McColl’s Transport, has been sold and is now under new ownership.

It is understood that former McColl’s CEO Simon Thornton teamed up with  Australian investment group Friesian to purchase the 66-year-old business from private equity firm KKR and fund manager Allegro.

Mr Thornton has returned to manage the company which is Australia’s largest independent bulk liquid logistics company,

“McColl’s is a solid business with good values,” Mr Thornton said. “It has a great team and we see strong prospects for growth over the medium and long term.”

“The members of Friesian see McColl’s as a long-term business to own and nurture and we are excited about the future.

“We see opportunities in the dairy and chemical sectors and want to position McColl’s to integrate itself more closely with its clients.”

McColl’s new board is made up of Simon Thornton, corporate lawyer James MacDonald and corporate advisor Mark Mentha.

“The new ownership group is made up of experienced and reputable Australian business leaders whose expertise will contribute to McColl’s success,” Mr Thornton said.

“I’m excited about ‘coming home’ to lead McColl’s as a well run, well capitalised business.”

McColl’s has reported a solid performance this year across its three divisions.

In the past six months, the company has purchased 49 new prime movers, 10 road trains and 13 tankers with plans for a step-up in fleet and infrastructure investment over the next three years to meet customer demand.

McColl’s is a carrier of bulk food, dairy and bulk chemicals, operating across Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia.