Switching to Sege
Four years ago Kangaroo Bus Lines switched to using Sege seats on its coaches. Now, it wouldn’t change them for anything.
It wasn’t that long ago when Darren Webster was first introduced to Sege Asia Pacific’s seats, but it now feels like a lifetime. The Kangaroo Bus Lines general manager came across Sege through manufacturers Irizar Asia/ Pacific, who installed the company’s seats on board its buses.
Webster immediately noticed the fine quality of Sege’s products.
“We instantly found that the Sege seats were much nicer than any other seats we’d had in the past,” Webster told ABC. “The price point was good, the serviceability was great and the access was exactly what we wanted from a maintenance point of view.”
“I’m a mechanic by trade, so being able to get into the seats and access it all was wonderful.”
After first seeing Sege’s seats onboard the Irizar coach, Webster paid a visit to Sege’s seating showroom. Not long after, Kangaroo Bus Lines coaches had Sege passenger seats installed on them, before some more luxury coach seats with seatbelts also came from the manufacturer.
At last count, nine Kangaroo Bus Lines coaches had Sege seats installed on them.
Webster says his company, which was founded in 1978, offers a wide range of services for passengers, including school, urban and long-distance touring, outback Queensland tourist trips and cruise boat experiences. Webster has found his Sege seats come in handy when he takes off on coach education tours to Canberra.
“I’m an operator who tends to standardise, so if we’re going to buy a set of seats for coaches then everything has to be common so I can have spares sitting there,” Webster says. “Looking at our last six coaches that we’ve bought, they’re all identical and the Sege seating is the same.”
“It puts your costs down and makes it easier when you go on multiple coach jobs, as you have the comfort of knowing all of your coaches are the same and no passenger is racing to get onto a certain vehicle over others.”
Webster says Sege Seats Asia Pacific has quickly become Kangaroo Bus Lines’ preferred coach seating option. Although Webster can see for himself the high quality of the seats, he says the primary reason for continuing to use Sege products comes from positive customer feedback.
Webster says his relationship with Sege started before the COVID-19 pandemic when he had a Custom Denning coach fitted with a set of Sege seats. Kangaroo Bus Lines customers quickly commented on the comfort of them. When Webster returned to making coach trips out to Birdsville in western Queensland, he says the sturdy nature of Sege’s seats meant they became the perfect choice for the trip.
Yet it’s not just the comfort and sturdiness of the seats that has impressed Webster. The Kangaroo Bus Lines general manager says he loves the little aspects of Sege’s customisable seats and how they show Sege’s great understanding of what passengers need on coach trips.
“It’s all about the little things,” Webster says. “My seats have flip down trays and USB ports to cater for everyone’s phones and iPads.”
“When I’ve driven the coaches, I’ve noticed that customers put their phones on the tray and can rest it on a little groove that Sege makes in the tray – it’s those things that have attracted us to continue using Sege seats.”
All of this fulfils Sege Seats’ motto to provide customisable seats that are comfortable for passengers. Sege Seats Asia Pacific director Lance Taskin says his company has always wanted to provide a variety of seating options.
Taskin says these recent tray groove developments form part of Sege’s initiative to keep innovating and finding new ways to stay up to date with current global technology.
“We’ve got an engineering department where everyone works on ideas,” Taskin told ABC. “As far as coach seat technology goes, our team is up there among the best.”
“We like to say that no project from a customer will be rejected. Instead, we’ll keep developing seats for the future while keeping our core principles of comfort, style and safety in our eyeline.”
Sege Seats has already proved it can match it with the bus and coach industry’s evolution. Recently, Sege developed extra light-weight seats that are suitable for new electric bus and coach models that rely on shedding as much weight as possible.
For Webster, it’s not just the seats that makes the operator continually use Sege’s products. He says the relationship his company has with Sege means Kangaroo Bus Lines has had no problems since it first installed Sege seats onboard.
“They absolutely are our go-to coach seat option – we’ve got no reason to change,” Webster says. “We’ve never had an issue getting spare parts and we get great service from them.”
“At the end of the day it’s the customer you have to please, and customers have given us positive feedback on these seats we get from Sege.”
The relationship between Sege Seats Asia Pacific and Kangaroo Bus Lines is only continuing to grow. Taskin says Kangaroo Bus Lines is now trialling Sege’s new coach driver seats and will soon try the manufacturer’s latest school seats. Although Sege Seats supplies to many other large operators, Taskin says he particularly enjoys customising coach seats to suit Webster’s fleet.
It’s all part of Sege Seats’ wish to complete any custom seat orders it receives. To show customers what it can do, Sege has launched a website option where potential clients can view Sege’s products in various colours and with different attachments added. Taskin says providing customers with an in-depth view into the tailored products that Sege can offer is the best way forward for the company.
“This new function of the website shows a bit more of what we are capable of when it comes to seat configuration,” Taskin says. “Ever since we first started distributing in Australia in 2013, we have been looking at ways to further customise our products.”
“We’re continuing to see how we can improve the quality, comfort and safety technology in our seats.”