Custom Bus closes

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AUSTRALIA An Australian bus builder that was once owned by Alexander Dennis Limited (ADL) has been closed down by administrators after the firm entered into Voluntary Administration on January 18.

Custom Bus, which operates out of Villawood in New South Wales and Wingfield in South Australia, fell into financial distress late last year as a result of production problems and operational challenges.

According to local news reports, staff at Villawood were made redundant last week. Partners Simon Cathro and Aaron Lucan of Worrells Solvency & Forensic NSW & ACT have been appointed as the administrators.

ADL owned what was then known as Custom Coaches between 2012 and 2014. The Australian Manufacturing Workers Union (AMWU) is blaming the state government for sending hundreds of millions of dollars in bus contracts overseas.

“We’ve seen a trend by this state government that it (procurement decisions) should be purely cost-based and NSW workers should compete on who should do it for the lowest wage,” AMWU NSW Secretary Steve Murphy said.