Focusing on Mining Machinery
Not only North America, the Hitachi Construction Machinery Americas business also includes Latin America. While the major markets in North America are construction projects and civil engineering, onsite mining machinery, including mine development, accounts for the majority in Latin America.
“In Latin America we have dealers in Brazil, Chile, Peru, Columbia, Suriname, and Mexico, plus one in the Dominican Republic, and another one in the Caribbean. Our goal for the time being is to boost our name recognition in those nations,” explains Babliton Cardoso, Senior Director of Mining Equipment Sales. Brazil-born Cardoso, who joined Hitachi Construction Machinery Americas in January 2022, has an extensive career in the mining and construction machinery industry including the European market and managing South American subsidiaries.
“In mining machinery it is crucial to maintain close relations with the customer. Dealers also have to offer a strong sales and service system, and we work with them to suggest new solutions to customers,” continues Cardoso. Mining machinery is not only huge, it has to be able to operate for long periods of time under severe conditions. Mines in Latin America are often located far from urban areas, making it difficult to secure workers, and in most cases mining machinery runs on a 24/7 schedule, 365 days a year.
“A single piece of mining machinery is expected to run 6,000 – 8,000 hours a year (250 – 330 24-hour days), for ten years,” Cardoso explains. “On average there are six to eight rigid trucks to one mining excavator in a mine site, which means we have a chance to sell them as well. Today’s industry demands a whole range of systems and technologies to keep machinery working non-stop, so we have to work as a team with dealers to earn and keep customer trust.”
In recognition of the situation, Hitachi Construction Machinery will soon offer autonomous dump trucks to the Latin American mining industry, capable of driving themselves without human operators. “Safety is at the heart of all our technology,” says Cardoso. “Our mine operation management system helps prevent trucks from colliding with each other, while Aerial Angle and other onboard functions provide dump trucks with peripheral vision, just like our excavators. There are also functions to sense danger in the immediate vicinity when parking, and to brake to prevent collisions when traveling. Advanced stability control minimizes body slip, delivering stable performance even on South American mining roads in winter snow. These technologies are invaluable in selling our products to the mining industry.”
The sales strategy in the region is going to be built around excavators for mining. The high-performance, robust oil pump technology is crucial for giant excavators in the mining field.
Cardoso has confidence in Hitachi Construction Machinery: “We’re very strong in the field, because we can offer both excavators and dump trucks, backed up by the Hitachi Construction Machinery brand name and proven reliability. We’re further improving our rep in the mining markets we serve now, and are developing dealers in surrounding nations to offer mining machinery as well as unmatched dealer support. That’s basically the Hitachi Construction Machinery strategy for Latin America.”