Thanks to Pilot Crushtec’s new distributor agreement for Sandvik Construction’s mobile range of crushers and screens, effective from October 2012, the company is achieving new levels of business never seen before, writes Laura Cornish.

Pilot Crushtec’s share of the mobile and semi-mobile crushing and screening market has always been a significant one, which until now has only been limited by its machines’ size, volume and capacity capabilities.

The alliance follows an approach by Sandvik Construction – which offers the world’s widest range of rock drilling, rock excavation, processing, demolition and bulk materials-handling equipment – for Pilot Crushtec to take over the regional distribution of its full range of mobile crushing and screening products. This has given the company instant access to a much larger pool of equipment and business.

“In just a few short months, the results of this partnership are already living up to our expectations. New doors have opened and opportunities for higher volume applications (up to 1 000 tph) are overflowing,” says Pilot Crushtec sales director, Graham Kleinhans.

While it took less than a month for the company to sell its first Sandvik machine, it is the number of units sold in the first three months of 2013 that is noteworthy. “Since January this year, we have already delivered 17 Sandvik units, mostly to the mining industry.”

Kleinhans believes this success is attributable to a combination of factors –a thriving iron ore and manganese sector, robust, heavy-duty, high capacity Sandvik machines capable of handling the typical hard rock materials associated with these metals and a “savvy sales approach unlike no other”.

There has also been much success in the Northern Cape and Zimbabwe diamond markets with the massive QE440 scalping screen unit that caters to high volume aggregate producers. It boasts 40% more screening area than its “little brother”– the market leading QE340. The stockpiling conveyors are both wider and higher, to deal with both the increased production capacity and facilitate larger stockpiles. “In a nutshell, it is cost effective to operation and is well suited to receiving mass tonnage sand move large volumes.”

“There are a number of sound reasons why Sandvik Construction considered Pilot Crushtec as a business partner. Pilot Crushtec has a reputation for being a dynamic and successful company, an independent business that is a major player in local and Southern African markets. The company has the technical expertise and field service capabilities to support the Sandvik brand and we share similar values,” Duncan McGregor, Sandvik product area president: mobile crushers and screens said when the alliance agreement was first announced.

Accommodating and preparing for substantial growth

“Pilot Crushtec’s business grew by 25% in our last financial year, thanks largely to the mining sector. Our target for this year is another 25% growth, which we will probably exceed. Our current order book is already indicating the likelihood of this,” says Kleinhans.

Specific sales targets of 100 units for 2013 have already been outlined for the Sandvik range. Considering the company comfortably sold well over 100 units of the Terex Finlay range, Kleinhans believes such targets are “very achievable”. Pilot Crushtec’s strategic alliance with Terex Finlay has subsequently been terminated.

With the continued anticipation for so much growth in the pipeline, the company is investing heavily in both logistics and its manufacturing facility.“We are retraining staff and are expanding our field service and aftermarket service offering. We are also adding a second floor to our spare parts department.”

Future growth will also be driven through attaining more business in Africa. “We believe regionalising is the key to doing this right. Priority countries include Zambia, Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Zimbabwe and Namibia.

“Looking ahead, we remain hungry and on the lookout for more products, both internally and from a diversification point of view. We will, however, always be first and foremost a mobile and crushing screen specialist.”Sandro Scherf, CEO of Pilot Crushtec reiterates: “Pilot Crushtec is constantly evolving, and this new association with Sandvik is consistent with our own forward thinking.”

Strength in sales

Kleinhans believes Pilot Crushtec’s success remains solidly grounded upon one key factor –sales. “It’s basic sales’ 101 principals that deliver results – you have to go out and find the work and you have to save your clients money by finding and offering them economical, cheaper, leaner processes and methods. Our customers welcome this approach and partnerships are then easily established.”

The company also prefers to keep machines in stock, which its peers may consider a ‘gamble’. “Companies are no longer able to plan far ahead, in terms of equipment orders and what they do, but we believe in our business and are prepared to carry the risks associated with stockholding. When a client needs something we can get it to them quickly as a result.”

Pilot Crushtec personnel will also be responsible for all Sandvik maintenance and will ensure a vast spare parts stockholding is always available.

The Sandvik range includes:

Mid-range mobiles:

Jaw crushers: QJ 340, QJ 330: QJ 240

Cone crushers: QH 440, QH 330

Impact crushers: QI 440, QI 340, QI 240

Screen: QA 450; QA 440, QA 430, QA 340, QA 331, QA 240, QA 140

Scalper: QE 440, QE 340, QE 330, QE 140

Heavy-range mobiles:

Jaw crushers: UJ 640, UJ 540, UJ 440i, UJ 440E

Cone crusher: UH 640, UH 440i, US 440i

Scalper: QE 440

Wheeled-range mobiles

Cone crusher: UH 421, UH 320

Impact crusher: UV 320

Screen: UF 320