THE new owners of 43-year-old Geelong business Josie's Transport plan to expand operations while respecting the company's history.
The family-owned business was established in 1974 by Josie and Fred Runia before growing into a leading courier and freight transport provider.
Melbourne buyers Aaron Cole and Scott Peacock, who both have experience in the transport industry, officially took over the business on February 1.
"Scott and I were looking to make some acquisitions and started the process with Josie's about three or four months ago," Mr Cole said.
"It's got a fantastic name in the market, not just in Geelong and surrounding areas but also in the Melbourne market - it's a strong brand.
"They have a reputation for great service, stable business ... with loyal people and loyal customers."
Josie's Transport provides a wide range of courier services, predominantly between Geelong and Melbourne but also across country Victoria and interstate.
There is currently about 20 office staff and 60 drivers.
Mr Cole said the focus will remain on providing safe, efficient and affordable services.
"While we've got some ideas and experience in the transport industry they have been successful here for a long time and we have to respect that and the people that came before us," he said.
"We want to grow the business from a revenue and profit perspective but don't want to lose the family feel."
Previous owner Mr Runia, whose original fleet comprised four small vans, gave the new owners his blessing.
"(Selling) is something I had been thinking about for a while. I'm in my 70s," he said.
"I knew Scott from the industry and I felt confident they would move the business on in their own way.
"I'm really pleased that all our staff members have retained their jobs and I wish them all well for the future."
Mrs Runia passed away in 2005 and two of the couple's sons will stay in the business.