By Austin Gamble
A momentous announcement was made on 10 November 2021, at a media function at the Maslow Hotel in Menlyn, Pretoria
The announcement revolved around the separation of Daimler AG into two independent companies. Initially I felt shock and horror, but it soon emerged that this was an amicable divorce, with both spouses agreeing to a property division. As the press release says, Daimler Trucks & Buses Southern Africa (DTBSA) has been the pinnacle of the commercial vehicle industry for over 60 years, offering market leading transport solutions and services across the region, and with the Daimler AG separation into two purely-play independent companies, with the heralding of a new dawn for DTBSA, as it prepares to officially transition into a completely independent and a wholly owned subsidiary of Daimler Truck AG effective from 1 December 2021.
The press release emphasises that this is a historic milestone, as it represents the start of a profound reshaping of DTBSA, and with a truck and bus dedicated and customer-centric corporate structure going forward, it means that the company will continue to drive a sustainable transport system to better serve the growing business needs of the Southern Africa market. Michael Dietz, president and CEO Daimler Trucks & Buses Southern Africa, says that “This is indeed a massive turning point for us as DTBSA and a huge investment for the Southern Africa market. We have done some ground-breaking changes previously, like the establishment of DTBSA as a legal entity in 2019 and more recently the founding of our very own captive financial mobility services, Daimler Trucks Financial Services (DTFS). I firmly believe that the new set-up promotes the necessary focus into our core business, creates favourable conditions for us to be more competitive and accelerates the development of key technologies for us to continue to provide cutting-edge products and services to fulfil the special needs of our customers. It is without a doubt that this independence is fully aligned with our growth strategy and further strengthens our foothold within the markets we operate in. As we gear up to a smooth transition, our commitment for all who keep Africa moving remains unchanged”.
In totality, a significant investment of up to R1 billion has been made available to ensure continuity in operation, adequate resources, and suitable working infrastructure for the DTBSA business. This new robust set-up will comprise of the Sales and Marketing, Customer Service & Parts (CSP), Own Retail, Manufacturing Plant, Value-added services which include; TruckStore, FleetBoard, Mercedes-Benz Uptime, Service24h, TruckParts, and FUSO Value Parts (FVP).