Spurned Linfox accepts subbie's asking price

Subbie who snubbed Linfox for cutting his rates returns to work for the transport titan – and he's named the price

Spurned Linfox accepts subbie's asking price
Spurned Linfox accepts subbie's asking price
By Brad Gardner | March 22, 2011

A subcontractor who walked away from Linfox after it cut his freight rate has returned to work for the transport titan – and he’s named the price.

Owner of Reedmans Retro Roadways Glenn Reedman refused to work for Linfox and publicly criticised the company last year after it reduced rates by up 10 percent under its contract with Carter Holt Harvey.

He feared he would be blacklisted at the time for speaking out, but he says Linfox approached him this year agreeing to pay his going rate.

"I managed to broker a deal with Linfox at my price. I’ve been back with them for five or six weeks," Reedman says.

Linfox faced an angry backlash from owner-drivers last December for reducing rates. Many complained the offer was unsustainable and pursued work elsewhere.

Reedman says Linfox struggled to deliver enough trucks to fulfil the contract, prompting it to contact him.

He says it is important transport operators – subcontractors especially - understand their costs and only accept work at sustainable rates.

"It’s a high turnover, low leftover business," Reedman says.

"If fuel goes up again I’ll be putting the price up again. If they cut my rate I’m out."

Despite suffering a short-term financial loss after leaving Linfox, Reedman says he does not regret standing firm on rates.

"People don’t realise how much bargaining power they have," he says.

Under its contract with Carter Holt Harvey, Linfox will manage all transport from the timber company’s mills and distribution centres nationwide until April 2016.

Reedman reiterated comments made last year that low pay leads to poor safety because truck drivers will need to work longer and harder to make a living.

If the Federal Government fails to establish its proposed ‘safe rates’ scheme, he says it must educate transporters on how to negotiate contracts.

With operators labouring under notoriously tight margins, Reedman says it is important they maximise profit where possible to remain viable.

"I just want to keep doing the job I’ve done for years. It’s what I love. There’s nothing else I would rather do," he says.

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