Staffordshire excavator manufacturer JCB has enjoyed a boost to its business at what is a difficult time for the company.
It has recently attracted a lot of negative publicity following its decision to make hundreds of redundancies.
However, the presentation of its latest Queen’s Award for Enterprise and now a major new order for its mini-diggers has helped to lift some of the gloom over Rocester.
The new order has been placed by Jewson Tool Hire - the rental division of the UK’s leading builder’s merchant, Jewson.
The company has agreed to purchase more than 300 JCB compact machines as part of an extensive upgrading of its fleet.
The move is a bold one as the construction sector is going through a major decline at the moment, however, Jewson said it was confident in its choice.
In total, it has ordered 200 JCB 8014 mini excavators, 100 JCB 8008 micro excavators and 40 HTD5 tracked Dumpster models, which are set to boost the number of compact machines available from the nationwide network of Jewson Tool Hire branches to 900.
The mini and micro excavators are manufactured at JCB Compact Products in Cheadle, while the tracked Dumpster machines are made at the group’s factory at nearby Cecilly Mills.
Although best known for its back hoe loaders, the small excavators have proved to be a major boon for the company.
Small enough to fit through most doorways, the machines are strong enough to do the work of ten men and are extremely popular with for small-scale building projects and even ambitious DIYers.
Part of the machines’ success is its ability to access areas that were previously out of reach and being able to fit through standard doorways means they can be used inside buildings or can access rear gardens.
Jewson Tool Hire director, Richard Pedersen said: “We selected JCB after extensive research into a number of suppliers. Each was given a clear indication of our requirements but JCB’s proposal met our needs for supply, training, repair, maintenance, fleet management, annual certification and price.
“We already use these three machine types, having operated JCB mini excavators and Dumpsters for several years, and they have proved great additions to our fleet. This order helps us to kickstart our aggressive small plant replacement programme, meet our customer needs and will allow us to stock our new 2008 branch openings.”
Jewson Tool Hire’s customer base mainly consists of small to medium size building firms, however, tradespeople and individual cash customers are also common. It said the demand for small plant has shown a constant growth over recent years with users expecting high quality, up-to-date items of plant.