PRIVATE WA company Ridolfo Logistics Services has emerged as the buyer of Wesfarmers’ distribution and logistics business for an undisclosed sum.The sale details, which involve supplying Western Power’s trans-port and storage needs out its Jandakot warehouse, have reignited questions about the industrial giant’s plans for its non-rail transport assets.Industry sources suggest Wes-farmers was likely to quit the trans-port business altogether because tough competition and tight margins have pushed returns below the group’s stringent requirements.“Wesfarmers is getting out of transport full stop, but if you ask them they deny it. They keep the cards pretty close to their chest,” one transport insider said.But Wesfarmers Transport general manager Ian Thomson denied the group’s transport business was up for sale.Mr Thomson said the sale of the distribution and logistics operation, as well as the Niteroad Express business last month, represented just 10 per cent of the company’s transport division.He said Wesfarmers was still involved in general freight and cold storage as well as operating a fleet management service for companies such as Coles, K Mart, Australian Liquor Marketers and Wesfeeds.However, Mr Thomson said Wesfarmers was looking at different options for the transport division, declaring it was a bad time to respond to questions about the operation’s future.Last month’s sale of Niteroad to Star Track Express was announced but the buyer of the distribution and logistics business was unreported.The purchase extends Ridolfo’s existing business relationship with Western Power, a major customer of the former Wesfarmers distribution and logistics operation. Western Power owns the Jandakot warehouse that houses the business Ridolfo has bought from Wesfarmers.Ridolfo Logistics Services, which forms part of the Ridolfo Group of Companies, has had a long relationship with Western Power, supplying and storing wooden poles for the energy utility out of its Welshpool centre.
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