Adding New Dimension To Marketing Tie–ups
As distribution tie-ups increasingly become the norm of the day among construction equipment manufacturers, companies having entered into marketing collaborations, are scouting for innovative sales promotional strategies for their parents. All to gain greater market access and depth. P. P. Basistha finds out the details.The present growth of the construction equipment market in India is increasingly being characterized by marketing collaborations among equipment manufacturers. The backdrops behind the collaborations is burgeoning equipment demand, which a better marketing tie-up among manufacturers can take upon. Tie-ups are also being carried with the business intention to promote newer products, for the fast becoming mechanized construction market.
Consolidation of market position is also one of the "prime intentions" behind collaborations in the fast growing competitive market. As per the equipment industry estimates, size of India's construction equipment market, based on its value is likely to reach Rs 12,000 crores in 2008 from Rs.9,000 crores during 2007.
A comprehensive random survey done among country's construction equipment marketing companies across the value chain shows, behind looking for greater market access, companies are banking on their existing market network under their own product domain. On this, manufacturers are undertaking right product positioning coupled with making promotional channels well structured, through upgrading networking capabilities, through adequate, well trained service engineers deployment, and sufficient components availability. All to aid better product promotion and create brand value for their parents.
Product sales are being done through business development, in case of newer equipment as well by distributors, who are also manufacturers in many cases. Notwithstanding, challenges confront many in way of sales through tie-ups.
Sound Product PlacementRight product positioning has allowed notable equipment manufacturers drive sales. Coupled with this have been adequate market knowledge base to push up sales.
He points out, "to gain business volumes in a construction market like India having heterogeneous demand requirement, it is much pertinent for an equipment manufacturer, precisely one's involved in producing earthmoving equipment to place wide range of products for its customers."
Mr. Raje informs, "Telcon can offer excavators ranging from capacity of 2 tonnes-120 tonnes and even beyond through import from Hitachi, our principal technical collaborating partner."
However, Mr. Raje points out Telcon's success has also to be greatly attributed to the competitive features of its excavators, which the company has been able to gain through its technical collaboration with Japan's Hitachi Construction Machinery Limited, ever since 1984. This has allowed Telcon create brand value for its excavators in the market over the years.
He adds, "All the refined operational features created through the collaboration have gone on creating acceptance of the product in an increasing order over the years."
Technical collaboration with Hitachi has allowed Telcon introduce new range of construction equipment in its basket, like heavy duty crawler lattice boom cranes, used for construction of ports, refinery, power stations etc. Telcon is the distributor of Hitachi-Sumitomo crawler lattice boom cranes in India.
Success for Telcon has also been due to its adequate back up service and component support capabilities. The company has a mother warehouse at Nagpur and four feeder warehouses. In addition, it has 35 dealers and 150 service outlets, operating across the country for providing after sales services support.
Taking service support further efficient, over the years, Telcon has been laying emphasis in offering customized support solutions and maintenance packages for the customer at a mutually agreed cost. Under the maintenance package it undertakes upkeep of the equipment for the customers over its lifetime.
Rightfully said this, today ECEL is the market leader in pick-n-carry cranes with more than 66 percent of the market share. ECEL manufactures wide range of hydraulic pick-n-carry and rough errain cranes. The cranes have a lifting capacity ranging from 12 tonnes to 40 tonnes. The company has recently introduced TRX series yard cranes with a lifting capacity ranging from 16–23 tonnes.
Coupled with being a prime crane manufacturer allowing it to have a competitive edge, ECEL has well calibrated distribution channels across the country. The equipment manufacturing major, has 88 distributors and dealers across the nation. It intends to take the number to 100 by the first quarter of 2008 and further to 135 till the year 2009. Its well placed dealer and distribution network have been allowing ECEL gain sizeable business volumes. The company was able to sell 2,800 machine units during 2006 and 4,200 units during 2007-08.
ECEL's well spread distribution channels have allowed it forge further marketing tie-ups with number of prominent, global construction equipment companies for distributing their products in India.
This consists its tie-up with crawler cranes manufacturing major like IHI of Japan, for distributing its high capacity crawler cranes, with Weihai Huata Building Machinery of China for its tower cranes in India. Italy's Fassi for its articulated boom cranes. US's Altec for its power and Telecom Utility Equipment the collaboration was entered a month ago and with Doosan for distribution of its forklift trucks. ECEL as of now, has 550 service engineers in field and it has sold 1,500 units of Doosan's forklift trucks ever since its tie-up with the company in 1996.
Through the tie-ups, supported by its marketing and service network, ECEL has been able to provide sizeable business volumes to its partners. As per figures provided by ECEL, it has been able to book 35 IHI crawler cranes since September 2008 onwards. For Weihai Huata, it was able to sell 62 units of tower cranes during 2007-08. For Fassi, the tie up which has been seven to eight months back the manufacturer could sell 37 units.
The voluminous sales backed by wide marketing and distribution network have reinforced ECEL's position to become a further competitive equipment manufacturing and distributing company in India.
Right Network AccessECEL's well laid marketing network has enabled Alpha Services reap dividends as well.
Alpha Services is a leading manufacturers of Mobile Tower Cranes & EOT Cranes having its works at Bhiwadi (Rajasthan) and marketing headquarter at New Delhi. Recently Alpha Services tied up with ECEL, the dominant player in material handling and construction equipment for marketing of Mobile Tower Cranes.
Besides manufacturing Alpha Services is the distributor for ECEL products range covering tandem vibratory roller, hydraulic mobile Pick-n-Carry cranes, slew cranes, tower cranes and Forklift Truck in the National Capital Region of Delhi.
Alpha is also distributor of Chinese equipment manufacturer Sany for its motor grader and concrete pump and has sold more than 100 concrete pumps in last one year. It is also the authorize dealer of US based JLG for Arial work Platforms.
Alpha is a thirty year old company; it has a well established service department at Delhi with Branch offices at Chandigarh, Pune and Chennai for rendering after sale service.
Spartan is the distributor of Chinese made JWY tower cranes in India. The company entered into a marketing collaboration agreement with the Chinese equipment company three years ago. Ever since, it has been able to sell at least 50 units of tower cranes in the country. With the booming cranes demand, Spartan aims to sell more number of cranes in the coming years.
Spartan has a pan Indian presence with its offices located in Bangalore, Hyderabad, Cochin, Mumbai, Ahmedabad and Kolkata. The offices perform the role of sales and service points.
Making dividends out of tie-ups, supported by right network access is another Hyderabad based crane distributor, Conmech Auto Consultants India Private Limited, Conmech is the distributor of Chinese crane manufacturer, CMAC-CMAX. It is also the distributor of passenger & material hoists and suspended rope platforms.
Conmech also takes to its credit on the right service support, based on annual maintenance contracts it takes for its customers among other services.
Well structured distribution channels supplemented with market knowledge base have been paying dividends to the CDE-Asia Ltd tie-up. CDE-Asia is a joint venture company with a 50 percent equity participation between CDE of Ireland and Kolkata based crusher manufacturer, Torsa Machines. CDE's product line consists of sand washing plant.
Mr. Bhartia adds, "Torsa's local technical contacts have proved to be much beneficial for CDE in selling its products, besides contacts with technical consultants also helped in promoting the technology involving the product." He informed, "Torsa's local contacts enabled CDE to set up its factory within a record period of five months, which other wise would have been not possible."
For efficient back up service support for its plants, CDE undertakes a sustained six months training for its service personnel in UK as an ongoing exercise. According to CDE, it has a complete team of experienced project managers and engineering team to offer complete after sales backup support, post installation of the plants.
The case of increased product sales based on well structured marketing channels is also for World Wide Machinery Solutions, exclusive equipment distributors of Vermeer Corp of US. World Wide markets Vermeer's trench less cable laying machines and surface excavators. The collaboration which has been ten and half years old have allowed World Wide sell more than 475 machine units till 2008. It is looking for selling additional 100 units during 2008.
Mr. Mathur mentions, "Successful promotion of the trenchless machines could be made by us through dissemination of the technology linked to the product, at the grass root level among the project implementing agencies, comprising municipal bodies, gas and telecom companies made underground utility construction companies accept the product in increasing order over the period of time." He highlights, "the same marketing strategy applies for the surface miners as well."
Adequate component and service support allowed further World Wide, cement Vermeer's position. World Wide has tie-up with logistics major DHL for importing components from US. The company also maintains stocks for the fast moving components for the equipment.
Sales on Required SolutionsAppropriate market network and products for customized construction solutions have been good for Hess Polytech Pvt Ltd. Hess is a fully owned subsidiary of Polytech, concrete batching plant manufacturer. Hess Polytech is the distributor of German made Hess block making machines in the country.
Similar approach to promote products based on required solutions have been for Chowgule & Company Private Limited. Chowgule & Co has a cranes division and is the distributor of Japanese Furukawa's truck and tractor mounted telescopic cranes in the country.
Chowgule has its sales and service locations based in Mumbai, Goa, Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Hyderabad, Bangalore Ahmedabad, and Pune. The company have been able to sell 150 units ever since its tie-up with Furukawa three and half years ago.
Company willing to make ground in the construction market through offering customized lifting solutions is Mumbai based, C.S. Diesel Engineering Pvt Limited. C.S Diesels which has entered into a marketing alliance with Italian crane manufacturer, TCM during mid September 2007 wants to make it big in the Indian crane market.
Mr. Shah informs to sell TCM products, C. S Diesel would be looking to market the cranes directly to the end users, comprising, industrial users, construction companies rather that crane hiring companies.
C.S Diesel, which incidentally is the distributor of L&T Komatsu's excavators in Mumbai and Goa and also for Cummins, have adequate market network base on the equipment requirement of construction industry.
Solutions on other end of Value ChainOffering products to suit customized construction solutions for end users is also the marketing strategy for distributors, selling products, away from the core value chain.
The top most category to fill this slot can be accorded to Multiquip. The company has reaped success on marketing collaborations front, through offering products for tailor made construction solutions is also for Multiquip Construction Equipment Pvt Limited. Multiquip Construction Equipment is the distributor of US based, Multiquip's construction equipment in Indian subcontinent, Middle East and at Common Wealth of Independent States of the erstwhile, Soviet Union.
Among the few prominent products, Multiquip sells out of its wide range of construction equipment includes, hydraulic power trowels, super screed fixed form pavers, generators, lighting systems for construction sites etc.
Multiquip Construction Equipment Pvt Ltd, entered into a distribution collaboration with Multiquip during 2004. Ever since the tie-up, it has sold around 1000 various equipment registering a 10 percent increase in turn over in recent years. Apart from distribution, the company has recently started manufacturing light towers for Multiquip USA in India.
Mumbai based Multiquip, has its sales and service points at Pune, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Coimbatore for service and component support. The company's mother warehouse is at Mumbai.
Second to fill the category to offer range of products could be Delhi based, BellStone Hi-Tech International. BellStone offerings consists of, construction machinery, survey equipment, laboratory testing equipment, tools & hardware sourced from number of foreign and domestic equipment manufacturers.
Bell Stone International, which owes its credit to its construction department store for range of products to be offered, has a common service department for providing service back up support. The common service department coordinates with the department head below for offering components and service support.
Promotion on Value AdditionOffering improved product line under their own domain of product expertise is also a promotional strategy adopted by certain distributors. For this, they have entered into marketing tie-ups with foreign equipment manufacturers to promote new range of products in the country. This can be cited by the reference of Mumbai based, Allen Buildwell Pvt Ltd, distributors of US made Allen concrete pavers in India.
"Allen Buildwell have been very active since 1996 in promoting several interesting Construction equipment connected to Concrete Mixing and equipment for Slipforming Roads, Aprons, Irrigation Canals, Drains, Barriers, Kerbs and so on.
Sales through offering value added products is the marketing strategy adopted by umpteen number of Indian construction equipment manufacturers and distributors, representing the bottom end of the value chain, through their marketing tie ups with foreign manufacturers.
Offering value added products is also Mumbai based, Mehta EarthMovers under it's business domain. The company has a distribution tie-up with Korean rock breaking equipment manufacturers for distribution of their products in the country. It has tie-ups with manufacturers based on the time period ranging from 7-10 years each. Mehta Earthmovers is also into the business of crane rentals.
In the category to offer value added products also comes, Pakona Engineers (India) Limited. Pakona Engineers is a joint venture company with Colombia Machines, Inc USA. It manufactures automatic plant for interlocking pavers, hollow and solid blocks, flyash bricks, kerb stones, retaining wall blocks etc. The company claims the value added features of its products owing to its rugged and high output features.
K.K Manhole is the distributor of Spanish made, Marcoza's wall chasing machine in India. The company owes its credit in selling 20 machines in the country, ever since its tie up a year and half back. K.K plans to sell 40 machines during 2008-09.
Confronting ChallengesThough marketing tie-ups both with Indian and foreign partners and may have proved to be dividend paying for one and many distributors but the story has also been not too rosy with couple of distributors.
Promotion of equipment sales based on tie-ups has also brought its set of challenges for, Kam-Avida, Enviro-Engineers Pvt Ltd. Kam Avida is the Indian distributor of U.K based Johnston made road sweepers and also U.K based Thredfort municipal garbadge compaction equipment.
As per Mr. Manish Chandra, G.M, Sales, Kam-Avida "the products, which are used in municipal applications have been finding slow acceptance due to modest business development initiatives and follow up by the dealers appointed by us with the municipal departments." However, the company is on the way to correct the anomaly.
Be as it may, challenges in way for manufacturing and distributing companies looking for sales is a silver lining. This can prove to be good learning exercise for the companies in making their marketing strategies reoriented and distribution channels well organized and be partner of the greater lot of the country's equipment marketing fraternity, that is enjoying business success.
Some of its products range include man and material hoist, Bar cutting and Bar banding machines, Tower crane and so on.
GreavesGreaves Cotton Limited, one of India's leading and well-diversified engineering companies manufactures a wide range of industrial products having core competencies in diesel/petrol engines, gensets, agro equipment and construction equipment.
To meet the challenges of construction industry, Greaves manufactures wide range of Road and Concrete equipment. The complete range of concrete equipment like Transit Mixers, Concrete Pumps, Batching Plants, etc. are manufactured at the Company's ISO 9001 certified Plants at Chennai and Gummidipoondi (Tamil Nadu). Greaves also manufactures the complete range of compaction equipment like Vibratory Soil Compactors, Heavy Tandem Rollers, Light tandem Rollers.
Greaves markets the entire range of CIFA and BOMAG machines, which include Shotcrete pumps, Tunnel forms, Moulds, Tampers, Plate compactors, Pneumatic tyre rollers, Recyclers and Refuge compactors amongst many other machines.
Greaves construction equipment is mainly used for construction of roads, bridges, buildings, ready mix concrete applications, etc. Greaves caters to the service and spare parts requirement of customers through their large network of qualified and trained service engineers located a various branches and dealerships.
Greaves also represents Sheffild Forgemasters Rolls Ltd., UK, internationally renowned manufacture of rolls for cold rolling and hot rolling steel mills. Further, Greaves represents special Metal Wiggin Ltd., UK for nickel alloys used in process and chemical industries as well as Timet, UK for titanium alloys used in petro-chemical industries.
The company produces wide range of truck-mounted cranes from 30 tons to 180 tons capacity for booms extension with hydraulic system for lifting capacity and return with boom in horizontal position.
MultiquipMultiquip Construction Equipment Private Limited (MQ-India) is incorporated to promote the Sales and Services of Multiquip (MQ) manufactured/distributed brand products in the Indian sub-continent as Multiquip Inc.'s sole distributor.
Multiquip Inc., USA (MQ has grown to one of the largest and most diversified suppliers of construction equipment and is a world-wide well–known Manufacturer/Distributor of light and medium sized construction equipment. MQ's diverse product lines include the highest quality equipment for soil compaction, concrete vibration, placement, smoothing and finishing, concrete masonry, rebar cutting and bending, power buggies, water and material pumping, portable power generation, jobsite lighting and welders.
MQ-India maintains products, accessories and spare parts warehouse in Mumbai and provides its customers certain exstock equipment, spares, and accessories. It provides prompt after sales support and services to customers and also offer technical solutions for selection of proper and appropriate MQ equipment, keeping in view the required utility and economical usage.
Bellstone Hitech International plans to add new state-of-theart- equipment to its stock, including high-tech lifts. The company has also plans to set-up such construction departmental stores in different parts of the country in view of good response to its existing venture.
Over the decades, it has established a large and appreciative customer base from both public and private sector. In conjunction with globally renowned manufacturers, M&CE offers its customers a comprehensive package–proven expertise, long experience, the world's best equipment and value-added service support.
Voltas offers the world's best technologies for infrastructure building, along with a highly professional support engineering team. Voltas has technical tie-ups with some of the most reputed names in the field, such as Boss Trucks–UK and Terex Inc–USA, Terex Mining O&K, Germany, Terex Equipment, Scotland, Hyundai, Dressta, Powerscreen and P&H for their world-class equipment which they represent in India.
Columbia Machine Inc is a world leader with over 70 years experience in manufacturing machines for producing a limitless range of concrete products with its unique vertical vibratory sysem that enables the production of all types of premolded concrete products, including concrete blocks and pavers with quick and simple change of moulds and saving in cement consumption.
Dar Tiee has made its mark by maintaining the highest standards for quality at competitive prices. The goal of the company is to build longterm relationship with customers and strictly perform the quality control, and closely evaluate and analyze the performance of its products and keep up customer's satisfaction.
IPCC Interglobal Projects & Construction Co. Delhi is the authorized dealer of Dar Tiee products in India. Dar Tiee delivers top quality products at competitive prices.
Growing industrialization has resulted in an explosion in urbanization which has caused a tremendous load on the existing civic infrastructure, thereby making it almost mandatory for the civic bodies to find better methods to carry their sewer maintenance programs.
Kam Avida is the India's largest manufacturers of drain cleaners, garbage collection and transportation system in a wide range such as walk behind and Ride on type sweepers in association with ISAL, chassis mounted sweepers in association with JOHNSTON and other attachment sweepers.