Davies bins rubbish business

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Prominent Queenstown businessman Sir John Davies is getting out of the lucrative rubbish collection business after almost 50 years.

His family company Trojan Holdings has sold its AllWaste-branded operations in Queenstown, Central Otago and Southland to major New Zealand refuse and recycling firm Smart Environmental.

The sale’s effective November 1.

Smart Environmental has had a strong presence in Queenstown and Wanaka for about 10 years.

AllWaste’s 45-odd Queenstown, Wanaka, Cromwell, Alexandra, Invercargill and Te Anau staff will continue to work for the new owner, while the business will continue to run from existing premises.

Davies’ original rubbish collection contract was part of his Northern Southland Transport business.

He says he’s selling as his family’s more interested in their tourism assets which include Coronet Peak and The Remarkables skifields, Milford and Routeburn Track guided walks, Mount Cook’s Hermitage Hotel and a share in AJ Hackett Bungy NZ.

“We just looked at it and thought it’s just one of those things we don’t have to be involved with.

“It was better to be out of it and concentrate on other things.”

Trojan had also had approaches to sell.

“It’s fair to say the [refuse collection] industry’s got more complex as time goes on, and difficult to service.”

Smart Environmental was a company that’s “nationally focused on it, and in a far better situation to do it.”

The business had grown “enormously” in his time, he says.

“It’s all changed a bit from having just one skip truck.”

Queenstown’s council, meanwhile, is tendering a solid waste contract for its new refuse collection system which starts July 1 next year.

All Queenstown and Wanaka households will be supplied with mixed recycling, glass recycling and refuse bins.