As pumping applications solutions provider Integrated Pump Technology continues its growth story across the African continent, part of its success is attributed to the empowering of its local agents with extensive skills training, a hands-on approach with customers and ensuring a large stockholding is on hand to limit downtime.
The company has distribution agreements from Swedish pumps manufacturer Grindex to distribute the submersible pumps range, and with over 20 distributors across the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region extensively trained on various aspects of the Grindex range, Integrated Pump Technology is assured that its strategically situated distributor networks are well prepared to service the increasing customer base.
The Johannesburg-based company places a strong emphasis on training and skills transfer, undertaken either at its head office or in-country, to ensure that distributors are fully prepared, amid the company’s drive to increase its footprint in Africa, says Integrated Pump Technology key account manager Justin Bawden.
Speaking to Engineering News & Mining Weekly, he says that all distributors understand the pump applications well and are equipped to guide customers, service the pumps and undertake various surveys on site, along with other skills to better serve the needs of the customer.
The company, which currently services seven countries from South Africa, including Zambia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar, Botswana, Namibia, Zimbabwe and Mozambique, has also trained some of its customers on site on how to operate the pumps efficiently and ensure the performance and reliability of the Grindex pumps.
Initially, Integrated Pump Technology sold the Grindex range in South Africa and neighbouring countries, however, it is now poised for distribution across entire SADC region following an expansion of the Grindex distributorship in Southern Africa.
New distributorships are in the process of being established across another seven countries, namely Angola, Gabon, Kenya, Malawi, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda, to sell and support the Grindex range, which handles every aspect of mine pumping applications.
While demand grows in the company’s current markets and the new agreements further opens up opportunities in new African markets, the extensive training ensures that Integrated Pump Technology cultivates expertise across the entire distribution network, helping distributors ensure that Grindex pumps are optimally selected, operated and maintained and assuring customers of technical competence, with quality after-market support provided for the full life cycle of a product.
“Our focus is on reducing downtime for the customer, wherever the site is located, and contributing to them achieving the lowest total cost of ownership,” Bawden adds.
In line with this focus of minimal downtime and quick turnaround, Integrated Pump Technology holds extensive stock to enable rapid deployment and is encouraging its distributor network to do the same, engaging regularly with its distribution network to analyse customer demand and trends in each region and facilitate effective planning of stockholding levels.
“We examine the trends in the various markets and prepare for that. The aim is to actually have sufficient stockholding at distributors in Africa as well. Keeping downtime low is very high on our priority list.”
That strategy, along with its hands-on approach with all customers, has been working well, he concludes.