Transit Australia Group

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Transit Australia Group Logo.png
ParentKinetic Group
Ceased operationApril 2019
Service typeBus services
Surfside Buslines

Transit Australia Group (TAG) was one of Australia's leading mass transit specialists headquartered on the Gold Coast in Queensland.[1]

The company operated Sunbus (Sunbus Cairns, Sunbus Magnetic Island, Sunbus Rockhampton, Sunbus Sunshine Coast, Sunbus Townsville), Surfside Buslines and Bustech with a unique end-to-end mass transit offering including bus design and manufacturing, urban network design, planning and operation, and workforce development and training.[citation needed]

TAG was dissolved after being acquired by AATS Group (now Kinetic) in April 2019 and Sunbus and Surfside Buslines are now owned and operated by Kinetic, who also owns Skybus.[2] Bustech was not included in the sale to AATS Group.


After selling their long established south-western Sydney bus operation to Westbus in June 1989,[3] Joe and Tony Calabro purchased Surfside Buslines from Greyhound owner Russell Penfold in October 1989 with 56 buses.[4][5] The Surfside operation grew with the Tweed Bus Service (1993),[6] Gold Coast Citybus (February 1995),[7] Gold Coast Tourist Shuttle (September 1998)[8] and Coomera Bus Lines (May 2001)[9] operations purchased. The Calabros also formed Bustech, a bus manufacturing business. In April 2008, the Sunbus operations were purchased from Transit Australia and all of the Calabro's Queensland operations consolidated under the Transit Australia Group. In November 2008 Magnetic Island Bus Services was purchased and in April 2009 the Sunbus Toowoomba operation sold to the Bus Queensland group.[10][11][12] In April 2010, the Townsville operation was expanded with the acquisition of Hermit Park Bus Service.[13]

In 2011, Bustech successfully launched Australia’s first double decker (CDi model) bus for urban transport since 1973. In 2015, the manufacturing arm also attracted international attention with the unveiling of Australia’s first electric bus designed, engineered and manufactured domestically.

In 2016, TAG formed a strategic alliance with Precision Components in Adelaide to develop an advanced manufacturing facility to produce next-generation, environmentally friendly diesel and electric buses.

In November 2017, the Gold Coast Tourist Shuttle (GCTS) business was sold to Skybus and rebranded as Skybus Gold Coast.[14][15]

In February 2018 Mobike, in partnership with Transit Australia Group and Good Cycles, distributed 200 dockless shared bikes around Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach with the number expected to grow to 2,000 by the time of the Commonwealth Games in April.[16][17]

In April 2019, TAG was purchased by AATS Group (now Kinetic Group), parent company of Skybus and majority owned by OPTrust. Bustech was not included in the sale.[2]


  1. ^ The ListSunday Mail (Adelaide) 26 August 2012 Archived 2 April 2019 at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ a b "Skybus Operator to Acquire Transit Australia Group - Bustech not Included". Australasian Bus & Coach. 2 April 2019. Archived from the original on 22 April 2019. Retrieved 2 April 2019.
  3. ^ "Calabro's Sold" Fleetline November 1989 page 176
  4. ^ "Stateliner takes over Greyhound" Australian Bus Panorama issue 5/5 March 1990 page 23
  5. ^ "Surfside Bus Lines" Australian Bus Panorama issue 6/6 February 1991 page 45
  6. ^ "Surfside Bus Lines" Australian Bus Panorama issue 9/5 January 1994 page 40
  7. ^ "Surfside Bus Lines" Australian Bus Panorama issue 10/7 April 1995 page 54
  8. ^ "Gold Coast Tourist Shuttle" Australian Bus Panorama issue 14/5 April 1999 page 56
  9. ^ Major bus buys for Kefford & Hill Archived 14 October 2013 at the Wayback Machine Australasian Bus & Coach
  10. ^ Sunbus Australian Bus Fleet Lists
  11. ^ Kynoch Coaches and Sunbus Toowoomba sold to Pulitano Group Australian Bus & Coach
  12. ^ Bus Australia Toowoomba Australian Bus Fleet Lists
  13. ^ "Transit Australia Group buys Hermit Park Bus Company" (PDF) (Press release). Transit Australia Group. 1 March 2009. Archived from the original (PDF) on 6 July 2011. Retrieved 24 July 2010.
  14. ^ "Skybus acquire GC airport service". Australasian Bus & Coach. 16 November 2017. Archived from the original on 16 November 2017. Retrieved 16 November 2017.
  15. ^ "SkyBus launches new Gold Coast Airport Shuttle". Skybus. 6 December 2017. Archived from the original on 13 March 2018. Retrieved 20 August 2019.
  16. ^ "New dockless bikeshare scheme rolls out on the Gold Coast today". 21 February 2018. Retrieved 6 April 2018.
  17. ^ "Mobike Australia Begins in Gold Coast". 6 November 2017. Retrieved 6 April 2018.