Industrial equipment supplier Caslad is leveraging its industry experience and contacts to solidify themselves as a large player within the light industrial and materials handling market segment.
Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, the company has seen a dramatic increase in sales through the online sector.
“Businesses that didn’t have an online store had to evolve quickly to survive and those who did, grew exponentially. This trend forced us to improve our stock holdings throughout the branches in order to keep up with the demand and better service our vendors,” the company said.
Its directors - Clayton Foster and David Lyus – add that although the economy and industry are not what they were pre-Covid, they “believe it is times like these that are best suited for consolidation and introspection, helping us to better equip the business for greater efficiency and future growth”.
Established in the midst of the 2009 recession, Caslad built itself from the realisation that a “direct source business model was the only sure way of securing longevity”.
However, since then, Caslad has grown from strength to strength through adopting new technology as it emerges, requiring continuous investment.
“By adopting this strategy, we feel that we have an edge over our competitors through our efficiency which maintains our competitive advantage. This requires constant research and development (R&D) and critical assessment of all manufacturing procedures through client interaction and efficiency metrics,” the company’s directors tell Mining Weekly.
“Caslads’ strategy has always been to improve, implement and provide the best quality range of products at a competitive price. It is no longer good enough to just have some of the best quality products on the market to satisfy potential clients,” they add.
Foster, the company’s MD, and Lyus, the manufacturing director, have always believed in efficiency and versatility.
They explain that this mentality “pushed [them] into mechanization”, which essentially means equipping the company’s ever-expanding factory with the latest computer numerical control (CNC) machinery on the market.
“This is possibly one of the major differentiating factors between us and our competitors,” they enthuse.
The company is also driven by quick turnaround times, accessibility and an effective distribution network, which it says, “plays a key role in keeping customers satisfied”.
The company received its first container of castors and wheels in 2011 and established its basic steel fabrication factory in 2013 – the company has grown substantially since then into “one of the larger and more comprehensive importers and manufacturing businesses in our market segment”.
In the years since, Caslad has expanded its product range, which it now imports. These products include lighter duty trolleys, a range of retail ladders, castors, wheels and one of the most comprehensive ranges of lifting and handling equipment on the market.
Products are also manufactured in-house, and includes aluminium and fibreglass ladders, aluminium access equipment, mild and stainless-steel mobile ladders, mild steel trolleys, storage equipment such as bins and bin panels, display equipment, steel scaffolding & aluminium scaffolding components.
In 2017, Caslad opened Durban and Cape Town branches to better facilitate quick turnaround times, accessibility and an effective distribution network.
“Together with our three branches, extensive stock holding capacity and over 50 distributors, we believe this network has been vital in maintaining excellent customer service,” they say.
This has been further bolstered by additional manufacturing facilities in KwaZulu-Natal and Johannesburg to accommodate the increased demand for the company’s established and expanding product range.