Jo'burg plays host to Africa's largest construction machinery fair

JCB's stand at bauma Africa 2013. (Image source: Ben Watts)bauma Africa saw the launch of a host of construction machinery products targeting and tailored towards the African market.

Among them was UK construction equipment specialists JCB, who used the platform to launch its new 20-tonne JS205 crawler excavator.

The JS205, which it is hoped will replace the JS200HD, will be sold in markets throughout Africa, India and Asia, and will help African customers who have to face up to the difficult challenges associated with maintenance, according to JCB director of overseas regions, Patrick Massardy.

"The JS205 crawler excavator will work in very tough conditions and throughout the year," said Massardy of the machine, which features a 5.9-litre six-cylinder engine.

"The JS205 is an outstanding achievement by JCB’s engineers and will definitely appeal to African markets and customers," he added.

Speaking at the show, Cem Peksaglam, CEO of Wacker Neuson SE, described Africa as "a market with great potential" for the German manufacturer.

"We are already represented in several African countries with our range of light construction equipment, and have enjoyed particular success with our equipment for soil compaction, as well as in the field of concrete technology," he said.

"We feel, however, that we can generate more demand for both our light and compact equipment ranges by selling products that are even better tailored to the needs of local customers."

The equipment manufacturer, which counts Wacker Neuson, Kramer Allrad, Kramer and Weidemann among its product brands, deployed a selection of new products geared towards the African market at Gallagher Convention Centre, including its Value Rammer.

Eugene Brown, regional president of Wacker Neuson Africa, said, "Since the launch of this rammer, we have seen very good demand for the machine, without cannibalising the existing business. With this product line, we can address new customer segments that were previously closed to us because of the pricing of our premium line machines."

During the event, Wacker Neuson also presented a cheque for R31,000 (US$3,100) to anti-rhino poaching project Unite Against Poaching. The money was raised through a commitment by the German firm to make a donation to the cause every time a Value Rammer is sold.

"We had great expectations for the first Bauma Africa," Brown remarked. “For us, the trade fair was a unique opportunity to show a professional audience the professionalism of Wacker Neuson and to establish contacts to new customers and potential dealers across the entire continent."

Nigel Irvine, sales and marketing director at Terex Finlay, said bauma Africa had given the firm the opportunity to launch its new I-100 impact crusher to the southern African marketplace following its unveiling in April at bauma Munich.

“We’ve had fantastic acceptance from the marketplace to this machine in Europe, the Americas, and Australasia, and we expect it will enjoy similar success here in South Africa,” Irvine stated.

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