AMTIL member Barden Fabrications has been amalgamated into the Automotive Solutions Group Limited (ASGL), a new company aiming to become the one-stop shop offering for the growing population of four-wheel-drive (4WD), sport utility vehicle (SUV) and touring enthusiasts.

ASGL has launched following the amalgamation of eight companies to form a fully vertically integrated model, listing on the stock exchange back in December last year. The new company is a consolidation of fleet and automotive businesses that specialise in the design, manufacture, distribution and retail of parts, accessories and performance technology for the 4WD/SUV market.

Led by Chief Executive Officer Tanya Mason, and avid 4WD enthusiast, ASGL aims to be one-stop shop offering that caters to the growing number of 4WD enthusiasts and leisure travellers. It has become a real challenger and is positioned to become a significant player in the market.

ASGL successfully raised its maximum subscription of $30m at $1 per share through its initial public offering (IPO), receiving strong support from institutional investors, high-net-worth individuals, retail investors and major institutions Microequities and SG Hiscock. ASGL is well placed to take advantage of continuing growth in the 4WD/SUV market by expanding the portfolio of businesses through organic growth and acquisitions.

Mason has formerly held senior financial and operational roles with large multinational companies including BHP Billiton, Woodside Petroleum, Toll Holdings and Aurizon Holdings. She anticipates that its growth momentum will be sustained over the medium-to-long term given the favourable conditions for the 4X4/SUV market, which is among the fastest growing vehicle segments in Australia.

“There is plenty of room for us to grow,” said Mason. “It’s not just traditional 4WD enthusiasts who are modifying or upgrading their vehicles, but we are also seeing lots of city drivers making upgrades to their 4X4 and SUVs as well.”

Along with Barden, based in Bayswater, Victoria, the eight cornerstone businesses acquired to form the new group are Roo Systems in Queensland, Umhauers in Geelong, Deering Autronics in Perth, JDR Motorsport in NSW, AMA in Queensland, Dolium in WA and ASG 4×4 in Toowoomba. The eight companies are all involved in design, manufacturing, retailing and performance technology in accessories and performance upgrades for 4WD vehicles and SUVs.

The group margins are expected to increase due to synergies with management forecasting a 7% increase in sales to $42.7m and a 7.5% uplift in EBIT to $6.5m. ASGL’s management team is led by highly regarded professionals in the automotive field and have a successful track record in integrating businesses. The company’s chairman is former Mitsubishi Motors Australia chief executive Tom Phillips.