Service support is a key differentiator in the equipment business
Service support is a key differentiator in the equipment business

Service support is a key differentiator in the equipment business

H Jayaram

H Jayaram, MD & CEO of GMMCO, which represents multinational giant Caterpillar in India, speaks on the dynamics of the equipment business.

Provide our readers information about GMMCO and its relationship with Caterpillar.
GMMCO Limited is a part of the CK Birla Group, a growing $1.6 billion conglomerate that has a history of enduring relationships with renowned global companies. GMMCO´s core competency lies in sales and support across three major product segments - construction, resource industries, and energy & transportation, apart from other infrastructure equipment. Over the last five decades, the organisation has spread its wings to serve core sectors of infrastructure building such as roads, airports, seaports, urban development and other construction activities, granite, cement, iron ore, coal and other quarrying and mining activities, power, oil & gas, marine and renewable energy.

GMMCO has been an integral part of India´s infrastructure development activities, providing world-class products, solutions and service to its customers, and thereby participating and supporting the development of infrastructure in the country. GMMCO manages sales and support of machines, engines and equipment for mining, construction and road-laying activities. GMMCO has represented Caterpillar - the world leader in machines and engines - for three decades in the central, western and southern parts of India. GMMCO offers ´one-stop solutions´ to customers.

GMMCO has 100+ branches with more than 2,500 employees to cater to customer needs with better coverage, truly helping to build the India of tomorrow. The company also has partnerships with Daimler, Bharat Benz, Kroll Cranes, Kress Carrier Industry Solutions, Juntann Rigs, Sennebogen, SEM and Sitech.

What are the major types of equipment commonly used in the cement industry? What is your market share in each of these categories?
Due to increasing demand in the infrastructure sector, heavy machineries are widely used nowadays with major cement producers, for quarry operation. These include:

  • Dump trucks (40 to 100 tonne class)
  • Excavators (40 to 110 tonne class)
  • Dozers (300 HP to 400 HP)
  • Wheel loaders (3 to 12 tonne class)

GMMCO and CAT engage with cement producers to satisfy their needs, giving them fleet recommendations and robust service support. CAT has a full range of equipment, which are widely used by the cement industry.

The cement industry is one of major purchasers of these equipment after the mining industry, and more requirements are expected to come up in the near future.

Please give us some updates on these products and the latest offerings. What are the changes you have introduced in these products in the recent past?
GMMCO sells and supports the following range of equipment which are used in the cement industry:

  • Dump trucks - 770G (40T), 772G (50T), 773E (60T), 777D (100T)
  • Excavators - 340D2 (40T), 349D2 (45T), 374FL (75T), 390FL (90T)
  • Dozers - D8R (300HP), D9R (400HP)
  • Wheel loaders - 2021 (3T), 950 (5T), 980H (8T), 988 (12T)

In terms of changes, machines are rolling out of the factory with more technically advanced features to meet current customer needs. Machines are integrated with technology enabled productivity solutions to enable remote monitoring and prevent unnecessary downtime and major breakdowns. Our machines are equipped with more safety features, which have been recommended by DGMS for all mining activities. Caterpillar has built an R&D set-up at Chennai, which is always exploring the possibility to increase productivity and fuel efficiency of machines.

Last year, CAT introduced a new series of wheel loaders, the 988 "K", which is 20 per cent more fuel efficient than the preceding "H" series. This market is always looking out for radical changes, and we are well prepared with innovative products.

What is your business model for leasing out mining equipment to industry? How successful is it? Are there any takers from the cement industry?
The cement business is capex-dependent, and most of the companies have good cash resources and take advantage of equipment depreciation. Hence, the customer chooses full ownership, instead of leasing.

How do you provide after-sales service? Your parent company Caterpillar is well known for using information technology for customer service; provide us details on that.
The equipment business is evaluated based on service support and it is one of the key differentiators. Each branch is well equipped with service vehicles, diagnostics and special tools, along with service manuals and parts catalogues. GMMCO imparts refresher training courses on a regular basis to customer support engineers and mechanics, so that they remain cutting-edge and provide better value to customers.

Contracted field support is offered through various Customer Support Agreements (CSAs) that are tailored to customer needs. CSAs can take the form of:

  • Annual Maintenance Contracts
  • Maintenance & Repair Contracts
  • Preventive Maintenance Contracts
  • Total Maintenance & Repair Contracts

We maintain fully equipped state-of-the-art workshop facilities at Nagpur and Chennai to cater to major services.

New technologies can transform your equipment data into a powerful management tool for reducing costs, creating efficiencies and improving profitability.

CAT Equipment Management Solutions put the latest technologies to work for business, offering specialised advice and easy-to-use targeted services. By optimising equipment data, a customer can make well-informed and timely equipment management decisions that can help control costs, improve operations, manage people and reduce risk.

Please comment on time-based maintenance and condition-based maintenance. Which one would you recommend?
Time-based maintenance is generic, scheduled maintenance as per OEM recommendations, with fixed time intervals. Condition-based maintenance is random, based on tests.

We recommend time-based maintenance to our customers as the overall profitability to the customer is better, compared to condition-based maintenance.

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