New online machine store will slash prices by up to 45%
Lonking's excavators can now be bought online
A brave new business model which promises to deliver Chinese construction equipment with US-style customer support and after-sales service to the North American market was launched at Conexpo on Wednesday.
Customers can buy machines online at between 30 and 45% less than competitor products, according to new company International Construction Products (IPC) Direct.
IPC is the brainchild of Tim Frank, former chairman of Sany America, who has also worked for Volvo Construction Equipment, CNH Global and Caterpillar. He has worked since October last year to set up the new venture, recruiting industry heavyweights such as CEO Wes Lee and signing up funders, dealers and industry partners.
“We built this company to take what is a great product, built by the lowest cost manufacturing entities in history and deliver it in a way that meets the demands of North America,” said Frank.
IPC signed a Deal with Chinese manufacturer Lonking at the end of last year and expects to sell 300 of its machines by the end of 2014. Lonking is China’s leading manufacturer of wheeled loaders, producing 50,000 units a year. “That’s almost three times the market size of North America. They know what they are doing,” said Frank.
IPC has also signed up pre-approved dealers at 120 locations. “We expect to triple that number in the next 30 days,” said Frank. The dealers will help to provide the after-sales service IPD is promising.
To kick off, Lonking will be supplying four models of wheeled excavators and three wheeled loaders. Dozers, rollers and forklifts will be added later in the year. IPC also intends to set up deals with other Chinese or Asian suppliers, to supply products that Lonking will not manufacture.
To allay potential fears about sourcing parts from China, the Lonking machines will contain components from trusted brands, said Frank: “We decided to meet North American requirements we should put in components that North American customers know and appreciate.”
IPC said that it will be able to deliver any replacement parts within 48 hours; all machines will have a three-year warranty and it is offering a 30-day money back guarantee if customers aren’t satisfied with their machine.