• Head Office
  • 128 Main Rd
  • Waikouaiti

Our Team

Waikouaiti Auto & Engineering (WAE) was established in 1995 by Kevin Byrne (aka Paddy). Located on the Main Road at the north end of Waikouaiti, in the beginning, WAE employed three staff. This venture started out as an automotive and light engineering business, servicing the public, local farmers, and small companies in the East Otago area. After a couple of years, the company grew, and it expanded into general site maintenance work and pipe repairs. In 2000 WAE became a Limited entity.

As the company continued to grow in the engineering field, WAE purchased its first mobile crane in 2007 and by 2011 employed over 20 staff. It was apparent with the increased workload at the Waikouaiti workshop the work would outweigh the premises and in 2014 our Dunedin Engineering workshop in Sturdee Street was opened. With also employing our own scaffolders it meant we could scaffold our own work sites without having to wait for contractors - this has been a great compliment to our business.

Investment in more mobile cranes and equipment has meant rapid growth for our Crane Hire team over the last few years. We have a team of six Crane Hire staff that are fully qualified; from rigging and dogman, through to truck driving and crane operating. An opportunity in December 2017 to expand our engineering operation into existing premises including nine staff meant that we hit the ground running with a very smooth transition into WAE Palmerston. In 2018, WAE now employs over 60 staff.

Kevin & Jodie Byrne

Owners/ Directors
Kevin and Jodie Byrne are the owners of WAE, Kevin started as a fitter and turner and has now been self-employed for over thirty years. Kevin is inspired by the depth of talent that the company holds. Every day is …

George Byrne

Workshop Manager Waikouaiti
George is our Workshop Manager in our Head Office in Waikouaiti. George oversees the daily operation of staff involved with Medium to Heavy Fabrication and Fitting, it is also the base of our Automotive Mechanical and Scaffolding teams. With a …

John Dryden

Workshop Manager Palmerston
John is our Workshop Manager in our Engineering Workshop in Palmerston (ten minutes north of our Head Office in Waikouaiti). John oversees the daily operation of staff involved with heavy fabrication (both for jobs in the workshop and on various …

Ricky Manson

Crane Hire Operations Manager
Ricky is our Operations Manager for the crane hire team based alongside our workshop in Dunedin. The variety of crane lifts or jobs and the window in completing these means no two days are the same. Our highly skilled …

Nathan Butler

Operations Manager
Nathan is our Operation Manager for three different companies; East Otago Transport, Southern Waterblasting and East Coast Couriers. Nathan is based out of the East Otago Transport yard which is opposite WAE Waikouaiti on State Highway One. Nathan oversees …

Rachel Kelly

Finance, HR & Systems Manager
Rachel is our HR and Systems manager, she is based out of all three Workshop Hubs. Rachel oversees all our staff, keeps systems running smoothly as well as updating policies and procedures.