Ag Equipment Intelligence
Plans to expand sales of Kuhn brand fertilizer broadcasters and seed drills in North America have been underpinned by significant investment in the company that manufactures these products.
Swiss engineering group Bucher Industries, which owns Kuhn Group, has acquired a 24% minority stake in the Rauch agricultural equipment company in Germany.
Bucher says the new capital, which has not been quantified, will further strengthen the established collaboration between Kuhn and Rauch in Europe. It will also lay the foundation for successful expansion into countries further afield, particularly in North and South America.
Rauch, which celebrates its 90th year in 2011, specializes in pneumatic seed drills and spreaders for fertilizer and winter road maintenance materials. The business, which employs 300 staff, generated sales revenues approaching the equivalent of $58 million in its 2009-10 financial year.
“By concentrating on its core ‘metering and spreading’ technologies, continuously investing in the business and focusing strongly on the needs of farmers and custom operators, Rauch became a European leader in fertilizer spreaders,” notes Bucher CEO, Philip Mosimann. “Together with Kuhn, Rauch then entered the market for seeding machinery and has continuously expanded this product line.”
Last year, Rauch consolidated several production facilities into a new state-of-the-art factory. Managing director Norbert Rauch says the $27.5 million investment was imperative in light of continued strong business growth, the increased demands of the market, and to remain cost-competitive.
Kuhn North America Inc. sells Rauch-built products in the U.S. market through 5 distribution centers — Ridgefield, Wash., Greeley, Colo., Vernon, N.Y., Columbia, Tenn., and Brodhead, Wis., where it also manufactures and assembles equipment.
Kuhn Group's Axis disc spreader in action.