SOUTH AFRICA – Agricultural vehicle supplier Argo Tractors South Africa (Argo SA) has inaugurated its new head office in South Africa, just off the R21 highway, in Kempton Park.
The new premise built at a cost of R100m, hosts a 6 000 m2 building, which includes office space and a 650 m2 showroom, as well as a 100 m2 training facility. About 2 300 m2 of space is dedicated to assembly, while 2 000 m2 is designated for spares.
MD of Argo SA, Godfried Heydenrych, told stakeholders during a launch event of the new headquarters that the semi-knocked down (SKD) assembly area has between 12 and 16 bays, which can produce 2 000 units a year.
The SKD Landini and McCormick tractors originate from Italy and India, with the parent company Argo being headquartered in Italy.
In turn, the spares area holds about 95 000-line parts at any given time, with about 355 000 items dispatched daily.
Argo SA plans to hold 400 tractors on site, for quicker delivery to customers and is optimistic that its new premises will help to further increase its market share, which has grown from 21% in 2020 to 27%.
It supports the markets of South Africa, Angola, Botswana, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Heydenrych pointed out that the new premises was much more efficient than the company’s prior premises, promising reduced downtime and quicker order turnaround for customers.
Agro SA plans to install solar photovoltaic capacity at the building soon. It has already installed an 18 000 ℓ/h borehole for water independence from the municipality if needed.
“The new operational site will be dedicated to displaying high-performance products designed for modern agriculture and is home to an advanced training centre to ensure continuous development of the necessary technical and application skills within the dealer network,” states Heydenrych.
He adds that the company also offers a demonstration field that is a few minutes’ drive away from the offices, to allow customers to personally experience the Argo product range.
Agricultural machine maker Bridgestone enters South African market
The opening of the new facility follows the launch of ultrahigh-performance tyres by auto and truck parts manufacturer, Bridgestone, designed for South Africa’s agricultural sector.
Bridgestone entered the agricultural sector in Europe as far back as 2013. Backed up by Bridgestone’s usual high-quality research and development, its agriculture range has gained a significant share of the market serving the larger, most powerful agricultural vehicles and equipment.
“Bringing this brand into the South African agricultural sector makes great sense given the fact that our farmers are renowned for adopting the latest and best technology to improve their profitability.
“South African farmers receive substantially less protection and financial support than many competitor countries, so their success is due in no small part to their ability to use technology to overcome the challenges of farming under challenging conditions,” said Bridgestone Southern Africa agriculture manager Willie Stander.
The company’s Firestone brand has been active in the agricultural sector for a number of years. Introduction of the Bridgestone brand widens the company’s solutions offering to take in the top end of the market.
Its launch offering comprises the VT-combine, VT-Tractor and VX-Tractor with the flagship range, the VT-Tractor radial tyre, designed for the most advanced, heavy and sophisticated machines.