A consignment of dumpers arrived at the HQ of Alan Mackay Machinery (Forfar) Ltd as we celebrated our first big order since becoming the latest addition to the Wacker Neuson dealer network in Scotland. The eight one-tonne machines are bound for the recently-opened Dundee depot of Jarvie Plant, a new customer for ourselves.
However, as Brian Thomson, our area sales manager, recalls, the visit to the Highland Show was for an altogether different reason. “We had gone to Ingliston to look for a pivot steer telehandler to add to our agricultural line-up. We found what we were after on the Weidemann stand and then we started looking at the construction kit from Wacker Neuson, Weidemann’s sister company.”
Negotiations over the ensuing months finally led to Alan Mackay Machinery (Forfar) Ltd taking on distribution for both product ranges and the company has high hopes for its debut in construction. As well as the Jarvie deal, a four-tonne EZ38 excavator has replaced a competitor’s machine at High Country Fencing in Brechin and a series of demonstrations of the 9503 nine-tonne wheeled digger promoted by the manufacturer as the world’s fastest mobile excavator has attracted strong interest from a number of potential customers. The company also holds stocks of the light construction equipment range including vibrating plates and rammers, breakers and saws.
Brian Thomson, who previously sold Case construction equipment, said a number of leads are being followed up in the wake of the ScotPlant show in April. “Wacker Neuson certainly seem to be going places these days and we’d like to think we could push ahead with them.”
Wacker Neuson is indeed going places. Figures released in March showed Wacker Neuson Group increased revenue and earnings in 2013 by 6.2% over the previous year but the biggest growth was in the UK where sales raced ahead by 72%. Commenting at the time Richard Harrison, managing director of Wacker Neuson Ltd, said: “The last year was the best year in the UK for Wacker Neuson with growth coming from both construction equipment and compact machines. “In the compact equipment sector, we were particularly successful with our cab dumpers and wheeled excavators but we were also able to increase sales of concrete products, compaction, utility, and demolition devices.”
To cope with the growth in business, Wacker Neuson UK will be moving into “substantially larger” premises this year.