Since April 2014 Prima Equipment, together with Mr. Salif Sidibe are studying on the possibility of opening a joint venture in Mali. Mr. Sidibe was born in Mali and studied in Paris. Currently he owns businesses in both Mali and Belgium, has a good local network and knows the way of doing business in Mali. Based on a mutual interest of selling heavy machinery, Prima Equipment International and B&B, the local company of Mr. Sidibe, opened in September 2014 together an office in Bamako Mali, under the name Prima Equipment Mali SA. They currently have 2 sales representatives employed and are working on opening a workshop to expand local services.
Prima Equipment was founded in 1997 under the name Euro Machinery and the company sells and rents out heavy machinery for road construction and mining purposes. Furthermore they give service to their customers all over the World as a one stop shop for heavy machinery and all related products. The company is owned by the family Haverkotte and is since 2010 successful under the name Prima Equipment.
As part of their business strategy, Prima Equipment decided to be more close to their customers in growing markets. And as Africa as a continent belongs to one of the growing markets for Prima Equipment, the board decided to look for a country in Africa to open a sales office and a workshop. Although Mali was recently rather unstable Mali turned out to be a good opportunity to start a first African office for Prima Equipment. Mali lays rather central in French speaking Africa, the local mining opportunities, the need for infrastructural projects and the reliable local partner. For Prima Equipment this was the basis of choosing Mali as a pilot for expanding African business.
Besides selling and servicing machines in Mali, the Company also, as a part of their Corporate Social Responsibility, helps to set up a school for mechanics and drivers. They do this in cooperation with the Royal Dutch Army and the Soma, the equivalent of the school in The Netherlands. Together they help to build up the school, the school program and school structure. They offer the students an internship and when they have vacant positions they can offer them a job.
As a part of the product portfolio the company recently added a LiuGong dealership in Mali as an alternative for used equipment, and the first offers to interested customer stem to be a fact. LiuGong is a Chinese producer of good quality machinery, suitable to the African market and conditions, and they are good represented in English speaking Africa. Through Prima Equipment they now have access to Mali and the surrounding French speaking countries.
Prima Equipment plans to open a workshop in Mali in the beginning of 2016 to expand their local services. Prima Equipment will provide the local company with rebuilded machines. As the most modern type of machines are not suitable for the African market, due to contaminated fuel, humidity, heat and dust. Prima Equipment rebuilds the older type of machines and can deliver them with a 12 month warranty. In their well-equipped workshop in The Netherlands they have all facilities and know how to do a frame up rebuild and in this way they can offer used machines, as new to the African market.
With this new entity in Mali and the opportunities it already offers, Prima Equipment hopes to open new offices in other African countries over the next few years.