UK veterinary wholesaler Centaur Services has completed its transition to an all-Mercedes-Benz fleet of 60 vans.
The company supplies more than 22,000 products to veterinary practices across the UK from its headquarters in Castle Cary, Somerset, and depots in Carlisle, Ivybridge, Letchworth and Stoke-on-Trent.
Its latest batch of Mercedes-Benz vans includes models from the Citan and Vito ranges for the first time.
The vast majority of its vans are Sprinters: most are 3.5-tonne 313 CDI models, while it also operates a number of 5.0-tonnne 513 CDI variants.
Centaur Services was established in 1964 by a group of veterinary surgeons to provide vets with a new, single-source supplier of products.
Operated initially as a co-operative, in 2010 it became part of the MWI Veterinary Supply family which was acquired last year by Amerisource Bergen.
In recent years Centaur Services has invested heavily in its warehouse and distribution network.
With the exceptions of two mid-size Vito 111 CDI Crew Vans, which have second rows of seats and are used by its VetSpace practice management software division to attend shows and exhibitions, its vehicles make multi-drop deliveries of food, drugs and consumables.
Typically, a van will service 17 veterinary surgeries each day.
The company’s single, small Citan, a 109 CDI, is based in Inverness and covers the Highlands, where there are fewer drops and much longer distances between them, so fuel efficiency is more important than carrying capacity.
Centaur Services’ Sprinters are fitted with tracking devices and limited to 70mph – each covers around 60,000 miles per year.