increase its presence in the Australian bus market.

“We will try to provide these products not only to BLK Auto, but to everyone,” Barwick said.

“Having our mirrors on BLK buses at Expo was a great start.

“It’s even better having it on a bus than showing it on a static stand. BLK having our e-mirror on its bus is a great reference point for AngelTrax.”

Barwick is certain that the partnership also benefits BLK Auto. The AngelTrax sales specialist says BLK’s investment in Australian-made parts is proof that locally sourced systems distributed by BLK can benefit the local market.

“There’s no reason AngelTrax won’t be around for another 20 years,” Barwick says.

“So we covered the lifetime of the buses with our local supply.”

Pecotic echoes that sentiment. BLK Auto’s general manager said he wants to continue working with AngelTrax in the future after helping them gain exposure at the recent Expo.

“We seek to grow through technology,” says Pecotic.

“Technology is changing at such a rapid pace that we want to keep keeping up with it, and AngelTrax’s products will help us do that.

“It is so important that we have this agreement with Australian suppliers like AngelTrax where we will use reliable products made and supplied in Australia in the future.”

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