The name Nsimbi means steel in isiZulu and it’s a fitting name for a new equipment company that is showing resilience and using innovation to change the way business is done in the earthmoving industry.
GERARD PETER spoke to Nsimibi Equipment founder CRAIG DUBE to find out more.
Founded only three years ago, Nsimbi is the brainchild of Dube and his former sales manager Bruce Rogers. At the time, both worked for a company that supplies heavy equipment to mines.
It was on a trip to Lesotho that they decided to start their own business. “We took our savings and bought two used excavators that we rebuilt and sold at a good profit and the rest is history,” explains Dube.
It was while the company was buying used equipment from mines that Nsimbi started to attract interest from Australian original equipment manufacturers (OEMs).
Soon it received an offer to sell OEM equipment to the mines. It started by supplying small belly plate jacks, a machine that used to remove the belly pan from dozers and it was a success. Soon, Nsimbi was supplying the jacks to Anglo American and Glencore.
Today, the company is the local supplier of three well-known earthmoving brands, namely Duratray , a manufacturer of all-steel trays; Jacon, a manufacturer of purpose built equipment; and Nivek that manufactures a track driven all-terrain, battery operated, remote controlled belly plate jack.
Challenging sacred cows
Dube explains that Nsimbi is now focused on supplying equipment to the mining industry but with a different approach to the traditional ways of doing business.
“We want to show mining companies the benefits of choosing our equipment before they commit to buying our products,” he says. “As such, we engage the services of an industry expert to determine what a mines’ needs are.
“We look at a project’s requirements, the challenges and how our innovative products can improve cost-savings, enhance safety and increase productivity. Also, we send demos to the mines so companies can see the benefits first-hand.”
Dube admits that it is oftentimes a challenge to get an audience with mining companies to discuss its innovative product solutions because many companies have a policy that if it is not broken, then why should they fix it.
That said, Nsimbi has already seen positive results and is getting a lot of repeat business and is regarded as stiff competition for more established industry players.