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JCB dealers open the doors to other marks

PLANT - Plant maker gives the green light to dealers to sell complementary machines

JCB'S fledgling compact equipment dealer network has signed a range of partnership deals with non-competing manufacturers.

Until now JCB dealers have sold only the firm's core range.

The move allows them to offer more package deals to customers and opens up markets for JCB compact equipment. For the makers of the complementary products, it allows access to the full weight of the JCB dealer operation.

Site dumper specialist Barford is the first to take advantage of the initiative by signing up with Holt JCB and Greenshields JCB. Barford's dumpers will be sold at 14 compact equipment depots in the southeast, south-west and Wales.

Greenshields has also signed a deal to sell CompAir's range of site compressors across the south-east.

Phil Elam, Greenshields' compact equipment project director, said: 'This is a new direction for us but we think everyone will benefit. We can offer the best distributorship around for these products and it will take our salesmen into new sectors. It will help us sell compact equipment.' He added: 'We are not going to be offering 12 different franchises but are certainly looking at adding more products.' According to Barford managing director Niall Wordsworth the deal will help the firm's efforts to move from third to second place in the dumper market.

He said: 'A manufacturer needs to have a combination of a good product and a good route to market ? JCB's channel to market is second to none.' Barford has cut back its existing dealer network to embrace the JCB dealers.

Mr Wordsworth said: 'Some of my dealers have market share of about 45 per cent, while others had considerably less. I think a lot of that is down to the investment in marketing.

I think the JCB dealers will deliver an increase in sales.' But he stressed that the collaboration did not mean Barford would be selling the business to JCB.

He said: 'This is a family firm and it will remain so for the next 20 years. Our collaborat ion is with the dealers.' n JCB has struck one of its biggest deals ever with the sale of £18 million of equipment to GE Equipment Services Plant Hire. The deal covers 500 machines including minis, telehandlers, backhoes, rough terrain forklifts and larger excavators for the Bristol-based national hirer.