NAIROBI, Kenya, May 20 – A leading construction equipment supplier has announced a new financing module for dual-functionality backhoe loaders to service increasing demand in the sector projected to grow by at least six per cent annually over the next decade.
The new equipment manufactured by UK-based JCB boasts of two arms on both ends of the backhoe with unrivaled capabilities for trenching, excavating, lifting and loading.
The firm has partnered with NIC, Stanbic and Barclays banks to allow prospective buyers to acquire the equipment under a special financing arrangement with the three financial institutions.
Suhel Yakub, a lead Sales Executive with JCB’s sole importer in the region – Ganatra Plant and Equipment Limited – described the backhoe as a game changer with a permissible loading height of 3.23 metres and weight of up to 2 tonnes.
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“We invented the machine in 1953 and since then we’ve been innovating it to what it is today. It combines two key benefits – the loader arm which is on the front side of the machine and an excavator arm which is on the rear side,” he said during a recent review of the equipment.
The backhoe is also equipped with a standard multi-faceted bucket which is able to execute bulldozing functions with ease.
“We’ve put – as standard – a multi-purpose bucket so its work is not just to do loading. We have a dozer blade, it can move earth, it loads, it can smoothen, and can grab. You can actually make your own road,” Yakub said.
Ganatra Plant and Equipment Limited Managing Director, Altaf Ganatra, described the new price offering for the backhoe as a unique opportunity that offers construction companies the much-need boost to their businesses.
“We are very excited about this new initiative. Acquiring the world’s best Back-hoe Loader at the new offer price is an opportunity not to be missed,” he said.
“By significantly reducing the cost of procuring a JCB Back-hoe Loader, we hope to increase mechanization to boost productivity. The offer will also be attractive to Kenyan entrepreneurs who can make very high returns by renting out the machines. We want to also make it affordable so that customers currently looking at used equipment can now opt to buy new machines instead,” he added.
JCB Regional Manager, Saurabh Gandhi, described the equipment as essential to Kenya’s rapidly expanding construction industry and government’s affordable housing initiative under the Big Four 2017-2022 development roadmap which also entails food security, manufacturing, and universal healthcare.
“Kenya is a very important market for JCB because of the country’s fast economic growth. The growing urbanization is in turn driving massive infrastructure growth. JCB is in a position to support this growth with its market leading construction equipment range,” Gandhi noted.
Kenya’s construction industry has reported a steady expansion in the recent past with an average growth of six per cent over the years.
The 2018 Economic Survey published by the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics reported a 6.3 growth in the sector with a wage employment growth of 2.2 per cent from 168,000 persons in 2017 to 172,000 persons in 2018.
Loans advanced to the construction sector equally swelled by 1.8 per cent from 112 billion in 2017 to Sh 114 billion last year.
Government spending on roads increased by 18.8 per cent in 2018 with the completion of private building works in Nairobi alone soaring 5.3 per cent to 466.8 points from 443.1 points in the preceding year.
Completion of building works however declined by 2.5 per cent to 57.9 points compared to 59.4 points in 2017.
Growth in the construction sector pushed cement consumption up 1.6 per cent to 5,946.7 tonnes in 2018.