Western Australian bus and coach supplier Bus and Coach International (BCI) has announced the company’s CEO replacement. BCI is one of the most recognizable and highly purchased bus brands in our industry.
27 years after starting Nazzari Hino Bus Sales and Service, which later became BCI, Ron Nazzari will step away from the day to day management. Long-time manager and bus industry veteran Desmond Armstrong has been appointed as BCI’s new CEO. Ron continues as Chairman and shareholder of the Xiamen based Asian bus body builder FT-BCI.
Des and Ron have shared 30 years of friendship and Des has worked at BCI since 1997. Desmond’s position has progressed at BCI from Service manager, Operations manager to General manager and now CEO. Desmond has 35 years’ experience in the heavy vehicle industry, starting as a diesel mechanic in South Africa for Asian and European commercial vehicles brands at different dealerships. Then migrating to Australia in 1988 where he held management positions at Mercedes Benz Trucks, GPR Trucks and AHG. Desmond also has mechanical engineering and Australian trade certificates.
“I first met Ron Nazzari 30 years ago as a new migrant looking for a better life in Australia”, says Des, “About three years later Ron had started his business and that’s where I got to know more about his passion and determination with this industry which has evolved so much over the years.”
When BCI founder and chairman, Ron Nazzari established the company in 1991 it was a small family-run operation in Perth. Today, BCI’s head office is still located in Perth, with dealerships in Victoria, Queensland, South Australia and New Zealand.
“Nazzari had a Ford Falcon which was his office, workshop and spare parts department all in one.”, remembers Desmond, “Back then buses where so basic you only needed to carry fuel filters and fan belts.”
“Over the years I had many dealings with the Nazzari Family supporting the product they built until one day I made the choice to join the family business as Operations Manager. That just meant I was doing everything from helping build a bus, doing the pre-deliveries then drive anywhere across the country.”
While BCI is one of the largest bus and coach companies in Australia, the team still firmly maintain a family-focused approach to business. These values extend through to the network of experienced dealers, who work to offer customers the highest level of after-sales support in Australia and across the Tasman.
“In my new role as CEO”, comments Desmond, “I feel honored to lead a team of dedicated staff with most been with the company for many years.”
Over the past two decades, BCI has been responding effectively to the requirements of clients, supplying one bus or a whole fleet that can be customized to their needs. Extensive ongoing consultation with operators and a dedicated Australian engineering and quality control teams during production, allow BCI buses to be at the industry forefront.
“My aim is to always improve our vehicles by using latest technology and engineering best practice. Also build up our branches so we can support our many loyal customers with Parts and Service.”
In addition, the continuity of Nazzari Family in this business is guaranteed through Mark Nazzari, recently appointed as General Manager after an extensive experience overseas at the production facilities, running his own company and around Australia working for BCI Sales team in direct contact with customers and suppliers.
“With Ron’s retirement I have the pleasure of working with his son Mark who has a very keen interest in the business.”
“My job is to grow the business and groom the next generation to continue with the core values started by the Nazzari Family.”, says Desmond.