After last year’s Sennebogen national sales meeting, Oliver Nachevski, vice president and chief operating officer of Strongco, told his organization “There’s no reason we can’t be at the top.”
At this year’s meeting, he was proven right.
As the previous vice-president of Strongco’s construction and cranes division, Nachevski had a personal hand in the firm’s success with Sennebogen.
“We had some good momentum going,” Nachevski said. “We had reorganized internally to put our focus on the construction and cranes portfolio. Sennebogen builds a good product; upkeep is simple; and it’s very much complementary to the needs of our Volvo customers.”
Strongco, based in Mississauga, Ontario, first took on Sennebogen material handlers in 2010, as the regional dealer in Atlantic Canada. Since then, Sennebogen has awarded additional territories to Strongco in rural Quebec, northern Ontario and Alberta.
Strongco has built its success in areas outside of Sennebogen’s traditional material handling strongholds. Strongco sells most of its Sennebogen machines into forestry applications.
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Nachevski feels that his team is able make inroads with these customers because they speak the language of the customers, in more ways than one.
“A number of our people know the millyards in these woodland areas very well,” he said. “They’re local to the area, and our Volvo loaders have opened doors for them in the past. Some of our sales reps in Quebec and New Brunswick are fluently bilingual: they grew up speaking both English and French. Our Sennebogen RSMs bring us the same kind of knowledge customer support, with a heritage in forestry and the ability to speak the local language. We have strong personal connections in these regions, as well as first-hand understanding of the mill’s operations.”
Strongco has also taken advantage of Sennebogen’s Training Center in Stanley, North Carolina, to ensure expert service support for its customers. Nachevski notes the millyards are often in the most remote locations, so Strongco arranges for the customers’ own technicians to attend the free technical courses offered by the manufacturer.
Sennebogen’s focused approach to purpose-built machines has attracted particular attention in wood yards with its purpose-built 830 M-T log loader. However, the yards in their territories have recognized the value in the complete range of Sennebogen purpose-built tracked and rubber-tired material handlers.
Reaching the top of Sennebogen’s dealer list, Nachevski is now working for a repeat performance in 2019.
“There is still lots of opportunity for us out there,” he said. “We had some sales early on to scrap recyclers and that industry is becoming active again. We just have to keep looking, talking about the success our customers have had and continue to use the services available to us from Sennebogen designed to grow our business.”