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Case Study

Mastenbroek's 'Bulldog' Paves the Way for Overseas Success

Global Success Stories: Mastenbroek's 'Bulldog' Paves the Way for Overseas Success

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Experienced exporter’s ‘Bulldog’ sees groundbreaking overseas success as the first machine arrives in California.

About the company

Mastenbroek’s groundbreaking expertise is in the design and manufacture of self-propelled trenchers. Covering utility, offshore and agricultural applications, their precision engineered machines support the global cable and pipe laying industry. From their rural county location, they supply equipment to over 60 countries worldwide.

The biggest developing sector for the company is renewable energy, with North America one of the main markets. Mastenbroek has been working in the US for some years but appointing a regional dealer on the West Coast allowed the business to take advantage of the opportunities presented by the growth in wind, solar and hydroelectric. They have recently had significant breakthrough with one of their smaller utility trenchers.

“We call it the Bulldog for the American market because relatively speaking it's a small, compact, but very powerful machine, and it’s very British. The name has really caught on,” says Commercial Director Christopher Pett.

“This year, the first machine has landed in California and it's going to be used to trench in renewable electric cables. We anticipate many more orders to flow for many years.”

DBT support

Attending trade exhibitions has been an integral part of Mastenbroek’s exporting strategy. Recent visits to ConExpo in Las Vegas and Bauma in Munich, supported by DBT, contributed towards securing their new dealer in the USA and the significant export success.

“Being able to set up a meeting at Bauma with the dealer we were considering partnering with, was a very useful staging post. We then followed that by attending as part of the DBT trade delegation to ConExpo last year.”

“We are very grateful for the support from DBT,” explains Christopher. “The cost of attending these major international exhibitions has sky rocketed since COVID, not just the cost to go there, but the travel and accommodation associated with it. The funding really helps us control the budget and mitigates the risks associated with attending. We’re a very a small player against the likes of Caterpillar and JCB. The support helps us be competitive.”

Christopher keeps an ongoing dialogue with ITA Sarah Dudley to keep up to date with news, local, regional and international events and sometimes requires country specific information. Following a recent contract for supplying equipment to Colombia, a place where they had never done business before Christopher looked to DBT for advice.

“Sarah made the necessary introductions, and I was able to meet the DBT team in the British Embassy in Bogota. It's always very useful to have expert local contacts to navigate more challenging new markets.”

UK Export Academy

Even as an experienced exporter, Christopher has found access to the UK Export Academy particularly beneficial. Attending the Masterclass ‘How to generate more business from trade show exhibitions’ was useful food for thought when looking to optimise his time spent exhibiting overseas.

The session covered the critical areas of exhibiting, such as how to attract attendees to a stand, convert initial interest into qualified sales leads, raise brand awareness and deliver measurable results.

“Although we've been doing exhibitions for many years, it's always interesting to be to be challenged and stimulated and get new ideas.”

“We’re very grateful for the support from DBT advisers both in the UK and overseas. The funding really helps us control the budget and mitigates the risks associated with attending important international exhibitions. We’re a very a small player in this sector and the support helps us be internationally competitive.”

Christopher Pett, Commercial Director, Mastenbroek