Trucking entrepreneur Allan Scott dies, aged 85

South Australian trucking magnate Allan Scott wore a variety of hats during his career. He was a World War II veteran, a publisher, a pub baron, a landlord, a philanthropist and a sports lover.

South Australian trucking magnate Allan Scott wore a variety of hats during his career. He was a World War II veteran, a publisher, a pub baron, a landlord, a philanthropist and a sports lover.

But he was best known as the grandfather of Mount Gambier, the small town in South Australia from which he ran his transport empire, the cornerstones of which were listed companies K&S Corporation and Scott Corporation.

Scott, who was valued at $483 million on this year’s BRW Rich 200, cast a long shadow over the town. On top of his business empire, he owned the local newspaper, the Border Watch (as well as two other local papers in the region) and at various times had operated everything from service stations and farms to property development businesses, hotels, restaurants and even the local department store Fidler and Webb.

Scott arrived in Mount Gambier from Milang in 1952 with one truck and set about building his transport empire.

In an interview in 1996, Scott said his stint in the army had taught him about discipline and leadership.

“You can’t sit up in the high chair in an ivory tower looking down on people. That doesn’t work anymore. I dream about things and then I can get blokes to go and do them. That’s how to run a business.”

He also believed the keys to business were hard work, decisiveness and strong ethics. “In business, you should always work hard and display good principles,” he said last year.

“Rewards come by being loyal. Always be prepared to make a decision, no matter how unpopular or difficult. And be prepared to listen.”

Scott was well known for his generosity, particularly towards South Australia’s sports community. He was a foundation sponsor of the AFL club Port Adelaide and virtually saved the state’s racing industry with a $5 million sponsorship package.

He was also known for his outspoken views, including his desire to introduce compulsory national service, his assertion that John Olsen was South Australia’s worst premier and his various campaigns for improved road transport between South Australia and Victoria.

Scott liked to say he was always prepared to offer advice or assistance to anyone who offered. “Perhaps they haven’t had the opportunities I had. Anyway, there can’t be two Allan Scotts in Mt Gambier. It’d be a bugger of a place. It’s bad enough with one.”

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