Kubota Construction has announced an order for 140 mini-excavators by GAP Group, the UK's largest independent plant and tool hire company. The deal marks the first major win since the appointment of Kubota Construction's first dedicated Key Account Manager.
GAP has been a regular user of Kubota Construction for many years, and today estimates that Kubota accounts for around 95% of its fleet of mini-excavators, situated at 59 depots across the UK.
The 2012 batch demonstrates the breadth of Kubota Construction's range, as its composition shows a marked shift from previous orders by GAP. Of the 140 machines being delivered, 30 are 6-tonne models and 60 are 8-tonne models.
"The mini-excavator market is skewing towards larger sizes as customers need to handle bigger projects, and we've had to take on increased numbers to meet growing demand," explains Ken Stewart, Procurement Manager for GAP. "We're more than confident, based on past experience, that the Kubota equipment will be up to the task."
Ken Stewart says that GAP sees the Kubota name as a badge of quality. "In addition to their mini-excavators, we use other items that run on Kubota engines. Whatever the application, we've always found Kubota products to be well-engineered, reliable and hard-wearing - ideal for customers who require construction equipment that can stand up to the rigors of demanding working environments."
In addition, GAP cites the fact that Kubota Construction fits anti-theft technology to its mini-excavators as standard, as being instrumental in bringing peace of mind to its customers. "Good security is a must, and we use Kubota's anti-theft technology alongside other systems as part of a robust protocol to protect our investment."
With so many Kubota models in the fleet, GAP's workshop personnel and foremen have developed an exceptional working knowledge of the brand. "I've been told many times by colleagues within GAP that the Kubota products don't suffer many servicing issues, which is a huge testament to their quality."
He adds that the excellent long-term cost of ownership of Kubota models extends as far as selling them on. "Kubota mini-excavators tend to retain their value, giving us good residual income to put back into the business when we need to upgrade our fleet."
The 2012 GAP order is the first major deal brokered by Rebecca Bryson, Kubota Construction's new Key Account Manager. Bryson was appointed to this role - a first for Kubota in the UK - in order to bring added value to the company's nationwide customers such as GAP.
As part of the order, Kubota Construction will be taking a greater role in supporting GAP to get the best of its fleet. "We'll be helping out on Open Days and liaising with depots on training and sales requirements, in order to help GAP get the best out of their Kubota fleet," explains Rebecca Bryson.
"We're delighted with Rebecca's appointment and see this as the start of a new era in our relationship with Kubota," confirms Ken Stewart. "With a Key Account Manager in place, we're confident that Rebecca will fly the flag for the Kubota range to help increase awareness and highlight the strength of our fleet, both externally to customers and internally to GAP's own staff."