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Thursday, July 25, 2024

Greyhound buses, trailers and various spares go on auction

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66 Greyhound and Citiliner buses with trailers and spares will be auctioned next month. This after the bus company closed office about 7 months ago.

According to Van’s Auctioneers, the auction includes 66 buses, almost half of which are luxury double-deckers, trailers, and a “huge quantity of spares”.

Greyhound and Citiliner buses which was owned and operated by Unitrans, carried millions of passengers between South Africa’s big and small cities since 1984.

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Stiff competition in the low-cost city-to-city market mearnt diminished revenue for Unitrans.

In 2020, the company, a subsidiary of logistics giant KAP Industrial Holdings, announced that it planned to get rid of Greyhound and focus on its core competencies of transporting freight.

The Covid-19 pandemic, which travel to a complete halt during hard lockdown, was the final nail in Greyhound’s coffin.

Less than a year later, hundreds of Greyhound employees were served retrenched and buses stopped running.

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Greyhound’s rolling stock will be auctioned off on 15 September to try and recover some money back.

“There is a total of 66 buses on auction. They are divided into four lots, and each lot will also include six trailers. The Greyhound and Citiliner brands and logos will also be offered, as well as a huge variety of spares in Cape Town and Midrand respectively,” Johan van Eyk of Van’s Auctioneers told SA Trucker.

Bidding will not apply to lots, not individual assets for interested buyers. A buyer can opt to buy all the lots, lock, stock, and barrel. Bidders will need to pay R500,000 upfront as a refundable deposit, to take part in the auction.

About half of all the vehicles on auction are double-decker buses which served as Greyhound’s luxury “Dreamliner” fleet. Most buses on auction are based on the Volvo B11R Euro and can seat between 60 and 65 passengers.

The “huge quantity of spares” include bus seats, trimmings, and engine parts.

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If the entire auction is bought lock, stock, and barrel, the successful bidder has an opportunity to revive the Greyhound brand in South Africa, with local operating permits also included in the deal.

“We”re not selling the booking platform or things like that… it’s the assets, which is primarily the buses, or, if you want to buy the whole thing, you can also use the names and the brand going forward,” said Van Eyk.

There is no reserve price or minimum bid on the lots and the sellers have 14 days after the auction to decide whether they accept the bid, added Van Eyk.

One can only hope that an investor will take the whole lot and revive the brand so loved by many South Africans from all walks of life.

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